Everywhere You Need to Eat in Atlanta Right Now
From Midtown, Buckhead, Old Fourth Ward or otherwise, the ATL has got you covered if you're searching for a bite to eat.
The diversity of Atlanta’s metropolitan area means there’s a bounty of culinary options to choose from—but that in itself makes it difficult to decide on exactly where to eat. This city is home to some great sushi spots, burger joints, BBQ restaurants, and so much more. If you’re stuck on where to go, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered. Whether you’re looking for a swanky ambience to impress your significant other, or just looking for a quaint spot with a dope menu and strong drinks, here are all the places you need to check out in Atlanta right now.
South City Kitchen
With various locations throughout the city, it’s something about the Midtown spot that brings a different energy. Nestled amidst a string of phenomenal restaurants, South City Kitchen has a menu filled with items such as She-Crab soup to a beautifully cut NY Strip. Their nationally known wine list features a bevy of selections from Reds, Whites and Sparkling. The Cabernet Sauvignon pairs well with their many seafood options, and the Pinot Noir is the perfect nightcap after an exciting evening. With the summer month in full effect, make sure to enjoy your meal at their exquisite outside patio.
This unique restaurant blends Southern and Asian influences. The ambience is amazing, and the food is even better. With its head chef Calvin Phan at the helm, Poor Calvin’s provides a culinary experience like no other place in Atlanta. For that perfect Asian-fusion dish, you can try their Lobster Crawfish Wontons, Hong Kong ribs, or the deviled eggs with Korean Beef; or you can pop up on the weekends for brunch to taste the establishment’s crab meat Grilled Cheese sandwich, or the Seafood Omelet accented with Japanese mayo. The innovative dishes and swanky atmosphere make this place the perfect hangout whether you’re with your friends, family, or that special someone.
Twisted Soul Cookhouse & Pours
If there is a place in Atlanta that serves everything—it would definitely be Twisted Soul Cookhouse & Pours. Seafood, steaks, pork chops, burgers, wings; you name it, they serve it. The house motto is “good simple food,” but that may be an understatement because the food is amazing. Aside from the menu, what makes this place really stand out is their huge list of alcohol. They’ve got bourbon, Scotch, rye, vodka, a nice selection of beer, and some signature cocktails like Down In Eve’s Bayou that will put you right where you need to be.
In what was a former train station, this establishment takes craft cocktails to the next level. But don’t stop there—Kimball House’s elegant menu exudes Southern culinary excellence, and the raw bar has a variety of oysters to choose from, so make sure to pull up to their Happy Hour during the week from 5 pm - 7 pm. Now back to the drinks—the Sazerac with rye and absinthe is a favorite with many customers, while the Golden Gate Sour is one of the best picks for any seasoned bourbon drinker.
When Tal Baum, founder of Oliva Restaurant Group (which includes Bellina Alimentari and Aziza), opened Atrium this winter she didn’t want to stick with just one cuisine. So Atrium has a range of globally inspired options found across the menu from the crudo section with standouts like fluke with grapefruit to the mains with scallops and farro risotto. If you sit in the parlor section of the restaurant there are 25 cocktails to choose from (but try the matcha colada).
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Maybe you know Todd Ginsburg for his Jewish deli food at The General Muir or maybe you know him for his barbecue at Wood’s Chapel. Well, now you can know him for his spin on Italian-American cuisine at Dirty Rascal, located on the ground floor of the recently opened Thompson Hotel. Think shareable classics with oomph—the garlic bread is really garlicky (in a good way!), the gorgonzola salad has roasted grapes and a tangy “Mom’s dressing,” and the ricotta tortellini is tender and creamy atop a bed of lamb bolognese. Don’t skip the tiramisu at the end and if you’re imbibing, opt for a spritz (and maybe an espresso martini).
Look, the brunch experience doesn’t have to be underwhelming. While people stand in line to eat a less than stellar biscuit at a well-known chain across the street from Gato, you can have your mind blown with exciting flavors found in the dishes at this Taiwanese-American pop-up that runs out of the kitchen on Saturday mornings. The setting is casual—grab a table inside or outside and order a feast, you won’t regret it. Fu-Mao Sun serves up comforting Taiwanese dishes like the fan tuan (rice ball) stuffed with a fried cruller, pork floss and pickles, the breakfast fried shrimp sandwich with scallion eggs, and at least two kinds of mochi doughnuts (flavors vary but on a recent visit they include matcha and pineapple). Drip coffee is available as is house-made sweet soy milk and cinnamon ginger milk tea.
