In 2009, the “Free the Hops” bill passed in Alabama allowing the sale of beer with an ABV content higher than 6.0%. A nearly five-year process provided Alabama with the opportunity to join 46 other states in the sale of high-gravity craft beer. In 2012, Tuscaloosa’s city council also voted to change the city’s zoning ordinance which allowed for brewpubs and breweries. This series of law changes provided a culture change and sparked a flourishing craft beer scene in the city of Tuscaloosa. Druid City Brewing Co., owned by Bo Hicks and Elliot Roberts, became the first official brewery in November of 2012.

Tuscaloosa is known to locals as “The Druid City” because of the giant water oaks lining the city streets in its early years, according to Encyclopedia of Alabama (Lewis, 2013). It’s only fitting the first official brewery derived its name from this fact. Initially, the two co-owners worked out of an office space before deciding to open a taproom in July of 2013. Druid City Brewing Co. is known for its Downtown North Porter which is described as, “a full-bodied malt bomb with rich chocolate and vanilla flavors from beginning to end” on their website. Coming in at an ABV of 9.1 this distinctive beverage is sure to have you in a blissful state of mind after a few sips. Druid City has other local favorites such as the Lamplighter IPA, Druid City Pale Ale, Riverside Saison, Tuskaloosa Stout, and Druid City Wheat. Each of these brews is uniquely named after a feature specific to Tuscaloosa. They have a variety of fun events throughout the week such as trivia and open mic nights as well as live music on site. DCBC is also credited as the first to legally sell beer exclusively brewed and bottled in Tuscaloosa. The brewery hand-bottled 144 22-ounce bomber bottles and released them at local stores such as Loosa Brews, Spirits, and Corks & Tops in March of 2015.

A second brewery arrived on the scene in November of 2013 when four friends: Joe Fuller, Eric Hull, Jason Spikes, and Wayne Yarbrough founded Black Warrior Brewing Co. These four gentlemen realized their dream could become reality and started home brewing in Jason’s basement. An extensive search eventually led to a perfect location to call home in the heart of Downtown Tuscaloosa. After months of hands-on work and renovation, they were able to open up the brewery named after the Black Warrior River which flows through Tuscaloosa County. Throughout the week Black Warrior has events such as trivia, movie nights, and American Outlaw watch parties. They have a vast selection of brews which makes it easy for everyone to find something they enjoy! Some of the local favorites include the Apricot Wheat, Crimson Ale, Broad Street Brown, Lock 17 IPA, Tashka Double IPA, and Sipsey Strawberry Blonde. No matter what style you prefer, you’re sure to find something you’ll fall in love with. Black Warrior Brewing Co. also distributes their Apricot Wheat and Lock 17 IPA throughout the area. This is the perfect way to take a little taste of Tuscaloosa with you wherever you go!

The newest brewery to arrive on the scene, Band of Brothers Brewing Co., opened its doors in September of 2015. Owned by brothers Jeremiah and Jeremey Donald and friend Quintin Brown this establishment provides a unique, easygoing atmosphere. With plenty of space to utilize, Band of Brothers frequently hosts live music, movie nights, games and much more! Their stellar selection of brews includes local favorites such as the Voodoo Mild, Monk on the Radio, and Station One Saison. Each of these beers provides a flavorful and noteworthy taste leaving you wanting more. Band of Brothers also distributes their Monk on the Radio Belgian ale to local craft beer hotspots such as Corks & Tops, Loosa Brews, and Cravings.

If you are in Tuscaloosa for a gameday at Bryant-Denny or concert at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater, be sure to check out one of the many craft beer stores around town! They provide the perfect opportunity to take a taste of Tuscaloosa home with you. Loosa Brews features 63 different craft beers on tap with an even larger selection of bottled and canned beers to be bought for purchase. What better way to decide on which beer to take home than by trying it on draft first? Loosa Brews is a great place to bring the entire family! They have a plethora of arcade games for all ages to enjoy as well as a large back patio deck perfect for viewing the sunset.

