clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
The Harvest Plate roasted baby carrots, baby sweet potatoes, Anson Mills farro, turnip greens honey-braised apples, and onion soubise from the Deer and Dove in Decatur, GA.
The Harvest Plate with roasted baby carrots, baby sweet potatoes, Anson Mills farro, turnip greens, honey-braised apples, and onion soubise.
The Deer and the Dove

38 Essential Restaurants in Atlanta, Summer 2022

From lamb burgers, Singapore noodles, and chimichangas to fresh, in-season vegetable plates and elegant tasting menus with wine pairings

View as Map
The Harvest Plate with roasted baby carrots, baby sweet potatoes, Anson Mills farro, turnip greens, honey-braised apples, and onion soubise.
| The Deer and the Dove

The Eater 38 is a curated list of restaurants covering Atlanta and its metropolitan area — both inside and outside the perimeter — spanning myriad cuisines and price points. It’s meant to help navigate Atlanta’s sprawling restaurant scene, while also answering the question, “Can you recommend a restaurant?”

With summer’s arrival, the Eater 38 has been updated for the third time in 2022 to include longtime Atlanta staples, restaurants with loyal followings, and those really bringing something special to the food scene right now. The restaurants listed below have been open for six months or longer and were selected to showcase the impressive diversity of Atlanta’s dining landscape. Removal from the Eater 38 does not mean a restaurant isn’t still great and won’t return in the future, but it allows for new additions, keeping the 38 a fresh, inclusive, and representative list.

For this quarterly update, Supremo Taco, Northern China Eatery, Chat Patti Indian Vegetarian Restaurant, Chef Winnie’s Kitchen, Gato, and El Tesoro were removed to make room for La Mei Zi, Mi Barrio, Che Butter Jonez, Warung Indonesian Restaurant, Kathmandu Kitchen and Grill, and Staplehouse.

Want to nominate a restaurant? Send suggestions to atlanta@eater.com, along with details as to why a particular restaurant deserves to be included before the next quarterly update.

The Hottest New Restaurants in Atlanta Right Now

For all the latest Atlanta dining intel, subscribe to Eater Atlanta's newsletter.

Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
If you buy something or book a reservation from an Eater link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics policy.

Spring Restaurant

Copy Link

The critically acclaimed restaurant, owned by chef Brian So and partner Daniel Crawford, features a tight, seasonally-inspired menu of dishes paired with a carefully curated list of natural and biodynamic wines. Start with fois gras terrine and sockeye salmon crudo before moving on to entrees like grilled wagyu flatiron steak and braised short rib or a whole fish course. Never skip the desserts at Spring, which change often and incorporate herbs, fruits, and other ingredients of the season. The small dining room here lends itself nicely to intimate dinner dates for two or foursomes of friends meeting to catch up over bottles of wine and a meal. Reservations highly encouraged.

Minas Grill & Emporium

Copy Link

Located on Delk Road, Mina’s Grill and Emporium is a cornerstone restaurant and market for Atlanta’s Brazilian community. Head in for a traditional Brazilian buffet as well as churrasco cut to order, and other fried street foods, including pastéis stuffed with ground meat or cheese, pão de queijo (Brazilian cheese puffs), and coxinhas (croquettes shaped like tear drops). It’s not unusual to find people camped out at tables dining while watching soccer at Mina’s, especially when Brazil is playing.

A buffet of hot chafing dishes containing camarão na moranga, or shrimp stew in pumpkin next to Portuguese salt cod stew called bacalhoada at Minas Emporium and Grill in Marietta, GA. Kris Martins

Virgil's Gullah Kitchen & Bar

Copy Link

The Gullah and Lowcountry dishes at Virgil’s, owned by Gee and Juan Smalls, are not to be missed. Order the she-crab soup or Gullah egg rolls stuffed with red rice, cabbage, and shrimp; the crab rice mixed with sautéed bacon, onions, and peppers; a side of greens; and the brownie-based Chucktown Chewie sundae for dessert. A second location is now open along the Marietta Street Artery near Georgia Tech. Outdoor seating available via parklet.

