EDITOR’S NOTE: As we continue to move through the pandemic’s various re-opening phases, it’s important to remember that operating hours and mask-wearing rules can change quickly. Please check with the restaurant you intend to visit beforehand to ensure that you have the most current information.


From Italian fare to health-focused options, Birmingham’s food scene never disappoints, and with warmer weather starting to make an appearance, it’s a great time to check out the new restaurant options. Whether you want a quick bite, a fun date night or Saturday brunch with the girls, here are some new Birmingham restaurants to check out.

4 New Birmingham Restaurants to Visit NOW (& 2 More Coming Soon!)

North Italia

225 Summit Blvd., Ste. 1100, Birmingham, AL 35243 • (205) 970-4182
Hours: Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday 11 a.m. to 11 a.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

While not locally based, we’re still excited to welcome North Italia to The Summit in Birmingham. Jaie O’Banner, the general manager of North Italia Birmingham, describes the restaurant as “a place where every moment is meant to be savored.” She goes on to say, “In my experience, people come here for a quick lunch, an intimate dinner, a fun brunch with the family or with girlfriends accompanied by an Italian Spritz or a bottle of wine, or a great happy hour with our ‘Bottle and Board’ special or pizzas and sangria. Our guests will find a variety of things that appeal to them — from uncompromised presentation and quality to unparalleled levels of service for a true sense of hospitality.”

You will definitely want to try the white truffle garlic bread paired with a Sicilian margarita pizza. Jaie’s personal favorite is the hand-rolled tortelloni stuffed with burrata. She continues, “People love our squid ink mafaldine — super delicious and a little on the spicy side. Alternatively, our Italian farm salad has pretty much everything you’re going to want in it! We have something for every taste and mood.” Plus, North Italia offers an intimate dining room and patio seating for your choice of the perfect setting. It sounds like we found your next date night spot!

Wine at North Italia, a new restaurant in Birmingham

Find the perfect pairing of wine and pasta for your romantic evening at North Italia. Image: North Italia

Squid Ink Mafaldine from North Italia, a new restaurant in Birmingham

The squid ink mafaldine is a favorite pasta option with a little extra kick. Image: North Italia

Bread with mozzarella and ricotta cheese from North Italia

The white truffle garlic bread is piled high with mozzarella and ricotta cheese. Image: North Italia

The Backyard Market

633 Montgomery Hwy., Vestavia Hills, AL 35216
Hours: Monday, 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Tuesday through Sunday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Whether you’re looking to dine in or grab something stellar to take home, The Backyard Market, now open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, has you covered. The breakfast menu is generous, offering everything from biscuits and bagels to breakfast bowls, omelettes, home fries and more. Don’t forget to start your meal with a mimosa, cup of fresh juice or hot cup of coffee.

For lunch or dinner, explore the vast array of options, which include more than 10 sandwiches, a selection of creative burgers, several salads and shareable snacks. Additional options include to-go and ready-to-cook meals you can make and enjoy at home, and the market has quick-grab items to round out your meal plans. Also worth noting, The Backyard Market has a lovely patio for outdoor dining!

Avocado toast and fresh fruit at The Backyard Market make a stellar start to the day. Image: Facebook

The well-stocked market carries everything from craft beer to charcuterie fixings. Image: Facebook

Homewood Nutrition

709 Oak Grove Rd., Homewood, AL 35209 • (205) 332-0303
Hours: Monday through Friday, 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.

After falling in love with the nutritional products himself, Jace Mauldin dreamed of owning his own storefront. On February 8, Homewood Nutrition opened to serve the community with loaded, beauty and specialty teas, full meal replacement shakes, and other nutritional support. All of the tea products are sugar-free and low-calorie, making them keto and diabetic diet-friendly. The teas and shakes promote weight loss and provide clean energy, vitamins and focus. A very popular item is the Donut Hole Shot, which controls hunger and burns fat while targeting the midsection specifically. Yes, please!

Be sure to pop in and try a combo to replace your go-to fast food lunch — a loaded tea and meal replacement shake. The loaded tea provides the energy boost you need with vitamins and it supports stronger focus. The meal replacement shake is under 250 calories but contains up to 27 grams of protein, making it the perfect complement to the loaded tea. (Who needs a burger and soda combo, anyway?)

