Honestly, there are restaurants in the Central Food Hall that could try a lot harder. There are shops upstairs selling lots of things nobody’s asking for. A store called Higher Standards sells everything that goes with weed, with the exception of actual weed. Hell, there’s even a Williams-Sonoma, which is interesting, to say the least, to have just a short walk from a subsidized housing community. It’s one thing to talk about income inequality in America; it’s another to see it so starkly.
But consider this: Less than 10 years ago, visitors to Atlanta were likely to end up at Lenox Mall, World of Coca-Cola, The Varsity, Underground Atlanta, or just “Buckhead,” if left to the wrong sources of information. Now they have Ponce City Market. It’s got some great places to eat, drink, work, shop, and hang, and the building itself is a slice of our history.
However you feel about “old Atlanta” vs. “new Atlanta,” and whether you’re a fan of Ponce City Market, a holdout, or something between, there may be no place that more clearly exemplifies this dynamic and that confusing, frustrating, and necessary change in Atlanta culture. So yes, you should definitely go to Ponce City Market, because there’s a lot more going right than wrong.
Just make sure you head across the street to Eats, where you can still taste "old Atlanta" at its best.