With over 80 available draft beers from around the globe, Brass Tap is another must-visit for craft beer enthusiasts in the Tuscaloosa area! Some other places to purchase local craft beer include Corks & Tops located off of Bryant Dr. and Cravings located downtown off University Blvd. Both of these exceptional stores allow you to “build your own six pack” providing the opportunity to try a profusion of local specialties. Cravings also has a patio section in front of the store where customers can pour a cold one and enjoy the sights and sounds of Tuscaloosa.

Whether you’re a craft beer connoisseur or new to the wonderful world of beer, Tuscaloosa’s craft beer scene will leave you delightfully pleased. With plenty of places to #drinklocal, you can’t go wrong in the quest for the perfect beer. Craft beer culture in Tuscaloosa is still young, but expanding at a rapid pace which is great news for all of us! If you’re in town in the coming weeks for some Alabama football make sure to give one of these great locations a try.

Written by: Will Wyatt

There are great events all over Tuscaloosa this weekend! You can start your weekend early by heading to Green Bar tonight! Exit 27 comes all the way from South Carolina to deliver some Rock to Tuscaloosa! Of course, Green Bar not only brings in great bands but also has a great atmosphere and drink menu. Located right next to Wilhagans, it is the perfect place to ease into a great weekend!

The month of September starts this Friday and with it comes the First Friday Art Walk! Local galleries, businesses, and restaurants are open in the evening for the community to experience what downtown has to offer! Venture into local galleries and businesses like the Canterbury Episcopal Chapel, and others to see their currently running exhibits like “Faces And Places Of Rabbit Holes” or “Small Curious Wonders” at University Medical Center. Take note that Art Night at Kentuck Art Center will take place next week on the 7th. As a part of their Art Night, Kentuck will be opening an exhibition by Kathryn Mayo titled “We are Selma: The Selma Portrait Project by Kathryn Mayo”.

Crimson Tide football is back this Saturday and with it comes all of the exciting festivities! The Children’s Hands-On Museum is hosting a Kid’s Tailgate Party where they can make mascot faces, spirit cookies, and will even have a concession stand! The unique museum in downtown is tailor made for the little ones, to introduce them to arts, crafts, and exciting exhibits in an interactive and exploring way! It provides fun for kids of all ages and they will never ever get the idea of calling a museum boring afterward!

You can wrap up your weekend Sunday evening at Black Warrior Brewing Company. Not only are they now pouring the One & Only Pale Ale, but they’re also hosting Jerry Robbins for some live smooth jazz and blues! There is no better way to put a bow on the perfect weekend than with smooth jazz and a One & Only beer!

We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and events. Tell your friends and we can’t wait to see you around the One and Only Tuscaloosa!

Tuscaloosa is packed with great events this weekend! Start your weekend off with one of the best views in town as The Lookout Rooftop Bar hosts a concert series presented by Black Warrior Brewing Co. Enjoy live music from Ham Bagby as the sun sets on top of Hotel Indigo! The concert series is completed with a beer special from Black Warrior Brewing Co.

The beat goes on Friday and Saturday when Moon Taxi takes the stage at Druid City Music Hall. The American indie-progressive rock band is based in Nashville, Tennessee where they met at Belmont University. Moon Taxi has released four studio albums including popular songs like All Day All Night and Morocco. They currently have a single out: Two High featuring the lyrics “Put em up” which is also their tour title. Moon Taxi always put on an incredible show and this year they’re giving us two in a row!

Kick off your Saturday at the Alabama Veterans Reunion – a free veterans appreciation day! There is going to be tons of fun activities taking place on the Veterans Affairs lawn. Free food and great music, and old friends are just the beginning of the excitement! All veterans, active duty, and their families are invited to attend this free event from 11 to 1 pm!

Across town at the Tuscaloosa River Market is the Bacon Brew & Que. This year’s event will feature more than 60 beers, including Tuscaloosa’s three breweries, and more than a dozen local restaurants serving bacon and BBQ-inspired dishes! VIP tickets for this event have sold out which only leaves the $40 general admission tickets. The Uri Band will be providing music throughout the afternoon that you can enjoy while sampling the beer and bacon!

