Chef Abhi Sainju from Nepal rolled sushi at Surin West for 12 years before opening this Pan-Asian restaurant. Try purist dishes like the Momos, steamed Nepalese dumplings, or inventive fusions like the Tako Salad: octopus poke salad reimagined with mint, Vietnamese fish sauce, and toasted peanuts (a Nepalese touch). He’s also an early adopter of the ramen craze.

INSIDER TIP: Ono Ice serves dessert here a few nights a week.

Bamboo on 2nd
2212 2nd Ave. N
Birmingham, AL 35203
(205) 703-0551

Under the guidance of Brian Somershield, a Stitt acolyte, this ever-bustling joint turns out thoughtful interpretations of modern Mexican, such as grilled chorizo meat loaf.

El Barrio Restaurante Y Bar
2211 2nd Avenue N
Birmingham, AL 35203
(205) 868-3737

Unique dishes like homemade ramen with collard greens dot this farm-to-table menu. Impressive craft cocktails make this a good suburban strip-mall spot for happy hour.

3156 Heights Village
Birmingham, AL 35243
(205) 876-8100

Fresh fish, local meats, and craft cocktails.

Galley & Garden
2220 Highland Ave S
Birmingham, AL 35205
(205) 939-5551

Chefs/owners Giani and Marco Respinto, who grew up in their family’s Greenwich Village restaurant in New York City, have mastered the art of hand-kneaded pasta, made with cake flour imported from Italy. Authentic dishes like velvety wild mush- room ravioli and tender veal piccata draw a packed house every night. The new wine bar/retail shop out back sweetens the wait with wine-barrel tables, candlelight, and a 300-label vino list that stretches all the way from Napa to Tuscany.

INSIDER TIP: Want dinner and a show? Request to be seated at the chef’s table, a cozy two-top that overlooks the kitchen.

GianMarco's Restaurant
721 Broadway St.
Birmingham, AL 35209
(205) 871-9622

Frank Stitt's landmark restaurant that made the city a must for food lovers.

Highlands Bar & Grill
2011 11th Ave S
Birmingham, AL 35205
(205) 939-1400

A showcase of Alabama's bounty, grown, caught, or foraged. Pricey and tough to get a table. Try going without a reservation and dining at the bar.

Hot and Hot Fish Club
2180 11th Court S
Birmingham, AL 35205
(205) 933-5474

Seasonally inspired international food served out of an airstream trailer behind Parkside bar. Out of that trailer’s tiny kitchen comes an ever-changing parade of Asian delights—lemongrass fried chicken, spicy soba noodle bowls—as many as 300 different dishes a year, all in the $10 range.

4036 5th Ave S #2
Birmingham, AL 35222
(205) 224-5632

Food truck turned restaurant specializing in grilled cheese.

4105 4th Avenue S
Birmingham, AL 35222
(205) 917-5000

Generous portions at this mom-and-pop smokehouse.

Miss Myra's Pit Bar-B-Q
3278 Cahaba Heights Rd
Birmingham, AL 35243
(205) 967-6004