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Tag: cahaba brewing co

Welcome to Birmingham!

            We’re so excited you decided on Birmingham for your new home. This city we love has so much to offer from food to the great outdoors. We know it’s not easy being in a new city so we’ve pulled together a guide of our favorite local spots. Enjoy!

Food

Highlands Bar & Grill

Recently named “Most Outstanding Restaurant in America,” this is an iconic Birmingham spot. Don’t forget to try the award winning coconut cake while you’re there!

Chez FonFon

Another charming Frank Stitt spot. Slightly more relaxed atmosphere and excellent French inspired cuisine.

Hot and Hot Fish Club

Classic Birmingham. We recommend sitting at the chef’s table for the full experience.

Jack Browns

Although Birmingham has some outstanding burgers, Jack Browns is arguably one of the best. The extensive beer offering, secret sauce and outrageous burger selections (try one with mac and cheese or peanut butter) make this spot unlike any other.

Fancy’s on 5th

Another great spot to grab an out-of-the-ordinary burger, or oysters. Fancy’s often has live music on the patio and a creative cocktail menu that never disappoints.

El Barrio

The best Mexican food in town. Try their seasonal guacamole and margarita for a real taste of something different!

Bamboo on 2nd

Right across the street from El Barrio, downtown. You won’t find more delicious sushi!

The Essential

This charming new spot on Morris Ave is known for their homemade pop tarts but don’t miss out on their lunch and dinner menus!

Bottega

Dine on the casual side, formal side or al fresco. Bottega is a classic Highland Park spot with a little something for everyone.

Hotbox

A unique dinning experience – don’t let the airstream and low key atmosphere fool you, this food is no joke

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Drinks

Breweries

The Bham beer scene is pretty strong. Head to Good People before a Barons game, take your dog to Avondale or try out the new Back Forty. Did we mention Trim Tab, Cahaba, Ghost Train and Red Hills? Explore multiple stops in one afternoon when you book a Pedal Tour.

The Collins Bar

Let these mixologists create the cocktail you never knew existed and play a few board games while you wait. This is a great spot to grab a drink after work.

The Atomic

Take a time machine back to the 1960’s at this downtown bar. You can even choose a costume off the costume menu. It’s a unique cocktail experience to say the least.

Brat Brot

Birmingham’s first German biergarten. The indoor/outdoor space is uniquely charming and offers bocce and fire pits. Enjoy both German and local beers as well as German food selections.

Lou’s

It might not look like much but you’ll feel right at home with the friendly and knowledgeable staff. Don’t forget to play a round of Yahtzi for a chance to win some cash!

Marble Ring/Zeldas

Birmingham’s 1920’s speakeasy experience. Enter through a phone booth in Hot Diggity Dog’s and enjoy a throwback to the flapper era. Now you can enjoy a glitter themed dance floor out on the patio at Zeldas!

Moon shine

This rooftop bar can be found at the top of The Elyton Hotel. Comfortable seating and great view make this is laid back spot to catch up with friends.

Pilcrow

Coming soon to Morris Ave, we can’t wait to try out this Mezcal speakeasy! A first for Birmingham!

Music & Entertainment

Iron City

This restaurant and event space doubles as a concert venue and when they’re not hosting live music, they’re offering family friendly events, sports viewing parties and more.

Saturn

Coffee shop, bar, concert venue and all around entertainment center thanks to their selection of board and video games. There’s constantly something fun going on here.

Alabama Theatre

This Birmingham landmark offers plays, concerts, and even movie nights! Catch a different Christmas movie every night of the week during December!

Lyric Theatre

The oldest theatre in Birmingham has been restored and is used for concerts, ballets and entertainment of all kinds!

Outdoors

Rufner Mountain

Get some fresh air and hike the beautiful trails of this nature preserve. You can also enjoy family and community events a couple times a month at the nature center.

Railroad Park

This 8-block green space in the heart of the city is a great place to spend time outdoors. Enjoy free exercise classes, summer concerts and ice skating in the winter.

