Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General South Archive >
Sep 9, 2008 08:31 AM

Bham - Hot and Hot

Any favorite dishes? Go for the specials? Thanks in advance.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The tomato salad as an appetizer when it is in season (according to the web site, they are still serving it), and the shrimp and grits as an entree (their signature dish).

    However, as I have said on this site several times, the restaurant has seriously declined since Chris Hastings stopped running the kitchen on a regular basis.

    1 Reply
    1. re: pinotboy

      We ate at Hot and Hot when passing through Bham. It was over a year ago, and I still remember the Tomato Salad app and the Shrimp and Grits. They were both amazing.

      3 Zesty Lemons

    2. I missed you, Dax!
      When do you plan to go?
      I haven't had a bad meal there yet (although I prefer the richer flavors of their fall and winter menus).
      One thing you might be tempted to overlook but shouldn't (if it's available): The Hot and Hot Pork and Beans. It will change your entire concept of the dish.
      Time also is running out to try their signature tomato salad.
      Here is what they touted in their most recent monthly email (from mid-August): "Corn, Eggplant and Heirloom Tomatoes are in season and we will be using them in dishes such as: Study of Heirloom Tomatoes with Grilled Eggplant and Sweet Grass Dairy Goat Cheese-simple but incredible flavors! Dave Garfrerick's Super Sweet Corn Bisque with Shiitake Mushrooms is a favorite, and Summer Vegetable Ratatouille may be found on our vegetable plate. We have been purchasing beautiful head-on shrimp from T.J. Ward in Apalachicola, Florida. These shrimp are fresh, wild American shrimp that are not treated with any type of chemical preservative and you can taste the difference."
      One other thing: depending on your party, you may want to sit at the chef's counter, which is at the edge of the restaurant's open kitchen. It's fun watching the food being made and the care that goes into it, and you get to learn a lot more about what you're eating. But if you choose a table, the service is spectacular.

      7 Replies
      1. re: Big Daddy

        Definitely do the chef's counter if you have a party of one or two. I've done it with three before, but find it a little hard to carry on a conversation.

        1. re: Big Daddy

          Been a little out of commission with ACL surgery and initial rehab. Time to hobble to some restaurants!

          Hmmm, I avoid eggplant like the plague. I'm pretty sure it was originally used as a medieval torture device. Everything else sounds great.

          I might be headed there for a work dinner tomorrow.

          1. re: Dax

            Enjoy, keep healing and I'm sure you'll let us know how it went.

            1. re: Big Daddy

              Consistently my favorite restaurant in Bham. Always sit at the chef's counter.

              I proposed to my wife — on one leg and the whole shebang — in the dinning room up front 6+ years ago....

              My wife ALWAYS gets the spring rolls and sirloin.

              When Chris the owner is there, I just tell him to "Make me dinner." I don't actually order. An app and a main course will just show up. And I always have the cheese plate for dessert.

              1. re: SkippyLeBeef

                Yes, the cheese plate is fabulous. My wife likes the Hot and Hot donuts, too.

              2. re: Big Daddy

                Went there Wednesday night for a work dinner. We started with the fried okra, mussels and the spring rolls. The curry dipping sauce for the spring rolls was perfect with just the right hint of spice. Mussels ok, broth wasn't the best, but the toasted bread with tapenade was a nice touch. Okra was okra, which I love (fried only).

                Some went with the tomato stack for a salad but I was already filling up on the apps and delicious bread (the cheese biscuits rock) with rich butter, so I opted against it. I think 4 of 6 of our party ordered the stacks, and high stacks they were. I didn't see much leftover.

                For my main I had the pork trio, which was belly, loin and leg. I felt like goldilocks except instead of pooridge I was eating the magical animal. The loin too lean and a little too hammy, the belly was very fatty (and I usually love fatty) and just a little too rich for me, but the leg was perfect with just the right amount of crispy fat. I could have eaten that for days.

                They seem to be moving to full fall mode, as they also had braised short ribs on the menu. I love short ribs. LOVE EM! These were quite good too (and a large dish), but it's a little hard for me to eat short ribs when it's still 85+ degrees outside.

                Thanks for the recs.

                1. re: Dax

                  The pork trio does sound great (mmmmm, pork belly). I share your love for braised short ribs, but agree they're not the meat for heat.

          2. Many of the "foodies" here think H&H consistently puts out the best food in town. I tend to disagee. I've have some winners there, but pleanty of losers as well. The posts below are spot on re: the heirloom tomatoes. However, they can tend to over do it sometimes. For example, I have a wonderful bluefin tuna tartare there once with an heirloom tomato relish. The waiter then steered me to a fish entree that, turns out, had the same tomato relish as a side (not mentioned on the menu). Way too much tomato and way too acidic for one meal (and the fish was mediocre). Agree with the rec on pork & beans - outstanding!

            Personally, I have really good luck at Ocean recently. Beautiful rock lobster tail appetizer that just melts in your mouth. The whole fish selections are daunting but excellent. Enough to feed two at a good price.