Anthony put the idea in my head to be a contributing writer on this blog. Truth is, I thought it’d be a fun challenge. Anthony seemed to be having a lot of fun, and I figured why not. Being out of town on business, I’ve had several opportunities to check out a lot of restaurants, many offering some sort of Southern specialty cuisine. So here you are. This is the first part of a multi-part series on the food in Birmingham, Alabama. Enjoy. I know I did.
Alabama, Part 1: Full Moon Bar-B-Que
I went to this place on a suggestion from my coworker, David, who said that the place had been rated top ten barbecue in the country according to MSN. It was a Saturday, my first one out in ‘Bama and I figured, why not give it a try?
Walking into the place, the first thing that I noticed was that it wasn’t a sit-down restaurant and appeared to be more of a fast-food place. This worried me. I did like that there were television screens all over the place all tuned to sports channels of one sort or another. The walls were decorated with all sorts of sports paraphernalia from Auburn gear, to Crimson Tide photos, to NASCAR mementos. My first visit, there were actually all sorts of Indy Race crews eating there, as there was a big Indy event in town that weekend. Way cool. I must also point out some of the t-shirts worn by female employees; the shirts read on the back, ‘The Best Butts in town,” and I’m afraid my gaze was drawn unconsciously down. Seeing as how I’m currently engaged, I think I will withhold judgment on whether or not they’re the best in town. Ambiance was definitely southern.
First, the chicken: tender, juicy, full of flavor. The meat disintegrated off the bones. The barbecue sauce was sweet and tangy, and not too much of one or the other for an excellent sauce. I ripped through that chicken much like the Tasmanian Devil rips through trees in the classic Looney Toons show. As for the sides, the corn was sweet and buttery, probably not the healthiest dish, but what do you expect from a BBQ place in the Deep South? I’ve never really had collard greens. My mom probably doesn’t even know what they are, so I’ve gone most of my life without trying them. Now that I have, I compare the taste to having steamed spinach, and I happen to love spinach! Now, I’m in no way an expert on these vegetables, so I apologize if my first experience with them does not match up to your collective expertise. This brings us to the cornbread. Yum. That’s pretty much all that needs to be said. The cornbread here is not overly sweet and it was perfect for mopping up the barbeque sauce that was left on the plate.
I recommend this place for anyone that loves barbecue. Not sure if I agree with a nationwide top ten, but the barbecue is delicious, the chicken is great, the price is not offensive, and you can’t go wrong with the local sports theme. Check this place out online (www.fullmoonbbq.com); you can also check out their MSN/Gayot review (http://www.gayot.com/restaurants/best-us-top10-barbecuerestaurants_7_01us.html). Oh, and they serve alcohol, like most of the places do here in Alabama, which is to say they have bottled beer.