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Local Birmingham Restaurants

Area Restaurants

Al’s Deli & Grill 1629 10th Ave. S. 939-4278. Mediterranean and American food—falafel, kabobs, roll-ups, stuffed potatoes, omelets, etc.—served 24/7 in this casual, UAB-area eatery. Shaded patio dining.
Bottega 2240 Highland Ave. 939-1000. Situated in a stately Italianate mansion, Bottega features contemporary Mediterranean cuisine created by award-winning chef/owner Frank Stitt. The menu, which changes daily, may feature duck, short ribs, venison and wild boar as well as veal, seafood and steaks. Bottega Cafe, in the same building, is known for its less-pricey, but equally excellent Italian fare.
Carlisle’s Barbeque 3511 6th Ave. S. 254-9266. House specials include a hamburger steak and their famous, vinegar-based barbeque—a delicious family recipe since 1945. Open Mon.-Fri. 10:30-3.
Chez Fonfon 2007 11th Ave. S.; 939-3221. The brain-child of chef Frank Stitt (of Highlands and Bottega fame), Chez Fonfon is an authentic French bistro focusing on French provincial food and wine.
Cobb Lane 1 Cobb Lane. 933-0462. Hidden away on a gas-lit cobblestone street, Cobb Lane Restaurant is a fine-dining establishment with an emphasis on Southern flavors. A Birmingham institution for years, Cobb Lane is famous for its courtyard, while the interior has a touch of old-world ambience. Open Tues.-Sat. for lunch and dinner. cobblane.com
Cosmo’s 2012 Magnolia Ave. 930-9971. It’s hard to beat Cosmo’s homemade pizzas, which include ingredients from the simple to the sublime. Saturday and Sunday brunch.
Courtney’s 2330 6th Ave. S. 251-3463. Courtney’s serves classic diner fare for breakfast and lunch, featuring daily meat-and-three lunch specials.
Cuisine Cooking School-n-Gourmet Market 2608-A Highland Ave. S. 908-0539. Founder/culinary director Brad Peters whips up a wide assortment of fresh baked goods and pasta dishes. Tues.-Thurs. night cooking classes offered.
Curry in a Hurry 1207 20th St. S. 930-0078. Enjoy good, fresh, inexpensive Indian food in this no-frills but friendly cafe. Lunch and dinner served Mon.-Sat.
Dreamland Bar-B-Que Ribs 1427 14th Ave. South. 933-2133. This is the uptown sister to the famous Tuscaloosa Dreamland that was known far and wide for its simple menu of ribs and white bread. The expanded menu features chicken and side orders as well as those slow-roasted ribs.
Full Moon Bar-B-Que 525 25th St. S. 324-1007. Full Moon is famous for its slow-cooked pork, ribs and chicken, signature chow chow and the chocolate-dipped "half-moon" cookies, served up in a friendly, no-frills atmosphere. Expanded menu available at other locations: Hoover, Inverness and Homewood. Open Mon-Fri.; other locations Mon.-Sat.
Golden Temple Vegetarian Café 1901 11th Ave. S. 933-8933. A no-frills but cheerful café and grocery, Golden Temple caters to health-conscious diners with vegetarian sandwiches, salads, soups and Mexican-style specialties like quesadillas and bean burritos. Look for daily specials. Mon.-Fri. 11-3; Sat. 11-2:30; closed Sun.
Grump’s Great Grill 2417 3rd Ave. S. 328-3232. A light and friendly atmosphere is served up along side a wide selection of freshly prepared, hot and cold fare for both breakfast and lunch. Plenty of parking. Open Mon.-Fri. 6:00-2. grumpsgrill.com
Guiseppe’s Café & Espresso Bar 925 8th St. S.; 324-2626. Located in historic Gable Square, Giuseppe’s is an intimate, casual Italian restaurant with modest-priced fare—pizzas, pastas (spaghetti & meatballs, seven-vegetable penne, chicken fettucini alfredo) and subs. Mon.-Thurs. 11-9:30; Fri. 11-10; Sat. 5-10.
Highlands Bar & Grill 2011 11th Ave. South; 939-1400. Gourmet magazine named it the number-five best restaurant in the country. Highlands offers fine continental dining with regional twists. Be sure to try one of their famous martinis. Highlands is open for dinner only, Tues.-Sat. Bar opens at 4 p.m.; dining room open 6-10:30 p.m.
Hot and Hot Fish Club 2180 11th Court South; 933-5474. This vibrant up-scale restaurant is home to the creative American cuisine of Chef Chris and Idie Hastings. Named one of the South's top neighborhood restaurants by Bon Appetit, Hot and Hot's nightly menu focuses on seasonality with the best regional components. Dinner Only, Tues.-Sat.,starting at 5:30. Reservations recommended. hotandhotfishclub.com
Jim ‘N Nick’s Barbeque 1908 11th Ave.; 320-1060. Famous for its Southern barbeque (and those incredible homemade cheese biscuits), Jim ‘N Nick’s offers a wide variety of menu items served in the cool ambience of a converted warehouse. Other locations in Homewood (Oxmoor Road), Hoover (Hwy. 31), Greystone (Hwy. 280) and Trussville (Hwy. 11). jimnnicks.com
La Cocina 2111 7th Ave. S.; 252-7626. La Cocina has been at the same location for 26 years. Serving same homemade “Tex-mex” food, also introducing new Caribbean menu items. “So why not get a little Caribbean crazy at La Cocina-ville!” Open for lunch Mon.-Fri. and dinner Thurs. & Fri.
