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Atlanta's Hottest Restaurant Openings in 2016
It feels like just yesterday that we watched the peach drop and rang in the New Year, but, believe it or not, we’re already halfway through 2016. We may not know what the rest of the year holds, but we do know that we’ll be eating well with delicious spots opening all over town each day.
The end of 2015 gave us hot spots like the lauded Staplehouse, swanky O-Ku Sushi, and Smyrna’s Porch Light Latin Kitchen, but 2016 is giving it a run for its money. And it’s not over yet! The rest of the year promises a new ramen hot spot, Next, Richards Southern Fried and Yumbii’s first brick and mortar.
But in the meantime, here are the 11 hottest restaurant openings of 2016 so far:
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2016 Openings at Ponce City Market
Ponce City Market
675 Ponce de Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30308
After what felt like an eternity, restaurants and dining stalls opened in the highly anticipated Ponce City Market the fall of 2015. Among the first spots to open were W.H. Stiles Fish Camp, Minero, and Brezza Cucina, but now others have joined the party. Take a trip back to the 60’s at The Mercury, from the same crew that brought you The Pinewood in Decatur. In this mid-century modern space, you’ll find classic cocktails (i.e. Manhattans, Daiquiris, Aviations, etc.) and American cuisine. Popular menu items include the lobster fritters, the prime rib sandwich, and the crab Louie salad.
Fans of Indian food can rejoice with the opening of Botiwalla, bringing Indian street food to the eclectic dining hall. It’s the sibling restaurant to Decatur’s Chai Pani, so expect an atmosphere with flair and food with plenty of zest. Must order items include the SPDP, savory puffed flour crisps stuffed with potatoes and piped with yogurt; the chicken tikka roll and the 50-plus-ingredient grilled lamb burgers.
Other exciting openings include South African jerky spot, Biltong Bar, Guy Wong’s Ton Ton Ramen and Yakitori and Marrakesh Mediterranean Market.
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Yebo Beach Haus
111 West Paces Ferry Rd. NW, Atlanta, GA 30305
Sunday, noon-3:00 p.m., 5:00-10:00 p.m.
Monday-Tuesday, 5:00-10:30 p.m.
Wednesday-Saturday, 5:00-11:00 p.m.
South African restaurateur Justin Anthony of 10 Degrees South has had quite the busy year. Last summer, he opened the chic and celebrity-studded Cape Dutch, and earlier this year carnivores got a bar of their own at Biltong Bar inside Ponce City Market.
Atlantans craving a bit of the beach life can get their fix at Anthony’s latest venture, Yebo Beach Haus, the reincarnated spin-off of Anthony’s former Yebo at Phipps Plaza resides off Paces Ferry in the former Coast space.
Here, diners can expect to find a fusion of American dishes and South African flavors. That means dishes like Peri-Peri prawn tacos loaded with avocado and mango salsa and the ever-popular ostrich sliders. In keeping with its airy coastal theme, lighter fare such as quinoa grain bowls and yellowtail crudo is also up for grabs. The perfect spot for cooler weather, there are two patios to sip on drinks like the BB Cooler, a blend of South African soda and vodka.
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Bread & Butterfly
290 Elizabeth St NE, Atlanta, GA 30307
Sunday, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Tuesday-Thursday, 7:30 a.m.-10:00 p.m.
Friday, 7:30 a.m.-11:00 p.m.
Saturday, 8:30 a.m.-11:00 p.m.
The sibling of Decatur’s Cakes and Ale, Bread and Butterfly (B&B) set up shop in trendy Inman Quarter this past spring. In a city heavy on restaurants with the hipster vibe, B&B transports its diners to Paris with a blue and green motif and a sunny, enclosed patio. No fried chicken or pulled pork here, but there is plenty of French café fare. The all-day spot serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, with popular menu items throughout the day, like the avocado toast, tomato soup with an impressive puff pastry, and the onion and mushroom French dip. You can also imbibe on cocktails, beer and wine (the Fitzgerald with gin, lemon, and sugar is particularly refreshing). Of course, you can’t pass on the delectable treats from its other sibling, Proof Bakeshop, which opened last year. Don’t leave without grabbing a croissant!Continue to 5 of 12 below.
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5260 Peachtree Parkway, Peachtree Corners, GA 30092
Monday-Saturday, 5:00-10:00 p.m.
Fans of Jay Swift’s 4th and Swift need to hit the road and head up to Peachtree Corners for his newest restaurant, Noble Fin. An American seafood and steak house, diners can satisfy their seafood cravings with raw oysters, jumbo lump crab cakes and a variety of simply prepared fish options. Meat eaters will be pleased with items like the prime 14-ounce New York strip and the Colorado lamb chops. Noble Fin has been quite popular since it opened this summer, so reservations are recommended.
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299 N Highland Ave, Atlanta, GA, 30307
Tuesday-Thursday, 5:00 p.m.- 1:00 a.m.
Friday-Saturday, 5:00 p.m.- 2:00 a.m.
Tired of the same old cocktail choices? Then Amer, sister bar to Bocado, is the spot for you! Another newcomer to the hopping Inman Quarter complex, Amer focuses on drinks made with bitters. The cozy spot (it only seats 35 people) has an extensive cocktail menu divided into four sections: shaken, stirred, built and sodas. While the drinks each use bitters, they aren’t all, well, bitter. The drinks are creative and playful, like the “Gucci Tonic” with gin, rum, pineapple, creole shrub, and tonic, or the “Death in June” with Aquavit, grapefruit, lime, pomegranate, seltzer and sea salt. This isn’t the place to come for dinner, but fun takes on bar snacks like the seasoned peanuts, baked ricotta, and smoked trout spread will satisfy the imbibers. You know that food created by chef Adam Waller is bound to be delicious.
