Posts

Yebo Beach Haus: Island Oasis in Buckhead

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 6/25/21

 

The lavish patio is dotted with black, white and hints of color, while large lush palms overhang to create an island oasis you don’t have to travel to the beach to experience. This is Yebo Beach Haus! In the middle of the courtyard, a trickling water feature lulls you into the beauty of the space and invites you to stay for just one more cocktail. What ultimately matches the patio so well is Yebo’s tropical, South African, and beachy cuisine. Entrees and shareable plates like a whole branzino, tuna tataki, chicken paillard, ostrich sliders, seafood risotto, and tasty cocktails round out the amazing Yebo menu. Let’s take a tour.

 

While relaxing next to the sound of trickling water, we sipped on the BB Cooler and the Rosemary Vesper Martini. One of the most refreshing cocktails was the BB Cooler that is a bright patio drink with hints of fruit, tartness throughout the sip. It’s easily drinkable for an afternoon with the girlfriends, on the other hand is the boozy Rosemary Vesper Martini!  This one would be one Bond would approve of with boozy and earthy notes up front while the cool and crispness of the lemon comes through on the end. Pinkies up!

 

Yebo also prides itself on a myriad of sharable plates you can dip and snack on prior to your entrée. We delved into the Yebo Popcorn, Tuna Tataki, and Ostrich Sliders. We haven’t seen ostrich on a menu in forever, so we had to try it. The meat was perfectly cooked and seasoned and then paired with spicy arugula, cool, creamy mayo and a tomato dollop for a balancing tang. The entire thing came off mellow with no gaminess and was like a burger slider with just a lighter, leaner meat.

 

The favorite bite of the three was the Tuna Tataki. It was a delicate, light mild tuna with a crusty, well-seasoned edge all enveloped in creamy avocado and jalapeno for spice. Then, pour on the amount of savory and rich ponzu that you like, and you get even more flavor. The entire thing is on rice paper, so if you’re feeling rebellious, you could wrap the whole thing in it and eat it rolled up. Finally, if you’re looking for a nice, light snack, to enjoy while sipping a cocktail, the Yebo Popcorn is right up your alley. With the one-two punch of peri-peri seasoning and Parmesan, it’s a good all-around flavor and a great shareable treat.

 

Fish is the quintessential go-to entrée when you’re near the beach, right? Enter the Whole Branzino that is flaky, mild and tender, yet the skin is crispy and crunchy.  Plus, the addition of the jalapeño cilantro sauce that starts spicy and ends tangy, a good addition to the fish while the earthy asparagus and bright lemon drizzle is just icing on the cake for this dish. One of the best dishes of the entire experience. Hold on to that, because even though this was amazing, the Chicken Paillard was the overall favorite bite!  The meat is tender and juicy while bursting with a gamut of flavors and ending with a bold spiciness. The arugula, sauce, and accompanying vegetables are the perfect pair to add earthiness and a hint brightness. The best bite is to get all the elements together for a spicy, savory, earthy, tangy bite that doesn’t stop. We could have this every day.

 

When you go to the beach, what’s your go-to food?

Jackson’s Steakhouse in Pensacola

Not too far from the blue-green ocean at Pensacola Beach, the historic downtown Pensacola vibe is quaint, yet vibrant with breweries, shopping, and delicious dining. On one of those picturesque corners sits Jackson’s, a steakhouse staple where Pensacolans go for a good steak, cocktails, and dessert for any occasion. Everything from the decadent chocolate mousse to the crunchy red snapper, fantastic filet mignon, earthy brussel sprouts, to the tender lamb lollipops, plus the cocktails, everything you get at Jackson’s is a food adventure.

What’s better with a steak dinner than a cocktail? We got the fantastic off-menu blueberry martini, as well as the sweet and sassy BAMA Buck. The martini was recommended by our waitress and turned out magical with the tart and tangy berries up front mixed with the citrus and booze on the back. It was a refreshing yet potent sip! As far as the BAMA Buck, with whiskey on the back and the sweetness of strawberry on the front, this cocktail is sweet and boozy. It was just the right balance between the two. I’ll have another, please!

