This month brings with it a new season (hello, fall!) and another packed lineup of Birmingham restaurant news. The newest buzz includes the return of an old favorite, a breakfast food truck, a new live music spot with a menu designed by renowned chef Chris Hastings, and expansions of two Birmingham favorites. Add more tacos and more pizza into the mix, and this fall looks to be another extraordinary season for Birmingham dining – read on to learn all about what’s new!

7 New Birmingham Restaurants Now Open or Coming Soon

The Fennec

1630 2nd Ave. S., Birmingham, AL 35233 • (659) 208-2480
Hours: Tuesday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to midnight; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.; closed Sunday and Monday

On August 13, The Fennec opened its doors – and its menu – to Birmingham revelers. This Parkside spot offers live music, drinks that hit the spot, and also serves as an event space, available to host weddings, meetings, and parties of all sorts. But for this column, what we’re most interested in is the food, and The Fennec delivers. With a menu crafted by legendary chef Chris Hastings, dishes include a bandana burger with cheddar, smoked bacon, and tomato; a fried seafood platter of oysters, shrimp, and grouper; and peach shortcake. And, if you head to The Fennec for late night, you can munch on jumbo buffalo wings, chips and avocado tomato salsa (yum!), and a fresh-baked pretzel with mustard and cheddar sauce.

Burger and fries from The Fennec, a new Birmingham restaurant

The “Bandana Burger” is topped with cheddar cheese and smoked bacon. Swoon! Image: The Fennec

RELATED: Iconic Birmingham Dishes Everyone Should Try

Bangin’ Breakfast

Hours: Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; closed Sunday

What’s better than breakfast on wheels? One of Birmingham’s latest food trucks serves up breakfast and coffee and travels all around Birmingham making mornings a little bit brighter. Bangin’ Breakfast is known for specialties like its BLT breakfast sandwich or its Waffle on a Stick – we can’t think of a better way to kick off a day’s work than that. You can check their Facebook page to find out where the truck is headed day-to-day.

Bangin' Breakfast food truck

Keep an eye on the Bangin’ Breakfast Facebook page to keep track of where they’re headed each day. Image: Facebook

REOPENED: Tropicaleo

4426 4th Ave. S., Birmingham, AL 35222 • (205) 643-5956
Hours: Wednesday through Sunday, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.; closed Monday and Tuesday

Our hearts were so happy to see the reopening of Birmingham favorite Tropicaleo, with new cocktails, mocktails, and plant-based menu items, to boot. The new iteration of this Latin American restaurant, which also has newly updated furniture and décor, is open now. “After four years in business, it was time for a refresh,” owner Gabe Marrero says. “We’ve made a couple of updates to the menu in tune with the vibe we have now, which is much more of a place to go to share with your friends. We made our dishes more sharable, and our menu is focused on small plates, appetizers, and plates to be shared with your people.”

Taco from Tropicaleo, a new restaurant in Birmingham

Tropicaleo serves up hearty Puerto Rican-inspired fare. Image: Tropicaleo

COMING SOON: Eterna Pizzeria

201 18th St. S., Birmingham, AL 35233

If you read this column month-to-month, you’ll notice an absolutely fantastic trend of pizza places popping up around our beloved city. And this month, we are thankful to have another to share with you: Eterna Pizzeria is headed to Parkside, imparting flavors from Italy and ovens that can whip up one of their nine specialty pizzas in just 90 seconds. Our mouths are watering already.

Pizza from Eterna Pizzeria

This wood-fired pizza joint will be a welcome addition to Birmingham’s Parkside neighborhood. Image: Eterna Pizzeria

COMING SOON: New locations for Rock N Roll Sushi and Ruby Sunshine

Rock N Roll Sushi downtown Birmingham location: 420 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. S., Birmingham, AL 35233
Ruby Sunshine Brook Highland location: 5243 US-280, Birmingham, AL 35242

Two of our current Birmingham favorites are expanding their Magic City imprint. Rock N Roll Sushi is opening its third location downtown, following outposts in Hoover and the Colonnade. And, if we can’t get to New Orleans, thankfully we have Ruby Sunshine in town for a little taste of NOLA. Their first location in Homewood already draws in crowds, and they’re expanding with a second location in Brook Highland. Let the good times roll!

