Saturday, December 13, 2014

Appetizing Aperture

Precious in taste and price, the Barrel of Jewels cocktail at Article 14 might be "Atlanta's Most Expensive Cocktail" at $99. Lift a crystal whiskey glass to your lips and sip the power of Louis XIII Cognac, Lock, Stock & Barrel straight rye whiskey, Carpano Antica Formula sweet vermouth, St Germain and bitters. You keep the gem of a memory. Article 14 keeps the crystal. 

Friday, December 12, 2014


Chris and Andrew were a couple of guys responding to friends' queries for dining suggestions in big cities like Chicago, Denver and San Fran. Their friends trusted them for good leads and good eats. Pressure. Flash forward and these gents have an app, a website and 149k Instagram followers on The Infatuation ( All because someone wanted to know where to go for dinner. 

Check Our List Twice -- Once for Christmas, Once for New Year’s Cheer at Atlanta Restaurants

Cue the lights, Christmas music and fireworks. With Christmas and New Year’s Eve approaching at a rapid rate, Atlanta-area restaurants are preparing to bring the holiday cheer with specials and events galore to celebrate the arrival of Saint Nick and 2015. Reservations will fill up fast, so be sure to call the numbers below for more information and to reserve your spot.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day:

  • Indulge in everyone’s Yuletide favorites at Atkins Park Restaurant & Bar in Virginia-Highland for Christmas Day dinner beginning at 6 p.m. Pricing is $28 for adults, $18 for young adults and $10 for children under 10, and tax and gratuity are not included. Menu highlights include a Big Green Egg smoked turkey breast with caramelized apple and sage stuffing, and classics such as green bean casserole, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, cranberry Gran Marnier compote and sweet potato biscuits. Finish it off with a sweet slice of pumpkin cheesecake or Southern pecan pie. Wine pairings are also available to put the cherry on top of the perfect holiday meal. Prefer to bring Christmas dinner home? The carry-out option is $175 for a dinner serving six-eight people and includes an oven-ready turkey, gravy and delicious dressing, potato and casserole sides. There is also a turkey-only option for $70. The 12-pound turkey comes roasted, smoked or fried and is in the pan ready to re-heat. Orders must be placed by December 21 and picked up by December 24 at 6 p.m. 404-876-7249;
New Year's Eve and New Year's Day:

