A few weekends ago, I headed down to the A (that'd be Atlanta for you non-rap-listening folk) to visit A and her fiance D! It was my first time visiting Atlanta so we had a lot planned out- and by that I clearly mean FOOD. Here's a brief photo recap of some of the stuff we ate, starting with the savory foods!
Thursday night we hit up the Varsity directly after A and D picked me up from the airport, woo. I've seen this place on tv a bunch of times before, it's clearly a city institution! Being that it was around 10pm on a Thursday night, it wasn't crowded at all, which was good because I was worried it was going to be the total clusterf*ck that they always show on tv about it, haha.
I got a burger and side of fries - I wanted to go with a somewhat basic order for my first time there.
A & D split two chili cheese dogs and onion rings. I tried one of the onion rings, which had a nice full coating of batter and pretty good, considering I don't really like onion rings, haha.
On Friday for lunch A took me to Antico Pizza Napoletana, one of her favorite local spots. Right before I visited, Antico had won an international pizza award, which was pretty cool. As you can see, they definitely don't skimp on fresh ingredients here! The pizza was delicious- nice chewy dough (but not tough), piles of fresh ingredients, and a fun, low-key atmosphere- we literally ate in the kitchen, haha. I'm so glad I got to try this pizza, it was fantastic!
For dinner Friday night we hit up Flip Burger Boutique, which totally brought out the Top Chef fan-dork in me. Richard Blais, one of my favorite Top Chef competitors, owns Flip Burger Boutique, so clearly I was jazzzzzzzzed about going, haha. The place itself is v. sleek and modern, with a lot of "flipped" design influences in the dining room.
There were so many fantastic-sounding menu items, but I went with the Burger of the Day, which was the Pork Steam Bun: Char siu glazed pork belly, tamarind mayo, cabbage, bean sprout, pickled carrots and ginger on an Asian steam bun.
This was SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO x 1023984729387473243823434 GOOD. All of the components worked really well together, and the pork belly burger was super duper delicious. I am drooling right now writing about it, no joke. Since it was my first time there, I also got the Krispy Kreme shake, which I was told includes TWO Krispy Kreme doughnuts blended into the shake. So so bad, so so good, haha! I've heard rumors that Chef Blais is looking at DC as a possible market for another Flip, and if that's true- between Flip and Shake Shack, you know I'd be ALL OVER THAT.
On Saturday night, A and I tried out JCT Kitchen, based on its general good reviews plus a spot on the Food Network's "The Best Thing I Ever Ate" for their Angry Mussels appetizer.
We started with a watermelon + vodka-based cocktail, super summery and refreshing.
And here we have the Angry Mussels - Mussels with peppered bacon, serrano chile, and onion, with some crusty grilled bread on the side. They weren't "burn your tongue off" spicy but had a nice noticable kick to it. We ate these pretty quickly, mainly because the sauce was so so so good, we mopped up pretty much all of it.
We also split an order of the Pork Belly Sliders appetizer - pork belly, house pickles, and vanilla bean apple butter. The pork belly melted in your mouth and the pickles were a great accompanyment to cut through the richness.
For our entree, we split an order of the JCT fried chicken - let's just say the "limited...come early!" note on the menu was enough for us to order it, since we were practically the first ones in the dining room, haha. It's a little blurry, but as you can see the yummy fried chicken, garlicky green beans on one plate...
...and this SERIOUS mac n' cheese in another bowl. All three items were delicious and we had absolutely no complaints. The chicken was juicy, crisp on the outside, and really tasty. The beans had a nice snap to them still with a powerful garlicky flavor. And the mac n' cheese was smooth, creamy, and perfectly cooked pasta to boot. All in all a fantastic dinner!
Finally, for Sunday brunch before I left Atlanta, we went to Highland Bakery. A really likes the Peanut Butter French Toast, but neither of us were that hungry to even try to tackle that monster of a meal, haha. Instead, I opted for a sweet potato biscuit to start, which had a nice sweet (honey?) top and fluffy inside.
A got the Hummus sandwich- hummus spread on grilled sourdough, served with sharp cheddar cheese, tomatoes, spring mix, sprouts, red onion and balsamic vinaigrette, with a side of breakfast potatoes. This sandwich had a nice balance of ingredients, and the bread held up well to the hummus (which normally can make sandwich bread wet and soggy).
I got the Cilantro Corn pancakes- served over black beans and topped with 2 fried eggs, sour cream,salsa, shredded cheese, and cilantro. Ok so maybe this wasn't exactly "light eating" compared to the Peanut Butter French Toast, but I liked the idea of a savory pancake so I wanted to give it a try. This was great, but I would've asked for it without the black beans- it was too much for me to eat to begin with, but the black beans also made the pancakes much more soggy which wasn't great after awhile.
So, as you can see, I definitely wasn't joking about our eating agenda during my visit. It was great seeing A and D, a new-to-me city, and all these fantastic restaurants! Thanks again A and D for having me stay with you!!