Metalhead sushi rolls from Rock n Roll Sushi

Rock N Roll Sushi welcomes a third location, opening soon downtown. Image: Facebook

Breakfast from Ruby Sunshine

Ruby Sunshine will soon open the doors to its second Birmingham location. Image: Facebook

RELATED: The Magic City’s Most Creative Restaurant & Bar Interiors

COMING SOON: Uptown Cantina

Taco Tuesdays are about to get a whole lot better when Uptown Cantina opens later this month. With its vibrant décor and billing as “Fresh-Mex cuisine,” its Instagram page teases its hat trick of tacos, tequila, and tunes. That’s a hard-to-beat combo.

"Tacos, Tequila, Tunes" mural at Urban Cantina, a new Birmingham restaurant

Uptown Cantina promises plenty of tacos, tequila, and tunes! Image: Uptown Cantina

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Published August 2021
Written by Rachel Burchfield

One of our favorite things about Birmingham is its remarkable food scene, and one of our favorite things about this remarkable food scene is its depth, variety, and diversity — which is absolutely reflected in this month’s roundup of new restaurants. From coffee shops to Greek street food to Cajun-inspired meals, there’s a little something for everyone.

9 New Birmingham Restaurants Open Now or Coming Soon (Updated August 2021)

BLUEROOT

2829 2nd Avenue S., Birmingham, AL 35233 • (205) 502-7000
Hours: Tuesday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.; closed Sunday

On July 20, BLUEROOT opened the doors to its new Pepper Place location, which joins its Mountain Brook outpost to make two brick-and-mortar locations. After relocating to Birmingham from New York City, owner and founder Jen Ryan struggled to find food options that were both healthy and convenient — so she created a one-stop-shop for both. The new Pepper Place location will expand upon the menu found at BLUEROOT’s Mountain Brook location, including customized salads, toasts, and more, but will still feature longtime favorites like its signature salads, grain bowls, and superfood snacks. “This is our flagship location, our vision coming to fruition,” says Jen. “It has the trifecta of clean food, nutrient-dense food, and convenience. It’s hard to find that trifecta, but that was our vision – and it’s finally here. We’re really excited.”

Salad bowl from BLUEROOT, a new Birmingham restaurant

You can expect a bounty of nutritious, colorful options at BLUEROOT, now open at Pepper Place. Image: BLUEROOT

Greek Street

5291 Valleydale Road, Birmingham, AL 35242 • (205) 383-3193
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9.m.; closed Sunday

The founder of Taziki’s is bringing another Greek concept to the area with the creation of Greek Street in Hoover, which celebrates street food from the Greek capital, Athens. Featured dishes include appetizers like hummus and falafel, sandwiches, bowls featuring a veggie base mixed with a protein of your choice, and of course, traditional desserts like baklava and loukoumades. “I wanted to bring the food I experienced while walking through the streets of Athens to Birmingham,” says founder Keith Richards. “This Greek cuisine is authentic and delicious.”

Chicken Skhug Sandwich from Greek Street, a new Birmingham restaurant

The Chicken Skhug Sandwich is one of many hearty, comforting options offered up at Greek Street, now open in Hoover. Image: Facebook

Whiskey Foxtrot Burger Dive

2341 John Hawkins Pkwy., Ste. 119, Hoover, AL 35244 • (205) 536-6172
Hours: Tuesday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; closed Sunday

From authentic Greek street food on to classic American fare, Hoover is getting another delicious spot in Whiskey Foxtrot Burger Dive, which, in addition to Wagyu burgers and gourmet hot dogs, will feature American whiskey to round out the meal. The dive opened on July 27 at the former Jubilee Joe’s location.

