Dining downtown

Another dining option coming to a corner near you

Renovations are underway in an old, warehouse-type structure at the edge of the historic Automotive District, at the SE corner of 3rd Avenue South and 22nd Street (car repair businesses still dominate the neighborhood). Signs announce a new restaurant called Sweet Tea, specializing in “American Dining” and “Traditional Southern Cooking”. It is hard to guess, but the space looks like it could seat a pretty large crowd.

There’s no website that I could find or any additional information–if anyone knows anything, please comment. Regardless, we’re all pleasantly intrigued by a new eating option in the central city. It’s about 2 blocks north of the Fish Market and WorkPlay and 2 blocks east of the Hyatt Place hotel. Go Midtown!

UPDATE: we now know that Cohen Carnaggio Reynolds did the design work, and that the restaurant will be a “meat-and-three” cafeteria–of all things.

15 responses to “Dining downtown

  1. Thanks for the heads up. Drove right by the place last week. The existence of a new sign sort of registered, but not its content. Another positive thing going on.

  2. Very excited to have another option on the South side of the viaduct. Thanks for the tip!

  3. thanks for all your postings. i get excited when i see one in my inbox. keep up the great work. btw …congrats on the engagement. andy

  4. Great news! Sweet Tea(22nd Street) actually sits on the eastern edge of the Five Points South Neighborhood. I will pass along this info to the residents and merchants here in Five Points South.
    Thanks

    • James–thanks for reminding us that Five Points does extend that far north. I’m still in favor of clearer branding, though, that keeps the Five Points banners up near the traditional circle, and creates a new “Midtown” or “Auto District” or some other brand for the area around Sweet Tea. Feel free to argue this with me–I just think it’s the best way to focus public awareness and redevelopment. Cheers.

  5. Thanks for giving everyone the heads up! I believe the architectural firm responsible for this renno is Cohen Carnaggio and Reynolds. Might confirm with Richard.

  6. There are Sweet Tea restaurants in Huntsville, OK City, and Landrum and Chapin SC, though they don’t seem to be related. I wonder if this one is kin to the Huntsville restaurant. As to 5 Points South, I think that the area north of Kirklin Clinic bounded by the tracks on the north will be better defined as a “separate” area as the development at Cityville and the next two years growth generated by RR Park. Five Points would do better to continue to define itself as it is now, instead of jumping over the UAB campus. Has anyone noticed that UAB is slowly eliminating the view of Red mountain from RR Park as they gradually build the new Hospital Campus, or however they refer to it?

    • I agree that the other Sweet Teas in those cities don’t seem related. And, good point about UAB/Children’s hospital campus–each new building seems to be bulkier and more massive than the last. It’s too bad that hospitals can’t be efficiently designed as slender and taller, rather than bulky and mid-rise. Fewer, slender tall buildings with view paths between them would be preferable to more, fatter mid-rise buildings that block view paths.

  7. I have heard that Sweet Tea is going to be a Meat & Three

  8. Bill

    The boundary lines for the Five Points South Neighborhood are as followed;
    22nd Street to Golden Flake Drive from Vulcan Park to 1st Ave South. The neighborhood boundary lines have been in place long before UAB. The campus at one point had residential homes that were bought up by the UAB. So the neighborhood has not jumped over UAB, UAB is in the neighborhood.

    bhamarchitect,

    About branding. I agree on having different areas which we already have; Anderson place, Cullom Street & Phelan Park historic districts. Soon to come Park Side & etc… But the Five Points South Neighborhood will play a role in making those decisions. Thank you for your input.

    James
    President of the Five Points South Neighborhood

    • James,
      I was more referring to the 5 points entertainment area, rather than the actual neighborhood boundaries, about which you are entirely correct. I am of an age to remember the original expansion to 40 city blocks that UAB made, and also was a student on campus when there were 4500 enrollees in the undergrad school.
      This all was also before the redevelopment of the neighborhood center as a working concept all across the southside, such as Avondale, Forest Park, the various clusters along Highland Ave, and across Southside. So when I made the reference I was thinking of the area which I sort of roped off there, as another of those sort of mini-areas. I live in South Avondale, which although part of Forest Park, is distinguished from FP in style and development, as will be the area from Kirklin to the Tracks although still remaining under the aegis of Southside neighborhood.
      I hope that straightens out our mutual mis-understanding of the terms we each were using.
      Bill

  9. Michael Hallisey

    Sweet Tea will be a new independent restaurant in the Automotive Historic District. Stan Corson in our office (Cohen Carnaggio Reynolds) is the designer. The dining room will seat +/-170 for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Look for southern favorites served in a casual, contemporary space. Plans call for a mid-April opening…

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