A handful of new restaurants have opened this year in the Birmingham area, and the list is constantly growing. Are you planning to go out to eat? Here are some restaurants to add to your list.
Kenyan-born brothers David Kimani and Collins Ngor started the Sahani food truck in 2020. The mobile restaurant, which makes its rounds to breweries, bars and parks, boasts a blend of Kenyan and American cuisine. Dishes feature grilled meats such as chicken and lamb mashkaki, topped with paprika and onions, and seasoned with spices such as cumin, black pepper and coriander. The combo menu features wings, philly cheesesteak, french fries, and quesadillas, served with our signature Sahani sauce.
This spring, Kimani and Ngure expanded their offerings with Sahani Kitchen, a takeaway-only restaurant on Birmingham’s south side. With the new project, which has a full kitchen, came new menu items including whole grilled fish served with ugali or kenya chips. Recipients can submit requests for pick and delivery (delivery is limited to downtown/south Birmingham area).
In addition to containing the Sahani truck, the construction is also a complex and a stopping point for other mobile restaurants.
Sahani Kitchen 2521 4th Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35233 | www.facebook.com/sahanibham
Tasty Town Greek Restaurant & Lounge
Tasty Town Greek Restaurant and Lounge, the new Greek restaurant from Pihakis Restaurant Group, opened on June 22 in downtown Birmingham. Located at the bottom of the Lumen Building at 10 14th Street, south at the west end of Railroad Park, Tasty Town offers a dining room, large bar area and lounge. The menu focuses on Greek and Southern ingredients and techniques, including small plates and appetizers like live-fire grilled souvlaki, fresh seafood, bright vegetables, and traditional dip with freshly baked pita bread.
Tasty Town Greek Restaurant & Lounge | 16 S 14th Street Birmingham 35233 | eattastytown.com
The Spun Cow, Pizitz Food Hall’s newest dessert kiosk, opened in the former Edolyn’s Pies space last spring. The ice cream and sweets kiosk boasts a menu of ice cream, handcrafted cotton candy, and floats.
Spinning Cow | Pizitz dining hall | 1821 2nd Ave N #3112, Birmingham, AL 35203 | www.thespuncow.com
I love Tina and Gina
While a slew of new stalls have opened in the Pizitz Food Hall over the past two years, the food hall has been missing a sandwich shop. Enter I Love Tina & Gina’s, which opened in May. This store, directed by Long Island-born Christina Harrison, is a tribute to New York. While living in Atlanta, Harrison saw a number of friends opening businesses in Birmingham, so she decided to visit the city. Then I fell in love. Harrison, who was planning to open a restaurant, did not think of the food court in downtown Birmingham. That’s until she saw space.
I thought I should put something here! She told Al.com in an interview. She decided to build a custom concept for her two favorites: sandwiches and salads.
“I’m a fan of sandwiches. Sandwiches and salads are like my thing. The only way for me to get a good one is to have it made myself,” Harrison said. “I have to make my own sandwiches. I never found what I was looking for in sandwiches in the South. It’s not like back home, where you have your takeaway in the corner or you can make it any way you want.”
“So I said, You know what? I’m going to make it myself. And that’s how Tina and Gina came out.”
Harrison, who officially moved to Birmingham in April, has built her own bodega in Birmingham—and the list includes New York classics.
“My staples are Boogie Down Bronx chopped cheese. It’s popular all over New York, but it started in the Bronx. It’s just a must. If you go to any New York deli corner, you can get chopped cheese on Along the way. “
“The Italian stallion, of course, is a staple in all Italian deli around New York. Especially Italian sandwich shops.”
Harrison has two favourites: BEC — or Bacon Egg and Cheese — and Soho Club.
