For a boy from Cullman, Alabama, Frank Stitt has certainly developed an international palate. Stitt began college studying philosophy at the University of California at Berkeley. There he met Alice Waters of the renowned Chez Panisse, and Frank Olney. Awakened to the culinary world, Stitt worked in France with Olney, Simca Beck, and wine authority Stephen Spurrier. Returning to Alabama, he blended his culinary heritage with Mediterranean influence to launch Birmingham’s most inventive restaurant, Highlands Bar & Grill. It was in 1995 that the Great Chefs team filmed Frank there for their Great Chefs-Great Cities series.
Later in the 90’s, they returned to film in his second restaurant, Bottega for their Great Chefs of the South series. Both have been lauded for Stitt’s wonderful food and originality. Stitt was named one of Food & Wine’s Top 25 Hot New American Chefs, and was named a Rising Star chef by the James Beard Foundation, and in 2001 was named Best Chef, Southeast, by the Foundation. Highlands was named, Best Regional Restaurant‚ by Esquire, and placed in the Fine Dining Hall of Fame by DiRoNa. The locals say it best, voting Highlands B&G Birmingham’s best restaurant year after year since 1991.