On to the delectable food, we started with the lamb lollipops. The lamb was seriously tender and wonderfully seasoned lamb bites. It was perfectly paired with an earthy, bright shaved brussel and radish salad. These two go so well together with the meatiness of the lamb and the earthy, crunchy of the salad. As far as the entrees, John got the flavorful filet mignon and I got the amazing red snapper, plus we paired it with some delicious brussel sprouts. These brussels are so good the guy next to us said he’s now a brussel sprout believer because of these! We agree, they’re rustic, earthy, tart, tangy, crunchy, and meaty. It’s all the adjectives you want to hear when describing these gems.

For our main entrees, the filet mignon was perfectly cooked medium steak with a tender inside and light grill outside. With the garlic on the top, it ended up being meaty and tangy with the right amount of smoke. But, the best dish of the night was the Red Snapper! Can snapper be decadent? Yes, the very definition of decadent with a ginormous piece of fish that literally melted in your mouth. Topped with a cracker crust that gave it a light crunch, lemon, butter, and herbs, it was simply divine. Crunchy, buttery, flaky.

Even if you don’t have any room, you have to stay for dessert and get the chocolate mousse! It was rich and decadent chocolate base, then a buttery, toffee, crunchy surprise at the bottom. On top an in-house made whipped cream brought it all together. Perfection if you ask me.

What do you want to try at Jackson’s?

Ovide: Best Restaurant in Sandestin

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 5/23/21

The majestic hotel towers into the baby blue sky and casts a shadow over the parking lot below that’s dotted with high end cars and guests anticipating the inside. Walking into the Hotel Effie, you’re greeted with a beautifully decorated lobby and hotel bar and lounge just to the left. Then, beyond, tucked in the corner is Sandestin’s newest and BEST dining experience, Ovide, by Atlanta’s (and Athens) own High Acheson. Every bite and sip you put in your mouth are vibrant and alive with flavor, like the sensational filet mignon, savory prime beef tartare, uniquely wonderful farm egg, rich blackened mahi mahi, and fantastic cocktails! Let’s dip in.

Ovide’s cocktail menu and program are top notch with two spectacular cocktails, Sun Kissed and Shore Leave. The Sun Kissed is a balanced cocktail that juxtaposes the bitterness of grapefruit and piney alcohol. This reminds us of an afternoon sipper that oh, so refreshing. Our favorite cocktail was Shore Leave. With warm rum, sweet coconut, earthy rose wine, bright lime, cachaca and more, this has a brightness and sass! We enjoyed the flavor complexity of this one!

Starting out with some of the bites, the ones we sampled were the farm egg and prime beef tartare. We seriously loved the uniqueness of the farm egg with so many good flavors in one dish! Savory egg sits on a bed of collard kimchi that adds spice, crispy rice for a good crunch, earthy peas, and tangy onion for one amazing bite. Our tip is to mix the ingredients all together for a savory, spicy, crunchy, and earthy flavor explosion. After this light bite, we opted for something a little heavier. The prime beef tartare is piled high and topped with a savory egg. This tartare is thick, rich, meaty, and has a good amount of creaminess. Once you top this amazing meat dish with the egg, crispy fired onions, and earthy mustard, it’s a tasty bite. Definitely get all the ingredients on the crunchy toast, which puts is up there with one of the best bites of the meal.

For our main course, we made some good decisions trying the blackened mahi mahi and the filet mignon. The flavorful and flaky blackened mahi fish paired so well with the tart pickled cauliflower, crunchy kohlrabi, and divine red pepper sauce that gives it a kick. It ended up sweet, creamy, rich, and slightly earthy when you mix it all together. Yum. The best bite of the night had to be the filet mignon. With pepper encrusted, maître d’hotel butter, and mushroom jus, this steak had a little bit of everything. From the crunchy and slightly charred outside to the succulent inside, it was rich, meaty, buttery, and savory over-the-top good! You won’t want to share.

As the meal winds down, the sun begins to set. We sit just outside the restaurant is what looks like a library speckled with books and library-esque décor. We talk over our meal and agree we will have to come back to Ovide when we come back to Sandestin. What do you want to try?