Jace’s goal with Homewood Nutrition is to provide a family-friendly environment with excellent customer service. “We want our customers to feel like family,” he tells us. “We want them to come back for the amazing people and the amazing products we provide.” Homewood Nutrition is able to help you create a specific plan to support your health goals with the right nutrition. Before you know it, you might be hooked, too!

Tea from Homewood Nutrition, a new restaurant in Birmingham

Homewood Nutrition’s teas offer a sustainable jolt for your day. Image: Homewood Nutrition

Sons Donuts

4000 3rd Ave. S., Ste. 105, Birmingham, AL 35222
Hours: Sunday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. 
Opening Spring 2021

The owners of Sons Donuts are no stranger to the Birmingham food scene. You’ve probably enjoyed a “sammie” from Big Spoon Creamery owned by Ryan and Geri-Martha O’Hara and a popsicle from Steel City Pops owned by Jim and Amy Watkins. Their new joint venture, Sons Donuts, brings together the synergy of both businesses.

After years of friendship, the O’Haras and Watkins wanted to create something unique for Birmingham. With the concept of Sons Donuts in mind, they hosted a tasting three years ago for family and friends, only to put it on the shelf for a bit. In November of 2020, the couples sat down and decided now was the time. With five sons between them, Sons Donuts became the name of their new joint business. Using the former Big Spoon Creamery office as a location, Sons Donuts adds new flavor to the Avondale scene.

The menu includes fried mini donuts dusted with both traditional and exotic sugars. House-made sauces will also be available to pair with the donuts, including traditional flavors like chocolate, some tropical and even a Sons’ signature sauce. Sons Donuts will also offer fresh-squeezed orange juice, a custom milk bar and bottled water supporting neverthirst, a local philanthropy. Jim Watkins hopes Sons Donuts is “a unique place to bring out-of-town guests while also being a morning staple or unique dessert option.”

Geri-Martha and Ryan O’Hara with Jim and Amy Watkins of Sons Donuts

Left to right: Geri-Martha and Ryan O’Hara with Jim and Amy Watkins at a Sons Donuts tasting. Image: Sons Donuts

Mini donuts from Sons Donuts in Birmingham, AL

Sons Donuts will offer a sense of childhood nostalgia with its fried mini donuts. Image: Facebook

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Slutty Vegan

Pinky Cole, the 33-year-old CEO and founder of the wildly successful Atlanta-based restaurant Slutty Vegan, wants to venture into the Birmingham food scene, and her new location is slated to launch in Woodlawn later this year. Based on the lines that formed when the Slutty Vegan food truck came around last year, it’s a no-brainer. As the name suggests, look for plant-based burgers with sassy names like the Fussy Hussy (a plant-based patty with pickle, vegan cheese, caramelized onions, lettuce, tomato and Slut Sauce on a Hawaiian bun) and the Heaux Boy (battered vegan shrimp topped with lettuce, tomato, pickle and Slut Sauce) … you get the picture.  There is no such thing as a plain burger on this menu!

It’s hard to believe this burgers are vegan, but they are. And they’re AMAZING! Image: Instagram

Eat at Panoptic

1819 Crestwood Blvd., Irondale, AL 35210 • (205) 319-1611
Opening Spring 2021

Chef Raquel Ervin is no stranger to the Birmingham market. Her wildly successful catering and food truck business, Eat at Panoptic, has won numerous awards, including “Best of Magic City Mac” at the Birmingham Magic City Mac + Cheese Festival in 2018 and “Best Bite” at Taste of Pelham in 2019. Now, after six years of seeing success in catering, Raquel prepares to expand her brand and open a bricks-and-mortar location of Eat at Panoptic. You’ll definitely want to try the spinach dip, crab cakes (Raquel’s personal favorite), 12-hour brisket, and 2 a.m. sliders. Stay tuned for details of her opening.

RELATED: Meet the Chef Behind the Eat at Panoptic Food Truck

Six-cheese spinach dip from Eat at Panoptic

Raquel’s famous spinach dip does not disappoint and will be available at Eat at Panoptic’s new brick-and-mortar location. Image: Submitted

These new Birmingham restaurants bring new life to the Magic City. Here’s to discovering your new favorite dish!


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