A round of compact white rice topped with shrimp and crab gravy at Virgil’s in College Park, GA. Ryan Fleisher

Heirloom Market BBQ

Copy Link

This Cobb County barbecue spot has limited seating, but chefs and owners Cody Taylor and Jiyeon Lee bring more than enough flavor to compensate for the cramped quarters or a ride home with a to-go box. Taylor and Lee’s Southern-Korean barbecue restaurant offers a must-try spicy Korean pork sandwich on its menu with chopped rib meat marinated in fermented chili paste, topped with kimchi coleslaw, black sesame seeds, and a sliced scallion. Order the sandwich with a side of Brunswick stew or collards.

A tin tray displaying spicy Korean BBQ pork, kimchi, and pickles spilling out of a sandwich at Heirloom Market BBQ in Smyrna GA. Heirloom Market BBX

Hot Cafe

Copy Link

For years, this modest restaurant just south of town has been serving up a comforting mix of Laotian, Thai, and Chinese dishes on its menu. But it’s the Laotian fare that really shines at Hot Cafe. Make sure to order any of the larb (or “lab”) — a meat salad tossed with scallions, cilantro, red onions, and toasted rice — along with the fiery papaya salad paired with sticky rice. Regulars also swear by the wings, pad thai, and tom yum soup. 

Bacchanalia

Copy Link

Two decade-old fine-dining stalwart Bacchanalia and its epic tasting menu are better than ever. The menu still includes the popular crab fritter, Maine lobster with caviar and brioche, and a rotating array of in-season entrees and desserts. Located next to market and cafe Star Provisions on Ellsworth Industrial Boulevard, reservations are necessary for a table here. Don’t have reservations? Head to the bar for cocktails, a glass of wine, and the a la carte menu. For those looking to create the Bacchanalia experience at home, the restaurant also offers a lavish, four-course takeout menu that includes dishes such as Maine lobster, New York strip, cheeses, and dessert. Reservations required.

Twisted Soul Cookhouse & Pours

Copy Link

Twisted Soul Cookhouse and Pours in Westside is where the South’s most loved dishes meet chef and owner Deborah VanTrece and chef de cuisine Robert Butts. VanTrece’s world travels and her three decades of professional cooking experience drive the menu and the service here, with Butts pushing the boundaries further with his dishes — striking a balance between casual and fine dining with ease. Expect dishes like mole sous vide short ribs, a smoked salmon croquette sandwich, cornmeal-crusted catfish goujonnette, and crispy confit duck with chevre scallion Johnny cakes. Reservations encouraged. Outdoor seating available.

Busy Bee Cafe

Copy Link

In business since the 1940s, this Vine City soul food staple on Atlanta’s Westside serves some of the city’s best fried chicken, alongside an assortment of other Southern meat-and-three staples. The fried chicken here is marinated for 12 hours, hand-breaded, and fried. If that isn’t enticing enough, get the smothered version, which is topped with pan gravy. 

Fried chicken, collards, and mac and cheese from Busy Bee Cafe in Vine City Atlanta Busy Bee Cafe

Che Butter Jonez

Copy Link

Occupy the Hood activist Malik Rhasaan and Detric Fox-Quinlan opened a permanent location of their popular food truck, Che Butter Jonez, as a restaurant in 2021. And they never looked back. Located next door to a Chevron station on Cleveland Avenue, the restaurant continues to serve one of the food truck’s most popular menu items: the That Sh!T Slambing burger. The menu here changes daily to keep things fresh, but has included bodega-style breakfast dishes, tacos on Tuesday, lumpia and garlic noodles topped with steak, and a delicious soft-shell crab sandwich during the spring. Halal.

