Word of Mouth reopening May 12 under new ownership

Word of Mouth Bistro in central Salem. Owners Becky and Steve Mucha announced their retirement and the restaurant’s closure April 9, but former employees bought the restaurant and are re-opening it. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Salemites who have been missing the crème brûlée French toast, Plate O’ Love or lemon poppy seed pancake from Word of Mouth Bistro are in luck.

The iconic Salem brunch restaurant announced this week it would reopen Thursday, May 12 after a brief hiatus. It will be open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Word of Mouth was mostly closed for dining in during the pandemic, but opened briefly in late 2021 before closing again in February. The closure was initially announced as temporary and eventually permanent when previous owners Becky and Steve Mucha announced their retirement in early April.

New owners Mychal Arredondo and Nicole Murphy bought the restaurant from the Muchas last month.

Murphy was previously a manger at Word of Mouth and hired Arredando, now her fiancée, in 2015. He went on to work there as a waiter, bartender and cook.

Longtime Word of Mouth employees Nicole Murphy, left, and Mychal Arredondo bought the restaurant in April and are planning a May reopening. (Courtesy/Word of Mouth)

Arredondo said Becky Mucha trained him in the kitchen after Steve began having health problems, and he learned to make the restaurant’s pancakes, French toast, sandwiches and potatoes.

Word of Mouth is located in a green house at 140 17th St. N.E. Since opening in 2008, it’s become known for its generously portioned dishes and favorites like the Plate O’ Love, which includes French toast and corned beef or veggie hash.

I couldn’t be more excited to see you all there, and to be bringing back all the magic you know and love,” a post on the restaurant’s Facebook said Tuesday. “We are still planning on our exact specials for that week, however I can promise we will have Becky’s amazing lemon poppyseed pancakes on that Saturday. Plan your week accordingly.”

-Ardeshir Tabrizian