When you think of Montgomery, Alabama you probably think of classic family friendly Southern food. Fried chicken? Yes, please! Biscuits and gravy? Sure! What you may not realize is the rise of the Foodie scene in Montgomery. The classic Southern Fare is still there, but with upscale twists. There’s also an upcoming trend of Cultural based restaurants, providing authentic cuisine from other countries. If you are looking for a romantic dinner, a celebration or a girl’s (or guy’s) night out, you’ll be pleased with any of the restaurants on our Fine Dining Guide for Montgomery, Alabama.
1. The A&P Social Located minutes from downtown Montgomery, the historic Old Cloverdale neighborhood is undergoing a transformation. There’s chic boutiques, quirky shops, upscale restaurants and new revitalization of the living spaces. The A&P Social opened its doors in 2007 on the site of a long abandoned A&P grocery store and has kept its promise to deliver “handcrafted food and drink with a side of southern hospitality.” Awarded the 2016 Wine Spectator Award and voted Montgomery’s highest rated restaurant, you’ll find a bevy of food and drink to tempt your taste buds.
Because they use fresh ingredients from local farmers and Southern purveyors, the menu changes seasonally based on availability.
I recommend starting (or ending!) the meal with the selection of regional cheeses and the deviled eggs. The cheese tray comes complete with 4 regionally sourced cheeses, along with seasonal preserves, candied pecans, Alabama honey and warm bread. The deviled eggs, a true Southern favorite, taste like the ones grandmother used to make. For a true breakfast treat, try the Belgium Waffles, complete with warm apples, cinnamon butter and a side of your choice of bacon or sausage. The A&P Social is open Tuesday through Saturday for dinner and on Sundays for brunch. Unfortunately, I just learned A&P Social would be closing on June 29th, 2017, so take advantage of their delicious menu while you can!
2. Central Located in Downtown Montgomery, Central is an “upscale casual restaurant.” Executive Chef Brandon Burleson believes in creating traditional Southern fare with new twists. He utilizes local and seasonal ingredients in his dishes and partners with local farmers, cheese makers, and craft breweries. This is working because Central has been the number one rated restaurant in Montgomery, AL on TripAdviser and the OpenTable Diners’ Choice Award recipient for the third year in a row.
We tried several of the appetizers and the portions were large enough I could have easily made a meal from one appetizer. If you’ve never tried Chicken Gizzards, they are prepared in a way that leaves them tender, rather than chewy. They are also served with a blue cheese dipping sauce, another twist on a classic Southern dish. I recommend trying the Fried Brussels Sprouts or the Wood Fired Pizza Pies. The Roasted Mushroom Pie is an amazing blend of a white cheese blend, cream sauce, blue cheese, mushrooms, onion jam, and herbed balsamic. The service was fantastic as our waiter seemed to anticipate our needs before we realized it ourselves. Central is open Monday through Saturday for lunch and dinner.
3. Vintage Year Another upscale restaurant located in Historic Cloverdale, first opened its doors in 1984 as a specialty wine shop. The rest, as they say, is history. The atmosphere at Vintage Year is perfect for a gathering with friends or a romantic date night. Think white linen covered tablecloths and a cozy ambiance. Start the meal with Southern Dynamite, a creamy concoction of Shrimp. Oysters, Crawfish, Scallops and Conecuh sausage served with warm bread. You could easily make a meal of the appetizers. Both the Gouda Baked Macaroni and Cheese and the Brussels and Bacon are excellent.
If you are a chicken fan, you can’t go wrong with the Joyce Farms Airline Chicken Breast. The chicken is tender and well seasoned, served over a bed of pasta blended with a goat cheese, bacon, chives, corn, and rosemary sauce. Tuesdays are Burger Night but expect modern takes on the burgers. There are choices like the WBLT burger with Wagyu Beef, Peppered Bacon, Heirloom Tomatoes and Tarragon Mustard Aioli. Vintage Year is open for dinner and Sunday brunch. Be sure to save room for one of the tempting desserts.
4. D’Road Cafe Want to know where to find authentic Latin food in the heart of Montgomery? D’Road is the place. But this isn’t just a restaurant. It’s a small inviting space where you are invited to feel like family. Owner Janett is originally from Venezuela and preserves the traditional Latin hospitality. She offers a warm welcome, cheerful, friendly service and a bountiful supply of food. We tried the hearty Venezuelan breakfast and believe me, you will not leave hungry! Here’s just a sample of the food we tried: Arepas, tasty fried corn meal patties, thick slices of ham, seasoned black beans, scrambled eggs filled with cilantro, onions, tomatoes, peppers and more, and bacon.
When we finished with our meal, Janett offered dessert, a flavorful banana muffin surrounded by whipped cream and topped with powdered sugar and a touch of cinnamon. Fridays are special at D’Road because it’s International Night. Each week a different country is represented. You can even share which country you’d like to see. D’Road also offers a monthly cooking class if you’d like to learn the secrets behind the flavors! D’Road is open Monday through Saturday. Hours vary so check the website before visiting.
5. Leroy Lounge Yes, I know this is not fine dining. But, sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name. If you’re looking for a spot to relax after dinner or to meet up with friends, Leroy Lounge is the place. Regulars know they can find 18 Beers on tap each day, along with wine and specialty cocktails. Who wouldn’t want to try a Straw-Berry Julius, made from a mixture of 1995 vanilla vodka, strawberry & cinnamon syrup and milk, or a Mary Pickford, a mixture of 1928 cana brava rum, pineapple, cherry liqueur, and grenadine? Seriously, you have to check out the names of their specialty cocktails. If you’re hungry, Leroy Lounge offers snacks with ingredients sourced from local ingredients. They are open seven days a week.
Have you visited Montgomery, Alabama? What is your favorite restaurant? We’d love to know!
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