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Empire State South Chef Hugh Acheson’s Next Atlanta Restaurant Is French

By George opens in the grand and historic Candler Hotel in downtown Atlanta near Woodruff Park this summer

Coming Attractions Eater
Beth McKibben is the editor and staff reporter for Eater Atlanta and has been covering food and cocktails locally and regionally for over 12 years.

Top Chef and Empire State South owner Hugh Acheson opens a French restaurant called By George later this summer in the historic Candler Hotel on Peachtree Street downtown, the Atlanta Business Chronicle reports. The restaurant, once home to Central Bank and Trust in what was known as the Candler Building, plans to serve lunch and dinner and provide space to sip tea, coffee, and champagne with caviar service throughout the day.

The circa-1906 structure near Woodruff Park was designed by Asa Candler; a former Atlanta mayor and founder of Coca-Cola in 1892. Acheson apparently chose the name By George as a hat tip to the original architects of the building: George Murphy and George Stewart.

Acheson’s menu at the nearly 3,000-square-foot restaurant located on the ground floor of the hotel could include classic French dishes like escargot, terrine of foie gras served with brioche and plum chutney, Cornish game hen, and a ricotta, spinach, and pepper-stuffed lamb breast.

The kitchen is lead by Ian Quinn, with Empire State South’s Kellie Thorn creating drinks for the bar.

By George’s design takes cues from the building’s history and the 19th-century Beaux-Arts era in Paris, featuring ornate glass chandeliers and large marble columns throughout the dining room.

The Candler Building lobby
The Candler Building lobby
Tracy O’Neal — GSU Library

The Candler Hotel is part of the Curio Collection by Hilton and includes 265 rooms. At one point, the former office building was the tallest structure in Atlanta during the early 20th century.

Eater Atlanta reached out to Acheson for more details.

In addition to Empire State South in midtown, Acheson also owns Spiller Park Coffee in Toco Hills and at Ponce City Market, and Five & Ten in Athens, Georgia — home to the University of Georgia. Acheson was a finalist for Outstanding Restaurateur at this year’s James Beard awards.

Fellow Top Chef and Atlanta restaurateur Kevin Gillespie (Gunshow) opened his breakfast and lunch counter Ole Reliable inside the 52-story Georgia-Pacific building downtown earlier this week.

Ponce City Market

675 North Avenue Northeast, , GA 30308 (404) 900-7900 Visit Website


924 Garrett Street, , GA 30316 (404) 380-1886 Visit Website

Spiller Park Coffee

2929 North Druid Hills Road Northeast, , GA 30329 (404) 662-9766 Visit Website

Empire State South

999 Peachtree Street Northeast, , GA 30309 (404) 541-1105 Visit Website