B-More Careful Soft Shell Crab on a brioche bun
B-More Careful Soft Shell Crab on a brioche bun.
Che Butter Jonez

Miller Union

Copy Link

James Beard award-winning chef Steven Satterfield’s fresh Southern cooking is simple, elegant, and includes a lot of seasonal, locally grown vegetables. The farm egg baked in celery cream with grilled bread is a must-try Atlanta dish. The restaurant also has one of the best vegetable plates in town and offers a killer wine list, too. The pandemic saw Satterfield and his team of chefs offer takeout from the restaurant for the first time ever to enjoy the Miller Union experience at home. Reservations encouraged. Outdoor seating available.

[Miller Union's farm egg in celery cream. Photo: Matthew Wong]
[Miller Union’s farm egg in celery cream. Photo: Matthew Wong]
Matthew Wong

Redbird

Copy Link

Redbird, the restaurant from chef Zeb Stevenson, churns out wildly creative seasonal dishes, with vegetables and fish always playing starring roles on the menu. Order family style and pair the meal with food-friendly wines, a cleverly named cocktail, or local beer while sitting in the airy, light-filled dining room or on the covered patio taking in the action at buzzy Westside Provisions District. Redbird serves weekend brunch, too, with its biscuit sandwich and burger pop-up Birdy Biscuits from the restaurant’s to-go window on the patio. Reservations encouraged. Outdoor seating available.

Three plates containing ripe tomatoes, leeks, okra Ryan Fleisher

Little Bear

Copy Link

Former pop-up chef Jarrett Stieber opened Little Bear in Summerhill right before the start of the pandemic in 2020. Despite the challenges brought on by the health crisis, Stieber never wavered from what made his pop-up, and now his restaurant, so popular with regulars. The chef’s mischievous sense of humor and creativity continue to be on full display in the dishes and in the cocktails at Little Bear. It’s best to order the entire tight menu here. Tell the server “Just F*ck Me Up, Fam.” Reservations encouraged.

A ceramic blue and white bowl of gold rice pudding garnished with edible violets at Little Bear Atlanta Ryan Fleisher

Lyla Lila

Copy Link

Chef Craig Richards opened his Midtown restaurant Lyla Lila in December 2019. Just three months later, the pandemic halted its forward momentum as a destination restaurant. Despite it all, Richards seemed to never lose sight of his original vision for Lyla Lila, a casually elegant neighborhood restaurant that Midtown needed. Pasta is a craft Richards has been working at for nearly two decades, which includes stints with Italian chef Lidia Bastianich at her Kansas City and Pittsburgh restaurants, and leading the kitchens at Virginia-Highland trattoria La Tavola and St. Cecilia in Buckhead. From cold-smoked scallops to duck lasagna to whole wood-grilled fish to the tiramsu, the dishes on the menu definitely make Lyla Lila a destination restaurant. Reservations encouraged. Outdoor seating available.

Two heads-on jumbo shrimp over spaghetti and bortaga Ryan Fleisher

Talat Market

Copy Link

Summerhill Thai restaurant Talat Market opened in spring 2020 inside an old neighborhood market on Ormond Street. Each week, chefs Parnass Lim Savang and Rod Lassiter create around a dozen or so Thai and Thai-influenced dishes for the menu, featuring soups, salads, relishes, curries, stir-fries, and desserts, along with a couple of larger entrees, like yum khao thawt (crispy rice salad) and whole fish preparations. This is where to head for happy hour specials, fresh oysters, off-menu dishes, and crushable cocktails, including a Thai-inspired twist on the pina colada. Outdoor seating available via patio and parklet.

Lucian Books and Wine

Copy Link

Owners Katie Barringer and Jordan Smelt merge their love for books, wine, food, and London at bookshop and wine bar Lucian. Located at Modera Buckhead, Lucian specializes in titles centered around art, design, food, and culture and carries nearly 250 wines by the bottle and 15 wines by the glass, curated by Smelt. Food here is approached with the same thoughtfulness and care as Barringer does with books and Smelt with wine. Nothing is an afterthought, right down to the sauces composed for each dish. Standouts on the menu are the raw hamachi with seasonal fruits, the gnudi, and duck. Be sure to order a bowl of crispy fries, too, which comes served with a chef’s choice aioli, like horseradish or spiced with chilis. Pair with a glass of champagne. Reservations highly encouraged.

