Bill, Karen and Thomas Burrus

Members of the Burrus family celebrate a ribbon-cutting at their restaurant, the Vine Bistro, at 222 Howard St. From left are Bill and Karyn Burrus and their son, Thomas.

For Karyn and Bill Burrus, the wife and husband proprietors of The Vine Bistro, Greenwood’s newest restaurant, the past two weeks  have been crazy, to say the least.

Crazy in a good way, though.

“Last week was real crazy, packed. You know, just working out all the normal glitches that come with opening a restaurant,” Karyn said Thursday, the day before the Greenwood-Leflore County Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon-cutting for the business.

“We think we’ve got everything worked out this week,” she added.

For Karyn, who has run a food catering business for two decades and continues to do so with her husband, Bill, opening up a restaurant was new territory.  The opportunity, however, “kind of just fell in my lap, really,” she said.

Originally, she was looking to move her catering business from home into a building  while also offering some other food items for customers to pick out of coolers.

That plan changed when the Waldrop family offered the Burruses a chance to move into the 222 Howard St. building.

The building, which previously held Station 222 restaurant, was “too good of a place to not use as a restaurant,” Karyn said.

The Burruses moved into the building Oct. 1 but didn’t start serving food until the first of this month, Karyn said. The catering business is also now run out of the Howard Street building.

The restaurant, which is open for lunch Monday through Friday, offers  sandwiches, soups, salads and some entrees. The biggest seller is the patty melt, Karyn said.

Bill Burrus, who spent 28 years covering sports for The Greenwood Commonwealth, said The Vine Bistro is trying to provide something different for the Greenwood community.

Karyn said she comes in early to prepare food in the morning. Bill comes in to control food on the stove, such as patty melts and po’boys.

During the lunch hour, Karyn works at the front of the restaurant — “I like to be around the people,” she said — while Bill works in the back.

Bill said it’s different getting used to serving through a restaurant since he’s sitting in the kitchen, waiting for orders, whereas with catering all the food is produced at once.

Growing up, Karyn always enjoyed cooking and entertaining people.

She recalled when her sister showed her an article about making money from what you enjoy doing. Getting into the catering business was a no-brainer since that job involved cooking for people as well as providing them with entertainment.

“And then Bill married into it,” Karyn said with a laugh, calling the business “definitely a family affair.”

Thomas Burrus, Bill and Karyn’s 20-year-old son, waits tables, helps in the back and does whatever else needs to be done.

“It’s pretty good,” Bill said of working as a family — though  Karyn added that there can be some moments of frustration.

“We just have a lot of high hopes, doing stuff, getting people downtown, when stuff’s going on downtown,” Bill said, hoping that the pandemic will end sometime soon.

Though the restaurant currently offers only lunch, Bill said there are plans in the future to host bourbon and wine tastings as well as pop-up brunches on weekends and pop-up specialty meals at  night.

•Contact Gerard Edic at 581-7239 or gedic@gwcommonwealth.com.

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