Whether amongst the cantina's chandeliers, the saloon's rustic surrounds, or the outdoor patio's crackling fire, guests at Fuego Cantina can savor a bevy of Mexican cuisine seven days a week—and until 2 a.m. on Monday through Saturday. Seasoned chefs cover hand-rolled enchiladas in house-made sauce, mix house-marinated meats into fajitas, and fill quesadillas with fixings such as grilled Portobello mushrooms and caramelized onions. Along with Mexican items, the inventive kitchen captains also smother half-pound hot dogs with relish and sauerkraut and top burgers with house-made chili and sharp cheddar cheese.
To wash down feasts, bartenders at Fuego Cantina's two bars keep 14 beers on tap and pour more than 30 wines by the glass. They also mix up specialty mojitos, margaritas, and martinis, such as the combined chocolate ganache and Godiva liqueur of the Death by Chocolate. In addition to tasty treats and drinks, Fuego Cantina enlivens evenings with karaoke on Tuesdays, pin-the-tail-on-the-cacti on Thursdays, and live music throughout the week.
Stone's Throw Bar & Grill serves contemporary American cuisine made with fresh and locally sourced ingredients. Daily menus reflect offerings from regional farmers, including the watercress salad, bursting with a harvest of avocados, corn, citrus supremes, goat cheese, and toasted cumin-lime vinaigrette ($7). A plate of fried green tomatoes ($8) works as a home-style opening act for the simple grilled fish, which is served on a bed of caramelized-onion-basil mashed potatoes ($23). Sides such as cheese grits and braised collards ($4 each) sing backup for the Meyer Ranch burger's ($9) protein-packed rock ballad. Splitting desserts of white-chocolate bread pudding ($6) and chocolate truffle tart ($7) prevents hurt feelings on the side of the delicious dessert menu.
Overtime Bar and Grill keeps a regular schedule of events and specials Monday through Saturday. Start off the week with Monday's $7 draft pitchers and $0.50 wings while you catch the game on one of 10 plasma TVs or the 100-inch projection screen. Karaoke night mitigates hump day morose, and live music on Friday starts the weekend. Overtime's food menu boasts several burger options, hearty bowls of chili, fresh salads, sandwiches, and more. During midday, lasso the rotating lunch special: an entrée, side, and beverage combo for $7. Night owls and evening emus can take advantage of kitchen hours 'til 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
Fried Alabama-grown green tomatoes, encrusted in cornmeal ($7), are a golden start to a journey through the Southern-fried favorites and European-pub classics on the dinner menu. The J. Clyde's caprese ($9) stacks Italian standards (fresh tomato and mozzarella) with Southern flavors (fried okra and pancetta), and the vegetable boxty ($13) subverts the Irish potato pancake by boxing locally-grown vegetables in a light European crust. Entrees such as grilled grouper, steak au poivre, and Bavarian sausage (entrees range from $8 to $23) satisfy any appetite for cullinary adventure. Or order off the comfort-food-filled pub menu to sup on steak and eggs ($15) or customizable pizza (starting at $9, with Alabama goat cheese available for $2 extra.)
Jeremy Douglas and Paul Burgess worked at a Fultondale sports bar in the spring of 2011 when vicious storms tore through the area and decimated it. Dead set on turning tragedy into opportunity, the two opened North Tavern to continue the traditions of the restaurant they lost.
Patrons sit at square wooden tables in North Tavern's airy dining room, with metallic walls and a high, loft-style ceiling that conforms to zoning regulations that date back to when giants ran the city. Live musicians take advantage of the eatery's booming acoustics as visitors grab drinks at the bar or dig into half-pound burgers with homemade chips, chicken alfredo, classic BLTs, and fried pickles.
With low lighting and a chic, minimal interior, Wine Loft BIrmingham sets the scene for an intimate date or a low-key dinner with friends. Start with a glass or bottle from the enormous wine list and then browse the food menu of small, shareable plates and desserts such as wild mushroom manchego bruschetta and smooth chocolate fondue.