DINING Stone s Throw Bar and Grill #3 Mt Laurel Ave 205-995-0512 VESTAVIA

Contemporary Southern cuisine is the shining star of this upscale restaurant nestled in the town of Mt. Laurel. A short drive from downtown, it s worth the trip when you discover Stone s Throw Bar and Grill s seasonal organic vegetables, meats and fresh gulf seafood. The wine dinners are especially fun. Be it five courses of Alabama heirloom tomatoes or four courses of various wild game, it is fun to pair the unique dishes with the perfect wines. Bob R.

Surin West 1918 11th Ave S 205-324-1928 BIRMINGHAM

On practically every Bir- minghamian s list of favorite restaurants, Surin West is a Southside hot spot for upscale Thai, Pacific Rim and sushi served in a hip and casual atmosphere. Other locations include downtown, Hwy 280 and Crestline Village. Best Thai food in the city. John M.

Sweet Tea 2205 3rd Ave S 205-745-3990 BIRMINGHAM

Once you ve founded and built up the largest Greek foods manufacturer in the U.S., where do you go from there? Home to your native Birmingham to open an unstoppable meat-and-three of course. Well, that s what the owner of Sweet Tea did, anyway, and we couldn t be happier to welcome him back, since he s just raised the bar for home- style cooking downtown. Sweet Tea has just changed the game downtown. That country fried steak is so good it hurts my feelings. Marshall S.

Taj India 2226 Highland Ave S 205-939-3805 BIRMINGHAM

A longtime Southside favorite, Taj India welcomes diners into its intimate dining room. The white tablecloths add to the casually elegant atmosphere where authentic Indian food is presented, including lamb, seafood, vegetarian choices and Tandoori specialties. Lunch and dinner are served daily. It s the best Indian food I have ever had. The service is wonder- ful. Everyone is extremely friendly. It is the perfect size, not a hole in the wall but not too mainstream. Jessika M.

Taqueria Guzman 215 W Valley Ave HOMEWOOD

Taqueria Guzman is usually just called The Taco Truck, and believe us, it is THE taco truck. It doesn t get better, fresher or tastier than this. They serve burritos, quesadillas and tortas, but it s really all about the tacos. Parked every day except Monday until about 8 p.m. Cash only. Fresh, authentic, cheap. And Jaime will give you a free Spanish lesson. Wes F.

T-Bone s Authentic Philly Style Cheesesteaks and Hoagies 1204 Centerpoint Pkwy 205-815-1414 BIRMINGHAM

A true hidden gem of Birming- ham, T-Bone s serves Philly style cheesesteaks widely believed to be the best in town. But don t overlook their deli sandwiches with thick-sliced meats, fresh-baked breads and delicious dressings, you re guaranteed to find something you like. The Tony Montana is heavenly. Very, very, very good deli sand- wiches. Melisande A.

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