The Woodall

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 5/12/21

Over on the west side of town, there is a new restaurant, The Woodall, with a beautiful long bar adjacent to a stunning mural of a bird’s talons holding a sword. People are dotted at the bar sipping on cocktails and chatting with the bar staff. Just around from there is a pristine patio with couples, families, and friends enjoying meals in the early evening. From the center cut filet, to the spectacular salmon special, delectable small plates, sippable cocktails, and sensational desserts, everything is pitch perfect here.

We had a little bit of everything on the menu during our visit to The Woodall. Starting with the Hemingway Handshake cocktail, it starts out sweet and runs the spectrum of crispy, earthy, citrusy, and floral on the back of the palate. This one was a balanced and wonderfully unique cocktail! Of the cocktail plates we could not get enough of the Taste of the Day, a steak concoction that was meaty, spicy, tangy, and creamy. This tender and juicy steak, delicate horseradish puree sauce, and spicy, tangy, harissa are all a testament to the complex flavors that you’ll get at The Woodall. We can’t wait to see what they have for the Taste of the Day next time!

There are so many sharable options to choose from at The Woodall. We sampled the Smoked Salmon Dip, Pigs in the Blanket, and Poke Crudo were all delicious! The Smoked Salmon Dip was the favorite of these and we could eat this all day! It is slightly fishy and tangy with tasty, crispy capers to add crunch and a little bit of earthiness. That pairs so well with the overall creaminess and buttery bread. Love. John’s favorite cocktail plate was the Pigs in the Blanket! These tiny link sausages are so rich and meaty on their own then enveloped in a wonderfully crispy puff pastry. The crunchy and meaty bite is elevated by the wonderful mustard dip! If you love poke, make sure to get the Poke Crudo. It is light and fresh with hints of spice from the jalapeno, savory of the soy and tuna, and avocado creaminess. The fantastic soy sauce forward sauce pairs so well with everything on the plate. Yum.

If they did not skimp on the flavor of the starters, you’ll be treated when you try the entrees! We got the Center Cut Filet, Special of the Night (Salmon), Pappardelle pasta, and brussel sprouts. Beginning with the Pappardelle, this dish mixed thick and tender noodles, rustic mushrooms, bright tomatoes, and mellow zucchini all in a light, creamy sauce. A great combination of flavors can be paired with a protein like the Sea Scallops! Our side item, the brussel sprouts, didn’t disappoint with a sweet and savory one-two punch of flavor. These went well with the main entrees like the Center Cut Filet! Speaking of the Center Cut Filet, this savory, well-cooked steak is perfection with a light salt and pepper seasoning to let the meat’s flavor shine through. The delectable sauce is deep and savory adding an element of richness to the meat and the steak’s accoutrements. It is paired with creamy, dreamy, mashed potatoes, a dotting of tangy cooked tomatoes, and earthy spinach. What a creamy, savory, tangy, and earthy bite! Our tip is to enjoy all the flavors together in one bite! Topping our delight with the steak, was the Special of the Night, the Salmon. Literally uttering OMG, this salmon is flaky and tender with the right amount of heft yet melts in your mouth. Accompanied by a mustardy and bright citrus drizzle, plus a crunchy slaw, that’s pitch perfect with the flavors of the salmon. If this is the special of the night when you go, it’s a must try.

Our tip at The Woodall, no matter how full you are, is to stay for dessert. The Bailey’s Cake is literally the icing on the cake to a wonderful meal! Sweet and moist cake up front with a slight crisp on the edges, and finishing with a boozy Bailey’s kick, this cake is light, creamy, and tangy. Whatever you do let the cake soak in the sauce for a few minutes for even better flavor, if there is such a thing. Divine.

What do you want to try from The Woodall?

The Farmhouse at Serenbe

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 4/18/21

In between the rolling farmlands and the thick forest of South Atlanta sits a small town composed of small business, restaurants, and beautiful houses line the streets. One side, the farm is full of goats and horses, and on the other there is a cozy Inn where you can stay for the night. Serenbe, has come into its own as a day trip destination boasting everything from shopping to dining to the arts and everything in between. Recently, we took a short daytrip down there to explore the community, take in the grounds of the farm and Inn at Serenbe, then enjoy dinner at the The Farmhouse at Serenbe. This day had the perfect weather to sit on the sunporch at The Farmhouse at Serenbe and enjoy a cool Everlasting Lemonade and a stellar Herb Encrusted Lamb Rack. We can’t get over the delicious fare here with everything from carpaccio, foie gras, pork chops, lamb, and lemon cake. Plus, they grow a lot of their veggies in a garden on the grounds and locally source everything else. The Farmhouse is one of those spots you’ll remember forever.

