Monday, June 25, 2018

Dining out with Locals Featuring Aimee Johnson

 Couldn't let the month end without featuring this extremely special person.

Meet Aimee Johnson, Executive Director, Alabama & Florida Panhandle | Alzheimer's Association
When asked about her favorite local restaurant, she said, 
"My favorite restaurant is Alloy Thai.  It is the best food in town and my son is the chef - Josh Haynes.  He says he is a great chef because I was an awful cook!!!!"
Aimee's role with the Alabama / Florida Alzheimer's Association is a very important one.  Although June is National Alzheimer's Awareness Month, Aimee makes this mission part of her life's work & continues the fight through community awareness.

Walk to End Alzheimer's - 9 across the state of Alabama
Held annually in more than 600 communities nationwide, the Alzheimer's Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s® is the world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research. This inspiring event calls on participants of all ages and abilities to join the fight against the disease!
When you participate in Walk, your fundraising dollars fuel our mission, and your participation in the event helps to change the level of Alzheimer’s awareness in your community. The Alzheimer’s Association provides free, easy-to-use tools and staff support to help participants reach their fundraising goal. While there is no fee to register, we encourage participants to fund raise in order to contribute to the cause and raise awareness.
June is Alzheimer's & Brain Awareness Month 

June is Alzheimer's & Brain Awareness Month – a time to shine a purple light for the millions of people living with Alzheimer's. Especially during the month of June, we need your help by mobilizing friends, families, neighbors, co-workers and customers to help bring an end to Alzheimer's disease. 
The Birmingham Restaurant Raider is a community partner & will continue to use this platform solely to focus on local restaurants, festivals and other causes in the Birmingham area.   
 Please sign up for a walk in your area by visiting
If you have not had the opportunity to try Alloy Thai, you are missing out! Subscribe to their page for updates on street market pop-ups, private dinners and more by going to
Thanks for reading & sharing! 
~The Birmingham Restaurant Raider
"Anonymously Raiding A Restaurant Near You"



Friday, June 22, 2018

Dine Like A Jet Setter At Customs International Cafe

Known for their international themed menu, Customs Cafe in Hoover, Alabama offers a wide variety of foods from around the globe. Each month they feature food from a different continent. Customers can experience dining at a quint little cafe in Germany or France without the pricey plane ticket.

During the month of June, Customs celebrates the French culture by featuring a variety of French inspired dishes.

We recently tried the Quiche Lorraine: Flaky pie crust filled with eggs, Swiss cheese, bacon bits and spices baked to a creamy, savory perfection. Served with a “tres Francais” carrot salad, fresh grapes and French bread.

This month they are also featuring a crowd pleasing French onion soup, a Monte' Cristo sandwich  and a Roasted Pear Tart for dessert.

Media Night 2018 at Customs allowed us to sample a variety of cuisines along with beverage pairings all in one night. Owners, Chef Craig Cassiday & Teresa White graciously hosted a group of food writers from the metro area. Everyone was greeted with a glass of Prosecco. 

Features of the tasting included: a German first offering (Ein), a Cuban second offering (Dos), an Italian third offering (Tre) & a French fourth offering (Quatre). 

Inspired by Germany, the first tasting was their Old Berlin Beer Cheese Soup, served warm with a side of their signature cheese wafers.
This was paired with a Dresden Spritzer.

Dresden Spritzer
The second item we tried was the Cuban Pork Slider: Moist, smoked pulled pork in Mojo sauce served on a soft yeast roll & paired with a perfectly mixed Classic Mojito cocktail. 


Next on the list was the warm & cheesy Italian Baked Ziti with Italian Sausage, paired with a glass of Barbera D'Asti.

Finally, paired with a glass of Baron & Gustier Vouvray, was the incredible  French inspired Roasted Pear Tart: Flavored with almond, pear, apricot, and butter…these individual tarts are addictive so order two! They have a crisp sugar pastry base spread with frangipane and topped with a roasted pear half then sealed with apricot glaze. In other words..... it's darn good! You definitely won't leave one morsel of this tart on the plate. 

Customs Cafe is the 2018 recipient of the Shelby County Small Business of The Year award. Stop by to congratulate them soon. Don't forget to ask for your passport!

Their cafe also doubles as an event venue for receptions, meetings and more!

Customs Cafe
1845 Montgomery Hwy, Hoover, AL 35244 
(205) 987-0176

Thanks for reading & sharing! 
~The Birmingham Restaurant Raider
"Anonymously Raiding A Restaurant Near You" 
Est. 2009

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Zoo, Brews & Full Moon BBQ 6/16/18

Join me this Saturday at the Birmingham Zoo  for a fun filled day along with presenting sponsor Full Moon Barbecue from 5:30-8:30pm for the fourth annual Zoo, Brews and Full Moon Bar-B-Que event. 

There will be live entertainment by the fabulous Union Road Band.

Enjoy drinks from over 20 breweries from all over Alabama and the southeast. In addition to beer, there will be plenty of other libations, including wines and non-alcoholic beverages. Attendees will enjoy tasty dinner provided by Full Moon Bar-B-Que.  There will be chances to get up close & personal with a few animals, walkabouts, train & carousel rides, special kids activities and much more! A few VIP tickets are still available. 
Enjoy added features such as caricature drawings,  splash pads, sand art crafts, face painting, lawn games and more!

Get your tickets today!

General Admission:
Under 3: FREE
Under 21: $20
Designated Driver: $20
Over 21: $35
Children’s tickets include admission, dinner and attractions. Adult tickets include admission, a hearty bbq dinner, attractions, and select servings.

VIP Pricing:
Under 3: FREE
Under 21: $50
Designated Driver: $50
Over 21: $75

VIP Adult tickets include select servings, admission, dinner, attractions, early admission at 5pm, VIP parking spots. VIP Children’s tickets include admission, dinner, attractions, early admission at 5pm, VIP parking along with a gift. 

This is a rain or shine event. No refunds will be issued.

 Bring the family & see you there!

Thanks for reading & sharing,

The Birmingham Restaurant Raider

"Anonymously Raiding A Restaurant Near You"