  • Both 10th & Piedmont (404-602-5510) and G’s Midtown (404-872-8012) will celebrate New Year’s Eve from 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. Guests can choose from the regular selection or a special menu for $45 per person. Highlights include smoked salmon mousse cups, mini crab cake bites, scallops and caviar, lobster tails, roasted lamb loin, Napa Valley cheesecake and carrot cake. The first course includes a glass of Champagne. Munch on brunch at both restaurants on New Year's Day from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.;
  • Buckhead restaurant Aria is celebrating New Year’s Eve with a $95 per person four-course meal. The second, third and fourth courses give diners the choice of meal option. 404-233-7673;
  • Once Christmas 2014 is in the books, head to Atkins Park Restaurant & Bar in Virginia-Highland on New Year's Eve for several treats, such as shredded confit duck leg ($12), pan-roasted halibut ($24) or smoked prime rib ($26). On New Year's Day, a $12 brunch featuring roasted pork loin with hoppin' John, braised local greens and cornbread will be served starting at 11 a.m. 404-876-7249;
  • Join Bantam + Biddy for New Year’s Day fun. For just $25 on January 1, the restaurant is serving up honey-glazed ham, stewed black-eyed peas, braised collard greens, cornbread and country gravy, and sweet potato pie or carrot cake. Breakfast, including $4 Bloody Marys and mimosas, is served until 3 p.m., but this featured menu is only available while supplies last. All locations are participating;
  • Chick-a-Biddy will begin the first day of 2015 serving brunch. From 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. on January 1, guests can enjoy classic brunch items such as fried chicken and waffles with honey butter and maple syrup, almond pancakes with ginger apples and maple syrup, and The Southern, including three JB Farm eggs, grits and black pepper bacon, pimento cheese and toast. 404-588-1888;
  • Keven Gillespie is ready to launch 2015 with a New Year's Eve seven-course tasting menu at Gunshow. The price is $125 per person seven beverage pairings available for an additional $65. 404-380-1886;
  • Gypsy Kitchen celebrates its first New Year’s Eve with a featured dinner menu for $75 per person. Highlights include NYE Spanish toast, chicken croquetas and a shrimp duo of garlic shrimp and crispy Kataifi-wrapped shrimp. For the entrée, guests will choose among Rioja-braised short ribs, a Catalan-style seafood stew or veggie paella fried rice. 404-939-9840;
  • HOBNOB is open for dinner New Year's Eve and is offering a special menu in addition to its regular fare. A late-night party kicks off at 10:30 p.m. and includes all-you-can-eat pizzas, beer and Champagne. Tickets are $25 in advance here; $35 tickets at the door. James Patrick Morgan will play the tunes until 12:30 a.m. Festivities include a balloon drop, party favors and a Champagne toast. HOBNOB will also serve New Year’s Day brunch. 404-968-2288;
  • Toast the New Year from the top of the Hilton Atlanta at Nikolai’s Roof. For $110 per person, diners enjoy an elegant menu including roasted diver scallop, rye crusted halibut and seared beef tenderloin, with the option to include a four- or five-glass wine pairing for additional purchase. 404-221-6362;
  • The Pig and the Pearl is offering both their regular menu and a special menu for a New Year’s Eve celebration to remember. For $50 a person, indulge in four courses and bubbly with dessert. Menu items include oysters, smoked prawn and octopus, coffee-rubbed lamb ribs and flourless tuxedo chocolate cake. 404-541-0930;
  • Ring in the New Year with Ray’s. All Ray’s Restaurants locations will be open on New Year’s Eve from 5 p.m.-11 p.m. serving a prix fixe dinner menu. The bars stay open until 1 a.m. Festivities at Ray’s on the River take place in the Grand Pavilion from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. at the Riverside New Year’s Eve Celebration. For $135 per person (plus tax and gratuity), attendees will enjoy a premium open bar, live music and dancing, an all-you-can-eat buffet with live action stations, a balloon drop and Champagne toast at midnight. Parties of 10 or more purchasing tickets by December 15 receive 10% off. 770-955-1187;
  • The Shed celebrates New Year’s Eve with a four-course prix fixe meal with bubbly and a toast at midnight. Menu items include tuna tartare, pumpkin ravioli, hot smoked salmon, saffron risotto and vanilla crème brulee. 404-835-4363;
  • At Trader Vic’s, New Year's Eve dinner is accompanied by live music from Bogey and the Viceroy Quartet from 9 p.m. - 1 a.m. The special menu, available for $60 per person, starts with Thai pepper shrimp, followed by Trader’s crumbled goat cheese salad and smoked Maple Leaf duck breast or Asian stir fry beef. The grand finale is coconut and cardamom pudding. 404-221-6339;

Gunshow Open for Special Holiday Hours

Gunshow normally rests on Sunday and Monday nights, but there's no winter's nap on the calendar for the Glenwood Park restaurant during the week between Christmas and New Year's Eve. Holiday excitement and creativity are in the air, sparking the team to throw closure to the wind and remain open for normal dinner service hours of 6-9 p.m. every night from Friday, December 26 through Tuesday, December 30. Reservations are encouraged and can be made by clicking here or calling the restaurant at 404-380-1886.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

FLIP Burger and LUV4wrd Partner to Help Atlanta Homeless

Flip a picture of something you "luv" into a way to keep Atlanta's homeless men, women and children warm this winter.FLIP burger boutique is sponsoring LUV4wrd, a new, free social- and cause-inspired mobile app platform where you post things you "luv" to support causes you love. Start by downloading the app -- remember, it's free -- from iPhone's iTunes App Store or GooglePlay for Android phone users, then post a photo or video you "LUV." For each post, FLIP will send a 50 cent donation to Mercy Care for their #LUV4HomelessATL campaign. Mercy Care operates Atlanta's only Health Care for the Homeless program and will use funds raised through LUV4wrd to provide winter coats, hats, gloves and socks to the estimated 7,000 homeless men, women and children living in Atlanta. For instance, you might "LUV" your December bison burger at FLIP. Post, share the LUV and warm up someone's day.

