Varuni Napoli, Atlanta GA

My friend Mike, who lives in Florida and writes the very good food blog Sweet Tea & Bourbon, was finally in Atlanta at a time when it was convenient for us to meet. We’d missed each other a time or three before. On one instance, he rang to see whether I wanted to do lunch about an hour after my daughter had her wisdom teeth pulled. I looked at the poor kid, sacked out on the couch with her mouth full of cotton, doped so high on painkillers that she couldn’t count beyond her fingers without falling asleep, and decided that while I might not be the best parent in town, at least I knew that it would be wrong to drive to Buford Highway for some Sichuan cooking with my kid in that state. Continue reading “Varuni Napoli, Atlanta GA”


Tap, Atlanta GA

I was recently invited to join some other bloggers and media types for a preview dinner of Chef David Connolly’s autumn menu at Tap, the popular gastropub in the King & Spalding building on Peachtree and 14th Street in midtown. If you’re familiar with Article 14, one of our favorite restaurants in that area, Tap is in the same building, but on the other side, with a separate lane for valet parking. It’s a very nice two story space with lots of stairs if you’d like to go up to the somewhat quieter area above the noise and activity of the main floor. Continue reading “Tap, Atlanta GA”

10th & Piedmont, Atlanta GA

Last week, Marie and I were invited to 10th & Piedmont to meet Executive Chef Javier Rivera sample some of this two year-old restaurant’s popular menu items. It’s in a really lovely space on the corner of… well, you know… in the former home of a bookstore, OutWrite. It’s more than just a restaurant; every other Wednesday evening, they open the huge windows and move some of the tables around for a painting class! Co-owner Gilbert Yeremyan was there to talk with us as well, His company, Communitas Hospitality, also owns two sister restaurants in midtown: Hobnob, which is on the corner of Monroe and Piedmont, and G’s, which is in the space next door. Continue reading “10th & Piedmont, Atlanta GA”

Saltwood, Atlanta GA

A few weeks ago, Marie and I were invited to visit Saltwood, a new restaurant in the Loews Atlanta hotel in midtown. It opened in early April, replacing a popular lunch place called Eleven, and it’s led by Executive Chef Olivier Gaupin and Sous Chef Chris Español, who stopped by to say hello and tell us a bit about the menu. The concept here is small plates and charcuterie, with local meats, cheeses, and seasonal vegetables. Marie and I had a pretty good time. Continue reading “Saltwood, Atlanta GA”

The Garden at Community Smith, Atlanta GA

You may have noticed that we’re more likely to visit and write about a fifty year-old barbecue shack a hundred miles from anywhere than we are to sip cocktails at a nice patio in a major metropolis, but one doesn’t like to turn down invitations to mixers, and so a couple of weeks ago, I joined a few other local writers for a meet-and-greet at the absolutely beautiful Garden at Community Smith, located atop the Renaissance Hotel on West Peachtree in midtown. Continue reading “The Garden at Community Smith, Atlanta GA”

Bartaco, Atlanta GA

A couple of Fridays ago, Marie and the three year-old came down to see me at work and we drove a short distance away for some lunch. Bartaco opened in August in a former industrial space on Marietta Street right at Howell Mill Road, continuing the ongoing prettification of this little stretch, which had been old city blight for such a long time. Going in next door are an Arden’s Garden and a boutique called A Ma Maniére. It must have been an expensive buildout for the small chain, which is based in Connecticut and has three stores there and one just across the state line in Port Chester NY. Continue reading “Bartaco, Atlanta GA”