Do You Believe Birmingham’s Food Scene beat out New York’s and Chicago’s?

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According to Zagat, Birmingham has surpassed the ranks of some top cities across our nation. In their most recent assessment, “26 Hottest Food Cities of 2016,” they asked their editors around the country to “make a case” for a city with the biggest year in food. So, how’d we do?

Thanks to some great national media attention, award recognition, and a few up and coming restaurants, our very own Bham ranked No. 14. Higher than New York(21), San Francisco (20), and Chicago (17).

Southern style reigned supreme over the previous destinations based on fresh ideas and creatively inspired dining spots. Quite a few local chefs added to our city’s delectable foodie growth such as Ryan Champion, the owner of Hotbox and Parkside.


Birmingham has long been an esteemed culinary destination with a deeply rooted farm-to-table ethos and multiple Beard award-winning chefs like Frank Stitt (Highlands Bar & Grill) and his former pupil Chris Hastings (Hot and Hot Fish Club). Many young cooks have spent time in their impressive kitchens, learning the ropes and as a result, the Southern city has become an incubator for burgeoning culinary talent.

–  Sara Ventiera, author of “8 Must-Try Restaraunts in Birmingham, AL

Some well known Birmingham eateries highlighted were El Barrio Restaurante y Bar, Fancy’s on Fifth, Real & Rosemary, Saigon Noodle House, and Ovenbird. These fan favorites offer esteemed dining options as well as unique dishes that stand out.

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From health focused dining to creative new concepts, Birmingham has caught the eye of some major foodies across the nation. For Zagat’s extensive list, click here. 


So, what do you think? Did Zagat “Zagat” right?


Author: Vicky Lewis

Senior at UAB, Poodle Enthusiast, Hiking Novice