Cold Weather "Forkcast" Nips 20% off at 10th & Piedmont, G's Midtown and HOBNOB

Chilly Willies and Wilmas, here's a toasty, tasty thought to ponder while shaving fuzz balls off those sweaters: Communitas Hospitality restaurants will cut 20 percent off your entire dinner check when Atlanta's outdoor temperature falls below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. To take advantage of this cold weather proposition, mention "The Forkcast" at Midtown restaurants10th & PiedmontG's Midtown or HOBNOB any day our fair city's mercury drops as stipulated. Cold hard truth, "The Forkcast" cannot be combined with any other offer.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Nikolaustag and A Very Merry Christmas Party this Week at Der Biergarten

Trimmed out with 9,984 ornaments, 72 nutcrackers, 48 stockings and 26 Christmas trees, the Nikolaustag Holiday Celebration at Der Biergarten radiates as much spirit and joy as St. Nick himself. There'll be no silent night on Thursday, December 11 from 5-9 p.m. as holly jollying flows through $8 liters of draft Krombacher pilsner and Warsteiner Dunkel, and $5 mugs of warm Glühwein set faces aglow. With music, entertainment, games, giveaways and a Santa sighting, Der Biergarten will be rockin' like Santa coming down the chimney. What to bring: yourself, friends and a toy donation for the Lift Up Atlanta toy drive.

Families and midday revelers, A Very Merry Christmas Party at Der Biergarten calls your names on Saturday, December 13 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. All decked out for the holidays, Atlanta's authentic German restaurant and beer garden lines up fun for all ages: hot chocolate, cookie decorating, a Santa letter-writing station, games and pictures with Santa from noon-2 p.m. Stop at your favorite store on the way downtown and pick out a toy to contribute to the Lift Up Atlanta toy drive.

You'll FLIP Over this Bison Burger

The turkey lurking leftovers are kaput, and we're moving on to something thick with a little kick and appropriately jacketed in a toasty bun. The bison burger, FLIP burger boutique's December burger of the month, grazes our radar. FLIP adorns its tender, juicy bison patty Southwest-style with pepper Jack cheese, cilantro-lime mayo and two onion rings stacked to contain bison chili and seasoned sour cream. A perky cilantro sprig doubles as holiday greenery. Feliz Navidad, y'all. 

10th & Piedmont and G's Midtown's Birthday Celebration is TONIGHT!

10th & Piedmont and G's Midtown are celebrating their birthdays by gifting guests half off the price of any dinner food items today, December 10. G's Midtown is marking its first year, and 10th & Piedmont clocks in with year number two. Both restaurants are extending the half-price favor over the 5-10 p.m. dinner hours as a way of saying thank you to friends who have shared the year of meals, spirits and merrymaking in Midtown. G's Midtown karaoke night mic provides more entertainment from 10 p.m.-2 a.m. for those who want to keep the revelry going into the wee hours.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Twelve Days of Biddy, $99 Barrel of Jewels Cocktail at Article 14 and More in This Week's Dish!

We're already super excited for the holiday season, but the good folks at Bantam + Biddy and Chick-a-Biddy are about to make the days leading up to Christmas even better. Bantam + Biddy will be offering 12 days full of deals and delights starting on Saturday, December 13, while Chick-a-Biddy brings the cheer to Atlanta Station with their own 12 Days of Giving campaign starting on the same day. Meanwhile in Midtown, the team at Article 14 has concocted a luxurious new cocktail perfect for a memorable holiday toast. Sip on a Barrel of Jewels featuring Louis XIII Cognac, Lock, Stock & Barrel straight rye whiskey, Carpano Antica Formula sweet vermouth, St Germain and bitters for $99. All that and much more in this week's Dish!

