It may almost be summer, but there’s another important time in Atlanta, and that’s the season for soul food, which is approximately 365 days a year. And since nothing represents soul food like mac & cheese, we’ve rounded up the best, cheesiest, most over-the-top mac & cheeses right now.
What you're getting: Braised Greens Mac & Cheese
Southerners are the masters of pretending that side dishes are actually vegetables (see: cornbread, grits, sweet potato pie, etc.), and when eating Wisteria’s mac & cheese, with braised greens stirred into it, this almost seems reasonable.
What you're getting: House Mac 'N Cheese
Community’s use of rigatoni instead of macaroni is genius because it provides more noodle surface area for the rich, custardy sauce. You’ll only be able to eat five bites of this, but they’ll be the best five bites of your life.
What you're getting: A Mac Bowl
With a name like Mac the Cheese, it’s pretty clear that the truck has got, um, street cred, so try a Mac Bowl with fontina or sharp cheddar the next time you’re at a festival and you won't be disappointed.
What you're getting: Fox-a-Roni
What’s better than separate sides of mac & cheese and Brunswick stew? Both mixed together and still having just enough room to eat the legendary Frito Pie.
What you're getting: Heirloom's Mac
Heirloom Market isn’t Korean BBQ -- it’s American BBQ-Korean fusion, which might sound confusing, until you realize its mac & cheese gets an upgrade from kimchi, and the creamy, cheesy, and spicy result is addictive.
What you're getting: Baked Macaroni & Cheese
This soul foodery has been serving some of Atlanta’s best fried chicken since 1947, but its sides, like the ultra cheddar-y mac and cheese, are nothing to scoff at either. Bonus: it’s categorized as a “garden fresh veggie,” so it must be.
What you're getting: Mac N Cheese (with bacon!)
Asante humbly lists the item as “Mac N Cheese” on the menu, but don’t be fooled- there’s bacon in there. And as they say, everything’s better with bacon, if by "they" you mean us.
What you're getting: Smoked Cheddar Mac ’N Cheese
This modern smokehouse takes its concept seriously: even the cheddar in its mac & cheese is smoked before it's served in a personal skillet, which means it crispy on top and gooey underneath. You won’t be mad at it.
What you're getting: House Mac-N-Cheese
Why have just one cheese in your mac when you can have four? SCK’s mac & cheese proves that more is... um more (but also better), a point further driven home by the option to add lobster.
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1. Wisteria471 N Highland Ave NE, Atlanta
2. Community Q BBQ1361 Clairmont Rd, Decatur
3. Fox Bros Bar-B-Q1238 Dekalb Ave NE, Atlanta
4. Heirloom Market BBQ2243 Akers Mill Rd, Atlanta
5. Busy Bee Cafe810 Martin Luther King Jr Dr SW, Atlanta
6. Asante250 Park Ave W NW, Atlanta
7. The Pig & The Pearl1380 Atlantic Drive Suite 14180, Atlanta
This Souther spot serves some of the best mac & cheese, and because it comes with braised greens you can totally count it as a serving of vegetables!
Deftly plating locally-sourced BBQ bites, Q's from two ATL natives who leverage their grilling experience (one was part-owner at Marietta's Sam & Dave's BBQ) to turn the Emory-area joint into a true neighborhood spot; that homey feel's accomplished by leaps and bounds with comforting classics like pulled pork and ribs.
An Atlanta institution serving up solid BBQ fare like pulled pork and beef brisket sandwiches, Frito pie, and burnt ends. We think that Fox Bros Bar-B-Q serves up some of the best BBQ in town, but you'll have to stop by and see for yourself.
From a duo originally repping TN and South Korea, Heirloom is a down-homey, natural-wood-surrounded 'cue house with Texas-sourced pecan, red oak, hickory & fruitwood ready to be tossed into two custom BBQ vaults where GA-farmed meats are slow-smoked. Get down with a variety of dinners & sandwiches (sliced brisket, stuffed turkey, baby back/St. Louis-style ribs...), sides like pork belly & Tabasco vinegar collards, grass-fed burgers, and smoked sausages including kielbasa, chaurice, and hot Italian.
Busy Bee Cafe serves traditional Southern eats. Their specialty is a 12 hour marinated masterpiece that draws fans from Macon to Marietta, and the only way to eat it is “smothered” in pan gravy. In the past year, Bernie Sanders and Killer Mike broke bread and fried chicken bones in political fellowship. Some would say BBC is “hot” again, but it’s had hot sauce ready for hungry guests and neighbors since icons of the Civil Rights Movement dined there for strategy sessions.
Prawns, conch, snapper, and scallops are all given a combination of Southern and Caribbean treatments. The chef will even give you the recipes if you ask nicely.
This Atlantic Station joint has BBQ, oysters and a large beer menu. They also fancy it up on occasion with things like chicken liver paté w/ cranberry preserve & brioche, a lobster & shrimp salad, and more.