Biggerstaff Brewing Company
Beer, delicious food, coffee—you can find it all at the recently opened Biggerstaff. The industrial space is polished up with a beautiful indoor seating area that feels outdoorsy when the weather is nice thanks to garage doors. Of course, you can actually sit outside, too, on their large patio with plenty of picnic tables and umbrellas. The food has been a smash so far thanks to delectable pub grub such as jumbo barbecue wings served with house-made ranch, crispy Brussels sprouts, and the loaded po’ boy with shrimp and calamari. On tap you’ll find a range of beers including a coffee pale ale and pilsner. Wine and cocktails are also available, and coffee is served all day beginning at 8 am.
Rodney Scott’s Barbecue
Rodney Scott is famous for his whole hog barbecue, and now Atlantans no longer need to jaunt to Charleston to get it. The fast-casual outpost brings all of his staples to Atlanta and a pretty dining room with big windows and blue accents to enjoy it in. When it comes to the food, pork is of course a great way to go here (as a sandwich or on a plate) but so are the spare ribs and even the fried catfish. Basically, just pick the protein that you're in the mood for and you’ll be pleased. But also, those sides. The macaroni and cheese are not to be missed and you definitely need hush puppies. The “tater truck” aka loaded baked potato is great, too.
Sinaloan-style grilled chicken paradise can be found in East Atlanta Village. The team behind the popular Supremo Taco opened this joint in December with counter service, indoor seating, and a large patio. Options are straightforward: Choose how much chicken you want (quarter, half, whole) and add your sides (guacamole and esquites are good options). All orders come with tortillas, rice, beans, and pico de gallo. Margaritas and horchata are on standby, too.
Le Bon Nosh
Glam interior design and delicious cafe fare is what you’ll find at Le Bon Nosh. The all-day cafe has pastries for a light breakfast (the perfectly layered croissant is a standout), sandwiches and salads for lunch (the lobster potato salad is a worthy splurge), and wood-fire grilled items for dinner. The idea here is to not feel like you’re in Atlanta but instead transported to an elegant dining room in Europe—mission accomplished.
The team behind Lazy Betty—Ron Hsu, Aaron Phillips, and Carl Van Tyle Gilbert—opened Juniper Cafe in West Midtown, and it’s like a breath of fresh air. The Vietnamese-inspired cafe serves pastries and a breakfast banh mi in the morning as well as lunch and dinner. Bright flavors and interesting textures abound in dishes like banh xeo, a coconut crepe with locally sourced shrimp and mushrooms, and the star fruit citrus salad that’s finished with toasted coconut, shallots, and garlic. There are also fruity house-made sodas that are very much mandatory ordering (especially the kumquat and yuzu soda which is very sweet-tart delicious). Sit in the Jewel-toned tinged dining room or grab a seat on the spacious covered patio.
Shay Lavi runs the kitchen at Nur where he creates bright and flavorful dishes like the roasted eggplant with tahini, chopped salad, and mango dressing. There are some classics, too, like falafel, hummus with various toppings, and kabobs. This isn’t the place to visit on a low-carb day as the pita is served fresh out of the brick oven and is undeniable.
Lucian Books and Wine
You can read a detailed background story on Lucian here, but just know that it is an expertly designed fusion of bistro, wine bar, and bookstore. It’s ideal for a date night, friend outing, or solo adventure—choose your vibe (and wine, of which there is plenty). The food is highly-executed bistro fare with standouts like the omelet with caviar and creme fraiche (it is melt-in-your-mouth good), fries with sorrel mayonnaise, and ricotta gnudi with beurre monté.
Chef Justin Dixon wants boring lunches to be a thing of the past. The pop-up chef set up shop in the Collective Food Hall within the Coda building. There, he makes sandwiches that go beyond basic like the "OG meatloaf melt” made with pork, beef, pimento cheese, bacon jam, and fancy greens. Don’t worry, vegetarians, he has you covered with sandwiches like the chickpea tikka masala salad with preserved tomatoes. Dixon also pop-ups up at events around town, so keep an eye out.