Tasty Weekend with Birmingham Restaurant Week 2012

How was your weekend/start of the week, friends? We had a busy/tasty one, but loved every moment. Saturday we got an early start and headed to Fox 6 to do our monthly segment (we’ll upload the vid soon), then we mapped out our plan of attack for Birmingham Restaurant Week 2012. Have you been yet? If you’ve read our tweets then you know we were excited.

Vanessa is such a sweetie, but we hoped she didn’t hear our tummies growling in prep for BRW 2012!

If you are in B’ham you still have time to check out some of the most fab food the Magic City has to offer. Most of the food we tried was in 5 Points South which is the heartbeat of B’ham’s Southside.

Y’all saw what we tasted last year, right? Check out what we dined on this year–some was amazing, decent, and plain bad. Let a belle tell you about some B’ham food and service!

A very DELISH dish just for all of us BRW 2012 foodies!

Jim ‘N Nicks

This resturaunt is a Southern fave of many locals from B’ham to Altanta and several surrounding areas. If you are looking for portions large enough to feed a hungry man or a small army, then this is the place to try! Though we’ve tried a few Jim ‘N Nicks locations, the Southside restaurant is our fave. The food is much better to us and the service is always superb.

One thing that many people look forward to at Jim ‘N Nicks is the extremely tasty cheese muffins. Oh my goodness! They come with this divine sweet butter and come out of the oven piping hot every time. What we really love is that everything from their sweet/tart lemonade to the mash potatoes is made from scratch. Fab! Check out what else me and the sis had–she LOVED their chicken salad salad:

You CANNOT and we repeat CANNOT go to Jim ‘N Nicks without having the mac ‘n cheese!
Juicy white-meat BBQ chicken with mash potatoes.

Before dessert we had the pleasure of chatting with Leo, the chef, and shared a few laughs after telling him how good their homemade dressings are and how we like that we have enough food to take home for the next day. Now if you aren’t a local, when you do go to check out Jim ‘N Nicks, you have to try dessert. Shermika loves their chocolate pie and I adore the lemon.

Take out goodness!!

*Sorry about the cellphone pics. The Nikon was taking a nap*

Michael’s

This was our 1st stop on our Birmingham Restaurant Week journey: Michael’s. I don’t eat there anymore after getting really sick after dining in, so, here is Shermika’s verdict:

As usual, the wine was good. Y’all know a belle loves some wine!! The service was beyond excellent. I can’t remember the server’s name, but he was so attentive. Michael’s has a 4 course dinner for $30, which isn’t too shabby for what you get. I had crab cakes as an appetizer, a salad with cranberries, shrimp and grits (my fave) and bread pudding.

The crab cakes were well seasoned and made a belle’s tummy very happy. They were topped with a fried green tomato and topped with fried crawfish tails. I’m not a fan of crawfish, so either I was really hungry, or the crawfish were really good and tasted like shrimp. I love Michael’s salads! I always get feta vinagairette, which is so tasty.

The shrimp and grits were okay, but not excellent. The cajun parmesan sauce was so good and sent my tastebuds into an overdrive. However, the grits were VERY THICK and I like my grits creamy. They grits were more like rice, which wasn’t a good thing. Wouldn’t you agree?

Y’all know I love my sweets, so the white chocolate macadamia nut bread pudding that Michael’s is known for came in and saved the day. It was warm. It was gooey. It was delicious. Mmmmmm! It was a perfect ending to the meal.

Irondale Cafe

Also known as The Whistle Stop Cafe, which was made famous in Birmingham native Fannie Flagg’s Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe, this restaurant shows you that one can’t go wrong with some good southern cooking. The fried green tomatoes with spicy remoulade sauce were the BEST I ever had! I’m not a big sauce fan, but this remoulade was on point! The tomatoes were fried perfectly, with a crispy coating.

Southern comfort food at its FINEST!

Doesn’t this food make your mouth water. I knew this place was as southern as it gets when it had black eyed peas with fat back. Now, I haven’t had fat back in years mind you, but the peas were excellent, and so was the Cullman County squash. The squash was very fresh and you can tell they added a little sugar in it.

The chicken on the other hand was some of the crispiest I’ve had in my life. Irondale Cafe does cooking right, so definitely make  a stop there on your BRW journey.  I met the owner, Jim Dolan, and he is so personable. He told me how they make one of the hot sauces that is on the table. It has habanero peppers, but doesn’t even taste like it. One look at their menu and you’ll be hooked for life!