Leonard’s BBQ 104 Sixth Ave. South; 322-0994. Serving real pit barbecue and the best, most authentic soul-food in Birmingham. Open Mon.-Sat. 11-7.
Mellow Mushroom 1200 20th St. S.; 933-5061. Pizza, calzones, sandwiches and salads in a cool, appropriately mellow atmosphere. Lunch and dinner daily. Open: Mon.-Wed. 11-10 Thurs.-Sat. 11-11, & Sunday noon-10. Second location in Inverness Corners.
New Chinatown 1020 20th St. S. (across from the Pickwick Hotel); 251-2373. Featuring standard Chinese favorites. Open weekdays 11-10.
Ocean 1218 20th St. S.; 933-0999. Voted Best Restaurant, Best Chef and the recipient of The Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence in 2004, Ocean offers fresh seafood in an exciting and contemporary atmosphere. The menu features fresh oysters and fish from around the world. Locally owned and operated by George and Harriet Reis. Dinner Tues-Sat. starting at 5:30pm. Reservations recommended. 933-0999. oceanbirmingham.com
Purple Onion Deli & Grill 1717 10th Ave. S.; 933-2424. A Birmingham institution for fast, casual ethnic cuisine. The menu includes American and Mediterranean favorites from BLTs to kabobs and hummus dip. Perfect for late-night snacking, Purple Onion is open from 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. on weekdays and until 6 a.m. on weekends. Other locations in Homewood (479 Greensprings Hwy.) and Pelham (2296 Pelham Pkwy.)
Rocky’s Pizza & Italian Foods 715 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. S; 252-8282. Pizza is the main event at this boxing-themed eatery, but Rocky’s also serves Philly cheesesteak, muffalettas, lasagna and other pastas, wings and salads. Eat-in, take-out and delivery.
Rojo 2921 Highland Ave.; 328-4733. Choose from Mexican quesadillas, burritos, tacos and specials, or, if you prefer, you can order from the “Americana” menu which features pub favorites like burgers and hot wings. Indoor and patio dining available, lunch and dinner served every day but Mon.;11-10 with bar open late.
Ruby Tuesday 2000 Highland Ave.; 939-1566. Consistently good food served in a lively, family friendly atmosphere.
Sakura 1025 20th St. S.; 933-1025. Popular Japanese restaurant specializing in sushi. Remarkably authentic in food and appropriately atmospheric. Dinner only. Thurs. hours are 5 p.m.-2 a.m. On weekends, Sakura closes at 11 p.m. and reopens at 12 a.m. for “midnight sushi,” served til 3 a.m.
Surin West 1918 11th Ave. S.; 324-1928. Authentic, fresh Thai and Pacific Rim cuisine served in a casual atmosphere. Thai noodle and chicken Masaman are two popular entrees. Sushi menu also available. Surin West is open seven days a week from 11:30-2:30 and from 5:30-9:30.
T-Bones 2222 Highland Ave. S. 939-4466. Authentic Philly-style cheesesteaks and hoagies. Mon.-Thurs. 11-10; Fri. 11-late; Sat. noon-late. Closed Sun.
Taj India 2226 Highland Ave. S.; 939-3805. Hidden in a strip mall on Highland Ave. (by Western Supermarket), Taj India serves authentic Indian food in an intimate, white-tablecloth dining room. Dishes include lamb delicacies, Tandoori specialties, seafood, spicy curries and vegetarian dishes. Lunch & dinner served daily. tajindia.net
Ted’s Cafeteria Restaurant 328 12th St. S.; 324-2911. Ted’s has been a Southside tradition for 27 years, featuring Southern-style breakfast, a large variety of fresh vegetables and meats for lunch. Plenty of parking. Continental breakfast items to go baked daily. birminghammenus.com/teds
The Fish Market Restaurant 611 21st St. South. 322-3330. This is the place for reasonably priced, fresh seafood served in a casual atmosphere. Open Mon.-Sat. for lunch and dinner. thefishmarket.net
The Garage Café 2304 10th Ter. S. 322-3220. A strangely romantic hole-in-the-wall hangout, The Garage Café is a fine place to nurse a beer or enjoy a satisfying lunch of a sandwich and chips either indoors or out in the eclectic courtyard.
The Grape 1101 20th St. S. 933-7790. Enjoy more than 100 wines by the glass, accompanied by small-plate gourmet fare—inside or on the patio. Other location at 214 Summit Blvd., 970-7777. yourgrape.com
The Original Pancake House 1931 11th Ave. S. 933-8837. More upscale than your average pancake house, this popular cafe features not just pancakes but also enormous, fluffy omelets and fresh fruit juices. Full lunch menu also available. Open Mon.-Fri. 6:30-2; Sat.-Sun. 7-2:30.
The Pita Stop Cafe Bar & Grill 1106 12th St. S.; 328-2749. The Pita Stop boasts both Middle Eastern cuisine as well as American favorites. Reservations and catering available. Hours: Mon.-Thurs. from 11-9:30, Fri. & Sat. 11-2:30 and 5-10.
The Side Café 2009 University Blvd. 226-8084. Specializing in soups, sandwiches and wraps. Try the chicken salad and bean sprouts on raisin bread. Open Mon.-Fri. 9:30-3.
Tracy’s 729 20th St. South; 252-7370. The place to go for meat-and-three in the Southside/UAB area. Besides its famous steam-table lunches, Tracy’s offers delicious salads and sandwiches as well as hot breakfasts cooked to order.

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