The Little Five Points location of Zesto is currently closed after a large tree fell onto the restaurant early Friday afternoon last week following two days of heavy rain and severe storms in Atlanta. No one was injured.
The tree was removed over the weekend from atop the 58-year-old iconic burger and soft serve ice cream joint. Zesto remains closed until further notice while the company assesses the damage, most of which was sustained in the back of the building.
“We are assessing the extent of the damage this week, now that we’re back in town from our son’s college graduation,” vice president Leigh Ann Livaditis tells Eater, who asks people to visit Zesto’s other locations in East Atlanta, Buckhead, Forest Park, and Tyrone.
Initially meant to compete with Dairy Queen, Zesto was originally owned by the Taylor Freezer Corporation. John Livaditis opened the first Zesto in Atlanta in 1949 as a soft serve ice cream shop on Peachtree Street across from Brookwood Station. After Taylor Freezer Corporation began cutting ties with its Zesto franchisees, Livaditis moved the original restaurant to its present location on Piedmont Road in the 1950s and added hamburgers to the menu there. The Livaditis family went on to open four additional Atlanta-area locations, including the Zesto in Little Five Points in 1963.
Zesto is now known for its drive-in-style burgers, chili dogs, and classic chocolate and vanilla soft serve ice cream cones dipped in chocolate hard shell and covered in nuts.