Check out this blog post from Gourmet magazine about Southern cheesemakers. John T. Edge notes that typically, when Southerns have talked about cheese, "we have been more likely to talk pimento cheese ... But that was then. This is now."
A Southern cheesemaker success story is Fromagerie Belle Chevre in Elkmont, Ala. The business and their award-winning goat cheeses have been written up in publications ranging from Food & Wine and Gourmet through Vogue and Business Week. Their cheeses can be found at upscale stores such as Whole Foods and Dean & Deluca, or through their web site.
It's much easier to find good cheese in Birmingham than it used to be. A number of restaurants now offer cheese plates, and V. Richard's, Tria Market and Whole Foods all have wonderful cheese counters. The selection at Whole Foods is larger, but if you go to V. Richard's or Tria you can sample the cheese you're interested in before you buy.