STK Atlanta

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 9/3/20

The large glass doors open slowly to reveal a swanky, low-light opulent bar, and luxury greeting space dotted with flashes of lights and a smooth beat permeating the air with cool vibes. STK Atlanta is one cool cat with sleek design and top-notch service, but don’t let its vibe fool you, they’re also very serious about their food. Everything your traditional steak house offers like a myriad of perfect cuts of steak, sauces, decadent sides to fun happy hour dishes like the rich beef tartare, stellar seafood options like the sea bass to specialty cocktails that reminisce of a hip night club. Our chef’s tasting had all of this, plus a dash of pizzazz to culminate in one of the most epic of culinary journey’s the city has to offer. Are you ready to be amazed?

Starting with our first course, the beef tartar. Beautifully presented, this beauty is packed with flavors, like the richness of the tender beef juxtaposed to the creaminess and tartness of the horseradish and earthiness of the olives. Mix that all up and pile it on a large, crunchy banana chip and you got a complete array of textures. We can’t get over how crunchy and hearty this dish turned out to be in the end. What better way to start your meal with a little bit of beef, and a cool sweet drink to complete it? With this course we sipped on the Strawberry Cobbler. A sweet and sassy pink drink that’s one-part sweet and tart strawberry and one-part boozy vodka martini. Finish it off with a sweet and rich graham cracker crust rim and you have a dessert in a glass. Pinky up.

Something we can’t stop thinking about is the second course dish, the sea bass. A fantastic and flaky, melt-in-your-mouth piece of decadence simply seasoned with salt, pepper, and dusted with butter. Even thought it is simply done, it is perfection. Just image that perfectly done fish on top of a fava bean puree mixed with fava beans, snap peas, and butter. It was soft, light, buttery, earthy, and crunchy. It had the gamut of flavors and knocked our socks off. Mark our words, this is one of the best fish dishes in Atlanta. For best bite, mix all the dish ingredients together. With our sea bass, we opted for the Shake Your Honey Maker cocktail. Their take on the tiki cocktail with a blend of pineapple, rum, honey, and vanilla. This was my (Liz’s) favorite cocktail because it reminded me of a cool beach day, sitting under an umbrella, watching the ocean waves crash on the beach. It was the beach in a glass. Don’t forget to get some of the sugar rim for something a little sweeter!

Have you ever had an experience that went down as one of the best of your lives? Enter the Tomahawk Steak with truffle and butter. Brought to the table plain, the butter is slathered on top and then the truffle is sliced FRESH right in front of you and layered on top of the steak. Beyond the top-notch presentation, it comes with all-out decadent sides and so many sauces, you almost have an endless combination of flavors to choose! Starting with the steak itself, tender and medium temperature, it has everything you’d imagine in a perfect steak with that meaty burst up front and a slight char on the back. Topped with the butter and truffle, you get a ton of creaminess up front, but the truffle comes in and mellows it into an earthy, creamy, meaty bite. You really don’t need ANY sauce for this gorgeous piece of meat, but if you do you can mix and match to find your favorite combination. With the butter and the truffle, we found that you can brighten up the bite with the chimichurri sauce or turn up the richness with the au poivre. If some tartness is what you’re looking for to pair with the butter and earthiness of the truffle and butter, why not MIX both the STK sauce and the STK sauce with sriracha? No matter what you pick, you’re in for a real treat. Perfection on a plate.

You can’t go to a steak house and not get an array of fabulous sides that are beyond good. From the truffle mac n cheese to the jalapeno cheese grits and the newest side, egg-in-a-hole, you’re taste buds are in for a roller coaster! The best of the three was the truffle mac n cheese, which was so rich, deep, cheesy, creamy, and earthy, there’s no way to you’re NOT finish that whole thing. It’s one of those sides you can’t stop eating. They also offer bacon, lobster, and other flavors to top on there, but for just the base mac n cheese it’s one of the best we’ve ever had, EVER. The jalapeno cheese grits were the perfect blend of out-of-control cheesy to slightly spicy. Plus, the egg-in-a-hole was a fun, different side with a runny egg that created a sauce over the succulent mushrooms. Which side would you choose?  Put us down for some more mac n cheese, please.

