East Idaho Eats: The Lodgepole Grill & Bar is back and ready to dish up delicious food and huckleberry drinks
Published at | Updated at
ISLAND PARK — After being closed for more than a year, one longtime restaurant is ready to come back to life.
The Lodgepole Grill & Bar shut down in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After hiring new staff and revamping the menu, it is now open and ready to share delicious food and drinks with locals and tourists.
“We started out small. We just wanted to get those doors open. We wanted to get people in here. We want to keep the menu classic,” said Destani Swisher, general manager at The Lodgepole Grill & Bar.
The grill and bar has food and drinks unique to the area, like its Lodgepole Lemonade and huckleberry daiquiri.
“We are in Island Park. Huckleberries are huge. We went through and made some drinks that are signature to the grill and bar,” Swisher said.
The Lodgepole Lemonade comes with huckleberry vodka, lemonade, huckleberry, and lime. The huckleberry daiquiri comes with Bacardi, lime and is huckleberry blended into a martini glass with a half-sugar rim.
The restaurant has steaks and burgers too. There’s a dish served up with a smoked 14-ounce prime rib that comes with a loaded baked potato.
“It is smoked all day long in applewood chip, and we rub it two days prior, so it sits and marinates, and then we smoke it all day,” said Swisher.
All of the entrees are served with some sort of potato element. French fries, mashed potatoes, and baked potatoes are some of the choices.
Another popular menu item is the All-American Cheeseburger, which is served with lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle and cheese. There are letters that say “LPG” that’s burned onto the bun.
“LPG is the burn for Lodgepole Grill. Normally, we burn all of our steaks with it. We also burn our burgers with it. It’s just kind of our signature thing. All of our patties are hand-pressed every day. (There are) certain spices that are signature for us, but it’s what makes it our burger,” she said.
You can choose from many salads, including the house salad. It’s a spring mix with tomato, cucumber, red onion, croutons and a choice of dressing. There’s a signature huckleberry vinaigrette that’s to die for too.
“All of our dressings are housemade. Nothing comes from a bottle,” said Swisher.
Swisher said the grill and bar serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
A popular breakfast item is the Farmer’s Omelet, which includes green peppers, yellow onions, sausage, bacon, ham, cheddar cheese and country gravy served with hashbrowns.
Swisher takes a lot of pride in The Lodgepole Grill & Bar.
“It’s kind of got a piece of my heart right now. When we wanted to reopen, it was about taking it back to mom and pop. We wanted to make sure you’re getting your dollar’s worth,” Swisher said.
The restaurant is inside The Pines at Island Park (3907 Phillips Loop Road), which is a cabin resort that anyone can stay at near Yellowstone National Park. It is open every day of the week except for Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Click here to like its Facebook page and see their hours.