Sitting on the sun porch and gazing out at the lush green lawn and beautiful sunshine, we sipped on the Berry Bramble, which was blackberry forward cocktail with the right balance of sweet from the fruit and spice from the ginger. This one is definitely refreshing! Our favorite cocktail of the day was the Everlasting Lemonade. This patio sitting sipper mixes lemonade and tart strawberries together into a slightly sweet and tart drink. Reminiscent of long summer days in the south, we’d recommend this one to anyone.

Starting with a pair of appetizers, we sampled the Wagyu Beef Carpaccio and Hudson Valley Foie Gras Terrine. The Wagyu Beef Carpaccio starts out with rich, tender beef brightened up with a fantastic, creamy truffle cream, earthy and crunchy capers, plus some deep truffle oil. As you roll around all the ingredients together on your fork, you get a good mix of meaty, creamy, earthy, and a little bit of crunch from the lettuce grown right on the grounds. On the other hand, the Hudson Valley Fois Gras Terrine combines meaty foie gras, tangy and bright dried fruit compote, and an amazing wine-tasting Riesling jelly. What’s amazing out this bite is that it tastes like a gourmet peanut butter and jelly! We’d recommend piling all the ingredients on the toast for the best bite!

For our entrees, we were treated to the divine Double-cut Pork Chop and an amazing Herb Encrusted Lamb Rack. The Double-cut Pork Chop is simply perfection of a pork chop being juicy, thick, and well-seasoned. The meat is so good, that the accoutrements are just icing of the cake. They’re just as special with sweet, creamy, and chunky grits mixing with the tangy and rustic collards and the apple adds a well-rounded brightness to the overall rich dish. When we say divine, we mean heavenly for sure! Needless to say, with how good the pork chop is, we were floored by Liz’s favorite, the Herb Encrusted Lamb Rack. Starting with the tender and succulent lamb perfectly cooked and adorned with mustard and herbs for a tangy, crunchy, and earthy bite. We cannot begin to describe the explosion of flavors this lamb brings. On top of that, the rutabaga puree beneath is sweet and creamy, the root vegetables are earthy, all mixing with the hearty lamb sauce and jus create an unimaginable bite. This dish will always be one of the best we’ve ever had, well, ever.

Being so full, we did save a little room for the Lemon Cake & Blueberry Compote. We love our lemon desserts and cakes. The cake itself was moist, yet dense that went so well with the thick, light icing, and the blueberries around it. The light and not over-sweet bite we needed to end our experience at The Farmhouse at Serenbe.

As the sun set over the rolling farmland, it splashed purples, blues, and pinks into the sky. If you ever need a little day trip or getaway just outside of Atlanta, this is your spot! Can’t wait to get back and try even more of their restaurants and spend a night in the Inn! If you could go to Serenbe would you?

 

 

 

 

 

Two Urban Licks: Brunch Edition

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 4/14/21

Right off the beltline in between Inman Park and Ponce City Market, Two Urban Licks is perched on a small hill with an inviting patio, amazing outdoor space, and even warmer interior. Just imagine the warm sun above and the clatter of patio diners enjoying a meal near you, then the smell of fresh food wafting from the kitchen where a wood burning oven’s fire glows ever so slightly. It’s also the perfect place to sit and watch people walk, run, or scoot on the beltline while sipping on a mimosa and feasting on everything from salmon chips to confit turkey wings, as well as brunch items like amazing brisket and eggs, a phenomenal biscuits and gravy, and flaky catfish and grits. Bring your brunch bae along for a sensational brunch adventure.