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.

Monday, December 8, 2014

12 Days of Giving Takes Flight at Chick-a-Biddy

Atlantic Station customers are sure to have their spirits warmed this holiday season as Chick-a-Biddy owners Shaun Doty and Lance Gummere spread Christmas cheer and generosity during their annual 12 Days of Giving. Between Saturday, December 13 and Wednesday, December 24, the fast-casual, family-friendly eatery known for its farm-fresh chicken and sides invites customers to countdown the days to Christmas with daily treats, deals and events, from a chance to win 50 percent off your meal to a $25 gift card. Offers include:
  • Saturday, December 13: Free Rice Krispies treat with any purchase
  • Sunday, December 14: Every person at the table receives a 10 percent off coupon to use on next visit
  • Monday, December 15: Free bowl of chili with the purchase of an entree
  • Tuesday, December 16: $5 off gift card per person with the purchase of an entrée
  • Wednesday, December 17: $6 chicken and cheddar waffles
  • Thursday, December 18: Kids 10 and younger eat free all day with a canned food donation for the Atlanta Community Food Bank. Free meal from the kids’ menu only.
  • Friday, December 19: Half-priced appetizers all day
  • Saturday, December 20: Free cheddar biscuit and jam with each entrée purchase, during brunch only
  • Sunday, December 21: Free glass of apple zing
  • Monday, December 22: Flip a coin after your meal for a chance to receive 50 percent off the food bill
  • Tuesday, December 23: Half-priced chicken wings 
  • Wednesday, December 24: $25 gift card, winner selected at random from business cards received. Restaurant closes at 3 p.m.

On the First Day of Christmas, Your True Love is Just Getting Started at Bantam + Biddy

“12 Days of Christmas” returns to roost at Bantam + Biddy this year, offering 12 days of generous gifts from community-loving owners Shaun Doty and Lance Gummere. Between Saturday, December 13 and Wednesday, December 24, the casual, family-friendly eatery entertains customers with a different treat, deal or event to enjoy daily. While there are no guaranteed sightings of 10 lords-a-leaping or nine ladies dancing, Bantam + Biddy is most certainly promising a spirited holiday celebration with the following 12 festive specials:
  • Saturday, December 13: Free slice of German Black Forest cake with a pork schnitzel purchase
  • Sunday, December 14: Free cookie with purchase of an entrée 
  • Monday, December 15: Flip a coin after your meal for a chance to receive 50 percent off the food bill 
  • Tuesday, December 16: Free Christmas Rice Krispies treat with any purchase
  • Wednesday, December 17: Vegas steak night featuring $6 steaks and baked potato (while supplies last)
  •  Thursday, December 18: Kids 10 and younger eat free all day with a canned food donation for the Atlanta Community Food Bank. Free meal from the kids’ menu only
  • Friday, December 19: Half-priced wings all day
  • Saturday, December 20: Free soup of the day with $10 purchase
  • Sunday, December 21: Half-priced appetizers all day
  • Monday, December 22: $2 slider night and Atlanta Community Food Bank Charity Night
  • Tuesday, December 23: Receive a six-pack of Jb Farm Fresh Eggs with a $25 purchase
  • Wednesday, December 24: Free hot chocolate, no purchase necessary. Ansley and Crescent locations closing at 3 p.m. and Avalon and Lenox location closing same times as respective shopping centers.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

What's New on Pinterest

Seeing spirits? What in the Dickens? You must be reading our Seasonal Spirits Pinterest board. Cranberry and rosemary white Christmas sangria, apple cider Moscow mules, a winter sun cocktail, hot cocktails and mulled wine -- these strong spirits from the past and present are destined to become your signature sippers during the holiday social season and well into the future. Of course, if your name is Ebenezer, it's a whole different story.