Get a kick out of Friday by heading to the University of Alabama’s Soccer Complex! Cheer on the Tide as they take on Florida State University. All Alabama Soccer events are free to the public and love having a crowd watching them play. Expectations and goals are set even higher this season for the team and plan to be fighting for the SEC championship this year! Be on the lookout for even more games as the season rolls on.

We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and events. Tell your friends and we can’t wait to see you around the One and Only Tuscaloosa!

We’re gearing up for another great weekend in the One and Only Tuscaloosa! Kick off with The Rude Mechanicals as they put on a free show! Now until Saturday at 7:30 PM you can catch Tuscaloosa’s Summer Shakespeare company present the bloody tragedy “Macbeth” at Manderson Landing. The Rude Mechanicals shows are intended to be family-friendly, with no overt blood or other graphic representation. However, “Macbeth” does contain sword fights, ghosts and other scenes that might be frightening for younger children. In the case of rain, they will be performing at Allen Bales Theatre!

Friday is going to be funky at Government Plaza as “Live at the Plaza” continues! With local favorites Plato Jones taking the stage, the plaza is in for a treat. Plato Jones is a local four-piece band from that combines blues, funk, southern rock and rock and roll to make them one of the most popular local/area bands! Since their debut in January 2005, the band has played hundreds of fraternity, sorority, clubs, private parties and festivals in and around Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and Florida!

On Saturday morning you can swing by the Tuscaloosa River Market for the Farmer’s Market! Vendors set up ripe red tomatoes and famous Chilton County peaches. Musicians sit propped up against the door, playing guitars as you walk in, and local Food Trucks, bakers, artists, and craftsmen gather here to sell their gourmet grub, fresh-baked yeast rolls, homemade jams and jellies and hand-carved cutting boards.

The National Physique Committee National Qualifier “Clash at the Capstone” is back this weekend! This Saturday the bodybuilding competition will take over the Bama Theater and you will be able to see the fittest people from across the southeast! The NPC Clash at the Capstone will also include the Mr. Tuscaloosa Bodybuilding Championship and the Ms. Tuscaloosa Bikini & Figure Titles. The Clash will be held July 1st, 2017 at The Historic Bama Theatre. Tickets sold at the door will be cash only.

You can wrap up your weekend Sunday evening at Black Warrior Brewing Company. Not only are they now pouring the One & Only Pale Ale, but they’re also hosting Jerry Robbins for some live smooth jazz and blues! There is no better way to put a bow on the perfect weekend than with smooth jazz and a One & Only beer!

We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and events. Tell your friends and we can’t wait to see you around the One and Only Tuscaloosa!

The One and Only Tuscaloosa is filled to the brim this weekend with fun events! Kick off the end of your week with the Lamont Landers Band at Live at the Plaza! This local band will be playing everything from blues to rock and even some funk! As a part of the entertainment district, you can purchase alcoholic beverages from restaurants and bars within the district boundaries that include several surrounding blocks!

Saturday is absolutely packed with events for all ages! Kick off your morning at the Farmer’s Market at the Tuscaloosa River Market! With incredible goods such as Chilton County peaches or perfectly ripe tomatoes and even musicians serenading you as you walk in, it’s a great experience! That’s not all you can find there though. The baked goods you can find here are some of the best in town! The Farmer’s Market is the perfect place to kick off a relaxed Saturday.

Right across town is the third annual Black Warrior Paddle Board Championship! Located at Lake Nicol and hosted by Smith Lake Paddle Boards. There will be three races and plenty of fun for a morning in the park! This would be a perfect outing for dog lovers as the park is pet-friendly! Root on your favorite racer or cheer on the lot as they coast by on their paddle board! If you’re feeling really adventurous, there’s still time to sign up!