Vulcan Trail

This two mile trail has been recently expanded and leads straight to The Vulcan and Vulcan museum.

Zyp Bikes

The easiest and most affordable way to get around the downtown area. You can rent a Zyp bike at one location and return it to another.

Rotary Trail

A nod to Birmingham’s history, this is a great place in the city to take a stroll!

Bham Eats: Bangkok Street Food at Cahaba Brewing Co.

grilled squid thai street food
Image of grilled squid with spicy seafood sauce via Kay Stk

 

Early on, we raved about Five Points South’s Chai Market. And these days, there’s even more to love. Owners Kay Stk and Golff Sudchodayon launched their Thai food pop-up at the old Cahaba Brewing Company last fall, and they’ll be joining Cahaba at its Avondale location for the second pop-up installment this Saturday, February 27. We sat down with Stk and Sudchodayon while they took a break from weekend food prep to find out more about the coming menu and their future popup plans.

“It’s definitely going to be street food because we love street food,” Stk said of the weekend offerings. They won’t be repeating their original menu, choosing instead to add four totally new dishes to their rotation, she said. But they are making one exception for a crowd favorite: pad ka pow.

“The stir fry basil with the fried egg,” Sudchodayon said. “Everybody loved that.”

They described the new menu options — grilled squid with spicy seafood sauce, crispy stir fried noodles with brown gravy, tofu panang, and larb chicken with sticky rice — as Stk displayed photos of the dishes on her phone.

They’ve designed plant-only food choices since their customer base includes plenty of vegans and vegetarians, Stk explained. The crispy noodles are vegetarian and the tofu panang vegan.

In fact, Stk said they may have an entirely vegetarian pop-up menu in the future, inspired by a longstanding vegan festival in Thailand. An entire city avoids meat throughout the seven-day festival, which Stk estimates has run for the past 30 or 40 years. “The menu from that festival is very, very good,” she said. “Maybe one day we can try.”

Both women think Birmingham can handle more Thai culture than their pop-ups, though. The “ultimate goal” is to stage a Thai food festival, Sudchodayon said. Besides dishing up authentic cuisine, she described entertainment elements like Thai boxing or a Thai cooking challenge.

“I think Birmingham is ready,” Stk added. “We see Greek food festival, Turkish food festival, Chinese festival, why not Thai?”

Avondale Spotlight: Cahaba Brewing 2.0

cahaba brewing company

 

Sometimes, an upgraded space can feel like an about-face rather than a natural evolution, so we’ve been curious to see how Cahaba Brewing Co. would handle their transition to an Avondale location. The short answer is this: very, very well. They’ve managed to maintain much of the feel from the original space but added tons more room, far better parking, and an exciting new location. Cahaba Brewing was a stylish take on rough-and-ready, and we liked it that way. But we love it the new way too.

The biggest difference is the space. There’s so much more of it. They’ve managed to move from a metaphorical cozy studio into a stunning loft space that still feels true to their industrial roots. Large walls of glass frame the tap room, one of garage sliders that will open to the wide outdoor patio in warmer weather, and another wall of fixed glass that preserves the ambience of a functional brewery with a bit more polish.

There are still long, communal tables and raised bar tops for seating, but there are also smaller round tables for more traditional parties. By varying the height and style of seating, they’ve managed the classic — but sometimes tricky — loft trick of carving one large space into more intimate groupings. High ceilings with roofline windows make the tap room feel even larger and more open. On a sunny day, there’s so much natural light that it almost feels like sitting outdoors, but with the benefit of climate control. Victorian-era furniture makes the adorable entry nook a fun departure from pure rustic style, and, along with an antique cart at the taproom’s opposite end, offers a subtle reminder that serious brewing is not a recent invention.

