We at Southern Living were saddened to hear of the passing of Craig Noone, 32, executive chef and owner of the Parlor Market restaurant in Jackson, Mississippi (featured in the November issue of Southern Living), on Friday, October 14.
A Jackson native, Craig attended Jackson Academy before receiving a business degree from Mississippi College and studying with the Texas Culinary Academy’s Le Cordon Bleu program. After working as a chef in restaurants in Italy, New Orleans, Dallas, and Atlanta, Craig returned home and opened Parlor Market in downtown Jackson last September.
Craig opened the restaurant in a historic 1898 building on West Capitol Street that had housed (among other businesses) a meat market, grocery store, lumber company, and the offices of the Dixie Marble Company. Wanting to honor that past, Craig researched the building’s history at the Mississippi Department of Archives while planning the restaurant, and later incorporated elements of the former occupants such as a marble-counter oyster bar, and reclaimed wood in the hostess station and furnishings.
He also used elements of the city’s culinary past in a changing menu that featured tamales and house-made kibbeh, as well as innovative twists on Southern specialties such as Mississippi rabbit roulade with glazed heirloom carrots and lemon lentils.
That combination of local history and classic cuisine made Parlor Market one of the city’s most popular restaurants. As Craig said shortly after his restaurant opened, “we’re not just trying to do good food here. We’re trying to bring back some of the history of downtown Jackson.”
– James T. Black; photo: Chris M. Rogers