As is the tradition at Eater, our closeout of the year is a survey of friends, industry types, and bloggers. This year, we asked the group eight questions running the gamut from meal of the year to top restaurant newcomers. All will be answered by the time we turn off the lights at the end of the 2015. Responses are cut, pasted, and (mostly) unedited herein. We've already covered the top standbys, and now it's time to pick the best of the fresh.
What were the top restaurant newcomers of 2015?
Grant Goggans, Marie, Let's Eat! editor: In Atlanta, probably Krog Street Market, generally. People really seem to enjoy going back to that space and trying a new restaurant each visit. Venkman's is also really promising, and I love both Hop's and Gus's Chicken. We have not visited Revival yet, but we're really looking forward to it. Out of town, Bill's Bar-B-Q in Hull reopened after a few years being shuttered. Technically, that's not a newcomer, but it's great to see them back in action. Their mull and chopped pork are fantastic.
Angela Hansberger, Creative Loafing contributor: Ticonderoga has quickly moved into favorite status. Staplehouse charmed me from day one and Ryan Smith's food continues to impress. Le Fat is a charmer. Little Trouble is uber cool and a fun place to take out of towners. Little Bacch makes the most memorable chicken in the coziest environment. One night I only ordered caviar and soaked in the scene.
Beth McKibben, Eater Atlanta contributor: O4W Pizza at Irwin Street Market. There's a reason everybody loves Grandma. Can a bar be on the list? If so, I want Little Trouble in there somewhere. Sometimes you just want beef dumplings, pork rinds, and a strong cocktail for dinner. Marcel has brought something special to the Atlanta dining scene. Old school steakhouse with white table cloths, a la minute service, classic dishes, and vintage cocktails but without the stuff and fuss. I like that I can dine on the "cheap" at the bar with a classic daiquiri and shrimp scampi or go super fancy at a table with a filet and champagne. It's a throwback vibe without being kitschy.
Laura Scholz, Eater Atlanta contributor: Cooks & Soldiers really elevated what was already a booming restaurant scene on the Westside, which is my neighborhood. And seeing Ryan Hidinger's vision realized in the opening of Staplehouse was very personally meaningful to me, buy also meaningful to the community as a whole for what it means for funding The Giving Kitchen.