Being a destination patio on the beltline, we started out with Cool It Ginger cocktail that was served frozen with a perfect mix of pineapple and ginger for a savory, spicy balance, then finishing with booze on the back of the throat. This is an amazing patio sipper that will get you through the summer. On the other hand, we’re suckers for a good old fashioned and opted for the Up In Smoke! With a ton of citrus up front and the booze on the back of the palate, this one is a solid smoky old fashioned cocktail. Your father would approve. If cocktails aren’t your thing, they have a fantastic assortment of Mimosa flavors from traditional orange to blood orange to grapefruit. You can’t go wrong on a beautiful Sunday sitting on the patio with one of these babies.

Before we arrived, rumor had it that Two Urban Licks does some fantastic Salmon Chips. Rumor confirmed! We got the Salmon Chips and they’re so beautifully presented, almost too pretty to eat. From the crunch of the seasoned hearty potato chip to the flaky and cool salmon, the spice of the chipotle cream to the earthiness of the capers and onions, that’s one completely satisfying bite. It really has the gamut of flavors, meaty, crispy, tangy, earthy. More please. To go with our Salmon Chips, we got the spectacular Confit Turkey Wings. The second you bite into one of these you know it’s going to be special with the tender, smoky, and crunchy turkey! Then, amazing flavor explodes from the lemon pepper rub as it mixes with the creamy blue cheese sauce. This ends up being lemony, creamy, savory, and crunchy all in one bite. I didn’t share.

Moving onto the brunch dishes, we got three very different bites, but we’d highly recommend each! Starting with the Catfish and Grits, the catfish itself was perfection with the three ways it should always be served, crispy, flaky, and tender. The fish was perched on top of a concoction of creamy grits and creole seasoning that was reminiscent of N’awlins. Our pro tip is to use the lemon squeeze they give you because it elevates the flavor of the entire dish! Going from creole to barbeque with the Brisket and Eggs. This was John’s favorite bite with the rich, deep, juicy, brisket seasoned with a plethora of flavors. It is paired with a savory jus and a couple of savory runny eggs that when mixed with the brisket balanced some of the richness with some brightness and savory. Finally, my favorite dish was the Biscuits and Gravy. Imagine a large, flaky, crumbly, and buttery biscuit piled high with crispy and crunch chicken that’s tender and juicy inside. You got that picture, now introduce some eggs and top it with creamy, savory, and rich sausage gravy with hearty chunks of sausage. This is what dreams are made of with all the complexity of all the ingredients coming together. Our tip is to make sure to get every ingredient in one bite including the well-seasoned and crispy potatoes on the side. Drool.

Whatever you do, PLEASE stay for dessert because they have this Peanut Butter Pie that literally have people falling all over it to try. It’s creamy, peanut butter forward, but ends smooth on the palate. The best part is they top it with jam so you have a peanut butter and jelly vibe and these charred marshmallows that add to the sweetness! It’s so good you will want to put this on your must try list. If you don’t get ANYTHING ELSE at Two. Get this.

Next time you’re on the beltline stop by for a cool cocktail and Peanut Butter Pie at Two Urban Licks and get in a reservation for brunch. You won’t regret one bite of it.

The White Bull

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 2/16/21

Our Foodie Unicorn

On a gray, cold, overcast day with freezing rain in the air, we headed to Decatur Square to enjoy a meal at one of Atlanta’s best restaurants, The White Bull. This is one of those places that you dream about as a foodie and a reviewer. You know we were counting the days to go and try Chef Pat Pascarella’s amazing creations and when that day arrived, we were blown away by so many dynamic plates. They have everything from the fantastic Cold Chicken Sandwich, the savory Poutine, fresh Half Chicken entrée, some earthy Burrata and Beets, smoky Smoked Trout, rich Brussel Sprouts, and some buttery Bread and Butter. It was worth the wait.  Alright, let’s not leave you in suspense; we’re ready to get down to the details.