RELATED: Your Ultimate Guide to Birmingham Patio Dining

Burger and fries from Whiskey Foxtrot Burger Dive

Classic American fare with an elevated spin, the menu at Whiskey Foxtrot Burger Dive features gourmet hot dogs and Wagyu beef burgers. Image: Whiskey Foxtrot Burger Dive

COMING SOON: Frothy Monkey

Longtime devotees were crushed when Urban Standard closed this summer after 14 years in business. Now the space on 2nd Avenue North will be replaced with a new coffee shop, the independently owned Frothy Monkey, which is already a hit in Nashville and Chattanooga. In addition to coffee, Frothy Monkey will serve cocktails, wine, and craft beer, and will offer grub for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner – and we hear their baked goods are to-die-for. “[We’re] excited for Frothy Monkey to open their first Birmingham location and bring life back to the Urban Standard space that played a pivotal role in the momentum of downtown revitalization,” says Mike Gibson, CEO and co-founder of Creature, the firm that is working with Frothy Monkey to reimagine its new space. “Their unique menu, style, and focus on creating a personal experience is going to kill it downtown.”

RELATED: Birmingham’s Best Neighborhood Coffee Shops

Brunch from Frothy Monkey, a new Birmingham restaurant

Already a hit in Nashville and Chattanooga, downtown Birmingham is excited to welcome its first Frothy Monkey location. Image: Frothy Monkey

COMING SOON: Sorelle Café

For the past four years, Joy Smith’s Sorelle Catering has provided delicious meals to residents of Homewood and surrounding areas. Now Sorelle is set to open a storefront in Homewood, and Joy will be joined by partner Daniel Roy – whose work you might know from Galley & Garden – as her sous chef. The café will serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner and will feature hearty dishes — and the stunning cheesecake, Sorelle’s signature dessert, that is pictured below.

Cheesecake from Sorelle Café

Longtime fans of Sorelle Catering will be delighted to learn that the brick-and-mortar location will be serving their signature dessert! Image: Facebook

COMING SOON: Davenport’s Vestavia

Davenport’s Pizza is an institution in Mountain Brook, serving top-notch pizza since 1964. In the 1980s, Vestavia had its own Davenport’s, but it closed after the building it occupied was sold. The good news? Davenport’s Vestavia is returning, joining the ever-growing number of tenants at the Vestavia City Center. We can’t wait for this!

Pizza from Davenport’s Pizza, a new Birmingham restaurant

Vestavia will soon be welcoming Davenport’s Pizza back to the neighborhood! Image: Facebook

COMING SOON: Juniper

Taking over the former Little Savannah space in Forest Park is Juniper, a spot that aims to set itself apart as a bar that focuses specifically on gin. Beyond drinks, Juniper will feature food offerings as well and is expected to open in late Fall 2021.

COMING SOON: Encore Rouge

We love seeing beloved Birmingham’s favorite food trucks open brick-and-mortar locations, and one of the newest to announce plans to do so is Encore Rouge, a Cajun-inspired food truck opening its new storefront at The Waites in Southside, next door to Taco Mama. Since the food truck opened four years ago, it has become known for dishes like shrimp and grits and chicken spinach dip. Their new location will offer all of their favorites from the food truck along with some new options, owner Antoinne Davis tells StyleBlueprint Birmingham exclusively. “A lot of people from New Orleans eat our food and say it’s exactly like New Orleans’ flavors,” he says.

Shrimp and fries from Encore Rouge

Loaded fries are an Encore Rouge favorite! Their loaded shrimp fries are topped with Alfredo sauce, Applewood smoked bacon, and of course, plenty of sautéed Gulf shrimp. Image: Encore Rouge

COMING SOON: June Café

Local coffee roasters June Roasters is opening a café, June Café, in the coming weeks. This new coffee shop will be located on 25th Street North downtown and will feature ample seating – both indoors and out.

June Roasters coffee cup

Coffee devotees will be thrilled to learn that Birmingham’s own June Roasterss will be opening a café. Image: Instagram

Happy dining, Birmingham!