Three slivers round white radish slices topped with a small dollop of mustard seeds sit atop raw hamachi over slices of cucumber at Lucian in Atlanta Ryan Fleisher

After years of serving classic, white-tablecloth fine dining, chef Gerry Klaskala remodeled his Buckhead staple restaurant to appeal to a younger generation of diners. Now it’s a bit more relaxed and casual — there’s a walk-in ready bar and lounge for drinks and snacks for an impromptu night out. The kitchen consistently cranks out Aria favorites, like butter braised lobster, slow braised pork, and lump crab cakes. Aria continues to carry one of Atlanta’s most comprehensive wine lists, too. Dine al fresco on Aria’s covered and heated patio. Reservations required. Outdoor seating available.

Aria
The main dining area inside the revamped Aria in Buckhead.
Jonathan Phillips/Eater Atlanta

Staplehouse

Copy Link

In 2020, Kara Hidinger and chef Ryan Smith took over ownership of the restaurant they helped found with non-profit Giving Kitchen, transforming it from tasting menu restaurant to a neighborhood market with a daily food menu served from the back counter near the kitchen. The food now is as seasonal, creative, and thoughtfully composed as it was when Staplehouse offered coursed-out tastings before the pandemic. Head to the back counter and order dishes like grilled octopus, eggplant, and peppers tossed in fennel salami vinaigrette, a crab cake sando, or a hearty grain bowl or burrata surrounded by fresh vegetables. If it’s on the menu, don’t skip the Italian grinder — a meaty and mighty sandwich easily shared between two people. Then, grab wine and beer by the glass or bottle or a cocktail and find a seat outside in the sunny garden patio or on the covered porch behind the building.

Mi Barrio Mexican Restaurant

Copy Link

Despite new developments going up along Memorial Drive every year now, this family-owned and operated taqueria continues to hang on, serving a loyal following of regulars who head in for the friendly service as much as they do the comforting food on the menu. Mi Barrio is a tried and true roadside taqueria with a totally low-key vibe, inside and out. Expect homestyle Mexican dishes, like chile relleno, generous taco plates, and chimichangas stuffed with meat, rice, and beans, paired with cold beer, strong margaritas, and refreshing horchatas.

Mi Barrio Mi Barrio/Jasmin W.

Glide Pizza

Copy Link

After nearly two years at Irwin Street Market in the Old Fourth Ward, Rob Birdsong relocated his popular pizza-making operation and takeout window, Glide Pizza, to Studioplex across the street. Taking over the cafe behind cycling shop the Spindle, the move to Studioplex allowed Birdsong to offer indoor and outdoor seating and to sell beer. But the takeout window is still very much a part of Glide’s DNA, and continues to be so on Auburn Avenue, where lines never stop forming for giant pizza slices and 20-inch Brooklyn-style pies. A second location is now open in Decatur inside brewery Inner Voice Brewing, with a third location opening later in 2022 at the Westside Paper complex on West Marietta.

Rob Birdsong holding a red tray with a slice of pepperoni pizza from the takeout window of Glide Pizza at Irwin Street Market in Atlanta Ryan Fleisher

First opened in 2016, 8Arm has spent the last six years successfully (and regularly) reinventing itself, allowing for an ever-evolving food and drink menu. These reinventions included a natural wine bar taking over 8ARM’s former coffee shop and chef Maricela Vega transforming the menu into an homage to Meso-American cuisine. In 2021, 8ARM morphed once again after Vega’s departure, shifting service into a Japanese izakaya and sushi bar. Even the parking lot saw change, becoming an open-air kitchen with outdoor seating. 8ARM is due to close October 8, following the sale of the property this summer to a developer. But the closure doesn’t come without one last menu reinvention. In July, the restaurant opens the kitchen to some of its past chefs, including Vega and Duy Huynh, as well as pop-ups such as the Plate SaleSo So Fed, and Ebi Chop Bar. However, 8ARM regulars can still expect strong cocktails from the bar and a deep wine list loaded with by-the-glass and bottle options of mostly natural and small producer wines. Outdoor seating available.

