Reviews › Casual Fare

One Curb, Two Meals 

Eli keeps us well fed with organic, Israeli fare. 

By Jan Walsh 

We dine in on occasion and pick up at the curb often at Eli’s Jerusalem Grill. And over the years, I have enjoyed everything on the menu. I have also been in the kitchen filming cooking videos with Chef Eli Markshtien, where I was impressed by his due diligence to keeping it organic. Everywhere I looked the products were marked with USDA Organic label. 

Oh, Mama! 

We pair surf and turf burrito bowls with melon margaritas. 

By Jan Walsh 

I am not much of a planner. But when I go to Taco Mama, I have my order ready… because I want everything listed on their colorful boards. 

Happy Hanukkah Week 

Savor Eli’s Jerusalem Grill potato latkes while they last!

By Jan Walsh 

Eating fried food on Hanukkah is a tradition. It is a commemoration of the oil that burned for eight days, as the Maccabees purified and rededicated the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. Eli’s Jerusalem Grill is frying organic potato latkes daily during until December 18. 

Starving Here 

What’s for lunch? 

By Jan Walsh 

When the lockdown first started, I had mass quantities of food groceries delivered. But getting food in the house and actually cooking it, soon proved to be too much. Every day there they were—food—just sitting there chilling in the fridge, waiting to be cooked. Fresh farm eggs couldn’t wait to be fried. Potatoes threatened to sprout. And mold married my strawberries overnight. 

Lunch & Dinner Delivery

Ordered Billy’s Sports Grill online and delivery to my door.

By Jan Walsh

This week Billy’s Sports Grill added online ordering option. You can pay online and get curbside pickup, of food and alcohol. Or if you live in Liberty Park, you can get your lunch or dinner delivered to your door, with contactless delivery. 


dyron's lowcountry country sunday brunch Toasting the Timing 

Sunday Brunch at Dyron’s Lowcountry now serves mimosas before noon.

By Jan Walsh

Dyron’s Lowcountry has one of the best brunches around. And thanks to a new Mountain Brook ordinance, they now serve alcohol on Sundays before noon. The ordinance passed this summer and allows restaurants and grocery stores to begin service at 10:00 a.m.

bottega cafe bar lounge Favorite Table 

Bottega Café adds lounge seating and moved my table.   

By Jan Walsh 

We always arrive before Bottega Café opens in order to get “our table,” in the right corner window. So many memories of lunch right there with Kev. We have romanced, celebrated, and problem solved over lunch and handcrafted cocktails or bubbles. Yet as we valet, I see my table is gone. In its place is a new lounge area with airy, rattan and wicker furniture. I get it. Here guests can wait comfortably for a table, while sipping their choice of beverage, or nibbling on an app. But where’s my table? No worries, I look to the left and there it is in the front window alongside the entrance. Whew! Same good light, nice little corner. We have found a new home here. 

Cider, Coconut, and Curry

Discovering new dishes at Abhi Eatery and Bar

By Jan WalshSometimes I get into culinary ruts. I find delicious dishes at a restaurant, and on the next visit, I stick with the tried and true. But today I am not going to order my “go to” favorites at Abhi—well, maybe just the momos. Otherwise I am discovering new options.

 

 

 

 


blueprint on 3rd wine dinner Inaugural Wine Dinner

 

Blueprint on 3rd’s first wine dinner benefits TumTum Tree Foundation.

 

By Jan Walsh

 

This weekend is TumTum Tree Foundation’s Wine Auction Weekend 2018. The Foundation enriches the lives of Alabama’s children who face life-altering and life-threatening illnesses. Over 29 years, TumTum Tree Foundation has donated over $11 million to Alabama children’s charities. And the TumTum Tree Wine Auction is the longest-running charity wine auction in the United States devoted to raising money for children’s charities.

the gardens cafe les dames eventA Feminine Affair  

The Gardens Café host private event for Les Dames d’Escoffier. 

By Jan Walsh 

Les Dames d’Escoffier, Birmingham Chapter welcomed new members this week at The Gardens Café by Kathy G. Located at Birmingham Botanical Gardens, the cafe was the perfect place to have this annual event. 



bluepint on 3rd scallops daily special Scallops Special

I shall never forget the scallops at Blueprint on 3rd.

By Jan Walsh

Kev and I are back at Blueprint on 3rd for the second time. In the meantime, we have raved to friends and family, word of mouth in person about this place, and I have on social media since our first visit.

lobster roll at Bistro VOn A Roll

Another lobster “Food Find,” Bistro V’s new Lobster Roll! 

By Jan Walsh 

I have been craving lobster lately. I do love it anytime. But this time of the year, when winter is waning, and hints of spring are wooing, my palate is ready for lighter fare. And just in time, Bistro V rolls out their new Lobster Roll. We have ordered it twice already for takeout—carried out well—and look forward to having it in house as well. 

 

Lloyd’s Restaurant celebrates 80 years of comfort food.

By Jan Walsh

 Photography by Beau Gustafson

Lloyd Chesser opened Lloyd’s Restaurant in Chelsea, Alabama in 1937.

Its current owner, Eli Stevens previously worked with his father in their family business, Home Baking Company. He delivered bread to the restaurant three times weekly.

Pair Cantina Tortilla Grills’ enchiladas with local brews.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Cantina Tortilla Grill has been serving fresh Mexican fare for more than 10 years. The recipes were created by its founder Guillermo Castro. And his brother, Jorge Castro carries on his tradition today whipping up chicken and cheese enchiladas for us.

