At each Tropical Smoothie Cafe location, healthy choices abound with drinks consisting of fresh fruit and snacks loaded with veggies and premium meats and cheeses. The café’s colorful repertoire of smoothies runs the gamut from creamy, dessert-based indulgent creations to light and refreshing low-fat fruit options or frosty drinks boosted with supplements. Strawberries, bananas, and peaches mingle with exotic açaí and goji berries to form mouthwatering concoctions designed to deliver health-boosting antioxidants, essential nutrients and laser-vision-inducing vitamins. Drinks pair with ciabatta and griddled flatbread during breakfast and lunch, as well as with made-to-order salads and a host of wraps and sandwiches.
Located in the historic Cloverdale Village, Roux recently opened its modern, art-filled space to serve traditional Southern comfort dishes and New Orleans–inspired seafood for lunch, dinner, and brunch. Prince Edward Island mussels ($19.50) crowned with Pernod sauce rub crustacean elbows with roasted new potatoes and braised leeks with saffron and fresh thyme. The Gulf shrimp po boy ($10) smuggles cornmeal-crusted gulf shrimp between french bread pieces under the cover of homemade coleslaw and a rémoulade sauce, and the Prime Roux burger ($12) combines grilled Meyer ranch beef with smoked onion jam, house-cured bacon, and a choice of cheeses without the use of nuclear fusion. Sunday brunch pleases with eggs benedict ($10.50) dressed up in an avocado purée and hollandaise sauce accompanied by smoked bacon. Cap a feast with a bite of bananas foster ($5.50) or sweet-potato-pecan pie ($5.50).
Bacon, cheese, pickles, lettuce, tomato, and onion crown the award-winning Butch burger, the nearly plate-sized signature item at Butch Cassidy's Cafe. Founded in April 1993 and named for Paul Newman and Robert Redford's classic film, the café tips its hat to other legends of the wild days with a menu steeped in Western references.
A reuben sandwich on rye pays homage to the Sundance Kid, a beef patty melt honors Calamity Jane, and a club sandwich name checks the Pinkertons, an agency still vying to make pink part of the rainbow. Other popular offerings include the Rio Grande nachos and Baggs Wyoming buffalo wings, and a low-carb menu highlights the kitchen's more health-conscious offerings.
In 1971, Glenn Watson opened Stanlieo’s Sub Villa to bring Boston-style subs down South, topping them with cubed onions, pickles, and tomatoes, as well as salt and pepper, oregano, and oil. More than four decades later, the Watson family is still running the casual eatery, but today, they pile their freshly baked buns high at two locations. Fried pickles, mushrooms, and green tomatoes accompany steak subs out of the kitchen, and sandwich-smiths load up vegetarian subs with one of four vegetarian soy meats, as opposed to the Hormel meats they use for their regular subs and sculptures of Teddy Roosevelt. For those up to the challenge, the staff stuffs their famous Kitchen Sink sub with genoa and cotta salami, ham, turkey, roast beef, capicola, and pepperoni, as well as swiss, american, and provolone cheese in order to burst belts.
"This Boot was a lone house of public entertainment," Charles Dickens wrote in his novel Barnaby Rudge, with "several people drinking there, and a great merriment going on." The Boot at Preserve Village works to channel this homey vibe into its spacious dining room, where a pecan-wood fire burns inside a brick hearth. Made with organic chicken, beef, and veggies, their fast-casual American menu includes salads topped with homemade dressings, slow-cooked beef-brisket sandwiches, char-grilled smoky pimento burgers, and homemade brownies. Guests can wash down each flavorful bite with cocktails, wine, or craft beers from local Alabama and southeastern breweries such as Back Forty Beer Company and Terrapin Brewing Company. The Boot at Preserve Village recently won the 2013 Best of Birmingham - Best New Restaurant award.
Gleaning her baking skills from her mother and grandmother, Gigi's Cupcakes' eponymous owner opened her first cupcake hub in 2008, drawing upon her entrepreneurial spirit and gift for crafting beautifully topped cupcakes. The franchised cupcakery now has 50 locations, each of which churns out 12 daily-rotating flavors that are made fresh every morning. The shop's selection of more than 40 flavors includes Canadian Maple, Southern Comfort, and Champagne—a bubbly-flavored base topped with an edible pearl. Patrons can pick out sweet treats from the daily selection or preorder them at least one day in advance online, by phone, or via singing telegram.