That’s not the only race going on around town this weekend! The Fifth-Annual Kid’s Triathlon will be going on at Lake Lurleen! This event is a great way to promote healthy, active lifestyles for kids – while supporting a great cause, Secret Meals for Hungry Children. The race distances are very beginner-friendly and is sanctioned by USA Triathlon ensuring that all standards for your child’s safety are met!

Wrap up your weekend at the 20th Annual BBQ and Blues at the Tuscaloosa Regional Airport Terminal! As is the theme of this weekend, this event is also a fundraiser and is raising funds for the DCH Help and Hope Patience Assistance Fund! Each ticket includes entry to the event and a BBQ plate provided by McAbee Pigfitters! Featuring a silent auction, live music, and more, this is sure to be an incredible event!

We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and events. Tell your friends and we can’t wait to see you around the One and Only Tuscaloosa!

Tuscaloosa’s coolest ongoing summer event is back! Live at the Plaza is an annual concert series that features amazing acts in live concerts on a stage at Government Plaza. Up and coming regional bands, as well as solo artists will rock the stage from April 28th through July 28th. Some changes have been made since last year’s series, but it is still an absolute must-do for your summer in the one and only Tuscaloosa! Here are our top 5 reasons why:

1. Local Musicians
Tuscaloosa loves art in every way, and so it loves music! It is a special pleasure to host some up and coming bands from the region and even from Tuscaloosa itself. Let bands like the Nashville-based country/rock trio Campbell Station or the soul and funk of Lamont Landers Band from Alabama impress you with amazing homemade music. Or enjoy our friendly neighborhood country singer Matt Jones from Tuscaloosa, whose concerts capture the soul of the City! More acts will be announced soon, but this is already an amazing start!

2. Entertainment District
New this year is the entertainment district around Government Plaza. As it is not allowed to bring your own alcoholic beverages into the festival anymore, the district was made to be the perfect alternative. You can get your favorite adult beverages in approved go-cups and so can take them to the concerts and anywhere else within the district! Food and soft drinks are also available in the entertainment district. Participating local businesses are, for example, Alcove, Monarch, Black Warrior Brewery, and many others. The entertainment district opens each Friday at 4 pm!

3. Pet Friendly
A special plus about Live at the Plaza is that it is totally pet-friendly! Located on the meadow of the Plaza, the concerts are the perfect place to bring your furry friends. For sure they will love to spend a fun night out with their owners and meet new friends, human and pet alike! And of course, all dog moms and dads enjoy having their puppies around so take them out for the concerts! Other visitors will be delighted by some puppy love, too – promise!

4. Kick Back After a Hard Week
Held every Friday night from 6 pm to 9 pm, Live at the Plaza is THE perfect event to relax after a long week of work! You can make yourself just as comfortable as in your own living room: You’re welcome to bring picnic blankets, pillows, lawn chairs and anything else you need to enjoy a leisure evening with your colleagues, friends or family. If somebody already made dinner at home – no problem! Bring them AND the food to the concert. As always, you are welcome to bring your own food, snacks, and soft drinks!

5. It’s Free!
Let’s sum up, with Live at the Plaza you can: Have a fantastic night outside. Listen to great live music from regional artists. Bring your whole family, including dogs. Bring your own food and soft drinks. Buy food and drinks from local restaurants and bars. Let down a hard week of work.
And now comes the final, the ultimate reason to not miss this event: It’s absolutely free! You enjoy all these amazing things for free admission!
See you at the Plaza!

Tuscaloosa is gearing up for another great weekend in the One and Only! Start your weekend off Friday night by visiting Green Bar! Taking the stage Friday night is Spaceface! San Francisco-based website “Do the Bay” said “In the digital age, there is a new band on the radar every week, and it’s hard to find anything that stands out. But in a pool of up-and-coming bands that blend together, Spaceface has fused psychedelic rock ‘n roll with pop in a way that makes them – dare it be said – unique.” With an intro like that, it would be hard to pass up this one!

Saturday is jam-packed this week with exciting events! Kick off your Saturday at the Living History Festival! Learn the history of Alabama from the characters themselves as history comes alive! You can learn about characters from history such as Mildred Westervelt Warner, Chief Tuskaloosa, and even Ann Hodges – the only person to have an object from space strike them!

