Traveling to Atlanta soon? Check out this Foodie Travel Guide: Where to Eat in Atlanta, Georgia, for some hot spots to eat and drink!
Atlanta, Georgia is a city oozing with urban Southern charm. Its neighborhoods and restaurants are as diverse as its ever-increasing population.
From cozy diners to bustling BBQ joints to elegant fine dining establishments, this capitol city is a growing foodie destination.
What food is Atlanta best known for?
Before we get to where to eat in Atlanta, let's talk a bit about what to eat.
Its location in the Southeast portion of the United States means the city is bursting with amazing classic southern food. Think fried chicken, Brunswick stew, chicken and waffles, pimento cheese, frito pie, and boiled peanuts.
Yet this cosmopolitan hub is home to some incredible culinary creativity. I had the opportunity to dine at some fun restaurants in Atlanta with the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers Association press trip. Here's a look at some of my fave eateries, plus a great neighborhood spot that I visited on my own.
I have to try fried chicken in almost every US city I visit, and there was no way I was going to visit Atlanta without at least one fried chicken experience! Pancake Social was a great spot to enjoy this classic Southern comfort food. (Note: I ordered the buttermilk pancakes with a side of fried chicken).
A ground floor restaurant located inside Atlanta's Ponce City Market, Pancake Social is a bright, bustling Instagrammer's paradise. Grammable vignettes are everywhere here, but that's just icing on the yummy brunch-food cake.
James Beard award-winning Chef Anne Quatrano is at the helm here. The buttermilk pancakes truly are fluffy and flavorful. The fried chicken has a tasty light spice combo. You can also enjoy dutch baby pancakes, beignets, and Belgian waffles.
Looking for healthier fare? Pancake Social offers a variety of fresh juices and smoothies, as well as large healthy lunch bowls.
The food here is reasonably priced, with most main items between $9 and $15. The servers were helpful and friendly, and the space is absolutely gorgeous.
675 Ponce De Leon Ave NE Suite 185
Atlanta, GA 30308
OPEN DAILY Sunday to Thursday from 7 a.m to 6 p.m.
Friday & Saturday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Bread & Butterfly
I absolutely adore cute bistros like Bread and Butterfly. The main dining room is intimate and cozy. Then there is a sweet porch/patio with French bistro seating perfect for a warm day.
And like at corner bistros in Paris, I found myself ordering a few small plates to make a meal. And, of course, a glass of French rosé.
The Smoked Trout Crouton ($10.50) was served with radishes, beans, cucumbers, and beets. I loved this and would order it again and again.
The menu is comprised of classic French bistro offerings, such as pomme frites, quiche, and salami and/or prosciutto on buttered bread. You'll also find a classic American burger here, as well as truffled penne au gratin and whole roasted chicken.
Bread and Butterfly
290 Elizabeth Street, Suite F
Atlanta, Georgia 30307
HOURS: Monday – Thursday 7:30am to 10pm
Friday 7:30am to 10:30pm
Saturday 8:30am to 10:30pm
Sunday 8:30am to 2:30pm
BRUNCH: Saturday & Sunday 10:30am to 2:30pm
Pastries only 8:30-10:30am
Fox Bros. BBQ
If you travel to Atlanta and don't eat any BBQ, have you REALLY been to Atlanta?
For our BBQ experience, we dined at the oh so popular Fox Bros. This barbecue joint is always busy, and with good reason.
The St Louis style ribs are tender, basted in the famous Fox Bros. BBQ sauce that has just the right amount of sweet and heat to it.
I indulged in a classic Frito Pie as one of my sides, which was served in a Frito chip bag. Our group shared the Dr. Pepper Chocolate Cake, which was rich and layered with tasty frosting.
1238 Dekalb Avenue NE
MON-THUR 11A-10P FRI-SAT 11A-11P SUN 11A-10P
Ponce City Market
If you're making a list of where to eat in Atlanta, you have to include two of the city's best food halls.
Ponce City Market is a large mixed-use space along the Atlanta BeltLine, in the city's Old Fourth Ward neighborhood.
This live/work/play space is a must-visit destination when traveling to Atlanta. Here, you'll find a mix of national and local retail shops, outdoor recreation/lounge space, full restaurants, and a food hall that boasts outposts of some of the city's hippest eateries.
Some top spots you'll want to check out at Ponce City Market:
Dancing Goats Coffee Bar
Five Daughter's Bakery
King of Pops Bar & Good Grub
Batter Cookie Dough Counter
Ponce City Market
675 Ponce de Leon Avenue NE
Krog Street Market
Another must-visit food hall in Atlanta is Krog Street Market. This happening spot is also located along the BeltLine, just a little over a mile away from Ponce City Market.
I had a hard time deciding what to eat for lunch at Krog Street Market. The choices all looked and sounded delicious. In the end, I went with a fried chicken plate (yep: more fried chicken. Can't get enough!) at Richard's Southern Fried Hot Chicken
Other spots to check out at Krog Street Market:
Fred's Meat and Bread
Krog Street Market
99 Krog Street
Hotel dining is definitely having a moment.
It used to be that hotel restaurants were starting points for chefs, and certainly not known for innovative cuisine. But that's all changing, and as a frequent traveler, I am all for it!
Local Motives at Atlanta's W Hotel is an excellent example of a unique eatery that is elevating expectations of hotel restaurants.
Executive Chef Shean Suter is a master of creative culinary artistry. We got to sample several items off the main menu, and I was highly impressed.
Some faves include:
- Avocado Toast - Chef Suter brings his A game to this Millennial foodie fave, which is topped with greens, watermelon radishes, and marinated tomato.
- Beet Salad - this is no ordinary beet salad. With a silky smooth beet panna cotta, roasted baby beets, candied pecans and edible flowers, this salad is a stunner. And it's as delicious as it looks!
- Fisherman's Stew - a hearty, flavorful dish with saffron tomato and Carolina gold ristotto.
In addition to a stand-out culinary program, the bar program at Local Motives is above and beyond, thanks in part to the expertise of head mixologist Tenice.
Local Motives (in W Hotel)
45 Ivan Allen Jr Blvd
Atlanta, Georgia 30308
What Should I See in Atlanta?
If you're looking for more things to do in Atlanta (because I realize other people like to do more than just eat on vacation), I have some travel tips in my Top 10 Things To Do in Atlanta travel guide! Be sure to subscribe to my newsletter so you don't miss a single post!
Most of these restaurants were covered as part of the IFWTWA Atlanta Foodie Press Trip. The Bread and Butterfly visit was on my own dime. All opinions and photos are, as always, my own.