The team behind Illegal Food is planning to open the Virginia-Highland restaurant in early December. A former pop-up in the kitchen at Joystick Gamebar on Edgewood Avenue, it is taking over the space that housed Bar Meatball.
The opening will mark the return of "The Hank," one of Atlanta's favorite burgers. Executive chef and co-owner Steven Lingenfelter is still developing the menu, but other holdovers from the pop-up include the "Fungus Among Us", "Nasty Nate," and "The F&H."
The restaurant will regionally source its ingredients: heritage-breed pork from Gum Creek farms; grass-fed beef from Brasstown farms; pasture-raised chicken, duck, and quail from Grass Roots farm; and regional seafood. The kitchen will blend grass-fed, pasture-raised, and antibiotic- and hormone-free beef for the burgers, serving them on fresh-baked H&F buns.
Behind the bar, Illegal Food will offer its own "contemporary Southern twist on classic cocktails" and a craft beer program. Lingenfelter, a Kentucky native, will bring in a wide selection of bourbons for tasting and to influence the cocktails.
The main dining room accommodates up to 57 diners, and the patio seats 36. Illegal food plans to open for dinner at 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and for lunch at 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.