The Side by Side Restaurant

4.0
350 reviews
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$30 and under
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Southern
Our restaurant takes a modern approach to blending Southern, French, and California-styles of cooking, set against the backdrop of downtown Tuscaloosa. The airy dining room and connecting bar offer ever-changing dishes and cocktails executed by Chef Chris Hastings and his team and are inspired by Alabama, the local farmer’s harvest, and other artisans of every kind. Relax and enjoy an intimate supper with us at the chef’s counter with front row views of the open kitchen, in the main dining room, the Rotunda, or with satisfying snacks and cocktails at the bar.
What 350 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.0based on recent ratings
4.0
food
4.1
service
4.3
ambience
3.7
value
Noise · Moderate
70% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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l
Western NC
2 reviews
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 2

It was totally empty but we were seated in the rotunda part - was weird being alone in a restaurant- food was ok not great

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b
New Orleans
4 reviews
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 4

Always great in the past but weak service and food tonight. Not that busy but waiter disappeared. Food had no flavor. Meat was tough. Disappointing.

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OT
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Mother’s Day

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VB
Atlanta
7 reviews
Dined on May 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great for a before the show drink and dinner.

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MC
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved the food, the atmosphere, and the service. Also, loved the fact that i could make a reservation for our large party!

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JM
St. Louis
8 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 5

Graduation lunch - limited menu and they screwed up 2 orders out of 4. Charged double for the drinks. Not a great experience.

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M
1 review
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 4

I normally don't write reviews but this experience was so terrible that guests should be aware. We had the worst service with the waitress - asked her what her favorite meal was and she said "nothing on this menu." She also told us that our steak could only be cooked rare or well done, despite the entree being $40. The waitress then served everyone their meal except one and then forgot about the last dish. The steak came out cold and was sent back. The last dish, salmon, came out when everyone had finished but it was rare. So it was sent back as well but came out 30 min later. The waitress also told us that the bottle of wine we ordered wasn't available but brought another one - with a major mark up from the first but did not tell us before the check came out. The waitress at this point said the apps, salmon and salads were going to be compensated by the restaurant. However, they were not taken off when the final check came. Overall, since this was a graduation weekend, it was embarrassing and frustrating to have to deal with this and the waitress did not even apologize. Very, very frustrating.

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TP
Jacksonville
35 reviews
Dined on May 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Service was a bit slow getting started, waited awhile to be acknowledged salads were interesting & delicious. Southern comfort food with a twist! Excellent!

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

4/21/19. Easter brunch. Average service, shrimp and grits not up to usual standards. Disappointed

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SD
San Diego
38 reviews
Dined on April 9, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Food was delicious, wine list limited but worthy ...
Server was pleasant but restricted on her knowledge of wines. Seemed a bit unsure of herself .

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OT
Birmingham
3 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Award weekend at University of Alabama

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R
Raleigh
20 reviews
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Great location at the Embassy Suites (where we were staying). Nice ambience, and very good service. The food was just mediocre, and so this was disappointing. There are so few nice restaurants in Tuscaloosa, and they have an opportunity to capitalize on the great location and nice ambience.

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CM
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Service was very good and the ambiance fine. I had salmon which was delicious!! Mine was one average sized piece of fish with scant veggies. My husband had the rabbit...he didn't like it much. He also had a salad that was "just ok". Lunch might be a better value, but I don't think the dinner is.

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l
Miami
26 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Side by Side is always a good choice. Food is always good and they are always accommodating on busy weekends.

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OT
Nashville
2 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great experience. Our waiter, Andrew, was outstanding and so nice!

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MM
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 3

It wasn’t busy so I cannot explain the quality of the food.
We will try it again.

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SS
Birmingham
12 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere. We were there for a late lunch following a University of Alabama Basketball game. It was not crowded and very quite. Evidently the game crowd doesn't flock here which is good to know.

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BM
1 review
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food at Side by Side was amazing! Our waiter was great, and we got our food very quickly. However, we did have a reservation and it was for brunch. I have had friends wait over 2 hours to get their food. We ordered the brunch burger, Club sandwhich, and chicen and waffles. They also let you choose from the brunch and the lunch menu. The food was very good and all at reasonable pries!

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OT
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 3

This restaurant is one of the more upscale restaurants in Tuscaloosa but the servers aren’t properly trained to be working in this environment. The evening started out with a parking issue, there wasn’t any available. Was told there was no valet or hotel parking available that we had to self park offsite and it was pouring rain. We ordered a bottle of champagne and our server brought us wine glasses rather than champagne flutes for it to be served in. Our cocktails (12 ea) weren’t served together, came out one or two at a time and was told that the bar was backed up. Our appetizers came out and the fried oysters that we ordered ($25) actually had fried lemons and fennel unannounced to us so you can imagine the shock when you ate a fried slice of lemon rather than an oyster. The entrees took about an hour to be served and we were “compensated” with a burnt order of cornbread on the house. Very disappointing evening. I would give 2.5 stars if I could. I will not be returning.

