I would bet good money on the statement that it’s impossible not to find something delicious to eat in Tuscaloosa. We’ve got our classic restaurants that have stood the test of time in town, but we’ve also got quite a few new kids on the block. As a dietitian, I’m a firm believer in eating not only for our health, but also for some downright pleasure. We’ve got some delightful food in Tuscaloosa, and I’m excited to share a few of my favorite dishes around town. 

By Sheena Gregg

Tuscaloosa’s Shoppes at Legacy Park has been booming with new business lately, including the deliciously famous Chuy’s Tex-Mex Restaurant, which opened last month. The Austin, Texas-based eatery promises to give its customers a unique experience, one that includes delivering the full, fresh flavors that their food and drinks are known for.

“We want people coming in to expect exceptional service, a great, family-friendly atmosphere, and amazing fresh food,” said Nick Gordzelik, owner and operator of Chuy’s in Tuscaloosa. “We want to keep our folks happy and we try our best to fulfill any dietary modification requests.”

On that note, patrons can expect bold flavors in a variety of sizes – something not always offered in other restaurants. Chuy’s offers menu items in half or mini orders, allowing diners to adjust their portion size without sacrificing taste. Made from scratch sauces such as the tomatillo, ranchero, and creamy jalapeno are just a few from the bunch of Chuy’s unique sauce repertoire.

By Joshua Watkins

Walk into Mugshots Grill & Bar and you will be greeted by images of many patrons (and a few famous individuals) all over the walls of an upscale rustic décor befitting a southern favorite. It’s a comfortable atmosphere and server, Kristin Beach, was most gracious as I looked over the extensive menu. Ultimately, Kristin recommended the “Come-back Burger” and it did not disappoint.  

By Sheena Gregg

Anyone who’s driven through Tuscaloosa has likely noticed the major construction that’s happened in our city over the summer. All the construction means a lot of new shopping options in Tuscaloosa, including a premier shopping experience for the foodies in town. Now open for almost two months, The Fresh Market in The Shoppes at Legacy Park on McFarland Boulevard has been tantalizing Tuscaloosans with its European style market and vast selection of specialty foods.

It may be hot this season, but the long summer days have got us ready to enjoy dinner on the patio at Tuscaloosa’s most popular restaurants. Check out our recommendations to enjoy an al fresco breakfast, lunch, or dinner, Tuscaloosa style.

By Sheena Gregg

 

Area residents in the mood for a unique snack like Sriracha popcorn or a nostalgic candy favorite like Razzles or Turkish taffy now have a place to satisfy those cravings at a place called, appropriately enough, “Cravings.” New York native Dan Robinson has enhanced downtown Tuscaloosa with a store to meet the needs of any food lover. Robinson is no stranger to providing unique, delectable treats to a community, having previously owned The Candy Bar, a specialty grocery in New Orleans’ French Quarter.

By Sheena Gregg

 

The news that James Beard Award winner and Iron Chef competitor Chris Hastings has a restaurant in Tuscaloosa is a dream come true for this enthusiastic foodie. Located in the new Embassy Suites Hotel in downtown Tuscaloosa, The Side by Side Restaurant achieves its primary goal of bringing out the gourmand in every visitor, enticing customers to not only enjoy eating, but to savor the entire food and restaurant experience.

By Sheena Gregg

“Have you been to The Simple Peasant?” is a question I’ve been hearing often over the past two months. It’s likely a question you’ve heard yourself. If your answer is “no,” I promise that you should get in your car and change your answer immediately. Though the restaurant boasts “uncomplicated cuisine,” it is clear to those lucky enough to have eaten at The Simple Peasant that uncomplicated means delicious.

As a joint venture for well-known Birmingham restauranteur Kevin Joyce and Shelton State’s own culinary genius Blake Miles, The Simple Peasant produces high quality culinary creations in an atmosphere of family-friendly comfort. “I’d like to think of this business as delivering fine dining on a paper plate,” Joyce said. “We’re not here to sacrifice flavor, but instead, we want people to feel comfortable and have amazing food.”

Amazing food it is, indeed.


FIVE’s brunch offers area diners a fresh, hip Sunday dining experience in downtown Tuscaloosa.

By Sheena Gregg

According to Webster’s Dictionary, brunch is defined as a meal that combines breakfast and lunch that is usually eaten in late morning. However, at FIVE Bar and Restaurant in Tuscaloosa, brunch is a Sunday experience that brings together old friends, good music, and great food and drinks. With a high reputation among foodies in Tuscaloosa, FIVE Bar and Restaurant has been no stranger to providing T-town folks with a memorable dining experience. Known for their signature dinner entrees and coffee/juice bar, FIVE has now expanded to providing a Jazz Brunch for all to enjoy.

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Druid City Living (DCL) is Tuscaloosa, Alabama's premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.