Food & Drink in Athens

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From one side, it’s a traditional wedding cake: dainty piped swags swoop across smooth white tiers. But as the quadruple-decker delicacy slowly rotates on its motorized stand, they come into view—fondant zombies. Carnage. Chaos. And, notes Deborah, real buttercream frosting.

This monstrous delicacy is only one example of the heights to which Deborah aims to reach in her quest to personalize cakes. The inveterate baker has frosted life-size guitars with intricately wrought whammy bars, and has solved the logistics of balancing a cake atop a perfect sphere. Each triumph is the result of in-depth consultations with clients. “I have to get to know them, get to know their personality,” says Deborah. Once she has ascertained her client’s style, a sketch and negotiations ensue, and the end result is a centerpiece that harmonizes with the celebration. Along with her careful attention to appearance, Deborah does not shirk taste: 10 pounds of butter and four heaping cups of real vanilla go into her buttercream frosting, which remains as airy and light regardless of the design.

197 Holly Hills Ct
Athens,
GA
US

A singing ballerina, Marilyn Monroe, a dainty geisha, and a tap-dancing chicken are just a few of the characters that deliver the singing telegrams that oft accompany CareAway Cakes & Gifts celebratory cupcakes. The crooning characters arrive to requested locations, whether that be the home of a loved one or the board meeting of a Fortune 500 CEO, to croon out personalized messages. Aside from the singing and sugar offerings—CareAway Cakes & Gifts acts as a one-stop shop for all party essentials including flowers, gift baskets, and specialty treats. Drawing on more than 20 years of experience, their pastry chef craft anything from cheesecakes and cupcakes to cookies, homemade pies, and gluten-free brownies. They also decorate customized cakes bearing designs such as a 3D rendition of a Georgia Bulldog, a 3D electric guitar, or cakes displaying cherished comic book heroes such as Spiderman and Business Casual Dan. Most baked goods are available for local shipping, and some are available for national shipping via UPS.

1055 Gaines School Rd
Athens,
GA
US

Recently featured in Athens Food and Culture Magazine, Jack's Bar pleases adult palates of all styles with tantalizing wine tastings and a cozy, sports-centric ambience, including a heated patio and big-game-beaming TVs. Amid glowy lights and a backlit bar, imbibe six South American wines while getting the skinny on their complex flavors, a thrill for burgeoning fine-wine aficionados or developers of wine-flavored toothpastes. As stomachs savor zestful vinos, mouths can relish complimentary hors d'oeuvres. Customers must be 21 and up.

254 W Clayton St
Athens,
GA
US

Just Pho serves authentic, flavorful Vietnamese dishes, including traditional, nutritious pho soups made with all-natural beef, chicken and vegetable broths.

1063 Baxter St
Athens,
GA
US

The culinary authors at Utage Athens Sushi Bar compose compelling nonfiction masterpieces about tasty Japanese cuisine. The 10-piece lobster-roll dish, a maki plate, weaves avocado, cucumber, lettuce, and masago into a flavorful fabric of deep-fried lobster ($12.50). Utage stultifies hunger with 26 varieties of authentic raw nigiri, one for each human sense.

440 East Clayton Street
Athens,
GA
US

Casa Mia serves up a dinner menu that features 15 tapas options as well as other Latin specialties. Share small plates, such as Colombian chorizo sausage served with a diving pool of creamy salsa rosada ($6). Sauteed mushrooms and onions sneak into melted monterey-jack cheese in Casa Mia's mushroom cheese dip, waiting anxiously for slices of dunking bread to find them ($5). Less traditional options include the Latin sushi roll, which stuffs chicken ($7) or fish ($8) inside sweet plantains covered in avocado sauce. Those opposed to culinary communes can sample a Latin-inspired entree of their very own, such as the hot-pressed Cuban sandwich stacked with ham, swiss cheese, avocado, sauces, and your choice of veggies ($7), chicken ($8), pork ($9), or steak ($10). A selection of sharable desserts offers sweet-seeking tongues a dynamic finale, including churros in a chocolate dipping sauce ($5) and spanish flan glazed with caramel ($5). Check out Casa Mia’s brunch and lunch menus for earlier dining options.

269 N Hull St
Athens,
GA
US