There's no room for additives in Juice Zone's smoothies, not even extra sugar. Instead, staff members make them with non-fat frozen yogurt, sorbet, and fresh fruit?including everything from pineapple, strawberries, and coconut to peaches and bananas. Their commitment to simple, delicious and, most importantly, healthful recipes is evident throughout the rest of the cafe menu as well, which features crisp salads and a selection of wraps and sandwiches that can be grilled atop the kitchen's miniature volcano.
Signed guitars and celebrity photos line the walls at Star Café Inc., but it's the food that gets top billing. And it's no wonder, with a menu chock full of hearty Southern-style food. Biscuits drenched in sausage gravy stick to ribs, while ribs and brisket elicit looks of longing from the faces of The Beatles and Bob Marley, looking down from photo frames. Down-home meals can be rounded out with traditional side dishes, such as sliced red georgia tomatoes, sweet potato souffle, and purple hull peas.
R. Thomas Deluxe Grill offers the sort of over-the-top kitsch that must be seen to be believed. The vibrant décor offers a bit of the tropics in the middle of Atlanta, laced with the bright colors of the wild and hippie-chic touches that will have you smiling through your meal. If anything, R. Thomas Deluxe Grill is a little escape in the middle of your workday. It’s also a great place to get flavorful California-leaning food that won’t leave you full of regret afterward, with healthy touches that play into the warm, peaceful vibe. Look out for the exotic birds that call the patio garden their home, and don’t be afraid to swing in after-hours for a curious bit of fun; R. Thomas Deluxe Grill is open 24 hours.
Chef Chris Hall, one of the three locals behind the eatery’s moniker, sources fresh, seasonal ingredients from area farmers and weaves them into creative and playful comfort dishes. For example, the chefs show off some of the region's best meats—and some of their own butchery skills—in the Notorious P.I.G. charcuterie plate, and they modernize the classic meatloaf by subbing in a sophisticated pâte and pairing it with pickled seasonal vegetables.
More than 100 varieties of wine quite literally surround guests at Local Three, where the bottles are tucked into the walls in a private dining room. Space behind the curved oak bar is reserved exclusively for spirits, including more than 40 bourbons available by the glass or flight. The bar’s taps flow with local and international craft brews, and bartenders shake up a seasonal cocktail list that, more often than not, features a drink inspired by The Big Lebowski.
Most locavores dwell more on where their food comes from than where it’s prepared, but the owners of Local Three poured a lot of thought into their kitchen—which, at more than 4,000 square feet, is actually larger than all the restaurant's dining rooms combined. This sprawling workspace houses enough gadgetry to make just about everything from scratch, including a duck-fat fryer, two smokers, and a computer-controlled oven complete with USB port. There's even a designated pasta room that operates on a separate heating system to control humidity.
Armed with just a single, generations-old cookie recipe, Great American Cookies opened its first store in 1977, and the rest is history. Today, the franchise boasts locations in malls across the country and nabbed a coveted spot on Entrepreneur magazine’s 2012 Top 500 Franchises in the baked-goods category. As the shop’s reputation grew, so did its menu as chefs churned out a mouthwatering roster of gourmet-cookie recipes, each created and carefully tested in Atlanta. The tempting options now include snickerdoodle, original chocolate chip with M&Ms, and chewy pecan supreme, as well as freshly baked fudge and cheesecake brownies, and cookie sandwiches stuffed with frosting. The real show-stoppers, however, are the giant chocolate-chip cookie cakes, which can be customized with sweet, celebratory messages or shopping lists penned in colorful icing.
Not very many people get inspired by tacos served out of the back of a nondescript van. But when Nacho Mama's Street Taqueria founder Ray bit into one of those freshly prepared tacos, he found his calling: make quality Mexican food. After attending Le Cordon Bleu, he began serving tacos from the back of his own food truck. Now, he's got his own restaurant.
Each taco, burrito, or rice bowl comes with your choice of meat, such as pork cooked with green chilies, chicken in a chipotle sauce, and traditional braised carnitas. For vegetarians, there's roasted corn and poblanos instead. The final product is paired with a side of chips and salsa. Meals can be washed down with Jarritos soda, which comes in an array of unique flavors, much like jelly beans after merging with that spice company.