With a diverse array of starter dishes and share plates, The White Bull has some spectacular bites. With all of them so good, it’s hard to pick a favorite, but probably the simple smoky smoked trout was the stand-out with a mellow fish spread with the perfect amount of smoke, charred bread, and tangy pickled onions. It was a ton of flavor, salty, savory, smoky, charred, and tangy. Also, we really enjoyed the Burrata and Beets with its naturally earthy and savory flavors with a hint of sweetness. We loved the addition of the anchovies for a natural salt and savory source to pair perfectly with the creamy cheese and roasted earthiness of the beets. Don’t let the anchovies scare you, they’re a great way to amp up the flavor without the sodium! From the sweet and tang of the sauce to the earthiness of the Brussel Sprouts, we loved these morsels! Plus, along with the creamy and sharp cheese paired with bacon bites for a dash of savory, these are some of the best sprouts in the city. John’s favorite starter was the Bread and Butter, a masterful piece of light and airy focaccia with melty butter and topped with piney rosemary. We found it was perfect for dipping in the main entrée, the Half Chicken or plain with some good, old fashioned butter. Warm and hearty.

Of the menu, the most brunchy of the entrees had to be the poutine. A heaping pile of crunchy, warm, and tender potatoes topped with wonderfully cooked beef brisket, then on the bottom, the savory and garlicky gravy with onions was the perfect combination. On top, mild and light cheese and the savor of the fried egg complete this amazing bowl. The best part is on the bottom, so get as much of the ingredients in the savory gravy and take one big bite. You’ll end up with a creamy, savory, crunchy, tangy, and rich bite. Plus, for the price, this is a TON of food, you’ll want to share!

On our road to The White Bull, we’ve had some great chicken, fantastic, phenomenal even, but one thing we remember about Chef Pat is that he has the absolute best chicken you can find in the city. We sampled it at a Polenta party back in early 2019, and it showed back up again in the Half Chicken dish. Fall off the bone tender and immaculately cooked chicken, skin on to lock in the juices, this dish is mind blowing good and you just can’t match the freshness.  Alone, this chicken is the star of the show, but you add the accoutrements of the sweet, hearty grits, savory garlic sauce, and charred broccolini and you’ve got THE flavor spectrum. Rich, savory, hearty, creamy, smoky, earthy, do we need to even go on? Pro tip, make sure to get the chicken off the bone and roll it around in the sauce, grits, cut off some broccolini and dig in. Put this on your must try list.

The waitress told us that her favorite menu item was the Cold Chicken Sandwich, and after her ooh and ahh-ing we were sold. It has to be good if she loves it that much? She was spot on, this practically perfect chicken sandwich in every way, has it all. The crisp of the fried chicken hits you on the front of the palate then the flavor changes and you get the creaminess of the mayo, the crunchy pickles, and the savory of the hearty bacon jam slathered on top. The flavor is so rich, deep, and complex that you don’t know what ingredient you like more. The combination of flavors is striking, and you will NOT be able to stop eating it! Needless to say, put this on your list too!

What’s a fantastic experience without an amazing cocktail? We got the Wollman Sour that was reminiscent of red wine up front but as you drink it sweetens as the egg white hits your palate and ends up being creamy and sweet. Rustic and earthy then sweet, so delicious.

At the end of our meal, the sleet was coming down pretty good outside, so we sat a while and watched another group order food for the table and talk about how good the food is, we concur! Everything is top-notch. What would you like to try?

Vin 25 in Roswell

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 2/8/21

In a quaint cottage just off the hustle and bustle of Canton’s food district in Roswell, Vin 25’s heated patio glows with firepits and the chatter of diners can be heard down Plum Street. We visited for Roswell Restaurant Weeks, but beyond that, this little slice of heaven is the perfect spot for an intimate date night, a glass of wine with your bestie, or just for a relaxing meal on the patio. Their stellar menu boasts large plates like succulent salmon to amazing charcuterie and fromage boards, unique wines like the Albarino Reserva from Uruguay, craft cocktails, and a whole slew of small plates. Just thinking about Vin 25 is making us hungry, let’s dig in.

Just because Vin 25 sells as a wine bar, doesn’t mean you can’t sip on a tasty cocktail. We sampled the La Rosa and it was a real treat from the mix of lemon, tequila, and sparkling rose. But what really makes this cocktail is that bit of spice from the prevalent amount of black pepper. It gives it just that little edge to elevate it from good to great. Now, being that Vin 25 IS a wine bar, we had to try something different, so we paired our salmon with the wine pairing recommended, the Barbera. A mild red wine out of Italy that is lighter bodied and more reminiscent of a pinot noir. Not too fruity, but not too bold, this one went so well with the earthiness of the foraged mushrooms and Brussel sprouts on the main course. We also were treated to the Albarino Reserva out of Uruguay, which is a white varietal that reminds us of in between a Vinho Verde and a Pinot Grigio. It was tart with a slight acidity but mellows out on the back of the pallet for a smooth finish. What a wonderful wine!

