Gallatin Canyon fixture shifts to events

By Bay Stephens EBS Editorial Assistant

BIG SKY – The Mexican Steakhouse and Saloon at the Cinnamon Lodge will not be reopening this winter. After eight years of running the locally-loved restaurant renowned for “Taco Tuesdays” and margaritas, owners Morgen and Ryan Ayres are changing their focus to events.

The name will change from Cinnamon Lodge and Adventures to Cinnamon Lodge and Events, reflecting their new business approach: hosting their own events and renting out the lodge for others’ half- and full-day events, with or without the use of the lodge’s commercial kitchen.

“Others will host their own weddings, rehearsals, private parties, reunions, concerts, classes, art shows, retreats and more,” the Ayers wrote in an email. They are already booking weddings and rehearsal dinners and hope to get some holiday parties on the books as well.

“We have talked about doing a murder mystery dinner party, being the base and after party to a bike race or mountain climb, a beer [tasting], spirits festival, art show and more,” Morgen said. “People really missed the Taste of Big Sky this year and [we] would love to host that next summer if it’s possible.” She added that they would be very excited to host the Dirt Bag Ball—an annual end-of-the-season party for Big Sky Ski Patrol and other ski bums—in 2018 as they have in past years.

“[Running the restaurant] has been an amazing adventure and we’ve learned so much,” Morgen said during a Sept. 6 conversation. “Having the restaurant night by night and doing events both was difficult to balance, so we thought this would be a new avenue.”

The rebranding entails some updating to landscaping around the lodge to make it more suitable as a wedding venue, such as adding an arbor and stone patio. They’ll continue to rent out cabins so guests hosting weddings on the property have the option to stay there. Short- and long-term cabin rentals separate from events will continue to be offered as well.

To the relief of those who’ve had them, Morgen said she’ll continue to sell whole sopapilla cheesecakes from the lodge, as well as slices through Caliber Coffee. She said they’re in the process of bottling her coveted hot sauce as well.

“We are so grateful for the years that we’ve had here as a restaurant,” Morgen said. “We look forward to doing so much more with the community on all kinds of levels.”

For the time being, the Mexican Steakhouse and Saloon will be open every night through Sept. 24 serving the flavorful dishes Big Sky has come to love.