Despite continuing construction and permitting delays and other unforeseen obstacles brought on by the pandemic over the last two years, new restaurants continue opening across Atlanta and its sprawling metropolitan area. While most restaurants are open for dine-in and bar service, many establishments are placing greater emphasis on creating great patios and other outdoor seating experiences as well as on takeout offerings. Here, Eater shines the spotlight on a few of Atlanta’s newest restaurants to check out this month.Read More
The 15 Hottest New Restaurants in Atlanta Right Now
From Detroit-style pizzas in Decatur and a 20-course omakase on Atlanta’s west side to red pork curry served with sticky rice in Grant Park and hot catfish sandwiches in Kirkwood
É Ke Pizza
Pizza connoisseurs in Vinings are raving about this new pizzeria from the team behind Baraonda. Here, folks will find Neapolitan-style, wood-fired pies, including a traditional margherita, pizza topped with pesto, pancetta, and sun-dried tomatoes, and specialty pies like the meaty Diavolo topped with Italian salami, ham, Italian sausage, bacon, and Calabrese peppers. Look for three pagnotelle sandwiches at lunch as well as creamy gelato and other desserts like pistachio cannolis, carrot walnut cake, and tiramisu.
Deborah VanTrece (Twisted Soul Cookhouse and Pours) just opened her second restaurant in Cascade Heights, a Latin soul food spot called Serenidad. Located just steps from Oreatha’s, which centers on soulful homestyle dishes from around the globe, Serenidad channels the soulful cooking roots of the Caribbean and Latin America, including dishes styled after those found in countries like Mexico, Peru, Venezuela, and Brazil. Led in the kitchen by chef Whitney Thomas, expect dishes such as paella grits with mussels and head-on shrimp, duck fat tamales, and canoas de plantanos paired with cocktails made with tequila, mezcal, cachaça, and pisco. Outdoor seating available.
Omakase Table began life as a pop-up at Silom Thai and Sushi prior to the pandemic, eventually moving to Brush Sushi Izakaya (now Cuddlefish), where founder chef Leonard Yu offered a six-seat omakase of up to 20 courses. Now open as a restaurant at Seven88 complex, Yu brings his intimate pop-up to life on a grander scale, offering two seatings per night for up to 12 people. An omakase here includes course after course of otsumami (small bites), fresh nigiri, dishes like atsuyaki tamago castella (multi-layered omelette), temaki (hand roll), and dessert. Jeff Banks joins Omakase Table as bar manager. He previously worked behind the bars at Brush Sushi, C. Ellet’s Steakhouse, and Southbound. At Brush, Banks was known for crafting refined cocktails using sake, Japanese whisky, and soju. Expect similar cocktails and non-alcoholic drinks at Omakase Table, along with wine and sake meant for pairing. Look for a takeout option to launch in 2023. Reservations required.
Westside Motor Lounge
Located on the corner of Northside Drive and Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway, Westside Motor Lounge takes over two former automotive shops, four shipping containers, and a 1982 Mercedes Wagon on the property, transforming the site into three dining, drinking, and entertainment spaces. The restaurant here serves a menu of Southern dishes and snacks, including mac and cheese mixed with bechamel sauce and a four-cheese blend topped with a jalapeno cornbread crust, a grilled pimento and bacon sandwich, and meat-and-three plates. Weekend brunch features biscuits and gravy. West Bar, a cocktail lounge and listening room on the western side of the property, includes a game room. A beer garden completes the entertainment complex, with a serving station and draft system located in a converted shipping container. Multiple outdoor seating options available.
Dinner and brunch pop-ups at Full Commission
Laotian pop-up So So Fed, Polish pop-up Brave Wojtek, and Taiwanese-American pop-up Mighty Hans took over brunch and dinner service at Full Commission, part of a new kitchen residency program there. Full Commission discontinued dinner earlier this year to focus on serving coffee and breakfast throughout the week, closing at 2 p.m. As it did at Gato in Candler Park, Mighty Hans serves Sunday brunch at Full Commission, starting at 10 a.m., with dishes like Taiwanese rice balls (fan tuan), dragon fruit mochi doughnuts, and a scallion pancake BEC on the menu. Starting at 5 p.m., Sunday through Tuesday, So So Fed serves dinner. Expect dishes like Hat Yai fried chicken, lemongrass pork ribs, and chicken heart laab on the menu. Brave Wojtek takes over dinner at 5 p.m., Thursday through Saturday, serving dishes like its popular pierogi, flat bread pizzas called zapiekanka, and barszcz (borscht). Look for beer, wine, and cocktails from the bar, with guest appearances by bartenders like Joshua Fryer (8ARM).
Bomb Biscuit Atlanta
Celebrated baker Erika Council relocated her popular biscuit stall to the former Field Day space on Highland in November. Now open as a full-fledged restaurant, Bomb Biscuit Co. continues to offer Council’s fluffy buttermilk biscuit sandwiches, including her signature Glori-Fried chicken biscuit and breakfast standards like the BEC topped with American cheese. Not into biscuits? Order one of the scrumptious cinnamon rolls or trio of B’Onuts (deep-fried biscuit dough balls coated in cinnamon sugar). Council eventually plans to expand the menu, offering catfish and grits and pancakes made from biscuit dough. She’s also considering launching Sunday brunch in the future, with dishes styled after those found on menus at restaurants frequented by parishioners after church. Order takeout at the counter or asked to be seated in the sunny dining room beyond the kitchen or on the back patio.
