Food & Drink

Atlanta’s Best Secret Eats: 11 Off-Menu Items You Can’t Miss

Published On 10/07/2015 Published On 10/07/2015
Courtesy of Sarah Dodge
Courtesy of Heidi Geldhauser
Courtesy of Bocado Burger
Brook Bolen/Thrillist
Brook Bolen/Thrillist
Brook Bolen/Thrillist
Miller Union
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1. Portofino 3199 Paces Ferry Pl NW, Atlanta , GA 30305

This elegant Italian restaurant boasts authentic, carefully-crafted menu items—lamb bolognese, fried Castelvetrano olives—and a considerable wine selection, along with a beautiful outdoor patio.

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2. Bocado 887 Howell Mill Rd NW, Atlanta, GA 30318 (West Atlanta)

Bocado's burger -- two patties of blended short rib, brisket, and ground chuck, topped with American cheese and butter pickles -- is one of the best in Atlanta. You may very well come here for the burger but end up more than satisfied with the rest of the contemporary dishes, like deviled eggs that'll rival your grandmother's, a grilled cheese & bacon sandwich that's near impossible to recreate at home, and a lobster roll special that'll transport you to Cape Cod on first bite.

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3. Little Bangkok 2225 Cheshire Bridge Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30324

The tom ka soup here is out of this world: a chicken-, mushroom-, and green onion-studded soup made with creamy coconut milk and outrageously flavorful spices

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4. Shake Shack 3035 Peachtree Rd NE Ste A146, Atlanta, GA 30305

Restaurateur Danny Meyer's food-truck-turned-global concept doles out no-fuss burgers, fries, shakes, and other classic American eats.

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5. El Super Pan 675 Ponce De Leon Ave, Atlanta, GA 30308 (Old 4th Ward)

People were distraught when Chef Hector Santiago’s original Super Pan in Poncey-Highland closed, but fortunately, the sandwich shop was resurrected in Ponce City Market, where you can order Santiago's exceptional Cubano and similar Latin-inspired sandwiches that made the original so beloved. In addition to sandwiches and breads, the buzzy counter-serve offers beer, wine, and cocktails, plus baked-in-house desserts like chipotle chocolate chip cookies, Piggie Cookies (bacon fat shortbread with guava jelly), and flan with burnt sugar caramel.

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6. We Suki Suki 479 Flat Shoals Ave SE, Atlanta, GA 30316 (East Atlanta)

We Suki Suki is a simple Vietnamese sandwich shop in East Atlanta Village slinging creative banh mi that rival those found along Buford Highway. Expect traditional lemongrass chicken and pork-and-paté sandwiches, plus the house favorite made with tofu and eggplant. While the so-called Saigon-style subs are the main lure of We Suki Suki, a small selection of pho (available with beef, chicken, or mushroom & tofu) is available, but only for dine-in service (and for good reason -- noodles and broth taste best right when they're served).

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7. Lusca 1829 Peachtree Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

From the guys who brought you the Octopus Bar, get ready for some kick-ass seafood and fantastic cocktails. Plus, this spot is open before 10pm so you can enjoy breakfast/lunch.

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8. The Vortex 438 Moreland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30307 (Little 5 Points)

This sibling-owned bar and restaurant in Little Five Points is a self-proclaimed "Official Idiot-Free Zone," and they're notorious for kicking out rude or high-maintenance customers to create a laid-back and fun crowd (they're usually pretty young, too). It's hard to imagine why anyone here would be picky with their food when they've got such a massive selection of whopping, diverse signature burgers like the Hawaiian-themed Freaky Tiki and the Holy Guacamole (self-explanatory), along with a hefty selection of local draft beers (and beer cocktails), cocktails and shooters.

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9. 10 Degrees South 4183 Roswell Rd, Atlanta, GA 30342 (Buckhead)

The retired South African pro soccer player who opened 10 DS back in '98 knew what he was doing when he opened this oasis of food from his homeland. It looks like a corporate office from Roswell Rd, but once you get past the door, and especially when you hit the bungalow-designed back patio, you'll feel transported.

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10. Six Feet Under Pub & Fish House, Westside 685 11th St NW, Atlanta, GA 30318 (Home Park)

The Westside outpost of Six Feet Under Pub & Fish House is home to exactly what it boasts in its name: beer and seafood. The Southern-inflected menu features a bivalve heavy raw bar, a variety of seafood soups -- like fish stew, chowder, and gumbo -- seafood-centric sandwiches and platters, as well as cornmeal-crusted, deep-fried shrimp, catfish, or oyster baskets, all served with chips, jalapeño tartar sauce, and jalapeño hush puppies. Enjoy the bounty of the sea with any of two dozen rotating draft beers, and take in the unparalleled views of Atlanta’s skyline from the outdoor rooftop bar.

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11. Miller Union 999 Brady Ave, Atlanta, GA 30318 (West Atlanta)

From its post on the Westside, Miller Union features unpretentious yet sophisticated New American cuisine with a Southern bent. The menu changes seasonally, but staples like the feta snack, butter bean or field pea hummus (availability depends on the season) with house-made lavash, and the celery cream-baked farm egg are indispensable starters (and if you happen upon the shrimp and andouille gumbo, add that to the list). The wine list is approachable, affordable, and organic with a global reach, though most of its attention leans towards the food-friendly wines of the old world. It’s also worth noting that the house-made ice cream sandwich is only available at lunch.