If you’re less of a historian and more of a dog person, swing by Sokol Park for their annual Bark in the Park! The Tuscaloosa Association of Realtors will continue their Annual Bark in the Park campaign this year with more excitement than ever! With a parade, demonstrations, and a “’Wag’ Bag” for each dog, this is a perfect event for any dog lover!

Next up is Black Warrior Brewing Company as they present Poses & Pints! Yoga and beer just seem to go together perfectly. So perfect, in fact, that Black Warrior is hosting a class this Saturday! For just $10 you can participate in Yoga and have yourself a pint! The class will be an hour long and all levels are welcome!

Finally, since you can’t finish your weekend on an empty stomach, head to Food Truck Fest! Band of Brothers Brewing Co. will be serving limited run beers, bringing in incredible food trucks, and hosting live music all evening long! The food trucks involved will feature local favorites Local Roots, the legendary Archibald & Woodrow’s BBQ, and JoJo’s Food Trunk! The bands Gio Trio and The Frayed Knot will be laying down the rhythm all night for this awesome event!

We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and events. Tell your friends and we can’t wait to see you around the One and Only Tuscaloosa!

Written By: Barrett Elder – Digital Media Specialist

(without being a cliché)

Spring has sprung, and the blooming flowers and blossoming trees make for one of the best times to show your true love you’re ready to commit! Tuscaloosa is totally for lovers with its southern charms and beautiful scenery. There’s far more to this fair city than just the Denny Chimes proposal. Show your one and only that you’re creative, and try out some of these places to have a truly unique engagement.

Inside the Bama Theatre
There is something magical about the old atmospheric style theater that feels so otherworldly. With the twinkling star lights in the ceiling and the grand Spanish courtyard style décor, it’s a perfect place to surprise them. Whether you see a concert or an independent film, wait for the crowd to leave or get their early and ask the big question. Even better, the second-floor balcony has a great view of the whole interior and might be a more secluded spot.

The University of Alabama Arboretum
Farther west in the outskirts of town, you can find the University of Alabama Arboretum which has thousands of selected plant life, a desert greenhouse, and so much more. Take one of the trails through their collection, a wildflower garden, or just wonder around until you find the perfect place. With the trees blossoming and the warm weather, it’ll surely be a memorable time!

Battle-Friedman House and Gardens
Down on Greensboro Ave, the historic Battle House has one fantastic hidden gem on the property. While the mansion its self is beautiful inside and well worth taking a tour, the gardens are a great little escape. The grounds were designed to be a traditional English garden and the recent efforts of the Tuscaloosa Preservation Society, they have fully restored the gardens to their original style. The perfect spot is the small fountain behind the greenhouse with views of both the house, and the blooming garden.

Any of Tuscaloosa’s Beautiful Lakes
It’s hard to pick just one of the fantastic lakes around town, so picking any will have you on the right course. Lake Lurleen has a fantastic little sandy beach with the lake sprawling out around it, while Lake Nicol has incredibly scenic cliffs overlooking the waters. Even Lake Tuscaloosa has the breathtaking spillway that’ll make a beautiful background when you propose!

Any of the Local Breweries
Hear me out, While not the fanciest of places around town, it is also the least suspected while still being a great venue. From Black Warrior’s laid back atmosphere and game rooms, Band of Brothers‘ proximity to the more elegant Drish House, to Druid City’s iconic chalk murals, there’s a beauty in all three. Now be advised to consider who you’re asking, but to the right person, it could the most unexpected surprise they never thought they needed. Plus, it’s the easiest location for a fast transition to a celebration!
Written By: Deven Wilson – Intern

Many may not realize that the river alongside our fair city actually is more than just a vessel for large tug boats and pretty views along the riverwalk. There’s a wide array of activities you can do on the open waters of the Black Warrior. Explore the waters solo, or cruise along at sunset aboard a paddleboat, there’s hardly a limit to what you can do.

