Friday, October 31, 2008

Sara in the City: The Pick Up Publix and Other "Hot" Food Joints

The Publix supermarket in my neighborhood is fondly known as the "Pick Up Publix." Located near Midtown, it's teeming with good looking people at all times. Go in after work, on a Sunday afternoon or on a Friday night wine run and you'll find attractive young professionals, adorable single moms and a handsome older fella or two. Even the cashiers' friendly smiles help with the attractive ambiance.

Although Forbes lists Atlanta as its number one city for singles, you can't count on finding love in the produce aisle. And you want to make sure your date has the same interests as you (food, food and more food). That's why I've composed this list of eateries frequented by interesting, attractive people that offer delish meals.

Fox and Hounds - Collier Road, MidtownFilled with handsome Georgia Tech students, this neighborhood haunt features classic British pub fare, a great deck, and 1/2 price food on Mondays. I suggest: $1 draft beer and $1 fish tacos on Sundays.

Tin Lizzies - Roswell Road, BuckheadFriday nights at Tin Lizzies bring out the best in Buckhead yuppies. Margaritas flow as the upwardly mobile flirt with one another. I suggest: BBQ Chicken Taco and Queso for a spicy night!

TAP - Peachtree Street, MidtownHotshot lawyers abound at this Midtown gastropub. Located on the ground level of 1180 Peachtree, home to King & Spalding, all three levels of this restaurant feature great food and attractive clientele. I suggest: Ordering a round of Numbers beer, made especially for TAP by our friends at Atlanta Brewing Co., and the fried pickles. Eat on the street level patio for great people watching.

Blind Willie's - N. Highland Avenue, VaHiCome for the soulful blues tunes, stay for the dancing, and leave tired and full! A perfect spot to mingle with a diverse crowd and have a taste of New Orleans. I suggest: The fried alligator.

The Chophouse - Turner Field, DowntownI know, I know. The Braves haven't been the best this year. But the drinks, burgers and view from (and around) the Chophouse are still more than satisfactory. Plan to take advantage of the cooler temps at the beginning of next season and cozy up with other Braves fans on the Chophouse deck. I suggest: A Georgia Dog, Turner Field's take on the traditional ballpark hotdog.

The Treehouse - Peachtree Hills Ave., BuckheadNestled in a quaint neighborhood, this great bistro is a regular stop for after work cocktails. The fun atmosphere and outdoor seating lends itself to socializing and meeting new (and cute) people. I suggest: Treehouse pizza and fresh spinach salad.

Taco Mac - Locations throughout the Metro areaTaco Mac is one of my favorite places for wings and sports in Atlanta and the Lindbergh Station location does not disappoint. Monday night football blares on the big screens and good looking fans of all ages gather to cheer on their favorite team. I suggest: Horseradish Chicken Wrap or the traditional Taco Mac buffalo wings.

Atlanta Dish Gets a New Look!

Time for a revamp of your favorite blog! Atlanta Dish has gone through minor renovations to stay up-to-date and looking fresh. We hope you enjoy the updated logo and look as much as we do!

Get Out of the Office... and Go Out for Lunch!

Popular lunch destinations off the beaten path may be the best places to grab some food on your lunch break! Eclipse di Luna, located in Miami Circle right off of Piedmont, offers sensational lunch options that may have you branching out from your usual hot spots! Eclipse di Luna is well known with the locals for their specialty tapas, live music, and an artsy, laid-back atmosphere. The menu is packed with a wide alternative of options from tapas ($2.25 to $5.95) as well as Spanish paella ($14.50 or $20). Eclipse di Luna is open for lunch Tuesday through Saturday at 11:30 a.m. offering a great way to enjoy yourself and relax during your lunch hour.

Portofino, a neighborhood Italian restaurant located off of East Paces Ferry Road is a great place for a casual, yet delicious lunch. Executive Chef Marty Eberly is always busy cooking up a lunch menu that is sure not to disappoint! Portofino is open for lunch 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. So head out on your next break, you'll never pack lunch again!

Eclipse di Luna – Miami Circle: 764 Miami Circle; 404-846-0449. Also Eclipse di Luna – Park Place: 4505 Ashford-Dunwoody Road in Dunwoody; 678-205-LUNA.

Portofino: 3199 Paces Ferry Place; 404-231-1136.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Times, They Are A Changin’ . . .Morton’s The Steakhouse And Woodfire Grill Are Extending Hours

For some reason, my body doesn’t adjust well to the new time when the clock goes forward in the spring. When the time changes in the fall, however, it feels like I just won the clock lottery, a “cloctery,” if you will. This year, I got a little preview on my cloctery feeling when some of my favorite spots made time changes of their own.

Morton’s The Steakhouse, usually a dinner only spot, is adding special 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. lunch hours on December 11, 12, 18 and 19 at both Atlanta locations. Go for the amazing steak, stay for the delectable carrot cake.

Morton’s The Steakhouse-Buckhead: Peachtree Lenox Building, 3379 Peachtree Road, NE; 404-816-6535.

Morton’s The Steakhouse-Downtown: SunTrust Plaza Building, 303 Peachtree Center Avenue; 404-577-4366.