As we mentioned, we went for Roswell Restaurants Weeks and got the 3-course meal that included Winter Squash Toast, 60 South Salmon, and Buttermilk Cake. On top of that we got gigantic charcuterie and fromage board! The board consists of 5 rotating meats and cheeses that can range from Tomme, which was John’s favorite, to Red Dragon from Whales, which was Liz’s favorite. What’s Red Dragon? It’s an aged cheddar that contains grain mustard seeds. Delicious. On the meats, we sampled two types of salami, prosciutto, and more. Who knows what will end up on the board next time! Hope it has the honeycomb and the bacon jam, those were very welcome accoutrement to the meats and cheeses presented! One of the better meat and cheese boards around, if you ask us.

The first course for the 3-course meal was the Winter Squash Toast. This seasonal vegetable toast had so much flavor! Just imagine the creamy and sweet winter squash purée melts into the crunchy toast and as you bite you go from creamy and sweet to savory of the bacon, tart of the currant vinaigrette, to tang of the pickled onions. Did we mention this one was bursting with flavor? It’s so complex and really tasty! The second course was the 60 South Salmon.  This one is a beautiful plate and just as beautiful tasting. The English pea purée is creamy and a little earthy that pairs perfectly with the tender salmon. Sitting in the middle of the salmon, the brussel sprouts are cooked just right and mixed with foraged mushrooms. This rounds out the flavors of earthy, crispy, and a richness. Such a good dish, and a great portion! Must try. The third course was the Buttermilk Cake.  Not too sweet, not too rich, this moist and delicate cake has a warm and buttery caramel on top of a boozy Rumchatta cream. Those dynamic flavors are well balanced with the addition of strawberries for tartness and almonds and pecans for a crunch.

What’s better than good food is always good company, we enjoyed talking to Mac, the GM, and our waiter about all things wine and beer. They have an amazing staff, stellar menu, and top-notch drinks. We can’t wait to sit on their amazing patio when the weather gets warmer. We’ll have to get the Albarino Reserva again and try a new bite or two. What would you like to try?

Mac’s Chophouse: Brunch on the Square

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 2/1/21

On a beautiful sunny weekend in the middle of winter, staring out the big windows at Mac’s Chophouse is the best view of the beautiful Marietta Square. You’d never know gazing down there it was cold enough to wear a heavy wool coat, the warm sun shown into the dining room, feeling almost like summer. Beyond the beautiful second story views, Mac’s Chophouse has impeccable service and even better brunch dishes. Lazy Susan in the middle, we got a hodgepodge of brunch staples like the wonderful Chicken and Waffles, creamy Eggs Benedict, and the big “bring-your-appetite” Lazy Susan sampler. Then, we took a moment to sip on the Black Thai Affair and a mimosa to perfect the day. Let’s dig in.

Our wonderful waiter didn’t skip a beat in recommending a cocktail, he immediately pointed to the Black Thai Affair. This gem of a cocktail starts out with a slight booze and then finishes with a creamy, frothy, citrus bite. The best part of this cocktail has to be the peppercorn thai basil syrup that gave it a peppery nose that lingered into the sip and on the back of the throat. It was such a wonderful unique addition to jazz up the entire drink. Must Try.

Moving on to the food, we saw they had pork belly appetizer and just had to at least try it.  Perched a top a bed of perfectly crisped Brussel Sprouts, the belly was the right amount of fat and meat, plus well-seasoned. To top it off, a drizzle of barbecue sauce for a little bit of a tang. All together the earthiness and crisp of the sprouts paired well with the savory meat and the tart of the sauce. Get everything in one bite! Moving to our brunch items, we got the Eggs Benedict and opted for the ham, you could also get crab cakes. This duo was rich egg and tangy hollandaise resting on a crisp English muffin and hearty, thick and meaty ham. We’d recommend getting these with the cheese grits and mix them together. OMG, now that’s amazing.

