Have I mentioned before how much I love doing these Bama’s Best contests? Our first one was more than three years ago when Mrs. Story’s Dairy Bar in Opelika claimed the title of Bama’s Best Milkshake. I will always remember going to shoot their story because they had what felt like half of the town show up, including the mayor, police chief and hospital administrator!
Since we start these contests by taking nominations on social media, I always think we’re going to end up with a lot of big city restaurants. But, invariably, the majority of nominated restaurants represent small town communities. It’s amazing and even heart-warming to see how connected and invested people are in helping their local favorite claim the top spot!
So, without further ado, here are your Edible Eight for Bama’s Best Pizza!
- Carpenetti’s Pizzeria in Moody
- DiFilippo’s Pizza in Ozark
- Geno’s Pizza and Grill in Scottsboro
- Giovanni’s Italian Restaurant in Sylacauga
- Pizza & Pint in Sylacauga
- Top-Notch Pizza & BBQ in Vernon
- Valentina’s Pizzeria and Wine Bar in Madison
- Vertillo Pizza and Grill in Sheffield
I mean, before we started this contest, who would’ve known that Sylacauga was a hotbed for fine pizza pies? (Of course, everyone in Sylacauga knew this already, but now the rest of the state knows!) Or that there’s a place where you don’t have to decide between BBQ or pizza for dinner — looking at you Top-Notch in Vernon! These are the things that make me love these contests!
So, where do we go from here? Great question!
Your local pizzeria still needs your help to make it into the Flavorful Four! Next week, there will be daily, regional matchups, Jan. 18-21, on our Facebook page at Facebook.com/SimplySouthernTV. (Check the image above to see who’s up against who and the matchup dates.) The restaurant with the most votes by the cut-off time will become a Flavorful Four finalist. (Try saying that three times fast. Seriously. I’ll wait.)
Judges will visit the Flavorful Four later this winter to determine an overall winner, who will receive:
- A cash prize
- All-important bragging rights
- Feature in Neighbors magazine
- Feature on “Simply Southern TV”
Alright – I’m putting on my “serious hat” for one of the last things I’ll say here. We LOVE these kinds of competitions, and we LOVE seeing the passion you have for your local favorite. But please, please, keep your posts friendly and supportive. It’s been a tough year for a lot of people in a lot of industries, but I think we can all agree, restaurants are one of the industries that have been impacted the most. From the business owners to the chefs and the workers, the Edible Eight represent people who work extremely hard and who have a passion for providing others with one of the necessities of life – good, wholesome food. And no matter who wins, we’re all extremely thankful that they’re doing the work they do.
<<Removes serious hat… puts back in box.>>
Speaking of being thankful… we’re also thankful for our contest sponsors – the Alabama Farmers Federation’s Dairy Division and the Alabama Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association. We couldn’t have this contest without them! And not just because of their sponsorships. Both of these groups are made up of farmers in our state who work daily to produce and grow products we need to make the perfect pizza pie – from the cheese to the tomato sauce and toppings. So, let’s thank our farmers for giving us the ingredients necessary for one of our favorite foods!
And thanks to all of YOU who nominated your favorite restaurant. We can’t wait to taste-test the Flavorful Four later this year!