Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Atlanta Restaurants Figure into a Day or Night on Holiday Ice Rinks


Thinking ice skating over the holidays? Triple axels, Salchows and nose plants all work up a hunger game for something hot to nourish the soul, spirited hydration or a toasty night cap. Use your tactile-tipped gloves to tap these links leading to restaurants within easy gliding distance of ice skating rinks around Atlanta.

Legacy Restaurant Partners accommodates a variety of cravings, and its restaurants are only a few steps away from the Centennial Olympic Park ice skating rink in downtown's Luckie Marietta District. For that Alpen glow, visit Der Biergarten where you'll find hefty hot pretzels, plates or sharing platters of hearty German fare, warm apple strudel or German chocolate cake to go with coffee and the flow of German beer, wine and cocktails. Open for dinner weeknights and lunch through dinner and beyond on Saturday and Sunday. SkyLounge on the roof of the Glenn Hotel is the evening place to stargaze or scan a panoramic city view with mug or cocktail glass in hand. Start or cap the day on the rink with American comfort food for breakfast, lunch or dinner at Glenn's Kitchen located inside the Glenn Hotel. Skaters seeking more thrills can zoom into Game-X to test their prowess at more than 60 of the latest games, plus big burgers, sandwiches, appetizers and a full bar with craft beer and beverage offerings. Tantalizing aroma of Italian classics and coal oven-fired pizza beckon at Max's Coal Oven Pizzeria, which is open daily for lunch and dinner and offers half-price bottles of wine on Mondays. A few blocks away by street and 30 floors up atop the Hilton Atlanta, Nikolai's Roof reveals a stunning view for those enjoying appetizers and drinks or a brilliant dinner from the modern menu of American cuisine touched by Russian inspiration. Take advantage of the $39 prix fixe three-course menu Tuesday through Friday from 5:30-6:30 p.m. The restaurant serves dinner and drinks Tuesday through Saturday evenings; dinner reservations suggested. Those seeking a tropical vacation after their icy spins can sail into Trader Vic's Atlanta on the lower level of the Hilton Atlanta. Tastes of Polynesian and Asian flavors chase chills while potent tiki drinks and cocktails numb any bruises from spills. 

Lace up for Skate Atlantic Station's 10,000 square-foot open-air ice skating rink in a winter wonderland of lights and decorations. Go with the floe then thaw out over a deep steaming bowl of drunken noodles, pho noodle soup, Tin Drum curry, pad thai, Asian tacos and other Asian street and comfort foods at Tin Drum Asiacafé. Hot teas, a kids' menu and gluten-free options keep everyone warm and well fed. You smoked them on the ice now bite into succulent smoked ribs, meats and seafood, awesome 'cue sauces and Southern sides, raw bar oysters and sashimi at The Pig & The Pearl. Craft cocktails and beer and a well-priced wine menu are conversation icebreakers. Open for lunch and dinner daily. Select oysters are $1 each Monday-Thursday from 4-6 p.m. Sunday Funday brunch pours drink specials, and Sunday supper runs all day with three courses for $30. Is your egg nogging after spinning round and round the rink? Relax at laid-back Chick-a-Biddy where showing off your Skate Atlantic Station wristband from the day slices 10 percent off your meal tab (excluding alcohol). Open for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch. For more flights of fancy, refer to Chick-a-Biddy's 12 Days of Giving specials on our blog.

Brand-spanking-new Avalon in Alpharetta has turned their Plaza into an ice skating rink the size of NYC's Rockefeller Plaza rink. Twinkling lights, a gingerbread house and decorations cast a festive glow, and Santa is hunkered down in his workshop nearby to delight the youngsters. Shop Whole Foods Market for healthy snacks, bakery items and hot beverages, soups, pizza and other hot food items or pick out a take-home meal from their extensive prepared foods counter. Forget your ChapStick or lotion? Problem solved. Marlow's Tavern is perched by the Plaza fountain for people watching while munching on gourmet American tavern fare and enjoying a favorite hot, frosty or spirited beverage. Marlow's is open for lunch, dinner and well into the evening. One block south of the Plaza, Bantam + Biddy serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and offers vegetarian and gluten-free options plus a "Little Cluckers" menu for the kids. For the time crunched, family meals serving three to five people for $48 are a take-home option; call 678-248-5159. Ted's Montana Grill also is just a block south of the rink and definitely the place to go to beef or bison up with a big burger or steak after an ice skating workout. Ted's is open daily for lunch and dinner and offers a full bar for appetizers, desserts and libations.

History and elegance gleam at The St. Regis Atlanta where the Astor Holiday Ice Skating Rink pays homage to the distinguished Astor family, founders of the flagship St. Regis in New York back in 1904. Swizzles and twizzles amid the holiday lights and tunes guarantee a festive mood that segues nicely into dinner and drinks in Buckhead. Gypsy Kitchen and The Southern Gentleman offer two distinct dining personalities in Buckhead Atlanta. Gypsy Kitchen caravans the culinary miles of Spain, from Andalusia to the Basque regions joined by Moroccan and Indian influences from across the seas and modern-day Spanish flavors. A menu of snacks, small plates, cured meats and cheeses, appetizers, entrées and plates for the table are smooth post-rink options for date night or groups seeking a place to sit down for a communal dinner with wine, brews and craft cocktails. The Southern Gentleman proves you can use "ice" and "South" in the same sentence. This newly opened gastropub is Buckhead's destination for classic, barrel-aged Southern cocktails, a lengthy list of bourbons and rye whiskeys plus New World wines and craft brews. Supper guests will devour executive chef Randy Lewis' fresh spin on Southern classics. If frozen "pond" twirls set cravings toward sushi and Japanese fare, focus on sophisticated yet earthy Umi. Chef Fuyuhiko Ito's menu showcases sashimi, nigiri and specialty rolls and draws upon ocean-fresh seafood from the world's finest markets. Umi's diverse beverage list pleases those seeking anything from cocktails and crafts to artisan coffee. The restaurant serves dinner Monday-Saturday and is closed Sunday.

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