Freddy’s (More Than) Wine Bar

A girls’ night gathering led me to my new favorite wine bar. But, really, Freddy’s is much more than a wine bar; it’s also a laid-back, counter-service restaurant with seriously delicious food. And right now it feels like the perfect place to spend some cozy, quality time with friends and family during the busy holiday season.

Owner Stuart Stone says, “You can come in and get some really good food—small portions so you’re not going to overwhelm yourself. We’ve got wine from around the world; it’s more of an eclectic list than you’d see in most places.”

There are, in fact, some 60 wines by the glass here, and they are constantly changing. Options include a single six-ounce pour, a standard 12-ounce glass and an 18-ounce carafe or an entire bottle. Also, Freddy’s offers some basic cocktails as well as several local and regional beers.

I visited Freddy’s for Alabama NewsCenter recently. You can read the entire story here.

Executive chef Randall Norman has crafted a seasonal, carefully considered menu that offers beautiful, imaginative dishes from all over the globe. “I try to have a little bit of everything on the menu,” he says, noting that Spanish foods share space with Asian dishes on a menu that is highly influenced by Western European-style cooking with Southern flavors evident throughout. “I definitely try to incorporate as much of Alabama into my cuisine as possible.”

The concept for Freddy’s, with its charcuterie, bar snacks and bites, small plates and larger “something more,” reflects an expansive worldview, and there’s a definite European café vibe here. Stone worked with designer Lyn Chappelle (whose cool shop, Atelier, is right next door) to create a space that is comfortable and eclectic and reminiscent of a Paris café or a Barcelona tapas bar.

When you go, hope that the mushroom and rosemary bread pudding with Parmesan cream is still on the menu. The gnocchi “mac and cheese” will be; it’s been the most popular dish since day one. Also, Freddy’s has some of the best shrimp scampi in town—perfectly butter poached and served with crostini to soak up the garlicky sauce. The Highland Tower—a colorful ombré stack of roasted red beets, carrots and golden beets rising from a bed of goat cheese mascarpone and topped with fresh dill—is as lovely as it is tasty.

Freddy’s Wine Bar

2251 Highland Avenue

Birmingham, AL 35205

Hours:  Monday through Thursday 4 to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday 4 to 11 p.m.

www.freddyswinebar.com

Phone:  Nope, there’s not one.

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