Eli's kabobsEli’s Jerusalem Grill serves healthy and heavenly kabobs.

 

By Jan Walsh

 

Photography by Beau Gustafson

 

Eli’s Jerusalem Grill is an organic restaurant located at 4673 Highway 280 and Pizitz Food Hall. Chef Eli Markshtien serves grass fed beef, organic chicken, lamb along with falafel, homemade pita, soups, salads, desserts, organic wine, and organic beer. Eli's also uses Non-GMO oils. 

 

Taco Mama margaritas From heat to sweet Taco Mama’s margaritas have it all.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Taco Mama has a motto of “Stay hungry, and be thirsty.” But no one is hungry or thirsty for long at Taco Mama. The menu offers build your own tacos, burritos, burrito bowl, nachos and quesadillas, taco and burrito baskets, and an array of specialty, handcrafted margaritas.

Eli's Jerusalem GrillEli’s Jerusalem Grill serves healthy, organic fare.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

What is a man to do when he cannot find a place to eat? When Eli Markshtien, and his wife, Laurel and family, moved to Birmingham he could not find an Israeli restaurant. So he opened his own and began cooking his grandmother's recipes—solving the problem and also fulfilling his dream of his own Israeli restaurant.

ashley mac's saladsTry Ashley Mac’s Salad Trio at three locations.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Ashley Mac's is open for lunch and dinner at three Birmingham area locations: Cahaba Heights, Inverness, and Riverchase. And all Ashley Mac’s restaurants are locally owned by Ashley and Andy McMakin.

LLoyd's restaurant ham plate

Lloyd’s Restaurant serves home cooked meals on Highway 280.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Much has changed since Lloyd’s Restaurant opened in 1937. But one thing that has not changed is the comforting, Southern style goodness coming out of the kitchen at Lloyd’s—and their friendly staff, who serves it.


Have your pick of in season veggies at Ted’s Restaurant.

By Jan Walsh

Photography By Beau Gustafson


There is nothing more satisfying to this Southern belle than a fresh vegetable plate. As a child I helped my grandmother pick veggies—okra, squash, corn, turnips, pink eye peas, tomatoes and more. Then I watched as she cooked them—incorporating decades of expertise.
Make a meal of this popular appetizer at Billy’s Sports Grill.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson


If you love nachos and seafood, Billy’s Sports Grill has an appetizer that you will
want to make into a meal.
Dreamland’s pork spare ribs are good to the bone.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson


Why the name, “Dreamland”? John “Big Daddy” Bishop opened his first Dreamland Café in Tuscaloosa in 1958—the same year Bear Bryant started coaching at the University of Alabama. Big Daddy was a brick mason who wanted another income to support his family. So he prayed for guidance. And legend has it that God told him in a dream to build a café on the land next to his home. And Big Daddy did just that. Since that time Dreamland has opened several locations in Alabama and Georgia, including our own Birmingham Dreamland.
Ted’s Southern cooking serves a loyal following.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

You can’t miss Ted’s Restaurant. It is located at 328 12th Street South with the large, original “Ted’s Cafeteria Restaurant” sign on the corner. Recent updates to the interior make lunching here more appealing. But it is not ambience that draws the crowds. We go to Ted’s for a taste of what busy Southerners miss—but have no time to cook—fresh meat and three, home style fare.

Pair pizza and Peroni at Slice Stone Pizza and Brew.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson


I love to try “new” restaurants—a few months after they open. Today we lunch at the new family owned and operated pizza restaurant in Birmingham’s Lakeview District. Appropriately located in the stone building at 29th Street South, Jeff, Chris and Jason Bajalieh opened Slice Stone Pizza and Brew here in 2011.

Big Bird

Lloyd’s Baked Chicken Greek Style is highly recommended. 

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Lloyd’s has been serving American and Southern style cooking for 74 years. Founded in 1937, the restaurant is a Highway 280 landmark. I can recall when it was “in the middle of no where.” Yet through the decades, as its neighborhood changed into a bustling area, Lloyd’s has remained true to its identity of a family style restaurant with friendly, attentive service and an extensive menu—all things Southern veggies, BBQ, steaks, steaks and more. 

Enjoy awesome food in a casual mood at Billy’s Sports Grills.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Billy’s Sports Grills offer terrific food, comfortable ambiences, and friendly service.


In 1979 the original Billy's Sports Grill opened as a bar and small kitchen serving simple sandwiches in Mountain Brook’s English Village. Billy's Chicken Sandwich quickly became the signature dish. Also immediately popular were Billy's Famous White Sauce and Hot Mustard Sauce. In the years that followed, Billy's menu expanded to include signature sandwiches, salads, wraps, steaks, and most recently fresh seafood for lunch and dinner.

Billy's Bar and Grill opens second location, Billy's On Overton.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Every neighborhood needs a Billy's. Liberty Park, and nearby Mountain Brook area residents, just got one. Billy's On Overton is the brother restaurant to Billy's Bar and Grill in Mountain Brook, a longtime neighborhood favorite of many who live, work and shop in English Village. Satisfying the need for an upscale sports bar and grill, the new eatery on Overton opened its doors in April 2008. Those of us who live in the area have watched, waited and been looking forward to this for months.

Billy's Sports Grill's Santa Fe Salad is big on flavor.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Billy's Sports Grill in English Village is a family-owned, neighborhood pub Located in English Village. They offer an extensive menu featuring appetizers, grilled burgers, steaks and salads. And the Santa Fe Salad is a favorite for those who want, not just a salad, a meal.