JEZE January 2015 : Page 118

100 Hottest RESTAURANTS 2015 Taqueria del Sol Multiple locations $3-$11 @taqueriadelsol P 71 Sure, you have to stand in line with all the other Del Sol devotees, but it’s worth the time spent inhaling the scent wafting from the kitchen. Once at the counter, call out your order in a hurry. We suggest a fried chicken taco with lime jalapeno mayonnaise, shrimp corn chowder and a shredded brisket enchilada with pork green chile. If you’ve come with a crew, splurge and get the guacamole, cheese dip and salsa trio, and wash it down with a pitcher of the famed margaritas. Weekly specials—from nutty shrimp tacos to tamales—are never a miss. Take a chance. Empire State South 999 Peachtree St. NE Midtown 404.541.1105 | $20-$46 @essouth B R P F 74 YEAH! Burger Multiple locations $7-$12 @yeahburger P F 72 73 Celebs like Owen Wilson, Jake Gyllenhaal and Vince Vaughn have all been spotted getting their grub on at YEAH! Burger. Maybe it’s the fact that the fast-casual concept is basically guilt-free with the use of organic local produce and antibiotic-and hormone-free meat. Score! January specials include the patty melt, roasted beet salad, and french toast and bacon shake. The selection of hot dogs (go for the Southern dog) and salads (kale, yeah!) are equally delicious options and quickly make you realize this isn’t your average burger joint. Gluten-free vegan burgers on gluten-free buns for the win! This seafood fave is from the same Here to Serve Restaurants team behind Noche, Shucks Oyster Bar, Aja Restaurant & Bar and more. The sea-shanty ambience, while casual, still pulls in the well-heeled West Paces crowd, who fl ock here for its coastal-chill vibe. Chef Quentin Donnaud (who won Food Network’s Chopped ) can fi nesse lemon sole and blackened salmon just as well as he can handle addictive sweet-corn and jalapeno hush puppies. Two patios (a packed one in the front and a more private one in the back) keep the scene Jimmy Buff et song-ready all year long—and the secret iron skillet seafood nachos are worth staying awhile for. Park Tavern 500 10th St. NE Midtown 404.249.0001 | $8-$17 @parktavern R P F 75 76 As Top Chef judge and restaurateur Hugh Acheson continues to build his empire (recently opening The Florence in Savannah), his actual empire—Empire State South—remains one of the buzziest restaurants in Atlanta. Pull up a steampunk-esque stool at the bar, and you’ll often fi nd Bar Manager Kellie Thorn standing on the counter reaching for bottles and bitters to make refreshing cocktails like Aesop Sour with gin, raspberry eau de vie, hay sugar and absinthe. On the dining side, Executive Chef Josh Hopkins is serving up fresh Georgia catfi sh and delectable stuff ed quail. Sweeten the experience with ESS’ signature candy plate. Roll with the best of them at Park Tavern, where the menu is as exciting as the crowd. A fresh sushi bar churns out sashimi-grade tuna, chef specials like the sushi boat (six to nine of your favorite rolls to share) and specialty sushi rolls like the Piedmont and Dyno-mite. Plus, it’s all half-priced every night from 10 PM to midnight! Not a sushi fan? Check in on Wednesdays for half-priced bottles of wine and try a fresh-ground burger like the gorgonzola bleu ribbon, BBQ or sauteed shroom. Finish it all off on the patio with a Peach on the Beach or Easy Does It in hand while you and your pooch take in breathtaking views of Piedmont Park. Aw! There’s a reason this buzzy tapas spot from Here to Serve Restaurants has locations dotted all over metro Atlanta. From the beloved margaritas and Spanish tapas to Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes, you’ll be hard-pressed to walk in with a date or group of pals and not have a blast. The Trailer Park taco with queso and fried chicken is nearly impossible to pass up, while seafood ops like chipotle mango barbecue salmon, along with meat-free items like garlic mushrooms, mean there’s something to please every palate. Add daily drink specials and $2 tacos every Monday and what’s not to love? Lest we forget, there was a time in the not-too-distant past when Krog Street was not the center of the dining universe. Before KSM opened en masse, Kevin Rathbun reigned supreme, and apparently, still does. Years after Krog Bar opened, we still can’t pull ourselves away from the warehouse-chic elegance of the place. Rathbun’s take on high-end steakhouse bar fare beefs things up enough to make this a Friday night one-stop, but passing through the outrageously talented, wine-heavy bar is suitable for pre-game or nightcap too, when it comes to making your rounds on the outskirts of Inman Park. With World Cup madness at an all-time high this past year, fans found themselves searching for a pub from which to cheer on their favorite team. Buckhead mainstay and neighborhood institution Fadó Irish Pub was the epicenter, and keeps its patrons happy with cocktails and pints of solid beer selections that include local and international faves, and options to mix your own Guinness with everything from Strongbow, to SweetWater 420. Traditional Irish pub fare with a modern twist is front and center with fi sh and chips, shepherd’s pie and a deluge of $4 snacks and bar bites for happy hour daily. 118 Coast Seafood & Raw Bar 111 W. Paces Ferry Road Buckhead 404.869.0777 | $13-$28 @coastatl1 R P Noche Multiple locations $4-$11 @nochevh_atl R P P Tav ark ern Krog Bar 112 Krog St. NE Inman Park 404.524.1618 | $6-$18 @rathbuns R P 77 KEY: $ -Dinner entree price range B -Brunch available [times vary] R -Reservations accepted [restrictions may apply] P -Patio dining F -Furry friends welcome PARK TAVERN PHOTO BY BECKY STEIN Fadó Irish Pub 273 Buckhead Ave. Buckhead 404.841.0066 | $8-$16 @fadoatlanta B R P 78

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