Birmingham ranks on list of unexpected US foodie destinations—see who got a shoutout

Screen Shot 2022 03 25 at 9.33.35 AM Birmingham ranks on list of unexpected US foodie destinations—see who got a shoutout
If you haven’t tried out SAW’s, what are you waiting for? (Jacob Blankenship/Bham Now)

First, we ranked among Fodor’s top 10 cities with a surprisingly good food scene. Now, we made popular travel publication Lonely Planet’s list of unexpected US foodie destinations. When will the rest of the county learn that there’s nothing shocking about Birmingham’s incredible food scene? Only time will tell. For now, let’s dive into the spots that got a shout-out on the list.

Expect the unexpected

Saw's Soul Kitchen BBQ
Gotta love some Alabama BBQ. (Matthew Niblett / Bham Now)

Lonely Planet is a popular print + digital source for all things travel—informing and inspiring adventurous travelers with guides to food, drinks, excursions and more across the globe.

While plenty of local faves got a shoutout from the publication, only one of them was deemed “the one thing not to miss”. That would be none other than SAW’s Soul Kitchen.

Lonely Planet gave Alabama some recognition for our “unique take on BBQ”, and sung the praises of some popular SAW’s menu items that blew them away:

  • The Sweet Tea Fried Chicken Sandwich—Sweet Tea Chicken, creamy white sauce, pickles
  • The Colonel—Sweet Tea Chicken, house pimento cheese, red tomato

According to Lonely Planet, these sandwiches are “something to write home about”. We couldn’t agree more.

Who else got a shoutout?

El Barrio
El Barrio also won a Nowie for Best Service. (Pat Byington / Bham Now)

In the article, the publication mentioned that Birmingham is becoming one of the top foodie destinations below the Mason-Dixon line due to our recent growth and influx of diverse talent.

That talent is certainly getting widespread recognition, as two Bham chefs were recently named 2022 James Beard Awards Finalists.

Here are the other local spots that Lonely Planet loved:

I can recognize that Birmingham isn’t as big of a travel destination as others, but with all these accolades, I think it’s about time we start getting expected recognition for our award-winning food scene. Don’t you?

What’s your favorite spot in our award-winning foodie scene? Tag us @bhamnow and let us know.

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Gabby Gervais
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