9 fantastic restaurants and bars on 20th Street + inside look at The Frank [PHOTOS]


The Frank
Home sweet home. (Jacob Blankenship / Bham Now)

Whether you’re looking for a new spot to add to your downtown foodie bucket list or you’re on the hunt for an apartment in the center of it all, 20th Street is the place to be. We’re sharing nine can’t-miss restaurants and bars you can check out on 20th Street—plus, an inside look at Common at The Frank, the newest Orchestra Partners project that’s leasing now.

Your guide to dining + drinking on 20th Street

1. Trattoria ZaZa

BBQ pizza from Zaza
If you haven’t tried a slice of ‘za at ZaZa, you’re missing out. (Jessica Broom / Bham Now)

Trattoria ZaZa is one of my personal favorite spots for everything from pasta lunches to brunch dishes—including my favorite roasted potatoes in all of Birmingham. ZaZa is the anchor tenant of The Frank, so residents can simply walk downstairs and feast. AKA my dream life.

2. brick & tin

brick5 9 fantastic restaurants and bars on 20th Street + inside look at The Frank [PHOTOS]
brick & tin’s slow cooked beef brisket is a must-try for any BBQ lover. (Hilary Meares / Bham Now)

brick & tin is a Birmingham classic—and for good reason. Their menu includes perfect lunch options, including savory brisket paninis, refreshing salads and salmon bowls.

3. Paramount

Paramount Bar
Don’t sleep on this grilled cheese. (Jacob Blankenship / Bham Now)

Looking for a spot to grab drinks with friends? Paramount is one of the most fun places to visit, thanks to plenty of arcade games and a menu with options like burgers, wings and salads. Grab a delish meal, then order a drink from their cocktail menu… or a fantastic ice cream float.

Want to live in the middle of it all? Common at The Frank is leasing now—book a tour today.

4. Bistro Two Eighteen

Bistro Two Eighteen
How delish does this spread look?! (Bistro Two Eighteen / Facebook)

If you want a classy place to start your evening or a top-notch dining experience, head to the Iron Age Building to check out Bistro Two Eighteen. Their menu includes cured pork belly, calamari, fried green tomato salad, crab cake and steak frites.

5. Manhattan Deli & Grill

Making lunch plans? Head to Manhattan Deli & Grill for a full menu of delish sandwiches—all reasonably priced so you won’t feel guilty if you enjoy multiple sandwiches a week.

6. The Yard

Birmingham Alabama
View of Railroad Park from on top of the Elyton Hotel (Pat Byington / Bham Now)

The Yard, located in the Elyton Hotel, offers southern cuisine for breakfast, dinner and Sunday brunch. Enjoy menu highlights like the spicy fried chicken biscuit for breakfast or woodfire grilled Gulf oysters and spicy shrimp pesto pasta for dinner.

Plus, check out Moonshine, a rooftop hotel located at the Elyton for some of the best views of Birmingham.

7. Cafe Dupont

Cafe Dupont is a Birmingham staple with classic Southern dishes made with locally-grown ingredients. The dinner menu changes seasonally, but think fried oysters and okra, beignets with strawberry preserves and cane syrup glazed pork belly.

8. Edgar’s

Edgar's Bakery, cupcakes
Strawberry sweetness from Edgar’s Bakery. (Patience Itson / Bham Now)

If you’re anything like me, you know the importance of ending your meal with a sweet treat. Thankfully, Edgar’s Bakery is located inside the Financial Center so you can make a quick stop for brunch or baked goods. Plus, Edgar’s serves fantastic lunch items—perfect for that midday bite.

9. Saferoom Lounge Bar

Saferoom Lounge Bar
The cirocojito from Saferoom, a combo of Ciroc, lime juice, simple syrup + mint. (Saferoom Lounge Bar / Facebook)

To end your night on 20th Street, head to Saferoom Lounge Bar, an upscale, basement-style lounge and bar with craft cocktails and acoustic music. Order drinks named after streets in Birmingham—like the 20th Ave North, a cocktail with vodka, lemon juice, simple syrup and raspberries.

Inside look at Common at The Frank

If you’ve noticed the construction on 20th Street and 2nd Avenue, you’ve probably been curious about the updates to The Frank Nelson building. Orchestra Partners focuses on rehabilitating historic buildings and revitalizing the structures to give them modern uses. The Frank was originally built in 1903 as the First National Bank Building, and now, The Frank combines retail, dining and residential spaces.

Common at The Frank, 10 stories of 180 residential units, is going to be one of the coolest places to live in Birmingham, thanks to some fantastic views of the city and the history of the building. While the units have been updated (thank goodness for in-unit laundry), the building still holds plenty of the fantastic features it did over a century ago, from the original windows to tile work.

Features of Common at The Frank:

  • Studios + 1-bedroom apartments
  • In-unit laundry + dishwasher
  • Furnished rooftop, gym, pet spa + interior atrium

Plus, remember all those restaurants on 20th Street North? A new one’s on its way… and it’ll be in the ground floor of The Frank.

“The Frank is all about downtown living. If you want to be able to walk anywhere downtown—to bars, restaurants, Railroad Park or work—The Frank is something that offers that in a sleek, modern way in a historic building.”

Caroline Jenkins, Senior Development Manager, Orchestra Partners

Ready to make Common at The Frank your new home? Learn more and start the pre-leasing process, plus check out other Orchestra Partners projects.

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Reviewed by Patience Itson.

Cecilia Wood
Cecilia Wood
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