5 remarkable Birmingham farm-to-table restaurants that we love

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farm-to-table restaurants in Birmingham
Is your mouth watering yet? This salad from Ash Neighborhood Bar & Grill isn’t your ordinary pile of greens. Photo via Jacob Blakenship for Bham Now

Supporting local business isn’t only good for the city you love—it’s good for your health! These farm-to-table restaurants in Birmingham use ingredients close to home and bring outstanding food to the Magic City.

1. Ted’s Restaurant

Farm-to-table might be the buzzword of this decade’s trendy restaurants, but meat-and-threes are the original blueprint. For Ted’s Restaurant, they’ve been doing it right since 1973.

Tasos and Beba Touloupis bought the establishment from the Sarris family in 2000. They work hard to carry on the tradition of fresh vegetables served from the steam daily.

“The tradition of meat & three is known for selling market fresh vegetables. We buy our fresh vegetables twice a week from the Jefferson County Farmers Market. We are working with a new vendor, Southern Organics, for our local greens for our salads.”

Beba Touloupis, Co-owner, Ted’s Restaurant

The menu rotates every day, but the friendly service and knowledgeable staff stay consistent. According to Beba, if you become a regular, there’s a good chance the wait staff will know if you want sweet or unsweet tea without asking.

It doesn’t stop with dinner—Ted’s recently added a Saturday brunch to their menu. As one of the city’s newest brunch options, the meat-and-three puts their twist on the service by incorporating Birmingham-area businesses onto the menu.

“Our way to make it special is to use local vendors. We are using Hinkel’s Bakery for our bread, Revelator Coffee for our coffee vendor and Southern Organics for our salads.

We added a new dessert, Suzie’s Fried Pies, prepared locally. We feel it is important to support local businesses that are working to provide a great product. When we eat out as a family, we only eat at local restaurants.”

Beba Touloupis, Co-owner, Ted’s Restaurant

2. Porch

Porch opened in August of 2020 and continues to serve mouth-watering menu items using fresh seasonal produce. The husband and wife team work with local purveyors, such as Ireland Farms, to offer veggie-forward options, as well as salads, sandwiches and fried chicken.

As the name suggests, you can enjoy an evening in the cozy outdoor seating area complete with string lights and plenty of seating. Or take your meal inside to soak in the colorful artwork and whimsical design.

3. Niki’s West

farm-to-table restaurants in Birmingham
Niki’s West is a long-time favorite for Birmingham residents. Photo via Jacob Blakenship for Bham Now

There’s a good reason Niki’s West is a necessary agenda item for any visitor to Birmingham. After six-plus decades, the family-owned restaurant dishes out baked Greek chicken, lemon-pepper catfish and more delicious eats to countless customers a day.

Pete and Teddy Hontzas are second-generation owners who took over the business from their father, the late Gus P. Hontzas. While the owners may have changed, the broad assortment of fresh vegetables and meats hasn’t gone anywhere.

Whether you’re looking for the freshest okra or simply want to see the most efficient way to run a buffet line, Niki’s West is a legend that endures.

4. Ash Neighborhood Bar & Grill

Ash makes nearly everything on their menu in-house—down to the pickles on your hamburger. What they don’t make themselves, the team sources from Alabama farms or local businesses.

You will find fresh lettuce from BDA Farm in the Spring Salad or tasty bread from Hinkle’s Bakery used for your Hot Chicken Sandwich. Each dish is carefully curated to bring creative and fresh meals to your table.

5. The Backyard Market

You’ll find more at The Backyard Market than breakfast, lunch and dinner. The local neighborhood market has:

  • Exotic meats like buffalo and elk tenderloin
  • A large specialty cheese selection

Everything sold in the restaurant and grocery store is hand-picked from vendors in the state, down to the cookies baked by two local women in the area.

“People want to support local, independent businesses. It basically boils down to people wanting to know where their food comes from.”

Jeff Gentry, Owner, The Backyard Market

Owner Jeff Gentry cites the burgers, wings and cheeseboards as their most popular items. Also, since the market has plenty of grab-and-go options like casseroles and mac and cheese, it’s a great place to swing by and pick up dinner.

Make sure to carve out time one evening to stick around and enjoy the friendly atmosphere. In the afternoons, you can head out to the huge patio for live music, Wednesday through Sunday. There’s even an area for kids to run around and play on a jumbo Jenga set.

That’s not all! Don’t forget to check out our previous guide featuring 11 farm-to-table restaurants on our foodie bucket list in Birmingham.

Stay on top of your health with more advice from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama by visiting AlabamaBlue.com. Or, follow them on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

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