Atlanta Bites I

For K’s 40th birthday (back in March) I surprised him with a trip to Atlanta, specifically to eat at our Top Chef fave Kevin Gillespie’s restaurant the Woodfire Grill, but also for a bunch of other Atlanta-related fun. It took until Labor Day weekend for us to get there, but last weekend we were Atlanta-bound!

For lunch our first day in town, we hiked to The Varsity — the world’s largest drive-in restaurant. We walked into the massive, Art Deco restaurant, ordered at the expansive counter (they really do ask, “What’ll ya have?”) and in a hurry we had our basic and retro yummy lunch. K had two “hot dogs” (hot dogs with chili and mustard) and “strings” (an order of fries) and I had two “naked dogs” (just what they sound like, hot dogs with nuthin’ on them) and “ring one” (an order of onion rings).

  It was fast food good and the onion rings were definitely keepers! K said that while the chili and mustard together were unusual, they worked. I took his word for it and enjoyed my childhood memory lunch of hot dogs in white buns. It was a good thing we were doing a lot of walking.

In keeping with the “back to basics” theme for the day, we went to Flip Burger Boutique that evening. Faux-hawked Top Chef alum Richard Blais consulted on the menu and one of their burgers was on K’s big birthday list of deliciousness.

They don’t take reservations and it was a Friday night, but despite the full tables and buzzing atmosphere it only took about 10 minutes for us to get a table. We have a soft spot for strawberry basil mojitos and they had them on the drinks menu so K ordered one and I was intrigued by the ginger margarita. We agreed that the S/B mojito at the Palmer House (that originally started our obsession) was better, but that Flip Burger’s was pretty darn good. I lurrrved the ginger margarita, but wished for just a little bit more spicy ginger as promised. K flipped (get it!?! Okay, I’ll quit) over the confit duck nuggets with blood orange chili sauce and they were soo fabulous — hot, fried, dark and juicy with tangy citrus and the chili kick. Take *that* chicken nuggets!

Confit Duck Nuggets

K got the osso buco burger with braised veal and crispy fried onions and it was meaty rich delicious. I ordered the lobster roll “burger” with green goddess dressing, but the server came back with the saddest news …  they weren’t serving it because the lobster wasn’t up to their standards. However, I asked if they could do the same burger with shrimp instead, they said no problem and I enjoyed a sprightly, fresh, light, sweet shrimpy delight.

And what is a day of burgers and dogs without a shake? K is not big on lactose so he enjoyed another mojito, but I went with the adults only Patron XO shake with mocha flavored tequila, vanilla ice cream, caramel and whipped cream. My only regret is that it was not bigger and that I couldn’t reach the bottom of the glass with my tongue.
Incidentally, our hotel (the Artmore Hotel) had a devastatingly lovely courtyard with a fountain, fire pit and comfy sofas where we enjoyed several warm evenings kicking up our feet and sipping drinks from the bar.
Next up: The Woodfire Grill, we eat our weight in fried chicken at Pittypat’s Porch and Pied au Cochon can suck it!  

One thought on “Atlanta Bites I

  1. 40? Really? Never would’ve guessed. After reading this, I asked Dale how old he thought he was and he guessed 29 and then 33. Oops. Guess I should be commenting on all of your fine, delicious sounding meals you’re making. 🙂

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