The first annual Food That Rocks celebration takes center stage on May 14th in Hammond Park. Sandy Springs. More than 20 restaurants and mixologists will be on hand to serve up delicious tastes while local favorites Tony Levitas and the Helpers, Ed Roland and the Sweet Tea Project and the Tommy Dean Trio will serve up familiar classics and new music from 7:00 p.m. to 11:00pm.
Chef Linda Harrell has carved out a little piece of Italy on Roswell Road just inside the Perimeter. In an unassuming strip mall opposite Fountain Oaks Kroger, Harrell and her team are serving up some of the best meatballs, pasta and wood-fired pizza in the city. With an extensive menu that offers a mouth-watering veal chop served with a crab and artichoke ragu, celebrated seared scallops with pecan risotto and basil crab cakes (oh, the crab cakes!), this cozy restaurant is a must-visit if you’re in the area. Or even if you’re not. One caveat: food this good costs a little more, but when every menu item from pancetta to tiramisu is a home run, it’s worth going to bat for.
Near another Kroger, this time at the Sandy Springs City Walk center, is one of Atlanta’s most interesting and exciting food experiences: flavor tripping. Get your reservation for this limited seating monthly event, and have your palate rewired by synsepalum dulcificum – the miracle berry. Salt and vinegar chips taste like candy corn, lemons and lime taste candied and vinegar tastes like apple juice; it’s a world it something of an elegant nightclub vibe, and the cocktail menu holds its own against any in the city. For food, you can’t go wrong with the New Zealand lamb lollipops or Chilean Sea Bass with cauliflower mash, and don’t dare leave without trying the bananas foster ice cream.
Diners should be aware that there are table minimums on Friday and Saturday nights and that there are charges for cigar cutting and for bringing in outside cakes (if you’re having a party). Check the menu to make sure you don’t get surprised.
Inside the Perimeter, just north of Wieuca Road is a delightful pie shop serving no-fuss, classic Southern pies. Whether your taste is for a simple pecan pie or a more exotic coconut cream pie, Kimmie, Ben, Wesley and Clarissa will hook you up with a slice of goodness that will make you feel good in more ways than one: Every month proceeds from one flavor of pie are donated to local causes and charities.
Cloud 9, Buttermilk Sky’s take on pie a la mode is a little slice of heaven in a juice glass. Yes, a juice glass.
As a rule, if it can be found underwater, it can be found on the menu at Hammocks. You like fish and chips? It’s here. You like crab legs by the pound? They’re here. How about oysters? They only have eight ways of serving them, so…yeah, that’s covered. But it’s not all scales and shells: if you like your food cooked low and slow, there’s brisket and pork and chicken fresh from the smoker. The restaurant feels like it would be right at home with a view of the beach and ocean rather than the Big Lots across Roswell Road, but once you’re inside the bright dining room or under the bright umbrellas on the patio you won’t be able to tell the difference.
Game on! If video games, board games and nerd culture-inspired menu items are your thing…Chewie…we’re home. With Playstations, Xboxes, Wii and PC stations – and dozens of games on each platform, you won’t get bored. But what about the food? And the puns? Star Wars fans can find a Biggs and Wedge Salad while the Nicktoons fan in you can enjoy a Crabby Patty, and you know what they call a quarter pounder with cheese in France? Well that’s on the menu, too. When in doubt, don’t get stingy with the espresso: Double Tap (that’s rule #2 to you and us, and coffee with a couple shots of espresso to the good folks at B&B).