Natural Instinct

At Westside Provisions, REDBIRD’s “free-spirited” style reflects the comforts of home

A partnership between former Watershed co-owner Ross Jones and chef Zeb Stevenson, West Midtown’s Redbird, which opened in August, prides itself on being a “rule-free” establishment. You won’t find the overly saturated here, but instead, an assortment of fresh and simple shareable plates that complement its come-as-you-are environment.

Designed by Smith Hanes, the restaurant’s open concept features a sizable bar, dining room and outdoor patio—all positioned so Stevenson can frequently interact with patrons. Take in views through towering windows or immerse your senses in the careful creation of menu favorites at the chef’s counter, where guests have a front-row seat to the kitchen’s excitingly chaotic production of dishes that offer “a little bit of everything.”

Coined “free-spirited cooking,” Redbird’s menu highlights the beauty in simplicity through limited-ingredient cold plates and à la carte proteins. Expect vegetable-centered dishes—like the garden greens salad or poached leeks—to commingle with savory favorites, such as the bubbling garlic shrimp. For those looking to indulge, Stevenson suggests the sugar cream pie—a salute to both his home state of Indiana and his mother (the dessert is dedicated to her on the menu).

A true advocate for simplifying modern cooking, Stevenson relays a calm enthusiasm for taking tasteful dishes back to the basics. “I’m just happy to be doing this,” says Stevenson. “I would rather be here—cooking, feeding people—more than anywhere else. It’s as simple as that.”