Noche Brookhaven: Tapas Culture with a Southern Kick

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“The trick to any great meal is starting off with guacamole.” – ancient Chinese proverb

If you’re from the South and love tapas, you need to get your ass to Noche A$AP. This restaurant does a great job of combining the dining culture of Spanish tapas with Southern favorites, incorporating foods like fried chicken and cheesy grits into the menu to make the most of its location. Continue reading

Sugar Shack: Cutest Café and Bakery in Brookhaven

photo (1)At the Sugar Shack, you can easily have a great meal for under $10. Try an adult grilled cheese with potato salad, or a balsamic chicken panini with chips.

If you’re on the go during a lunch break, or looking to eat somewhere for an adorable brunch date, head here! From what I’ve observed, lots of people run in and out of this place; few sit down to eat. They’ve got lots of coffee drinks (lattes, café au lait, french press, macchiatos), as well as gourmet breakfast bagels! Continue reading

So Kong Dong Tofu House: What Sundubu Jjigae Is, and Why You Need To Try It

So Kong Dong…is not a first date location. It is a great splurge-for-dinner-with-friends sit-down meal kind of location, but I wouldn’t even call it a splurge, because if three people come relatively starving and order two combo meals, they will all leave very full and satisfied, for about $13 each.

Tofu House is a very small restaurant that’s situated in the very corner of an obscure shopping center in the center of what I consider Atlanta’s Chinatown, Buford Highway. It is, quite metaphorically, a diamond in the rough.

There will be lots of Asians in groups of friends and families sitting at the table, so you know this place is pretty authentic, for tofu soup. And when the words tofu soup appear on your screen, I know your first instinct is to close the tab and shake your head slowly because you just wasted 30 seconds of your life reading this, but keep reading.  Continue reading

Hankook Taqueria: KorMex Fusion You Won’t Believe

hankookI guess the thing about Hankook is that it looks really sketchy from the outside. It’s a tiny little hut that I nearly drove past, with few parking spaces. Even when I walked in, I was a bit skeptical. But I regretted judging a book by its cover as soon as I took a bite of my beloved taco.

Hankook is a Korean-American restaurant established by Tomas Lee, who just wanted to present his food and culture in a simple fashion: T.A.C.O.S.

I went for lunch with my friend Rahul on a Saturday, and the place was crawling with Georgia Tech kids. We struggled for around ten minutes to find a table, as the place was bustling.

Their menu is very short and simple: snacks, tacos, and burritos. Continue reading

The Vortex: The Epitome of Sass in a Meal

I love a sassy attitude as much as the next person, and I was excited to discover a restaurant that is the epitome of sass. The Vortex Bar and Grill is located in the heart of Atlanta’s Midtown, the center of youth vibrancy and bustling activity.

Some restaurants indirectly try too hard but attempt to cover it up; the Vortex, by contrast, is straightforward about what they offer, which is a no-fuss attitude, a decor of badassery, and delicious, cheap burgers. They refuse to deal with anyone’s bullshit, and with dozens of awards on their wall, they can definitely afford to be upfront about it.

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Saigon Basil: You Get What You Pay For

Let me try to contextualize this for you: we visited Saigon Basil on a Saturday evening at 7PM, and the restaurant was empty. Completely. I was really confused, but stuck to my guns…

Saigon Basil is an impossibly small Vietnamese-Thai fast food joint with an impossibly smaller parking lot that’s ideal if you’re looking for inexpensive takeout food, determined because 1) they deliver and 2) lots of people came in over the course of our meal to pick up food, answering some of the questions raging inside my head.

I don’t think there’s a single item on the menu that’s over $10, but the price means some quality is definitely sacrificed, and I have to question that quality. Continue reading

Com Vietnamese Grill in Dunwoody: Our Waiter Confronted Us After the Meal

My friend Bryant and I went to a Vietnamese grill in Dunwoody the other day. The restaurant was difficult to find, hidden in one of the corners of a huge shopping center. Not a smart location move on Com’s part.

We walked into the grill at 6PM on a Wednesday evening and the place was nearly empty. However, over the course of two hours or so it filled up a bit, with young Caucasians.

Let’s see. Com is a Vietnamese restaurant with French influences, and a bar counter. However, the decor of the place has convinced me that the restaurant is suffering from a long-term identity crisis. In a dimly lit dining area, why would you choose such a light shade of wood for your tables and chairs?

But then I realized it’s all the actual food itself. Continue reading

Taqueria Del Sol: Simple, “Cross-Cultural Flair” in Record Time

Taqueria del Sol. I’d heard a bunch about it when I asked around about Mexican food in Atlanta, and I finally went with my sister one day to see what this place was all about.

The restaurant believes in providing a few high-quality dishes as opposed to many “okay” dishes, which is a point with which I strongly agree. The food they offer is very simple, and the menu is short. They have six tacos, a make-your-own-enchilada option, three apps, and a medley of sides, as well as two lunch specials and three dinner specials that rotate every week. They also have an extensive alcohol menu! Continue reading

Shoya Izakaya: As Authentic Japanese As You Can Get

What do you imagine the headquarters of a Japanese mafia to look like? I made up my mind as soon as I walked into Shoya Izakaya, which is located on the corner of a very nearly empty shopping center.

It feels just the way you think a traditional Japanese teahouse might, except the dim and loud atmosphere makes me feel like there’s a mafia meeting happening behind the plain white walls, with dark wood strips running along them.

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There’s a full sushi bar with seating to observe very energetic and enthusiastic sushi chefs converse with one another and the diners.

Shoya also offers an authentic dining experience in which groups of 4 or more can take off their shoes before entering a private eating space and sit on floor cushions with cloth coverings on the door for privacy. You either have to meet a baseline cost of food or pay an external fee for the private room. Continue reading