If asked to narrow down Birmingham’s best assets to just one *really* superb characteristic, I’d waste no time in handing you a fork.
The Magic City leaves no appetite hungry, what with its James Beard-recognized chefs, its passed-down traditions, it’s soul-finding flavors…
But it’s not just what you see on your plate that’s worth taking a bite. No, Birmingham is FULL of flavor, all the time.
Image, Christopher Hirsheimer
Let me hit just a few high notes and I’ll leave you to let it settle. I’ll be back again soon with more to please your palate. And go ahead, get used to my gastronomy-speak, ’cause in this city, I’m afraid, I’ll never grow tired of talkin’ ’bout food, the people that make it, the ways we enjoy it, and the reasons it defines us.
A Quick Taste of Birmingham, including a statewide flavor feast, a regional foodie symposium, a neighborly food fetish, and the tastiest of Southern bragging rights:
-2012 has been dubbed once again the Year of Alabama Food. And it’s no surprise that the majority of finger-lickin’ links to the state’s top eateries all lead you right here, to Birmingham’s best restaurants.
-In just a few weeks, Birmingham will host FoodBlogSouth for the second year. This genuinely Su’thun foodie (blogger) fest is a real treat for those of us who like to type and Twitter away about food from time to time (some of us being a bit more “official” than others), and having such a dynamic group of food writers/stylists/critics gather in the Magic City is a testament to Birmingham’s stature as a bonafide culinary destination. (I’ve already got my ticket in hand. God forgive me in advance for all the cookbooks I will stuff into my well-planned, oversized purse.)
-Just a few blocks away, there lives this home chef extraordinnaire who just casually cooks and posts about her kitchen adventures as if it is nothing more than simply boiling water. Of course, in a food-centric city like Birmingham, one of my neighbors would be cooking up all kinds of fabulous feasts and fables for the rest of us hungry souls to gobble right up. Some call this coincidence; I call it strategic, delicious real estate.
-Birmingham is vying for the South’s Tastiest Town Award (via Southern Living). Online voting is open through January 31, so log on each day to cast your pick! (We’re a bit behind the front-runners, so encourage everyone at your dinner table to vote, too!)
There you have it. A nibble. A morsel. Just enough to keep you coming back for more…
You see, I am inspired by Birmingham’s tremendous food culture. Being born and raised just a few miles west over in Mississippi, I can authoritatively appreciate the flavor of some down home cookin’. I can also appreciate the precision and craft in a dish so beautifully executed that it is emotionally painful to swallow each bite, knowing good and well that the moment has presented itself and has passed, that the flavor will all too soon fade and the food will become just another memory, another story.
Here’s to all the stories we’re cookin’ up here in the Magic City, from my table to yours.
And in the words of one of my favorite chef/storytellers, Virginia Willis…Bon Appetit, Y’all!