Of everything we got, the chicken and waffles were almost too good to believe. Starting with the crisp and tender chicken topped with candied bacon, all sitting on a warm and fluffy waffle. Don’t forget to drizzle on a generous amount of maple syrup for the best possible bite. It has all the flavors from savory, crunchy, sweet, and rich. Beyond this amazing dish, the Lazy Susan Sampler was another bright spot, and something we’ve not seen on any other menu. It was a hodgepodge of delicious brunch items like a salmon bagel, creamy and cheesy grits, all the brunch meats you can imagine, a slice of dreamy crème brulee French Toast, a waffle, crispy potatoes, and scrambled eggs. It doesn’t get any more complete than this really as you get a good bit of everything on the menu. The favorites from the sampler had to be the amazing cheesy, tart, and creamy grits, along with the perfectly cooked and thick crème brulee French toast slathered in maple syrup, and the little salmon bagel.  Remember to bring your appetite, you’ll need it for this one.

As the waiter took the lazy susan away, we peered back out the window and watched people stroll through the Marietta Square, one couple hand-in-hand, a few young ladies giggling, and a biker stopped to check his watch. We agreed at that point, the food was just as good as the view. We can’t wait to try more at Mac’s Chophouse.

Jai Ho Indian Kitchen and Bar

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 1/24/21

Tucked at the end of Dutch Valley in Midtown, Jai Ho Indian Kitchen and Bar is truly a hidden gem in the heart of Atlanta. With scratch Indian-inspired cocktails along with divine dishes that are big on flavor, they have dynamic staples like hearty Aloo Gobi and Chana Masala to inspired mains like the Lamb Hind Shank and even pizza! Don’t go to Jai Ho without trying one of their signature, made-fresh cocktails like the Jai Ho Colada and the Cilantro Martini. Who’s hungry?

Upon arrival, we were greeted with two wonderful cocktails, the Jai Ho Colada and the Cilantro Martini. The Jai Ho Colada has a ton of tiki inspiration with a little bit of booze up front and juicy pineapple on back. This drink literally reminded us of biting into a fresh of the tree pineapple. We were impressed with its simplicity and fruitiness. As for the Cilantro Martini, one thing we never thought we’d say together was cilantro and martini. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, this green cocktail mixes vodka and an array of fresh ingredients, but the star is the cilantro because it gives the entire drink an earthiness that ends with a slight booze and the lingering tang of lemon. Either of these are a good choice!

On the vegetarian side, we sampled the Aloo Gobi and Chana Masala. With perfectly seasoned cauliflower and tender potato, the Aloo Gobi flavor bursts off the plate with earthiness and heartiness. So tender, savory, and rich, this is always a favorite dish of ours but this one was so good, we might have cleaned the plate. We ate this without anything to accompany, it doesn’t need it. On the other hand, the Chana Masala starts hearty and earthy as well but as you eat the heat builds on this stellar dish and you end up grabbing your water. This one is a perfect pair for the rice because it helps cut through some of the heat. Also, we ended up mixing the two and it just elevated the flavors from all the dishes and became a hodge-podge of earthy, spicy, hearty, and savory. We’d recommend doing this to anyone.

Something we didn’t expect to see on Jai Ho’s menu was pizza! It’s an innovative way to bring interest to the menu and to use the naan you have around the restaurant. The one we got was the Chicken Tikka Pizza with tender chicken and savory sauce mixed with the right amount of cheese and crunchy onion. It ended up being savory, sweet, creamy, and tangy. Did not disappoint!

Now that we have your attention, let’s talk Lamb Hind Shank. We gasped with delight when the lamb came to the table because this beautifully plated gorgeous piece of lamb has it all! The meat itself is tender and cooked just right to not give off any gaminess. Then, slathered in a Masala sauce with earthiness, spiciness, and rich savory explosion of flavors that envelop the tender meat. Our tip for this dish is to get a ton of the meat off the bone, mix in the sauce and the rice and you have one dynamic plate. Get this no matter what else.

What would you like to try? Perhaps a cocktail and some lamb?