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Published July 2021
Written by Rachel Burchfield

This month’s new restaurant roundup really runs the gamut — from wood-fired pizza to healthy salads and smoothies to an ice cream shop founded by 17 Homewood families united for a common purpose. That doesn’t even scratch the surface of the new offerings Birmingham has in the food department this summer. Popular local food truck Underground Vegan is slated to get its first brick-and-mortar location by the end of the month, and the Lakeview District continues to harness its culinary prowess with two new, diverse spots to enjoy. Here are eight new restaurants to add to your Birmingham foodie bucket list.

8 New Birmingham Restaurants Now Open or Coming Soon (Updated July 2021)

Taproot Café

5190 Medford Dr., Hoover, AL 35244 • (205) 502-7781
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; closed Sunday

Husband and wife duo Reggie and Michelle Torbor have opened a concept in Hoover that serves smoothies, salads, sandwiches, and toasts with locally sourced ingredients. Taproot Café was originally intended to just serve smoothies, but Michelle and Reggie — a former NFL football player and Superbowl winner with the New York Giants — expanded the café’s reach to include healthy food choices as well.

Pineapple sage smoothie from Taproot Cafe, a new Birmingham restaurant

In addition to healthy food, Taproot Café also offers smoothies, like this pineapple sage option. Image: Facebook

Umami

2808 7th Ave. S., Ste. 117, Birmingham, AL 35233 • (205) 201-4337
Hours: Tuesday through Thursday, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.; closed Monday

Taking over Babalu’s former space in the Lakeview District is Thai and sushi spot Umami, which opened in June and is owned by the same team of brothers who run both Nori Thai and Sushi and Shiki Thai and Sushi. “Visitors can expect a relaxed, family atmosphere with something for everyone,” says General Manager Ben Durham. “From tapas to sushi, Umami combines classic Asian cuisine with Mexican-style small plates.” And, though the owners run two popular Birmingham restaurants already, this concept is uniquely its own, Front-of-House Manager Emily Gallant tells us. “We strive to bring something new and exciting to Birmingham along with providing quality service for all diners in the Lakeview area,” she says.

Spread of sushi from Umami, a new Birmingham restaurant

Created by the founders of Nori Thai and Sushi and Shiki Thai and Sushi, Umami combines Asian-inspired cuisine with Mexican-style small plates. Image: Umami

Steel Gastropub

2808 7th Ave. S., Birmingham, AL 35233 • (205) 202-6649
Hours: Wednesday, 4 p.m. to midnight; Thursday through Saturday, 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Sunday, 4 p.m. to midnight; closed Monday and Tuesday

Just down the block from Umami in the Lakeview District is the newly opened Steel Gastropub, which took over the former Sky Castle space last month. It combines pub fare with Southern dishes and offers a deep cocktail and beer menu. Look for items like sliders, wings, fish & chips, burgers, seafood, and even vegetarian options.

RELATED: 10 Must-Try Dishes on Birmingham Menus

Entrée and a glass of red wine from Steel Gastropub

Pictured here is Steel Gastropub‘s surf and turf, which includes flat-iron steak and creamed crawfish. Yum! Image: Steel Gastropub

The Son of a Butcher

2810 3rd Ave. S., Ste. 100, Birmingham, AL 35233 • (205) 961-3200
Hours: Monday through Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; closed Sunday

Pepper Place has its newest food tenant in The Son of a Butcher, a butcher shop from the same owners that gave Birmingham Evans Meats & Seafood. Though not technically a restaurant, The Son of a Butcher, open since Thursday, July 1, offers high-quality meat, seafood, cheeses, and more.

