Montgomery, Alabama, is a city with history. As the confederate capital during the American Civil War, Montgomery was a pivotal location during the civil rights movement. Hungry tourists can get a fine bite to eat in town at these top 10 restaurants.
Filet and Vine is a restaurant and deli in central Montgomery. As well as serving a terrific choice of the best meat cuts, they sell them from their own market. The daily ‘hot bar’ menu provides diners with cheap but wholesome choices of juicy steaks or marinated chicken with a choice of two sides, all for less than $15. All of the meat comes from silver sterling or blank Angus certified beef, making it some of the highest quality available. On the same site as the restaurant is the bottle shop, which stocks more than 12,000 different varieties and vintages.
Jim n’ Nicks BBQ is an up-and-coming chain serving some of the very best in Alabama barbecue. In the USA, barbecue differs from state to state, with fierce rivalries as to which state prepares the best meat. In the Southern states, it is often joked that barbecue is spelled P-O-R-K, compared to the B-E-E-F spelling in the north. This is evidenced from Jim n’ Nicks’ menu, which features a wide selection of pig-based dishes, including baby back and spare ribs, pulled pork and Carolina style pork. There is the option of beef brisket on the menu, but mostly, this restaurant is a celebration of all things hog.
Dreamland BBQ was originally opened in 1958 and has since grown into one of Alabama’s biggest barbecue businesses, with a steadily growing empire of restaurants and caterers. Dreamland BBQ sticks even more rigorously to the tenets of Southern barbecue than Jim n’ Nicks does, featuring only chicken and pork – you won’t find any beef here. Starters include nachos and wings, but the main event is the selection of barbecued pork and chicken combos – just get stuck into these straight away.
There aren’t many places to eat that are more cultured than Café M in the world, let alone Alabama. Set within the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts, Café M offers fresh European and Middle Eastern dishes that are set to delight any audience. Since 2004, the sole caterer of Café M has been Jenny Weller, whose team diligently prepares food across a range of menus. Several times a month, the cafe puts on a special lunch where food courses are paired with wine for just $15 per person. After eating, diners have the chance to walk off the meal by taking in some of the beautiful art that fills the rest of the museum.
Baumhower’s opened in 1981 when ex-Miami Dolphins football player Bob Baumhower decided to share his love of food with the rest of the world. He now has a number of sites across all of Alabama, bringing the best in nostalgia and great American eating. Baumhower’s prides itself on using only the best in high quality, fresh, local ingredients. The menu is a meat feast, with steaks, ribs and burgers in plentiful supply. The specials menu features a string of dishes, each with their own American football related twist that are perfect for mixing and matching between groups.
A family-owned and operated restaurant, Martin’s is one of the oldest in Montgomery, having opened in the 1930s. The menu changes daily and is inspired by the classic home cooking that the owners themselves grew up with. Each day they cook whatever they feel like and serve it to a hungry crowd of happy diners. Specialties include meatloaf, fried catfish, and salmon croquettes. The restaurant is especially family-friendly, with a relaxed atmosphere and friendly vibe. Martin’s even picked up two awards in 2012, including the readers’ choice from the Montgomery advertiser.
Tomatinos pizza and bake shop is set in the heart of the historic Old Cloverdale district of Montgomery. Built in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Old Cloverdale was considered one of Montgomery’s genteel places, and is currently the largest landscaped neighborhood in the state of Alabama. Open for lunch and dinner, Tomatinos serves a wide variety of pizzas, calzones and sandwiches, all of which are also available to takeaway if you feel like taking in some of the historic local surroundings.
With the title of the River Regions’ oldest white tablecloth restaurant, The City Grill is locally owned and operated with a wine list that restaurants in Paris would be jealous of. A fine-dining establishment, The City Grill asks that guests come dressed in business casual attire, although the staff themselves are far from stuffy. The restaurant’s signature dish is a starter called Tuna Napoleon, consisting of diced sushi grade tuna with an avocado and miso vinaigrette. More expensive than other restaurants in the area, The City Grill more than makes up for this with an incomparable attention to detail to both food and service.
Central is located in the centre of Montgomery’s downtown district and serves some of the most exciting food that the city has to offer. Head chef Leonardo immigrated to Alabama from Panama in 1990, where he studied the arts of cookery. The menu features dishes from all sorts of international persuasions, including honey-whipped goats cheese, hickory-crisped duck quarters, and cornmeal-dusted, pan-fried trout. Desserts include banana pudding and milk chocolate Bavarian cream, offering examples of dishes from the old world and the new.