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Jan 28, 2009 08:45 AM

Birmingham - Locally milled grits & local knife sharpener?

I recently ordered some Anson Mills grits, steel cut oats, and some polenta. I've only tried the oats so far and they were delicious. However, the total cost with shipping was like $35 for less than 24 oz of grits, 12 oz of oat and 12 oz of polenta, or close to that. I googled local sources and found Coosa Valley Milling and can't wait to give them a try next time I head out to visit friends way the heck out on 280 (?). Are there more local options?

Additionally, my knives need some TLC and I haven't bought the tools nor do I have the skill set to sharpen them myself at this time. Where do you get your cutlery sharpened locally, preferably not Williams -Sonoma that will charge me and arm and a leg.

Thanks in advance,


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  1. Is that the same company that sells the grits at Pepper Place and Tria? (I believe the packaging has is clear on the front and blue on the back) I have had the grits and they are good, but for about $10 I didnt think they were mind blowing...actually I have to admit that I prefer quaker quick grits to those expensive stone ground grits, but that is probably becasue that is what I grew up with.

    It has been about a year since I had my knives sharpened, and need to get it done again. I had them done for free at V Richards...I called up to get the info, but it was on Tuesdays they had a guy that would take your knives at the meat counter and sharpen them for you. He did a really nice job and best of all it was completed while I was eating breakfast! I believe I did give him a small tip.

    1. I just left a message w/ a good friend of mine who is a Sous chef here in town about the knife sharpening question. I will let you know what he says. I do think the other poster was correct about V. Richards having somebody come down 1 day a week to sharpen knives. Not sure if they still do that though. It might be worth calling there and asking. I will ask him about the locally milled grits also. He worked for Hastings and then Stitt for years b/f accepting his current position so he is familiar w/ local products.

        1. re: Dax

          You can get Coosa Valley grits (sold as McEwen and Sons) all over town. Try V Richard's, Western in Mt Brook, Pig in Homewood or Liberty Park. Tria's might have them also. I've had their polenta and grits (white and yellow), and they are stellar.
          The Coosa Valley web site also mentions Snapper Grabbers seafood on U.S. 31 near Vestavia Hills city hall and The Fish Market as retail outlets.

          1. re: Big Daddy

            I've enjoyed all of the McEwen & Sons products that I've purchased. I am also using their organic cornmeal right now, and it makes some killer cornbread.

            Please post if anyone finds out if V. Richard's still does the Tuesday knife sharpening.

            1. re: Big Daddy

              McEwen and Sons...that's it...those are the grits I was talkin about. They sell em at a bunch of places.

          2. Coldwater Seed and Supply in Tuscumbia, Alabama sharpens knives. This issue of Southern Living magazine mentions this store in an article about Tuscumbia.