A couple of weeks ago, one of my best friends from school, E.J., came to visit. People kept asking, “What are y’all going to do?” and “What will you take him to see?” Do? See? All we did and planned on doing was EAT…
I mapped out a food itinerary for his trip that featured some of my favorite Atlanta spots while keeping in mind his favorite foods. Here’s the list:
- Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q
- Sublime Doughnuts
- Fellini’s Pizza
- Gladys Knight’s Chicken & Waffles
- The Varsity
- Atlanta Food Truck Park
Believe it or not, we ate at all but one spots. And the one restaurant that we didn’t get around to was ironically at the top of both of our lists – Gladys Knight’s Chicken & Waffles.
I shall now give you a play-by-play of each food trip (from E.J.’s ordering perspective)…
- Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q: Ding, ding, ding…we have a winner. We went straight to my favorite BBQ spot from the airport and dined on a variety of favorites. Our table shared a generous portion of fried pickles to start. E.J. ordered the pulled pork plate with wings, macaroni and cheese and fried okra.
- Taco Cabana: This was our late-night, impulse decision after an evening at the bars in Virginia-Highlands. Thanks to our friend Steve, I’ve now been inside the the brightly lit, 24-hour, drive-thru/restaurant on the corner of Piedmont & Cheshire Bridge. Taco Bell would’ve sufficed, however, our taco plates and cheese dip definitely hit the 2 a.m. sweet spot.
- Willy’s: It wouldn’t have been a trip to Atlanta without stopping at the city’s favorite burrito place. What is adored by so many Atlantans and out-of-towners, unfortunately didn’t make the cut with E.J. He opted for a burrito bowl (still scratching my head over that one) while my friend Sarah and I went for the obvious…burritos. At least he gave it a fair shot…
- Atlanta Food Truck Park: Basically heaven. This won everyone’s heart and stomachs on Saturday afternoon. From the macaroni and cheese truck, Mac the Cheese Truck to the lemonade stand and french fries we ordered, the food truck park is a mecca when it comes to food. Whatever you want, they have it.
- Fellini’s: Our bellies were pretty full but thanks to E.J.’s new love of beer, we stopped by Fellini’s for more afternoon brews. After splitting a pitcher, we got slices to go for dinner. Fellini’s pizza has officially been stamped E.J.-approved, which didn’t surprise me one bit.
- The Vortex: We consumed a few too many “iced waters” at the bar on Saturday night, which caused for a delay in our food schedule on Sunday morning. Originally I’d planned to get up bright and early to beat the crowd at Gladys Knight’s, however, our plans had to be changed due to the ridiculous line out the door. Instead, I took E.J. to another Atlanta gem in Little Five Points – The Vortex. After being carded for apparently looking under 18 (a famous rule at the joint), we sat down in preparation to cure our Saturday night coma. Leave it to E.J. to order the Coronary Bypass Burger and tater tots. I opted for the Blue ‘Shroom Burger. Together we shared the Cheesy Cheddar Balls (yes, fried cheese). To my surprise, we weren’t able to stomach more than a few bites.
- Sublime Doughnuts: Every meal needs a dessert, right? We were in one of those food coma moments, when all we could say is, “Why not?”. So we ventured to the doughnut bakery that has gotten rave reviews – Sublime Doughnuts. A little overwhelmed by the endless menu, I chose the Nutella Doughnut, while E.J. opted for a Glazed Fritter.
- The Varsity: After driving around Atlanta bit, E.J. decided he could conquer the last item on the food list: The Varsity. What’ll ya have!? What’ll ya have!? This Atlanta landmark is known for its hot dogs and drive-in. We pulled up and parked while the enthusiastic Varsity employees took our order. E.J. got the standard chili cheese dog with fries, while I opted for lighter fare with a Frosted Orange, or “F.O.” You can’t drive through midtown or downtown Atlanta without stopping here.
I’m pretty sure I gained about five pounds during E.J.’s visit, but hey, it was worth every ounce. I absolutely loved showing a friend around my city, especially since we only visited food landmarks.