Lilac Restaurant Closed For Good This Weekend
After eight years on historic Montana Avenue, one of Billings' finest restaurants closed their doors.
Lilac restaurant, located in downtown Billings at 2515 Montana Avenue, served up their final meal Saturday 6/13. According to a message on Lilac's Instagram, Executive Chef Jeremy Engebretson said he is mixed with "sadness and gratitude" and the decision to close the restaurant was due to a "combination of circumstances, both global and local."
According to a Facebook post, Lilac would be open for dine-in service on Friday and Saturday from 5 to close. Reservations had to be made, and no walk-in's were taken. Takeout was available from 12noon to 2pm on Saturday. "We will be running what inventory we have this weekend, so once it's gone - it's gone," said Lee on Instagram. "We will also be selling our wine inventory under the same premise," he posted.
View this post on Instagram
Friends and Family - It is with a mixture of sorrow and gratitude that I write this message to you all. A combination of circumstances, both global and local, have lead us to this point. Saturday, June 13, will be our last planned service at Lilac Restaurant. I personally want to thank Billings and all of those outside of my hometown for the support over the last eight years. I am thankful to my family who supported me through the volatile ups and downs, successes and failures, accomplishments and mistakes. I also want to thank my amazing staff, both present and prior, for helping me make a series of lifetime dreams come true. They have become a part of my family and have celebrated with me at my highs and carried me through my lows. I will be forever grateful to each and everyone one of you. This is a challenging time for all of us. Our community has been presented with a series of occasions that many, if not all of us, were unprepared for. Without any history of recourse we are making the best decisions we know how to make each day. I would ask of everyone to try and view one another with grace and compassion as we attempt to move through this historic time. We are all in this together, whether we like it or not. We will be running what inventory we have this weekend, so once it's gone - it's gone. We will also be selling our wine inventory under the same premise. These walls have been my soul for the past eight years. There is a definitive level of sorrow on my heart as I battle my own demons, forced to see that which I've put so much into lock the door while I watch from a distance. On the same note, it reaffirms the level of trust and talent of those who have chosen to surround me in this little hometown gem we named Lilac. We planted our seed, we grew, we flourished, and now our season is over. It has been every bit exhilarating and rewarding as I imagined it would be. Again, I thank everyone from the bottom of my heart. We couldn't have made it this long without you. I hope our little restaurant left a positive mark on some hearts out there; I know this experience has touched mine. Until the next spring, Jeremy Lee
Billing has been lucky to have a talent like Engebretson, who was a semi finalist for the 2018 James Beard Foundation Awards, share his craft. And in case you missed it, another downtown Billings business is getting national recognition. Le Fournil at 2805 1st Avenue North was named one of the "100 Best Bakeries in America" by Food and Wine magazine.
Montana’s largest city is just about as far as you can get from Dijon, France, without looping back, but Francois Morin spent much of his career in the IT world far from home, which is how he ended up marrying a Montana girl, which is how they ended up here, making some of the best baguettes on Mountain Time since 2017. -Food and Wine