  1. Cruise the open waters

Bama Belle is back and ready to take you and your friends out on the calm cool waters of the river. They offer live music and breathtaking views of those sunsets Tuscaloosa is known for. You can also book the Bama Belle for private events and really enjoy the paddle boats old school charms.

  1. Paddleboard your way to zen

Once up on the board, there’s hardly a more serene and relaxing way to enjoy the river than a paddleboard. The waters are so gentle it’s easy to paddle your way along the riverbanks and really reconnect with nature. Show off those yoga skills with fellow yogis or just by yourself on the board.

  1. Canoe through the creeks

Another great way to explore the Black Warrior is to hop into a canoe and paddle around either the open waters or explore the many creeks that feed the river along the banks. The beautiful Hurricane Creek feeds the river and is a truly hidden natural gem in Tuscaloosa with secluded riverbanks and old railroad trestle bridges over the waters.

  1. Fish for a good time

The Black Warrior is home to a diverse ecosystem of over 120 freshwater fish and other aquatic animals that are hiding in the river. Find an open spot along the banks, and take some time to return to a primal way to hunt. If you can, take a pontoon or a canoe and cast a wider net in the deeper parts of the waters.

  1. Float and soak

Take a tube, some friends, and just gently float along the river with ease. Let the waters take away the stress of the day and soak up some sun while having to do little to no work as the gentle waves rock you.

Rentals can be found at these one and only retailers and rental shops with The Outdoor Rec Center, GUMZ on the river, and Tuscaloosa Paddleboard.

 

Written By: Deven Wilson – Intern

This weekend is packed with fun events in the One and Only Tuscaloosa! This Friday is filled with music! you can catch Corey Smith putting on a show at the Druid City Music Hall! The tour, Smith says, is an extension of who he is — raw and honest to the core. The show starts at 8:30 with doors opening an hour earlier for his Great Wide Underground Tour!

Also on Friday, Sonic Frontiers presents electronic music pioneer Tim Perkis as part of their 6th season of programming with a curatorial focus on “California Experiments”. Over in downtown, you can catch The Bama Theatre Acoustic Night that will feature guitarist/composer Hiroya Tsukamoto!

On Saturday, kick off the Chinese New Year at the Children’s Hands-On Museum! Children are able to make their own dragon, find their zodiac animal, make a mask, and even write their name in Chinese! After you bring in the new year with the kids, head over to Black Warrior Brewing Co. for their second annual Chili Cook-off!

As if the weekend couldn’t get any better, Sunday you can catch Alabama and Auburn’s Women’s Basketball Teams face off in the Iron Bowl as the Tide takes on the Tigers in Coleman Coliseum! All military service men and women will receive free admission with military ID and the first 300 fans get a free t-shirt!

We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and events. Tell your friends and we can’t wait to see you around the One and Only Tuscaloosa!

Our great state of Alabama is home to several icons, with the invention of white sauce at Big Bob Gibson’s, to the array of infamous ribs that continue to prove our place in the world of Barbeque. Tuscaloosa has more than their fair share of BBQ legends in town, with iconic institutions that have continued the proud tradition of Alabama BBQ being some of the best in the world. From the dynamic decade of the 60s to the decadent 80s, the druid city has hosted several wizards of the BBQ pit.

Dreamland

John “Big Daddy” Bishop grew up in a turbulent time for the south but came to rise from his job as a cement finisher to the face of his own dream. There was a brief moment where his iconic institution wouldn’t have existed, as he debated on how to provide better for his family with either his restaurant dream or opening a mortuary. Luckily one night, the legend goes; he dreamed about running a restaurant and never could get the dream out of his mind. He then opened up Dreamland the same year Paul Bryant started his coaching career at Alabama. Originally he served classic American staples like burgers but found he had a talent with barbecue. His success leads to the other items being removed from his menu and focused on his ribs. The crowd would grow with a racial diversity in a time where there was plenty of division. Students from the University of Alabama in town would mix in with the black residents who first came to dreamland. Leading to its city-wide popularity. It wasn’t just excellent ribs people came back for, Big Daddy ensured his customers felt like family at his establishment by encouraging his staff and family who worked beside him to create a welcoming atmosphere. People. This combination of legendary ribs and excellent service allowed his dream to grow beyond city limits. Today his success has lead to a franchise that extends across Alabama, Georgia, and Florida. Dreamland continues to grow, with his friendly face gracing the logo of their rib empire.

