Food & Beverage, Modern Design
Norm Architects
Bark House
Birmingham, Alabama

Walk along a promenade in Northern Italy as you step through the doors of Bocca. As Birmingham’s newest Italian restaurant located downtown on 2nd street, Bocca takes its cues from the high-end fashion and design centers of cities like Milan and Turin. With a modern artistic design, the aesthetic throughout is thoughtfully appointed with dark woods and rich, bold colors. What was once a large single open space is now transformed offering guests a sense of discovery and anticipation of what theevening will bring – the perfect setting for a dining experience in which old world meets modern cuisine.

Tom Saab is the owner and head chef of this new, modern masterpiece where guests dine within the atmosphere reminiscent of Northern Italy.
Tom Saab
Coming off the success of Bistro 218, Tom Saab has once again identified a niche in the Birmingham restaurant scene. Beyond fresh pasta, Tom’s vision is to offer the highest quality steaks and seafood as well. More than excellent cuisine, his restaurants deliver on an intangible holistic experience. In Bocca, intimate, cozy spaces define the elevated sense of belonging that guests enjoy over every course of their meals.
“Shelby brought a high degree of organization, and there were no unanswered questions with them.”
Tom Saab

Images by : Nicola Harger
“We wanted this experience to be like an escape. Every night, we want to transport people from Birmingham to Northern Italy.”
The Solution
How do you take a large room and make it feel modern, intimate and sexy That was the challenge set before Matt Shelby and his team. The process for Matt began by buying into the vision of a private dining experience based on a theme of old world charm, with a contemporary twist. To create personal dining moments, the team of designers, architects and builders focused on space dividers and furniture throughout that features curves and soft lines. Making this sensory experience for parties of all sizes as personalized as possible required a seamless ensemble of lighting, opulent colors and quality building materials all designed to capture the essence of Northern Italy.