Ticonderoga Club

Copy Link

To be a member of this Krog Street Market New England-style tavern, one simply has to walk in, grab a seat, and order a drink or a meal. Try popular menu mainstays like the Ipswich clam roll, the seasonal vegan noodle bowl, the veal sweetbreads, or the crowd-pleasing (and feeding) chuckwagon steak platter. Ticonderoga Club is owned by three trailblazers of Atlanta’s cocktail movement: Greg Best, Paul Calvert, and Regan Smith. Cocktails rotate regularly here, but T-Club’s mint julep riff, the Ticonderoga Cup, and an Irish coffee are always on the menu. Reservations are encouraged, and customers may order to-go cocktails online for takeout.

The empty bar with color string lights at Ticonderoga Club inside Krog Street Market Ticonderoga Club

BoccaLupo

Copy Link

Opened in 2013, Italian-American restaurant BoccaLupo has become both a neighborhood favorite in Inman Park for local residents and one of Atlanta’s must destination restaurants. Order any of the fresh pasta dishes on the menu — the black spaghetti and the 20-yolk tagliatelle are now Atlanta classics. Make sure to check out the tight wine list and cocktails here, too. Reservations encouraged. Outdoor seating available.

This East Atlanta Village hangout has been known to quietly serve some of the best versions of popular foods on its menu for years, including pizza, meatloaf, wings, vegan burgers, and a hot chicken thigh sandwich served on a brioche bun. Make sure to check out the seasonal food and dessert specials on the menu, too, and pair the meal with clever cocktails, wine, local beer, or even a boilermaker. Outdoor seating available.

Argosy Argosy/Foursquare

Lazy Betty

Copy Link

Owned by chefs Ron Hsu and Aaron Phillips, Lazy Betty in Candler Park offers sophisticated fine dining wrapped in a warm and inviting neighborhood restaurant. Here, people choose between two reservation-only tasting menus of six to eight courses with optional wine pairings and a vegetarian meal upon request. There’s also champagne and caviar service, which comes with steamed milk buns and scallion pancakes, too. Reservations required. Vegetarian menu available upon request. Outdoor seating available.

Ryan Fleisher

Feedel Bistro

Copy Link

This congenial restaurant on Briarcliff, owned by siblings Tamar Telahun and Simon Gebru, serves traditional Ethiopian and Eritrean fare with injera flatbread used to scoop up the vegetable- and spicy meat-laden dishes. Order options like the lamb and collard stew gomen be’siga or the red pepper stew doro wet, the ye’shimbra asa chickpea biscuits, and the marinated short ribs goden tibs or vegan mushroom tibs. A bright and cheery restaurant, Feedel Bistro is a great spot for solo dining, couples seeking a quiet night out, or a small group of friends gathering for a meal.

Feedel Bistro

The Deer and The Dove

Copy Link

Chef Terry Koval opened his Decatur restaurant in 2019 and its become not only a destination restaurant for Atlantans, but provides Koval ample space to really shine as a chef. Expect skillfully composed dishes of in-season vegetables, beef and pork from nearby cattle and pig farms, and game meat entrees, like crispy rabbit legs fried in fermented buttermilk, duck sausage roulade, and plates of venison. The restaurant’s bar offers a handful of classic cocktails, beer, and cider, as well as a selection of mainly French and Italian wines. In the mornings, head next door to Koval’s B-Side Cafe for Montreal-style bagels, bagel sandwiches, and coffee. Reservations encouraged. Outdoor seating available.

