LongHorn Steakhouse gears up for opening

TUPELO – After some controlled dry runs to serve diners this weekend, LongHorn Steakhouse will open its doors to the public Monday at 4 p.m.
The Orlando-based Western-themed restaurant has hired about 80 employees at its North Gloster Street location.
A “family and friends” limited seating Friday afternoon allowed the newly hired staff to get a feel for how the restaurant runs, said Tony Smith, the company’s director of operations.
The 6,200-square-foot restaurant can seat up to 242 people.
As its name implies, steaks are the specialty.
But, Smith said, “we’ve got something for everybody.”
“What sets us apart is that our steak, chicken and fish are fresh and never frozen,” said Jennifer Hathcock, the managing partner of the restaurant. “It’s well-seasoned and expertly grilled.”
LongHorn – along with Olive Garden and Red Lobster – is owned by Darden Restaurants of Orlando. Annual sales for LongHorn are expected to reach $1 billion for the first time this year, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
With more than 350 locations, LongHorn is expected to grow to some 800 restaurants in the next few years. It’s currently the No. 3 steak chain behind Outback Steakhouse and Texas Roadhouse.
Beginning Tuesday, the Tupelo LongHorn will open Sunday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

LOCATION: 3574 N. Gloster St., Tupelo

PHONE: (662) 620-6301

HOURS: Sunday to Thursday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

WEBSITE: www.longhornsteakhouse.com

Dennis Seid/NEMS Daily Journal