Remember my yearly Bliss Lists? I am bringing them back. Kind of. Instead of being updated yearly, this list will be updated on an ongoing basis. It’s something I learned when I was the editor of Eater Atlanta with the website’s Heater Map and Eater 38 and I think such lists are super useful.
This Bliss List* will live on the right sidebar of the blog. This list is not a ranking of what I consider “the best” restaurants in Atlanta. Instead, it’s simply a compilation of where I am currently eating often in case you need a fresh idea for dinner or a recommendation. I’ve also included a link, when applicable, to anything I have written about the place if you want more information.
Scroll down and click the “read more” button to check it out.
Every few months, a certain type of food porn starts trending on local social media. A couple of years ago during the Neapolitan pizza craze, it was upskirt crust shots flashing char marks. Currently, the hot photos feature platters of oysters at Kimball House — the more levels, the better.
Before the Decatur restaurant opened in September 2013, Atlanta had standard oyster options. Kimball House, however, is determined to make Atlanta a bona fide oyster town. On most evenings, the oyster menu runs 20 deep with varieties from Georgia, British Colombia, and elsewhere. Each oyster is presented on the menu like a wine: “citrus, ripened tomato, charred scallion” describes the Howland’s Landing of Duxbury, Mass. The oysters are served on glistening, ice-packed pewter trays decorated with pieces of dark green seaweed. A wedge of lemon and a tiny brown medicine bottle filled with mignonette are all that’s needed to bring out each briny bivalve’s distinct qualities.
Over the last decade, the Decatur train depot has been home to a series of unsuccessful restaurants. The late-1800s building seemed destined for haunted real estate status. That was until Matt Christison, Miles Macquarrie, Bryan Rackley, and Jesse Smith — who worked together at the Brick Store Pub — came up with a plan to open a bar. With guidance and financial backing from Mike Gallagher, Tom Moore, and Dave Blanchard, who own the Brick Store Pub and Leon’s Full Service, the group transformed the old depot into a love letter to cocktails, oysters, and the hotel restaurants of yesteryear.
The space borrows much of its romantic and masculine aesthetic from those old American hotels. In fact, the restaurant was named after Atlanta’s Kimball House Hotel, which spanned an entire city block near Five Points, 1870-1883, until it was destroyed by a fire. A second and larger Kimball House was built in 1885, but was razed in 1959 to build a parking deck.
Yes, you read that correctly. The much anticipated Georgia debut of Dirty & Rowdy wine is here and being sold at Ansley Wine Merchants. So, if you are a fan, the hot wine is finally available in Atlanta. While you are at Ansley, be sure check out their amazing selection of cocktail supplies.
Vitals: 1544 Piedmont Rd NE, Atlanta, 404-876-6790. www.ansleywine.com.