Raw meat from The Son of a Butcher

Grill enthusiasts, rejoice! Pepper Place’s The Son of a Butcher offers high-quality meat, cheeses, seafood, and more grilling favorites. Image: The Son of a Butcher

Red or White

3916 Clairmont Ave., Birmingham, AL 35222 • (205) 538-5213
Hours: Sunday and Monday, noon to 5 p.m.; Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Before, you could count on Red or White in Forest Park to deliver on solid wine selections. Now, though, you can turn to the spot for drinks and dinner, as Red or White now offers a dining space with menu items ranging from meat and cheese to small plates to wood-fired pizza in a variety of flavor combinations.

Close-up of pizza from Red or White, a new Birmingham restaurant

Red or White recently opened a dining space that offers a selection of delicious wine and food. Image: Red or White

Neighbors

715 Oak Grove Rd., Homewood, AL 35209 • (205) 518-5521
Hours: Sunday, noon to 6 p.m.; Monday through Saturday, noon to 9 p.m.

And now, for dessert! Ice cream shop Neighbors opened its doors last month in Homewood. Founded by 17 local families, Neighbors serves not only ice cream but candy and other sweet treats too! The backbone of the shop is community pride — a notion we can get behind! Get the full scoop (pun intended) on the families behind this fun local establishment HERE.

RELATED: Birmingham’s Favorite Ice Cream Joints & Popsicle Stands

Ice cream cone with sprinkles from Neighbors

Cool off this summer with a scoop of ice cream from Neighbors, Homewood’s newest creamery. Image: Neighbors

COMING SOON: ChopNFresh

This summer, ChopNFresh is coming to Lane Parke in Mountain Brook, featuring house-made dressings and salads that are “huge — most of our fans eat half for lunch and save half for dinner,” says co-founder Yunus Hasan. ChopNFresh is the sister store of CHOPCHOP Fresh Salads, which launched five years ago in Huntsville. “We make all of our dressings from scratch, and we also roast all of our cooked toppings in-house,” adds Yunus. “No frying, no microwaves, just pure, roasted goodness.” We can’t wait to try it!

Salad from ChopNFresh, a new Birmingham restaurant

ChopNFresh, the sister restaurant of CHOPCHOP Fresh Salads, is coming to Lane Park later this summer. Image: ChopNFresh

COMING SOON: Underground Vegan

If you’ve heard the name Underground Vegan before, there’s a reason — it is one of the city’s most popular food trucks. Next up for the businss? Its first brick-and-mortar location, opening Tuesday, July 27. “We’ve got good food, a great environment, and even better customer service,” says owner Khalilah Sowell. And you don’t have to be vegan to enjoy favorites like its vegan “chickun.” Another great option we’re excited to welcome to the Birmingham restaurant scene!

Chicken wings and fries from Underground Vegan

Underground Vegan is slated to serve its delicious “chickun” out of its first brick-and-mortar location later this month. Image: Underground Vegan

Cheers to the Magic City’s growing food scene!

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Published June 2021
Written by Rachel Burchfield

This summer, as we emerge from our COVID cocoons and back onto the food scene, there will be more eateries for us to enjoy. As Birmingham’s food scene grows in popularity, so does the sheer number of restaurants to explore. Here are five new spots that are worth a try this summer.

5 New Birmingham Restaurants Now Open or Coming Soon (Updated June 2021)

NOW OPEN: Golden Boy Pizza Food Truck

Golden Boy Pizza, which, according to its Instagram, has been “slinging naturally-leavened Neapolitan style pizzas in Birmingham since 2019,” is now taking its sourdough delights on the road. Its new food truck is expected to hit the streets sometime this June, and a quick scan of its Instagram promises flavor combinations like pepperoni and nduja with hot honey, or “red sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni, nduja, Italian sausage, and finished with candied jalapenos to give it some sweet heat,” its Instagram reads. (Sorry, had to take a moment to stop drooling.) Golden Boy even offers a dessert pizza, featuring Nutella, strawberries, and powdered sugar on a sourdough crust. So, yeah. Wherever this food truck goes, we will follow.

