13 Favorite Dishes from 2015

"Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and drinking if God had notmade them a pleasure as well as a necessity." Voltaire

Not precisely sure how 2015 disappeared so quickly, but MAN was it delicious!

I thought it would be helpful, at least for my long-term memory, to recap the most memorable dishes of year. These are the star tastes which make me salivate at the mere mention of the restaurant. These dishes motivate me to make reservations and drive to places like Decatur for a meal. (Why does it always take me so long to get to Decatur anyway??)  Your tastes may not align with mine, but I'll let you disagree on your blog!

Here we go...Speaking of Decatur, let's start with an appetizer, the fried kale paekoras at Chai Pani. If I'm anywhere close to this restaurant, I'll pop in for an order of this fried goodness. I am smitten with the green chutney and yogurt sauce. SO great!

This also happens to be one of my favorite places to bring visitors, including our favorite British soccer coaches who will tell you the food is "class!"Also in the appetizer/small plate category, are the clams at Cooks and Soldiers.  This basque take is called Almejas which is Sapelo Island clams, bacon, feta, and green apple. I still crave the broth. If you're out and about near Old Fourth Ward or Avalon and need a quick fix-the-hangry-attitude-with-a-snack kind of dish, Lottafrutta is a perfect thing to get. I can't adequately explain why this simple cup of fruit and cream is so spectacular, but it is. Also in Old Fourth Ward is my favorite Japanese restaurant, Miso Izakaya. I didn't do a new review this year, but I had this new entrant this summer, a special salmon/shrimp/tuna trio. It was SO great!  Doesn't the picture just make you hungry?

I don't even know if this makes a regular appearance on the menu, so you may not be able to find the dish. Still, anything you order will be fabulous. For entrees, I was thrilled to discover El Mexicano's shrimp or, more precisely, the Camerones al mojo de ajo, or shrimp with jalapeno and garlic in a butter sauce.


Be still my heart!If you'd rather eat lobster for your seafood, you would do well to venture out to Buford Highway for BoBo Garden's lobster Hong Kong style.  It's hard to tell WHAT this picture shows, but trust me, it's a game changer!Also in the "can't recognize the seafood" category is the Soft Crab Omelet with shaved mushrooms, chives, and watercress dish at Marcel. I gushed in my review and I still dream about learning how to make this buttery rich goodness. What's that you say? You're a vegetarian?

I have never flipped out over tofu the way I did at Dua Vietnamese Noodle Soup (note - the name isn't representative of the dish - you haven't lost your mind and I haven't erred!). I like my "Bun with Tofu" spicy and it's kick isn't for the weak. (Note - I don't know why it's called "bun" when there's no bun in the mix.)


Fortunately Dua is better with food than naming things!In the mood for pasta? Head over to St. Cecilia and order the homemade agnolotti filled with braised short-rib and seasoned with a drizzle of red wine au jus, scallions, and Parmesan cheese.


I am on a mission to learn how to make short ribs because of this dish. Your cooking ambitions might change as well. You've been warned.As a side dish, the green beans at Le Fat are not to be believed. I am tempted to throw out a list of adjectives describing this deliciousness, but I worry you'll all think I've lost my mind.

Seriously. How good can green beans be?


How about trying them and letting me know yourself? I may still be day dreaming about them... I mean, if they weren't lowly green beans...

Finally, let's move onto desserts.  I stand by my assessment that Gunshow's banana pudding is the best dessert in Atlanta. But dang if last week's lemon icebox cake from Revival isn't the object of my latest "I need to make that" obsession. Clearly Chef Gillespie cares about desserts.Finally, I would be remiss if I didn't mention the crème brûlée at Kimball House which is perfection itself.  In fact, for best overall dining experience, Kimball House is tops in my heart still. If you live in Atlanta, you are surrounded by incredible restaurants. If you haven't been trying out new places, I think 2016 should be your year!

Until then, I'll do what I can to share what I know.

Happy trails my friends!