Al’s Deli & Grill, Mark’s Joint among establishments receiving 95 and above Food Service scores in February

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Anyone else love sports just as much as Mark’s Joint? Photo by Jacob Blankenship for Bham Now

Several Birmingham area  restaurants, including popular  “joints” such as Al’s Deli and Grill in 5 Points/UAB area, Jack Brown’s Beer and Burger Joint in the Lakeview District and Fat Mama’s Lunchbox in Woodlawn received 95 and above on their health inspection scores over the past 30 days.

As a public service, Bham Now publishes monthly Jefferson County Department of Health restaurant inspection scores and profiles local places that were scored in the past few weeks.

How are the inspections conducted?

According to the Jefferson County Department of Health, the agency, “regularly inspects establishments in Jefferson County where food is prepared or sold for human consumption. Two type of inspections, scored and alternative (non-scored), are performed throughout the year.”

The food service inspection scores are updated regularly on the Jefferson County Department of Health website. In this food service inspection edition, the scores were received after February 10th. Here are our featured restaurants for this month.

Mark’s Joint – 97

Mark’s Joint is an old-school BBQ place. Photo by Jacob Blankenship for Bham Now

Mark Snyder, who helped establish Urban Cookhouse in 2010, launched his namesake restaurant, last year, Mark’s Joint, in the former original Urban Cookhouse location at 2846 18th Street South in Homewood, Alabama. Yes, there is the classic barbecue items but  Mark’s Joint menu is expansive with chicken salad sandwiches, seared ahi sliders, grilled cheese and even some Tex-Mex thrown in.

Jack Brown’s Beer and Burger Joint -96

Beer and burgers.  That pretty much sums up Jack Brown’s menu. There is something to be said about concentrating on doing one thing right.  The burgers are out of this world and addictive.  And the beer?  Drink over  100 different kinds beers and join their Notch Club.

The folks at Jack Brown’s also have little fun in the Lakeview Entertainment District too.

Al’s Deli and Grill -97

Al’s Deli and Grill. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

Looking for a 24/7 hangout?  Al’s Deli and Grill adjacent to the UAB campus has been a mainstay for students and UAB Hospital employees since 1999. Al’s has a full mediterranean menu, plus burgers and stuffed loaded potatoes.  Hot tip… the omelettes.

Fat Mama’s Lunch Box – 99

Fat Mama’s Lunchbox’s Reggie Cook in front of his Woodlawn store. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

Perhaps more known for it’s food truck, Fat Mama’s has a “joint” at 5422 1st Ave. North in the Woodlawn neighborhood.  Pick-up a breakfast in the morning or get the audacious Fat Mama’s Burger for lunch.  You can’t go wrong, whatever you choose. The place is right across from the Family Dollar on 1st Avenue North. Say hello to Reggie Cook, the owner, and ask him about the Birmingham Iron.  He is a big fan.


Once again, visit Jefferson County Department of Health’s Food Service website for the latest scores.  These food service inspections are invaluable and help keep us all safe. It is our “right to know.”


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Pat Byington
Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.
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