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Support these Black-owned restaurants in Huntsville and North Alabama

Whether you want to chow down on barbecue, sample vegetarian food-truck fare, or crush on gussied-up funnel cakes, Black-owned food businesses in Huntsville and across north Alabama will make your belly happy.

These aren’t just restaurants to support once a year, though. This is serious food for serious eaters, all 12 months of the year.

Also check out our stories on Black-owned restaurants in Birmingham and South Alabama.

(Ian McCalister/Facebook)

Chef Will the Palate (Huntsville)

Chef Forest Wilson doesn’t eat meat. And at Chef Will the Palate, the food truck he opened in 2010, he packs big flavors into meat-free vegetarian food. The truck, stationed at Lowe Mill Arts and Entertainment complex in Huntsville, serves burgers and cheese “steaks” made with big portobello mushrooms; NOLA-style blackened tofu; and curry quinoa lettuce wraps. Pastas (gluten free or wheat noodles), pizzas, and sandwiches help round out a diverse menu. Spring rolls and California rolls are doused in Wilson’s signature Bee Sting sauce.

(Soul: Wingery and Records/Facebook)

Soul: Wingery and Records (Florence)

Thaddeus Saajid-Rowell grew up cooking and listening to soul music with his grandparents. Later, after time as a musician and teacher, he was torn between opening a restaurant or a record store. Soul: Wingery and Records bridges the two. Wings, both traditional and boneless, are served with nine flavors of sauce ranging in heat from Alabama white to Nashville Hot. Chicken forms the soulful backbeat on a menu that includes waffles, fried green tomatoes, and fried cauliflower as sides.

(Tha food truck/Facebook)

Tha Food Truck (Madison)

The truck, which first hit the road in 2009, is available for bookings. The self-billed home of “Quality Street Food” serves cheesesteaks, burgers, hot dogs and steak tacos, all made from premium sirloin and marinated in a signature sauce. Sides include sweet potato waffle fries.

(Sac’s Kitchen/Facebook)

Sac’s Kitchen (Huntsville)

Sarah Douglas has cooked, it seems, her entire life. For nearly a decade now, she’s fed folks from Sac’s Kitchen, which she co-owns with her son, Carlos Burwell. People rave about the hot water cornbread. Sac’s mostly offers a meat-and-two menu. The former includes baked lemon pepper chicken, catfish, pork chops, shrimp and salmon patties (they also put them in sandwiches). Daily specials include pig trotters and neck bones on Saturdays, and oxtail or meatloaf on Wednesdays. Sides include all of the soul food classics. Red velvet cake and peach cobbler are sold whole or in individual servings. Also available: blackberry cobbler, banana pudding, and cupcakes.

(Royalty Funnel Cakes & More/Facebook)

Royalty Funnel Cakes and More (Decatur)

A fall festival favorite is available year-round at Royalty Funnel Cakes and More. Pick a size (three-, six- and eight-inch options) and personalize it with toppings that include powdered sugar, Fruity Pebbles cereal, gummy bears, banana pudding, and strawberry cheesecake. Finish off your creation with caramel, chocolate, maple, or other syrup. Ice cream and deep-fried desserts (Oreos, honeybuns) also are available (as are burgers, wings, hot dogs and other savories). Kenya Congress, an activist and mother with a heart for the downtrodden, started out as the Funnel Queen but rebranded last year when she opened her brick-and-mortar dessert shop. Only open now for drive-through and delivery.

(Datdudewitthe seafood/Facebook)

Dat Dude with the Seafood (Huntsville)

With two locations in Birmingham (plus a third in Huntsville), Alabama’s favorite grilled cheese shop is making waves across the state. Paired with every ooey, gooey cheese-stuffed sandwich are their signature beer-battered fries. The addition of a cornstarch-flour-light beer coating gives Melt’s fries an extra outer crunch that gives way to a steaming hot potato center.

(Bunyans Barbeque/Facebook)

Dick Howell’s Barbecue or Bunyan’s Bar-B-Q (Florence)

They are about two miles apart in Florence. Both Dick Howell’s and Bunyan’s have won fanatical followings for their pulled pit-cooked pork and mustardy Hot Slaw. So, which is best if you’re a novice? Heck, they sit only two miles apart so try both, and decide for yourself. Open since 1947, Dick Howell’s has a more traditional barbecue menu, with plates and sandwiches, but also hot dogs and baked potatoes. Bunyan’s, a relative upstart that celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, serves chicken stew along with the standard plates and sandwiches.

Whether you want to chow down on barbecue, sample vegetarian food-truck fare, or crush on gussied-up funnel cakes, Black-owned food businesses in Huntsville and across north Alabama will make your belly happy.

These aren’t just restaurants to support once a year, though. This is serious food for serious eaters, all 12 months of the year.

Also check out our stories on Black-owned restaurants in Birmingham and South Alabama.

(Courtesy of SoulGrown)

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