Woodfire Grill, Atlanta’s favorite farm-to-table restaurant, added another day and an extra half hour to dinner time. Does that mean that, although I just celebrated my birthday, I am actually getting younger since I have more time to enjoy fresh favorites, like local sweet corn soup ($8)? Wishful thinking, perhaps... Anyway, starting November 3, the Midtown restaurant will be open for dinner Monday through Saturday, and doors will open a half hour earlier at 5:30 p.m. instead of 6 p.m.

Woodfire Grill: 1782 Cheshire Bridge Road; 404-347-9055.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Don't Forget to Vote .... for Dogwood!

We know there's another election going on, but this one doesn't require hours standing in line! We're casting our vote for Dogwood restaurant in the Atlanta Downtown Design Excellence Competition. But don't wait til the last minute. This is the last week to vote for your favorites in Atlanta architecture and design. Winners in the five contested categories will be announced November 6. Check out the videos of each nominee and cast your ballot today!

Halloween Haunts

Don't have plans for Halloween yet? We've got the scoop on hot Halloween par-tays no matter whether you are OTP or ITP!

Alpharetta, Vinings, Midtown, Kennesaw and Tucker are covered at Marlow's Tavern. $5 creepy cocktails, monster mashing music and CASH prizes for cool costumes sound frightfully fun.

Roswell residents get to trick or treat for a good cause. Aqua blue’s 6th Annual Aqua Boo benefits the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Fill up on thrilling half-price appetizers and chilling $5 cocktails all day long! Have a ghoulishly good time with DJ dance music from 9 p.m. on, dance contests, horror movie trivia and door prizes.

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

DailyCandy Definition

Steer clear of the valet posse and park it yourself makes you a candidate for self-valetdation. In this health-conscious era that’s not a sin, according to The DailyCandy Lexicon, and you can even work off those calories before you begin chewing!

Self-valetdation: n. Every now and then, when one parks on one’s own, just to get away from it all.

Celebrate National Chocolate Day at Morton's The Steakhouse

Who knew that there were actually two fabulous holidays this week? Not only do we have an excuse to dress up in ridiculous outfits for Halloween, but we can also divulge in as much chocolate as we want to celebrate National Chocolate Day today! How else are we supposed to celebrate this special occasion? It is our duty to consume as much chocolate as possible and Morton's The Steakhouse has the perfect dish to do just that. Tonight, spoon into their chocolate mousse dessert, laden with semi-sweet Belgian dark chocolate.

In honor of this day, the restaurant is also sharing its recipe (no one will tell if you eat two helpings).

Chocolate Mousse - Serves 8
3 cups heavy cream
2 ounces semi-sweet dark chocolate, preferably Belgian
3 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa
1 cup egg whites
¼ tsp. cream of tartar
¼ tsp. salt
½ cup sugar

Bring half the heavy cream to a boil in a saucepan. Place the chopped chocolate and cocoa powder in a medium mixing bowl and pour the boiling cream over the chocolate. Let the chocolate, cocoa and cream sit for one minute, then whisk together with a wire whisk until blended. Be sure any large balls of cocoa have been broken up. Set aside.

When chocolate's temperature has come down to 80ºF, beat the egg whites on high speed in a chilled mixer for approximately 10 seconds until they begin to foam.

Add the cream of tartar and salt to the egg whites; beat for approximately one additional minute, until soft peaks form.

Sprinkle in sugar, continuing to beat until stiff, but not dry, for another minute. The whites should make a "wop, wop, wop" sound in the mixing bowl and be very stiff.

Check temperature of the chocolate again to be sure it has come down to 80ºF; fold in the beaten egg white mixture.

Add remaining heavy cream to chilled mixing bowl. Whip on high speed until soft peaks form, approximately two minutes. Fold the whipped cream into the chocolate - egg white mixture.
Cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight or at least four hours.

Using a pastry bag with a star tip, pipe six ounces of mousse in individual serving dishes and top with fresh whipped cream.

Morton's The Steakhouse-Buckhead: Peachtree Lenox Building, 3379 Peachtree Road, NE; 404-816-6535.
Morton's The Steakhouse-Downtown: SunTrust Plaza Building, 303 Peachtree Center Avenue; 404-577-4366.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Save 20% At Fifth Group Restaurants When You Purchase Camp Twin Lakes Partners Card

Atlanta Dish readers, Camp Twin Lakes is keeping their online Partners Card store open one more day just for you! Tomorrow is the last day to purchase Camp Twin Lakes Partners Cards online. This card gets buyers 20 percent off at more than 500 shops and restaurants! Click here before midnight on Tuesday, October 28 to purchase your Camp Twin Lakes Partners Card online. Granted, you won’t turn into a pumpkin if you fail to do so, but you will miss out on 20 percent savings at more than 500 Atlanta shops and restaurants from November 1-9, 2008! Use your card at participating Fifth Group Restaurants®: South City Kitchen® Midtown, South City Kitchen® Vinings, Ecco and La Tavola Trattoria. The card costs $60 – a mere pittance compared to the savings you’ll enjoy and the inner glow of knowing your $60 will help brighten many young lives. Camp Twin Lakes, a nonprofit organization accredited by the American Camp Association, offers year-round recreational, therapeutic and educational programs for children and young adults facing serious illnesses and other physical, emotional and life challenges.