The lemon pie was a perfect ending to the meal. I could taste the buttermilk in it and the pie melted in my mouth. All the food was fresh, seasoned perfectly, and the meal was beyond excellent. I will definitely be back to Irondale Cafe again…especially for their world famous green tomatoes.

Dreamland

If you are looking for fast service with a smile, then Dreamland will not disappoint. We had their BRW 2012 special which included a rack of ribs, a side, their famous BBQ sauce, and dessert! They have the best ‘nana budding (2nd to our mom’s) in B’ham! The sweet tea is excellent and a decor that would make any Southern belle happy.

Their ribs are juicy and finger (say it like this: fanga) lickin’ good. Our mom came along and always raves about their mac ‘n cheese that the sis and I don’t fancy. Their bar is filled with license plates and the walls are lined with all sorts of pics and more. Pure fun and great food all around. Check out what your friends had there:

Their BBQ sausage is the truth. Fab, fab, FAB!!!
This Banana pudding includes Bud’s, a local (B’ham) cookie company’s sweet treats!

Cosmo’s

If you are looking for a local spot with plenty of fun characters, then Cosmo’s Pizza is the spot to hit! They sell everything from fresh sandwiches with cute names to pizzas. We had their BRW 2012 dinner that included garlic bread with sun-dried tomatoes, their rock ‘n roll 9-in pizza, and 2 chocolate mousses.

Though I really can’t eat chocolate, I did give it a try and it was really good. Oh yeah, the pizza/bread was soooo good. Fresh ingredients always make a belle shimmy! Our server told us he normally worked in the kitchen for the last year and a half, but we couldn’t tell because he was sweet as pie! Check out the pics:

Fuego Cantina

We had a sweet server and excellent service, but was rubbed the wrong way when one of the managers asked us how we enjoyed everything. Now, y’all know that a belle keeps it real. We wouldn’t have it any other way and told him (with the sweetest smile) that the appetizer and beef nachos were divine, but the chicken burrito was bland and dry.

Guess what he said, y’all? That we were the only ones that didn’t like the chicken burrito and that everyone loves it. What?! Are you serious? Not these belles…next!

Dave’s

A neighborhood pub with plenty of charm is how we would describe Dave’s. From the moment we walked through the doors you feel like you are visiting an old friend. We had the pleasure of attending BRW’s intimate Beer Saturdays. The few lucky guests got to sip on some of the most divese wine selections from local brewery Avondale Brewing Company. Sidebar: We LOVE their cute lil’ logo and you have to stop by to have at least one drink there. Check it here!

Hope y’all can make it this Saturday, Aug. 25th because another local brewery, Good People Brewing Company, will be there to treat guests to more beer. Though we both aren’t “beer” drinkers, I enjoyed trying some of the exotic flavors and thought they weren’t half bad.

Our opinions are a belle’s own.

We had so much fun being BRW 2012 bloggers and hope that you will try these restaurants for yourself. So, what did you do this weekend? Tried any new local spots in your neck of the woods? Follow our Facebook page for a few other BRW 2012 photos soon!

Disclosure: We received ONE free meal at each restaurant we covered. Our opinions are a belle’s own.

Tamika

Tamika is a communications guru/self-proclaimed body language expert and lives for big purses and cute shades. She speaks darn good Spanish, loves gadgets, pasta, makeup, crocheting, and is learning to walk in heels with the help of Shermika.

4 thoughts to “Tasty Weekend with Birmingham Restaurant Week 2012”

  1. Oh it looks like you all had so much fun! We don’t go out to eat very often, but when we do we like to check out new places. The last place we went to was Mother’s Cafe and Garden in Austin, TX. Everything we had was amazing and our server was incredible!

    Thank you so much for this post, it is so nice to keep up with both of you! Hugs! 🙂

    1. Hugs, Joyness. I know y’all don’t eat out much, but when you do it’s great to have fab food & service. Some things in life shouldn’t be a compromise and that includes food/service. We enjoy checking out your blog, too. Thanks for being such a loyal reader! xoxo

  2. The food at Dreamland looks amazing. I would love to go there and try those ribs, they look so great! I also got a kick out of the “No Farting” sign. I wasn’t expecting that! The mac ‘n cheese at Jim ‘N Nicks looks great, too! Definitely the making of a really great time out!

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