Fans of Atlanta restaurateur Alex Kinjo (MF Sushi, Anh’s Kitchen, Kinjo Room) are already flocking to his latest venture in Virginia-Highland, Mai Kitchen. Sporting a stylish design for which Kinjo is now known, this Vietnamese restaurant features dishes like shaken beef, hot bowls of savory pho, spicy green papaya and mango salad, and Ha Long Bay noodles tossed with fried tofu. Order the passionfruit mousse for dessert, which comes domed in a rich hard chocolate shell.
After running Peruvian pop-up La Chingana for over a year, chef Arnaldo Castillo opened his first restaurant in Poncey-Highland with Atlanta restaurateur Howard Hsu of neighboring Sweet Auburn BBQ. Tio Lucho’s is an ode to Castillo’s father, who was known for his ceviches. The restaurant even bears his father’s nickname (Tio Lucho or “Uncle Luis”), given to him while working in Peruvian restaurants throughout Atlanta over the years. Dishes at Tio Lucho’s blend Peruvian techniques and recipes with Southern ingredients, like tiradito (similar to sashimi), lomo saltado, and a few favorites from the La Chingana pop-up menu. But ceviches take center stage at this restaurant, as do other coastal Peruvian seafood dishes and cocktails. Outdoor seating available.
Wylie & Rum
Billed as a “Floribian” (Floridan and Caribbean) restaurant and rum bar, Wylie and Rum takes over a 1950s-era commercial building along busy Moreland Avenue and brings the Reynoldstown and Edgewood neighborhoods tropical vibes, food, and drinks with plenty of outdoor seating. Here, people can indulge in guava barbecue ribs, jerk chicken, black and white soup, handmade empanadas, and a vegan plate with pulled jerk jackfruit tossed in guava barbecue sauce. Expect rum-based cocktails like the Mai Tai, Hurricane, and mojito from the bar, which also features over 30 rums to try.
Gigi's Italian Kitchen & Restaurant
Chefs Eric Brooks and Jacob Armando transformed their weekly pop-up in Candler Park into a permanent restaurant in August, transforming the former Gato space into a cozy Italian bistro with tables draped in red checkered linens set off by candlelight and flowers. Serving a menu of traditional red sauce classics made with in-season produce and fresh-made pastas, expect dishes like rigatoni fazool with cowpeas replacing cannellini beans and chicken marsala served with fresh focaccia. Dessert features Gigi’s popular tiramisu. A tight list of cocktails, wine, beer, and amaro round out the beverage list, which includes the Dirty Gigi martini and a rye Old Fashioned punched up with espresso and coffee bitters.
Six months after finding big success in Poncey-Highland, a second location of seafood restaurant and raw bar Fishmonger recently opened at Pratt Pullman District. And this one features an expanded raw bar menu with seafood towers and an oyster happy hour and serves cocktails, beer, wine, and frozen drinks. Taking over building seven next door to restaurant Dailies and Sides on Rogers Street, chef Bradford Forsblom continues to churn out delicate filets of blackened grouper, fresh oysters, crudos, and seafood salads, chowders, and sandwiches at the new location. Look for daily specials, too, including sandwiches like the hot catfish and the Frankenstein roll with chunks of hot buttered crab and lobster. While there is seating at tables and at the cocktail bar and raw bar inside, the majority of the seating is found outdoors on the 100-seat patio, part of which is covered. There’s even fire pits for cooler evenings.
Tortuga y Chango
What began as a series of mezcal dinners at El Tesoro transformed into a mezcal bar and restaurant from Alan Raines and Samantha Eaves. Taking over the former Lawrence’s Cafe space, Tortuga y Chango builds a bridge between chef Hugo Suastegui’s hometown of Acapulco and the Pacific coast of Guerrero, Mexico, in the food and drinks. Expect dishes like vieiras a la sarten (scallops atop corn puree, jalapenos, seasoned vegetables and fruit); pescado entero (whole grilled fish in an adobo marinade); and aguachile de camaron (tostada topped with citrus-marinated shrimp) on the menu here. Cocktails by beverage director Orestes Cruz feature small producer mezcals and tequila in drinks like the El Corazon made with mezcal, fino sherry, and cynar.
Owned by a former partner in Comet Pub and Lanes, Ben Horgan, Corner Slice recently took over the former Avellino’s space on West College Avenue, in the same complex as Tortuga y Chango. For folks who love to thick-crust pan pizzas, Corner Slice is serving up Detroit-style pies topped with everything from Calabrian peppers and Italian sausage to bacon, red onions, and jalapenos. Look for batches of saucy wings, fried mozzarella sticks, and sandwiches like meatball parmesan and a meaty hero served on fresh sesame seed focaccia bread on the menu, too.
After closing Brush Sushi on October 9 ahead of its relocation to Buckhead in 2023, chef Jason Liang and John Chen opened their latest venture together in the space just two weeks later. They haven’t skip a beat with Cuddlefish, billed as a casual omakase restaurant where people choose between four, seven, nine, and 12 courses, with the latter offering sea urchin and dessert from Momonoki pastry chef ChingYao Wang. Look for hand rolls and a la carte nigiri, too. Unlike Brush, Cuddlefish doesn’t include a sushi bar, but instead serves its omakases via table service and at the restaurant’s full bar. Reservations highly encouraged.
The Bite of Korea
Korean street food restaurant the Bite of Korea (BOK), owned by Gavin Lee and Chloe Jung, recently opened at the Hugh Howell Marketplace in Tucker. Like the pop-up, BOK serves a similar menu that includes its popular bulgogi quesadillas, soy garlic Korean fried chicken, doenjang-jjigae stew, so-dduk skewers, and japchae noodles. Look for a lunch box special (or dosirak), Tuesday through Friday, featuring a choice of meat (bulgogi, jeyuk pork, or Korean fried chicken), fried or white rice, soup and salad, batter-fried vegetables, and mandu (dumplings). Outdoor seating available.