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Hampton + Hudson
299 North Highland Avenue Northeast, Atlanta, GA 30307
Sunday, 10:00 a.m. – noon
Monday-Friday, 11:00 a.m.-2:30 a.m.
Saturday, 10:00 a.m.-2:30 a.m.
Inman Park continues to crush it in the dining department with the addition of Hampton + Hudson (H+H). The first sole venture of Billy Streck (Cypress Street Pint and Plate and Grain), H+H strives to be a neighborhood restaurant with its warm interior, comfy seating and extended hours. The menu focuses on upscale pub food, with an emphasis on shareable plates like the hot chicken biscuit sliders and steak tartare tacos. The drink list is also approachable with SweetWater 420 going for only three dollars, along with several other beer, wine, and cocktails.
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1197 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30361
Sunday-Thursday, 5:00 p.m.-midnight
Friday-Saturday, 5:00 p.m.-2:00 a.m.
Atlanta has become a hub for Carolina transplants (i.e. Tupelo Honey Cafe, Coletta, Oak), but the latest out of Charlotte, NC is by far the swankiest. 5Church brings drama to Colony Square in Midtown with black booths and walls, quirky art (check out the large UFO mural), feathered chandeliers and quotes from Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War” hand painted on the walls and ceiling. Loud EDM pumps through the speakers to ensure a party vibe, so this may not be the place to bring your grandparents. But, with its large size and rooftop, 5Church is perfect for a group gathering before a night on the town. It’s also within close proximity to the Woodruff Arts Center in case you need a post-symphony cocktail. Feast on dishes like the slow-cooked sea bass with preserved lemon or the rabbit agnolotti and wash them down with “The Preacher’s Daughter,” a refreshing concoction of peach moonshine, grilled peach punch, and lemon juice.Continue to 9 of 12 below.
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Brush Sushi Izakaya
316 Church Street, Decatur, GA, 30030
Sunday, 11:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m.; 5:30-10:00 p.m.
Tuesday-Thursday, 5:30-11:00 p.m.
Friday, 5:30-11:00 p.m.
Saturday, 11:30 am.-3:00 p.m., 5:30 p.m.-midnight
Izakaya means gastropub in Japanese. You won’t find your usual Philadelphia Rolls here; instead, expect authentic Japanese pub fare like a variety of skewers and grilled dishes. Kushikatsu (deep fried vegetables or meat) or yakitori (grilled meat) are staples. The sushi is artful and simple with combinations like salmon and citrus or yellowtail and fried leeks. The man behind the food, Chef Jason Liang, sources local chicken from Grassroots Farm and places a strong emphasis on using fish and seafood from Georgia. Other high-quality proteins include Wagyu beef from Japan and seafood purchased at the Tsukiji Market in Tokyo. For a truly indulgent experience order the Omakase – a pre fixe sushi tasting – available only at the sushi bar.
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Bon Glaze Doughnuts
3575 Durden Drive NE, Brookhaven, GA 30319
Hours vary by day, check the website.
What do you do when you’re over the corporate hustle and want to take your baking hobby to the next level? Open a doughnut shop, of course! That’s what husband-and-wife duo Kelly and Kenny Keith did when they opened this Brookhaven doughnut shop. Customers are wowed daily by the eye catching creations in unique flavors like s’mores, cotton candy (with actual cotton candy piled on top) and salted caramel balsamic. While most come for the doughnuts, some stay for the bacon – available candied and dipped in chocolate. A second location will soon open in Buckhead with other locations to follow.
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Linton’s in the Garden
1345 Piedmont Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
Tuesday, 9:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m.; Wednesday-Sunday, 9:00 a.m.-11:-00 p.m.
Dine among the flora and fauna at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens. Helmed by James Beard award winner, Linton Hopkins, Linton’s draws people in with warm earth tones and a sunny space. With windows galore, diners feel ensconced in the garden, while the rooftop offers sweeping views of the city. Linton’s prides itself on “garden-to-plate” dining, utilizing the edible plants in the botanical garden seen in dishes like the “blackened cabbage” with roasted summer squash, broccoli and creamed silver corn. Don’t let the garden vibe scare you away, meat eaters. There’s an “iron skillet New York strip” with Jerusalem artichoke puree, crisp sweet potato and dressed arugula with your name on it. Besides the art on the plates, be sure to check out the Chihuly drawings on the walls of the main dining room.
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Storico Fresco Alimentari
Storico Fresco Alimentari
3167 Peachtree Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30305
Lunch, Monday-Saturday, 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Dinner, Monday- Saturday, 6:00-10:00 p.m.
Atlanta’s own Eataly can be found in the heart of Buckhead at Storico Fresco. The original location was a hole in the wall shop, but the new spot invites people to stay, sit down and have a glass of Chianti. A wide selection of freshly made pastas, sauces, and salads is available along with large display cases of meats, cheeses, and desserts. Lunch and dinner service is also available with a variety of antipasti (fried squash blossoms with ricotta cheese are a must), pasta dishes like squid ink chitarra, and simple, but lovely, secondi like the veal breast stuffed with summer greens and roasted quail with sausage. There’s a full bar and espresso machine to meet your Italian beverage needs.