It’s the Friday of the Alabama vs. Mississippi State game in Tuscaloosa. The time is 7 in the evening. You get hungry and you think, “Hey, let’s go to a nice dinner at 5, or maybe even Chuck’s.”
We, as citizens of Tuscaloosa and students at The University of Alabama, go through this week after week in the fall. 2+ hour waits for our favorite restaurants. We want to brunch, but we don’t want to wait 3 hours for 5’s breakfast burger. We want a greek style bloody mary from Glory Bound, but it isn’t worth waiting an hour for. We pay $10+ dollars for cover at our favorite bars. The stores mark up their inventory including chips, beer, and party supplies.
Here are the tricks to having a successful game day weekend!
DO GO EARLY
If you go any later than 6, good luck. I know it is annoying to eat the early bird special, but you have to sacrifice sometimes.
DO PICK A LESS TRENDY RESTAURANT
While we all love Chuck’s, Five, DePalma’s, and all of those cute restaurants downtown, you may want to pick something off the radar. Everyone is wanting those trendy restaurants. Like I said before, it’s all about the sacrifice on a game day weekend.
DON’T THINK ABOUT A RESERVATION
The new trend in restaurants is not taking reservations. Tuscaloosa has taken this trend and they’ve run with it. There is virtually no good restaurants that take reservations.
DO USE OPEN TABLE
I don’t know why Open Table isn’t automatically on everyones smartphone when they get it. Open Table is an app where you can make reservations with the click of a button. Download the app, fill in your contact information, enter the number of guests in your party and what time you want to dine, tell them what city you are in, and VOILA! They will pull up the cute restaurants that take reservations and show you open slots. That’s not all! The more honored reservations you have, the more points you get. And those points turn into cash. Cold, hard cash to use towards your meal at an Open Table friendly restaurant. Get the app to see which restaurants are Open Table friendly in your town. Here are the three Open Table friendly restaurants in Tuscaloosa:
- Cypress Inn
- Epiphany Farm to Fork
- Kozy’s Fine Dining
DO CALL AHEAD
While most restaurants don’t take reservations, some do take call ahead. It is definitely worth the call to inquire on if they have a call ahead policy.
DO GO SHOPPING BEFORE FRIDAY
If you are planning on buying beer or alcohol, make sure to go early. Some stores jack up the prices on Friday or Saturday of gameday. Go shopping Wednesday and Thursday to stock up!!!
DON’T EXPECT TO GET INTO A BAR WITHOUT PAYING AT LEAST $10
Bars tend to jack up cover on gameday weekends. This week they definitely will be one of the weekends to expect cover. Make sure to get some cash out before you start drinking! You make more responsible decisions with money when you haven’t consumed alcohol.
DON’T TRY TO DRIVE ANYWHERE AFTER DRINKING
Drinking and driving is a sure way to go straight to jail on a game day weekend. You should never ever get behind the wheel after having a few. Tuscaloosa Police and the UA Police do not take driving under the influence lightly. Don’t risk your life and the lives of other people on the road by calling a cab!
Whatever you do this weekend, make sure to have a great time! Tuscaloosa is an awesome town with a lot of great things to offer. Try something new and tell us about it!
Until next time, Roll Tide!