Archibald & Woodrow’s BBQ

Tuscaloosa spot on the BBQ map wouldn’t have happened if the Archibald family didn’t open across the Black Warrior in Northport for business. Today, they have several locations around town, but the original house of ribs history starts back in 1962. The husband and wife duo of George and Betty Archibald quit their jobs and along with their son George Jr. opened the BBQ joint. While its location was hard to find at first, many were determined to find the source of the scented hickory smoke. Once inside people were greeted with a small menu packed with flavor with pork shoulder and slabs of ribs alongside white bread and the potato chip of the south, Golden Flake. The tiny house only offers three seats at the counter, six in a small dining room, but plenty of picnic tables to enjoy the long warm Alabama days outside. Archibald’s iconic status in Tuscaloosa wouldn’t be complete without a tie to the legendary coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. Considered to be one of his favorite spots to eat, many more people have since followed the coaches footsteps to find its hardly changed since his era. Today, the success of the Archibald family has grown into three other locations under the name Archibald & Woodrow’s BBQ, and serves the classic ribs, alongside wings, pulled pork sandwiches, and several sides. The sweet hickory smoke now wafts across the city, but its source will always be the charming little house that is packed with over 50 years of a well-smoked pit and some of the best ribs of the south.

Moe’s original BBQ

The established barbecue scene around town had become well understood by the 80s, with Dreamland growing and Archibald’s smoke wafting over the city, locals and tourists alike came to understand the flavor found in the college town along the Black Warrior. Three university students, from Athens, Huntsville, and Tuscaloosa became close friends united in their love of southern cuisine and culture.  It was in 88’ the boys met Moses Day to learn the ways of fire roasting meat. Moses had a pit set up in his backyard that grew to be well known around town. The boys would leave their southern state for the Rockies in Vail Colorado to refine their cooking skills. Eventually opening up something they came to find was lacking in the mountainside state. They boys would use the skills and pit mastery they learned from Moses to open up Moe’s Original BBQ bringing Alabama style barbecue to the North. Their popularity allowed them to come back to Bama with locations across the state, and eventually to the place where it all started. Opening their Tuscaloosa location in 2010, nine years since they began their own dream of contributing to the legacy of barbecue in Alabama.

Today, any visitor to this college town can find more than enough barbecue to satisfy their savory desires. From local legends and icons to the city’s ability to inspire the future generation of pit masters to a national level of success, it’s easy to see why we are well marked on any BBQ map.

Three years ago this November, The iconic Black Warrior Brewery in downtown was founded. The doors opened at a time when Tuscaloosa was entering its new renaissance of locally focused businesses that expanded the possibilities for this college town. It was years before, that the four founders set out to create one of the great breweries in the city. While working at a tire manufacturing plant, these men became close through mountain biking and one day in the hills above Chattanooga set out to found the brewery. It would take two and a half years for them to finally make their way to the grand opening, with plenty of weekends spent crafting the beer in one of the founder’s basement. They would test and share their early brews with friends and through this found their fourth member.

After a long and tiring search, they found a diamond in the rough of downtown that they saw potential in. it was Thanksgiving weekend they signed the lease for the former barbershop and thanks to their engineering backgrounds were able to turn the space into their new home. Today Black Warrior Brewing is a proud staple of the uninhibited excitement of downtown. They share a part of the buzz and liveliness of great nights spent in Tuscaloosa along University Blvd. While the river it’s named for passes slowly by below along the banks, the city the brewery knew has rapidly grown around it. With new hotels, restaurants, renovations and people all coming in city limits with great haste, Black Warrior Brewing has remained as a tremendous place to slow things down. A place to unwind with good friends and better beer.