Dessert pizza from Golden Boy Pizza, a new Birmingham restaurant

The Golden Boy dessert pizza stars a healthy layer of Nutella topped with fresh strawberries and a dusting of powdered sugar, all atop a sourdough crust. Image: Instagram

RELATED: 3 New Places in BHM to Grab a Drink, a Beer or a Glass of Wine

COMING SOON: Daughters Baking in Mountain Brook Village

2812 Cahaba Rd., Mountain Brook, AL 35223 • (205) 602-8113

In July we can expect Daughters Baking’s new storefront in Mountain Brook Village, where we can continue to enjoy its boutique cakes, including its specialty naked cakes. “Flavors on our menu often hit on nostalgic and comforting combinations from childhood memories growing up – yet taking it up several notches,” the Daughters Baking website says. “Each cake is thoughtfully filled with rich components that hopefully change people’s ideas of what a cake could ever be.”

Heretofore, Daughters Baking has done its work – think cakes ranging from birthday cakes to wedding cakes to event cakes, cookies, and more – out of a large shared kitchen space in West Homewood. This is Daughters Baking’s first storefront, and, in addition to providing sweet treats, the company also hopes to serve as a small event space in the community to host events like weddings, rehearsal dinners, speaking events, birthday parties, and more. (Check out our feature on Daughters Baking from 2019.)

Three cakes from Daughters Baking

Left to right: Cookies and cream cake, wedding cake with added rainbow sprinkles, and blueberry lemon cake. Yum!! Image: Facebook

Wedding layer cake from Daughters Baking, a new Birmingham restaurant

In addition to birthday and everyday cakes, Daughters Baking also creates stunning wedding cakes. Image: Facebook

COMING SOON: Luca in Pepper Place

Luca, an Italian restaurant serving up authentic Italian dishes, is coming online near Pepper Place soon. Helmed by respected restaurateur Nick Pihakis and the Pihakis Restaurant Group. Chef Rita Bernhardt – formerly the executive chef at Satterfield’s in Cahaba Heights – will lead the kitchen at Luca, which will serve high-quality Italian dishes out of the former Architectural Heritage building. More to come!

Spread of food from Luca

Look for authentic, mouth-watering Italian fare at Luca, coming soon to Pepper Place. Image: Facebook

COMING SOON: Tasty Town in Parkside

But that’s not all Nick Pihakis and the Pihakis Restaurant Group have up their sleeves this summer! We can also expect Mediterranean fare from the restaurateur in the form of Tasty Town, to be located in the Lumen housing development in Parkside. Tasty Town will combine Mediterranean cuisine with the ever-popular Southern “meat and three” concept – one meat and three sides but with a Mediterranean twist, allowing guests to customize their plates as they wish. Count us in.

RELATED: Your 2021 Birmingham Food Truck Guide

COMING SOON: Pizza Grace in Mercantile on Morris

Award-winning chef Ryan Westover is bringing his artisan pizzas to a storefront in downtown Birmingham with the opening of Pizza Grace, which will be a tenant in the mixed-use development Mercantile on Morris. (Pizza Grace will join storefronts like Hide & Hunter, Bridge + Root, and Cannella Gelato & Café, reports the BBJ.) “Pizza Grace is my opportunity to make my mark as a restaurateur and pizza maker,” Ryan said in a release. “From my years of experience, I saw the opportunity to integrate old-school baking techniques with modern technology and design. Our unique approach to pizza will feature 100 percent naturally-leavened dough and will utilize whole wheat flours to add flavor and nutritional value.” And Pizza Grace will do more than just pizza, Westover told StyleBlueprint exclusively. “We are going to be doing a lot with vegetables – all the sides will be veggies and the pizzas will be veggie-heavy,” he said. “We’re also going to have a robust ‘Southern Cafe Style’ dessert program and some hand-shaped breads.”

Pizzas from Pizza Grace, a new Birmingham restaurant

Image: Instagram

Here’s to exploring Birmingham’s delicious culinary scene!

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Published March 2021
Written by Rachel Farrow

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.

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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

RELATED: The South’s Newest Food Halls

2 NEW BIRMINGHAM RESTAURANTS COMING SOON!

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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