“The club for me is a Southern sandwich. I kind of gave it a New York touch and a New York name. It’s a Manhattan experience, and it’s a fancy sandwich. It has a London roast with smoked Gouda cheese and baby greens. All the things. So, I just kind of call my sandwiches after Some of my favorite places and my favorite things in New York. Soho Club is like the hottest club in New York, so I wanted Soho Club to be the best sandwich.”
I Love Gina & Tina’s prides itself on having another New York staple – Boar’s Head meat.
“You can’t go to a deli in New York and not get pork head,” Harrison said. “So, if I’m going to open a deli, I have to get the pig’s head.”
But, Harrison admits, it wasn’t easy getting the New York flagship product into her store.
“The CEO is really, really hard to be involved with. I almost applied for a job with them just so I could walk through the door and talk to whoever I needed to talk to so I could get them at a deli,” she said with a laugh. “But they finally came and it was a great partnership.”
In addition to sandwiches, I Love Tina & Gina’s offers a selection of meats and cheeses, as well as condiments and side dishes. Also in the rundown: A monthly assortment of sandwich specials, like hot honey chicken and Parmesan meatball.
I love Tina and Jenna | Pizitz dining hall | 1821 2nd Ave N, Birmingham, AL 35203 | www.instagram.com/ilovetinasandginas
South Sukkot Kitchen and Bar
Chef Erica Barrett’s Birmingham location SOCU Southern Kitchen & Bar opened in May at Pizitz Food Hall.
While the design of this location differs from her restaurant in Mobile, Barrett wanted to bring the same Creole and Southern Gulf restaurant to the Pizitz food court.
“We brought that French feeling through the yard,” Barrett told AL.com in an interview.
Barrett’s goal was to keep the design of her Birmingham restaurant familiar. Its distinctive press wall filled with news articles and restaurant reviews remains a staple of the dining room’s design, as well as the chef’s table, where patrons can see the front seat in the kitchen.
“When I go to restaurants, I prefer to sit at the chef’s table. Some people prefer to sit at a regular table. But I am curious,” Barrett said with a laugh, “I love the chef’s table, so people can see all the action and all the chaos. That’s like the heartbeat of a restaurant.”
Interested in sitting at the table of Chef SOCU Southern Kitchen & Bar? Request a table in the hostess suite or through an Open Table reservation.
SOCU Southern Kitchen & Bar | Pizitz dining hall | 1821 2nd Ave N, Birmingham, AL 35203 | www.eatsocu.com/b Birmingham
The Goose opened this past May on the former Spring Street location. Surrounded by patio seating and a green space called The SideYard, the Avondale sports bar features a high ceiling and game area.
goose | 4100 4th Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35222 | https://www.facebook.com/The-Goose-BHM
The Cajun Steamer Bar & Grill
Cajun Steamer Bar & Grill opened its sixth location last spring in Cahaba Heights. The new location joins restaurants in Hoover, Trussville, Huntsville, Murfreesboro and Franklin, Tenn.
New to Cajun Steamer? Try the Redfish Rockefeller, a red Creole filet topped with jumbo shrimp in a spinach-bacon sauce, served over Cajun mashed potatoes. Not a fan of red fish? Try the dish with mahi mahi or chicken instead.
The Cajun Steamer Bar & Grill | Vistavia Hills, 35243 | cajunsteamer.com
Lady E Chicken Café
Lauryn England, her native Birmingham, made history in March when she opened Lady E’s Chick’n Cafe, the first Alabama restaurant run by a transgender black woman.
While the $99, 24-karat Gold Lady E wings made huge waves on social media in April, the restaurant also features a number of fried wings, cheeseburgers, sides (like fried okra), fried peanut butter, and jelly sandwiches at affordable prices. Another huge advantage – the late night hours. Lady E is open Fridays until midnight and Saturdays until 2:30 AM
Lady E Chicken Café | 1905 Park Bell, Birmingham, AL 35203| https://www.facebook.com/ladyeschickncafe
Do you have a recently opened restaurant? You know one is coming? Send an email to Shauna Stuart at email@example.com.