Backwoods Bistro is a Southern fine-dining restaurant that offers a variety of fresh, delicious American foods.
According to the restaurant’s website, Backwoods Bistro started in Sopchoppy and was owned by Jesse Rice’s family. Soon after, he reached out to his friend Taylor Harrell to help him run the business. By 2012 the duo has relocated to Tallahassee and since have had a very successful company. In conjunction with Backwoods Bistro, they also own Backwoods Crossing at the corner of Mahan Drive and Gadsden Street. A unique feature of the restaurant is that they grow most of their produce. At the Backwoods Crossing, there is a full-size garden where a few things like tomatoes and peppers are used in dishes and sent to the Backwoods Bistro location farther east on Route 90. They have three full-time gardeners who work in the fields daily.
Every weekend the restaurant creates a special menu called garden creations. Depending on the vegetables that are available at the other location, three entrée dishes are created for customers to try. Each weekend the meals change and are never the same unless it is popular among consumers.
Alongside dinner, entertainment is provided for customers to enjoy. Harrell personally hand-picks various musicians to play at the restaurant. This has helped the business create long-lasting relationships with musicians and attract people from various backgrounds.
First-time customer Jennifer Johnson shared why she enjoys going to the restaurant. Her favorite part about her visit was the live band that brought an energetic atmosphere to her dining experience.
“Backwoods Bistro is definitely a fresher place; they prepare it with elegance, but it is still homey, and it is all really tasty and well-seasoned,” she said.
Overall, the restaurant has enjoyed a positive reputation with its quality food and great customer service. They have won Tally Awards for three consecutive years in the categories of Best Lunch, Best Dinner, runner-up for Best Atmosphere, runner-up for Best Entertainment and Best Service.
“We do a really good job of making people feel welcomed and do our best to accommodate what we can. With our diverse menu, it is compact enough to where we can provide a good product but also deep enough to where there is something for everyone,” said Harrell.
This restaurant brings a unique style of cuisine with freshly grown foods unlike anything seen in Tallahassee.