Chef and owner Terry Koval inspecting dishes prior to being served at The Deer and the Dove The Deer and the Dove

Kimball House

Copy Link

Housed in the former Decatur train depot, the menu at Kimball House is an ode to elegant dining and drinking all experienced in a dimly lit, laid-back dining room. Kick off the night with Southern and Gulf water oysters paired with cocktails or champagne at happy hour. Stay for dinner and continue the evening by sharing local vegetable and fish dishes or a three-course steak dinner for two. Beyond its award-winning cocktails, the Decatur restaurant features a wine list that is equally impressive, and includes everything from mucadet, chenin blanc, and big, bold reds to sherry, madeira, and vermouth. Reservations encouraged. Outdoor seating available.

Kimball House.
Kimball House.
Andrew Thomas Lee

Snackboxe Bistro

Copy Link

Since opening in 2018 at the H Mart plaza in Doraville, Lao restaurant Snackboxe Bistro has gained an avid following — and for good reason. Chef Thip Athakhanh mixes traditional Lao dishes and street foods with beloved home recipes passed down from her family on the menu at Snackboxe. Expect plates of larb (meat salad), khao poon (spicy rice noodle soup), and the popular mok pha (steamed fish) with street foods such as fried garlic-pepper wings, lemongrass spare ribs, and tapioca pearl dumplings here. A second location is now open in Duluth.

Snackboxe Bistro [Official]

La Mei Zi 辣妹子 Doraville

Copy Link

A longtime staple on Buford Highway for Taiwanese and Sichuan dishes, La Mei Zi’s dining room is rarely empty, especially on the weekends. Grab a table or a booth along the bank of windows and order the restaurant’s popular three cups chicken and dan dan noodles or slurp a bowl of shrimp, squid, and clam spicy seafood noodle soup. The Singapore noodles at La Mei Zi are always a good choice, as is the lamb and leeks in a cilantro-laden hot bean sauce.

Spicy beef noodle soup at La Mei Zi in Atlanta. Bill Addison

LanZhou Ramen 兰州拉面

Copy Link

This Buford Highway staple in the Pinetree Shopping Plaza, now with a second location in Kennesaw, offers heaping plates of hand-pulled noodles and noodle soups on its menu. Try the pork or oxtail stir-fried noodles or order the beef or roast duck hand-pulled noodle soup. Watch the chefs through the kitchen window roll, twist, pull, and whip noodles into shape. LanZhou also offers a variety of dumplings on its menu, including soup dumplings and pork buns.

WARUNG Indonesian Halal Restaurant

Copy Link

Located in the Parisian Avenue complex, folks might miss Warung Indonesian Restaurant whizzing down Buford Highway. Make it a point to slow down, park the car, and grab a table at this petite spot for siomay (steamed dumplings stuffed with fish, shrimp, and chicken) or a bowl of bubur ayam (chicken congee). Then, dive into nasi goreng (chicken fried rice mixed with shrimp paste) and a plate of sate kambing (grilled lamb skewers) or soto betawi with tender chunks of beef brisket. The service here is friendly and helpful for those who aren’t sure what to order. Halal.

WARUNG Indonesian Halal Restaurant

Woo Nam Jeong Stone Bowl House

Copy Link

Located in Seoul Plaza on Buford Highway, Woo Nam Jeong or Stone Bowl House serves traditional Korean fare created by the restaurant’s longtime chef Young Hui Han, lovingly referred to as “grandma”. Regulars to this Korean restaurant know to order its signature dish, any of the dolsot bibimbap. The dish is served in a searing hot cast iron stone bowl allowing the rice to become nice and crispy before mixing. Make sure to indulge in the complimentary banchan here, which Han makes herself each day. Other dishes to try include the haemul pajeon (seafood scallion pancake) and gujeolpan, an elaborate Korean royal court dish consisting of nine types of food served with crepes in an octagonal wooden platter.