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MS
Birmingham
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

The food was not impressive, especially after having been to other Hastings restaurants. We went for Valentines Day and ordered the couples special. The fried green tomatoes were amazing, but the lobster risotto was crunchy. It has nuts in it, which didn’t feel right. At first we thought our risotto was just under cooked. Then we got the “bottle” of champagne add on. It was a miniature bottle. Not the best advertisement, and we felt completely jipped. We would have been better off just ordering separate drinks. The steaks were cooked wonderfully. The dessert was a pear and apple crostata. It was borderline cold and the waiter gave us spoons?? We had to use a knife and spoon to eat them. Definitely not what I expected for a $110 dinner. I had been so excited to finally come here and was extremely let down.

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OT
Birmingham
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very romantic and great atmosphere. Perfect for Valentines’s Day. Service was outstanding. Only complaint I have is about the serving size on the Valentine’s Day menu.

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on February 18, 2019

Thank you for your review! We are happy to have hosted you for Valentine's Day!

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CW
Tallahassee
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Side by side does not disappoint. It is in Embassy Suites Hotel but not associated with them as I understand. Busy Valentines evening came off without a hitch. Getting to choose from the regular menu or the Valentine special was an added treat.

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on February 18, 2019

Thank you for your outstanding review! We are happy to have hosted you for Valentine's Day!

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c
Denver
3 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

The food was good, the menu a little odd; not too many choices. Check it out before you decide to go. We were seated on time and fine with a reservation. Even though they didn’t seem full, the service was slow. We waited quite a while for food, drinks etc, the server apologized for our wait and mentioned they were slammed but it didn’t look that way. Maybe they were short in the kitchen area.

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DP
New Orleans
4 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We love Side-by-Side and the food is always very good. The fish of the day was great. The desserts were good. The only negative we had was the butter lettuce salad. When it was brought out, it was literally lettuce and vinaigrette. There were none of the other listed ingredients. Our waitress never returned so that we could ask about it. Overall, it was another good night out at Side-by-Side but could have been great if the salad had been completely prepared.

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OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, great staff.

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on February 18, 2019

Thank you for your great review!

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JK
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service. Great atmosphere. Will return.

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on January 30, 2019

Thank you for your great review! We look forward to hosting you again! Please ask about our Lunch Rewards Program on your next visit!

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H
Birmingham
4 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 5

They charged me $3 for ice in my cocktail...Not cool. Other than that, good food and ambiance.

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on January 19, 2019

I would like to thank you for your visit and review. We are happy that you enjoyed the food. I would like to explain we do not charge for ice. Our standard pour for liquor is 1.25 oz (as most bars/restaurants). The extra charge was for a 2 oz pour (more liquor) which is what we serve for a liquor on the rocks (giant ice cube). This is noted on the receipt and should have been verbalized by staff. If they did not explain this, I do apologize .I will be reminding the staff of customer awareness.

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GU
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

We truly enjoyed our dinner to celebrate our son's birthday. Our son got the lamb and our daughter-in-law got the short ribs which they thoroughly enjoyed. My husband and I got the steak which was OK. Our steaks were a little chewy with a good bit of gristle though cooked to the correct medium. Neither of us cared for the sweet potato gratin. The carrot and parsnip were good. Overall it was a good dining experience.

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on January 19, 2019

Thank you for your review. We are happy you dined with us for your special occasion. We appreciate the input on the New York Strip. It is pertinent for us to know feedback so that we may evolve to the customer's taste. While the chef has designed the menu with certain pairings, we realize that the customer comes first and we are happy to accommodate certain substitutions to better please our guests. We hope to host you again soon!

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J
New York Area
18 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Missed the boat. Mostly less than described. A bit dull.

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SS
New Orleans
3 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

My wife and I found Side By Side to be a very welcoming restaurant, from the greeting by the charming hostess who showed us to our table to the waitress who served us. The food was delicious and the waitress made her first decaf-cappuccino for my wife, which was outstanding. We will be back.

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OT
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 4

The service was great nice little restaurant good location. Everything was clean but the food was really mediocre for this caliber a restaurant.

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SH
Birmingham
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My wife and I went here on Christmas Day and had a wonderful dinner. We split the New York state and it was prepared exactly as we asked. We appreciate having a good restaurant we can go to on holidays.

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on December 29, 2018

Stephen, thank you for spending your Christmas with us! Serving you is our pleasure!

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OT
Birmingham
2 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Everything was fabulous!

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on December 29, 2018

Thank you for dining with us and for the great review! We are happy that you enjoyed The Side By Side!

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R
Washington DC
17 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 4

Vegetarian options were very limited and chef was not interested in providing accommodation of our choosing despite a minimal number of diners.

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B
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food and exceptional service! We arrived early for our reservation (1 hour early) and they were able to accommodate us! One of the best meals I’ve ever had!

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on December 29, 2018

Brad, Thank you for the great review and thank you for choosing to dine with us. We are happy that we were able sit you before your reservation time. We look forward to having the pleasure of hosting you again.

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D
Philadelphia
14 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Food was excellent. I wanted something light so I had the shrimp and avocado . It was great.

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OT
Birmingham
5 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My mom and I got dinner here the night before my college graduation. It was gorgeous, high class, and the food was amazing!

The Side by Side Restaurant
Responded on December 29, 2018

Congratulations College Grad! We are so happy that you enjoyed your special occasion with us.

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OT
New Orleans
1 review
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very good, Jessica was great.

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f
Pittsburgh
61 reviews
Dined on December 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere, great food, highly convenient for those staying at the Embassy suites.
Menu is somewhat limited though.

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KR
Birmingham
14 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very good! The food was great. The server was nice.

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