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Year of Alabama Food

Courtesy Alabama Tourism Dept.

From the fresh seafood on the Gulf Coast to the time-tested Southern classics of its heartland, Alabama enjoys a diverse and delicious culinary heritage. Food is such an important part of the state’s tradition that tourism promoters declared 2012 the Year of Alabama Food and unveiled a number of efforts to market Alabama as a culinary destination.

One of the chief initiatives for this celebratory year is the creation of five Alabama food trails. The Northern Alabama Trail features barbecue, steak, Southern comfort food and historic dining venues. The Taste of the Magic City Trail highlights spots around Birmingham, and the Coastal Cuisine Trail showcases the best seafood on Alabama’s Gulf Coast. Groups can also explore the Alabama Heartland Trail in the center of the state or the Lower Alabama Trail.

In addition to the food trails, the Year of Alabama Food website has listings and photos of some of the state’s most famous dishes, as well as recipes and restaurant profiles. There’s also a listing of 25 food festivals that take place each year throughout the state, giving groups plenty of options for planning a culinary tour of the state.

Brian Jewell

Brian Jewell is the executive editor of The Group Travel Leader. In more than a decade of travel journalism he has visited 48 states and 25 foreign countries.