View from the Top: Bluff Park’s Tip Top Grill steeped in Americana

John Morris was once a frequent customer at Tip Top Grill, the full-service gas station-turned-restaurant perched atop Shades Mountain. And, like many regulars, he couldn’t get over the view.

That view.

“When I moved to the area eight years ago, I stopped here every day,” said Morris, owner of AGF, Inc., a Bessemer-based tiling and flooring contractor.

“Every time I told the owner [Bob Hoeferlin, formerly of Sandwich Chef, Crestline Diner and Gus’s Hot Dogs in Birmingham], ‘If you ever want to sell this place, let me know.’ So, he let me know.”

Today, in addition to owning AGF, Norris owns the Bluff Park restaurant overlooking Ross Bridge Resort at the intersection of Shades Crest Road and Park Avenue. The scene attracts a varied cross-section of customers — from the weekday morning coffee gang of retirees to hungry teenagers in need of an afternoon nosh to out-of-towners who’ve heard of the must-see view.

To read more about Tip Top Grill, check out the March 2014 issue of Hoover’s Magazine. Find your copy here.