5535 15th Ave. E.
Tuscaloosa, AL 35405
The original location in Tuscaloosa, a homegrown joint with a worldly following, still packs in hungry diners. Back in the 1960s and 1970s, Dreamland developed devoted fans who would travel across the nation to eat at this storied spot. Nowadays, servers deliver complimentary appetizer plates of white bread and the same sauce that the original owner, Big Daddy, developed. Smoked sausage, chopped pork sandwiches and sides of beans, slaw, potato salad and banana pudding have been added to the menu since the original restaurant opened. But keeping those ribs just like they used to be is key to Dreamland’s success both here and at the other shops, explained Betsy McAtee, the CEO of today’s Dreamland. “All of our Dreamlands use the same meat, the same sauce, the same wood vendor out of Tuscaloosa, just like the original location,” she said.