In fact, the new location isn’t just about shiny new space but about a more refined business perspective. It’s as though the presumably large investment in a new space has prompted the brewery to take its craft event more seriously. A printed beer menu offers thoughtful descriptions of their trademark and seasonal offerings, including some of the local plant/river inspirations behind their flavors. There’s something closer to the experience of visiting a Scotch distillery overseas — the attention paid to explaining the product’s story and process — while maintaining the easy hangout vibe of Birmingham’s taproom culture.

There’s also the excitement of the brew culture’s connection to Birmingham’s renaissance — a trend the Birmingham Business Journal noted in a 2014 profile of Cahaba Brewing. Fred Dyess, owner of nearby Avondale Antiques, predicted the Continental Gin complex will host the kind of small shops and restaurants found at Pepper Place, and we think it’s only a matter of time before it boasts a new Zyp station. We can’t help thinking Continental Gin will become a natural expansion point for Box Row tenants who outgrow their startup spaces but want to maintain a presence near their initial brick-and-mortar locations. 

Cheers, Cahaba! Here’s to some awesome trendsetting.

Bham Development: Cahaba Brewing Moves East

Image via Cahaba Brewing Co.

We’ve grown accustomed to Cahaba Brewing Co.’s current face, nestled at the foot of the Red Mountain Expressway in Lakeview. But even fans of the current space will admit it’s small, and it’s hard not to be excited about their new location in Avondale.

Situated in the Continental Gin industrial campus, the new space will boast a patio and plenty of parking, an amenity absent from the present location, wrote Kelly Poe for AL.com. Limited tank space in the current location also meant subcontracting the first can run of the company’s American Blonde Ale to a Virginia producer, Poe noted.

“The growth the brewery has seen over the last few years has been phenomenal,” Cahaba partner Eric Meyer told Poe. “That’s what’s pushing us to go into the new building.” But the company was also looking for a space with character, partner Andrew Pharo said. They settled on the Continental Gin location because “there’s a lot of historical aspects and interesting architectural aspects to the building,” he told Poe.

In an October 2014 profile of Cahaba Brewing, the Birmingham Business Journal’s Ryan Phillips wrote of the partners’ commitment to being part of Birmingham’s revitalization, a movement they linked in part to the growing craft brew culture. Craft brewing has drawn “a younger, more hip crowd” in other cities, Phillips noted.

The new location is an important ingredient too, since Continental Gin sits at a nexus of neighborhoods like Avondale, Crestwood, and Woodlawn, noted the BBJ’s Bryan Davis. “It only takes one entrepreneur with a pioneering spirit to spark the revitalization of an area,” Davis wrote, citing Parkside as an example. Both Cahaba partners and Continental Gin real estate reps told Davis they envisioned more development to come in the complex, which has plenty of room for new tenants.

“We’re not only looking forward to moving to Continental Gin to increase our production capacity, but to help revitalize the neighborhood and turn it into a creative center for Birmingham,” Meyer told Phillips earlier this year.

So we’re curious to see how the shift of brew culture eastward will fuel growth in neighborhoods like Avondale, and perhaps even nearby Woodlawn. South Avondale, certainly, has already made a name for itself, even being labeled Alabama’s Brooklyn by Thrillist.com. But Avondale’s growth has so far been relatively limited to the areas around 41st Street and Avondale Park. With Cahaba Brewing expanding the neighborhood’s cache eastward, we’re excited to see how that changes the game in areas beyond the current boom.

It’s also good news for Crestwood. Area residents will willingly tell you they enjoy close proximity to lots of great things, but having Avondale amenities literally bordering Crestwood boundaries certainly can’t hurt. The Crestwood North Neighborhood Association Facebook page was quick to point out their proximity to Avondale in a Facebook post sharing the Thrillist rating. In fact, Cahaba’s move may have the most immediate single family housing impact on Crestwood, persuading more folks they can have an established neighborhood while being up-and-coming adjacent.

Whether our predictions are right or wrong, we’re excited to see the brewing trail stretching farther across the city. We’ll definitely be raising a glass at the new Cahaba.