To end our epic night of decadence, was the dessert board with a little bit of every dessert on the menu. We sampled the bag of donuts, cheesecake, chocolate cake, and the cookie sundae. Each were delicious in their own way, the cheesecake with hints of key lime and rich crust was tart and slightly sweet, while the donuts were flaky, puffy, and sweet with spicy or sweet dipping sauce. These are good for those who like their desserts on the lighter and sweeter side. Of all the desserts, the chocolate cake and the cookie sundae stood out. Being a decadent dessert lover, we both really enjoyed the chocolate cake. It was an explosion of rich, dark chocolate with tender cake. The cookie sundae was so rich, chocolate-forward, and delicious topped with ice cream and chocolate sauce. This was Liz’s favorite because it was warm, gooey, and so deep and rich that it was the perfect icing on the cake for this great meal.

Did we mention we wish we would have worn our elastic waist pants? With the evening winding down and the darkness coming over the buildings, we left happy and stuffed. This is one of those meals, you’d never forget! So, next time you’re in midtown, whether you want a light bite for happy hour, which they have daily with great deals, or in for a full meal, this is the spot to go. Next time, I want to try that $5 Lil’ Burger for happy hour. It’s so cute and looks amazing! What do you want to try?

Carson Kitchen: Food So Good, You’ll Swear By It.

Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 3/3/20

Carson Kitchen, the newest edition to City Center in Alpharetta, feels homey with the open-air kitchen, delivers soulful and sinfully good food, as well as thoughtful, elevated cocktails. Every single thing we tried on their menu was top notch, from the scrumptious bacon jam, to the divine deviled eggs, to the best #$%@ black rice and oxtail risotto, the tender and perfect NY Strip, and let’s not forget the How ‘Bout Dem Apples delightful cocktail. Food so good, you’ll swear by it. Trust us, you’ll let one slip. Get ready to pay the swear jar (more on that later). Fantastic food adventures ahead, enjoy the ride.

Sips like the How ‘Bout Dem Apples cocktail reminds us of the holidays. With it’s apple and all-spice forward flavor to the sweetness and smoothness on the back, it’s an all-around delicious drink. You’d forget it had whiskey in it if we didn’t mention it. They had a ton of options from tequila, gin, vodka and so many other variations, plus they have a sangria that looks tasty too. We’ll have to try more.

Then, we started the sampling with a few of the appetizers like the bacon jam, deviled eggs, and crispy chicken skins, but the best appetizer by far was the bacon jam. Imagine savory, crunchy bacon ground up and mixed with jalapeno and brown sugar and topped with melted Havarti. It reminded us of candied bacon in a bowl. This is the appropriate place to insert the mind blown emoji. It was rich, decadent, savory, sweet, spicy, and creamy all in one dip. We can’t say enough about this dish, it is an absolute must try. We WILL be back for more. In addition to the bacon jam, we had the crispy chicken skins. It was spicy, crispy, and perfectly paired with sweet honey for dipping. We got a fun tip, to dip the skins IN the bacon jam. How’d they do that? Amazing way to mix and match dishes! Another delicious bite was the deviled eggs, which were topped with salty caviar and fried prosciutto. This little number was tangy and rich with savory yolk, sour cream, and mayonnaise mixed with the right amount of salt from the caviar and fried prosciutto. Eat the whole thing at once, stuff it all in there, it’s the best balance of flavors!

If you thought the bacon jam was amazing, you must try the black rice and oxtail risotto. This dish was the best bite of the night with al dente cooked black rice and risotto, pulled oxtail and a sauce that was both savory and rich. The oxtail itself is like a pulled pork but even deeper and slightly saltier, but that’s a good thing here. Plus, this dish is impeccably plated in a bowl that looks dainty but eats like a meal. It’s every flavor on earth and is breathtaking, but what’s even better is it’s unexpected. It sounds like it would be good, but who knew this would be one of the best dishes we would have all winter? Get. This. Dish. You’re welcome.

The flavor train continues with the cocoa-espresso NY Strip. This sassy dish is one of those steaks that’s thisclose to perfection. The rub is earthy and rich with a slight chocolate flavor that mixes with the savory of the meat. Even better was the demi glaze that was literally cooked with the oxtail bone in it, so it explains the depth of the glaze. It was tangy and slightly fruity to enhance the flavor of the meat and rub. Don’t get us started on the tenderness, either. All the elements have us wondering, “where have you been all our lives?” Pairing this with the brussel sprout salad for a little cream and little green, what a delicious meal.

Have you ever had a meal so good and so overall complete that you just couldn’t help but let a little swear word slip? This is it. And yes, they have a swear jar on the kitchen bar! They say their food is so good that you will swear when you eat it and if you do, you’ll have to throw in some money. We may have lost a $20. That money is the kitchen staff’s shared bonus at the end of the year. We dig it.