Lotus Vietnamese

Gỏi đu đủ tôm

Tender shrimp, shredded green papaya, basil, roasted peanuts, crushed peanuts, minced red chili peppers, and a touch of minced onion were carefully dressed.  We’ve always loved this dish.  And, we probably always will.

Gỏi

BÒ LÁ LỐP

Someone just can’t wait.

Bánh Hỏi

Lemon With Salt & Pepper Blend

Bò Lúc Lắc

The sauce might be a bit glossy and sweet.  But, the beef was perfectly tender.

Cơm Tấm

We’d love to go straight down the list.  We ended with a soothing pot of delicate jasmine tea.  It was the icing on the cake for us.  Yet another lovely and delicious meal at Lotus Vietnamese, we’re already eager to return.

Lotus Vietnamese Cuisine
2550 Pleasant Hill Road
Suite 408
Duluth, GA 30096
770 622 9693

Radial Cafe

Biscuits & Butter

These tender, homey biscuits were served warm.

Rich, buttery, and a little bit dense…

They only require the tiniest touch of soft, creamy butter and house-made strawberry jam.

Pork Belly Hash Topped With A Fried Egg

Each nibble of pork belly was perfectly tender with crispy, crunchy edges.  This pork belly hash could easily turn into one of our all-time favorites.

Krispy Kreme French Toast

Krispy Kreme French toast offered by a cafe that’s barely a handful of steps away from a CrossFit.

But, there’s no guilt, right?

Strawberry Rhubarb Preserves

The tart bite of rhubarb was definitely needed here.

Super kid-friendly, every table fills up fast on the weekend (around 10ish).

Radial Cafe
1530 Dekalb Avenue
Atlanta, GA 30307
404 659 6594

Sweet Auburn Barbecue

Sweet Auburn Barbecue

Cocktails

Starters

Sweet Auburn Country Picnic Plate

If you start here, you’ll never be able to finish the rest of your meal.  This very generous plate of candied bacon, pimento cheese, and Benton’s country ham served with two mounds of homemade pickles could easily be a meal… or two.

Plates

Maple Glazed Smoked Peking Duck

Beautifully smoked, maple added a touch of sweetness to each perfectly tender, smoky bite of duck.

More, please.  We’re pretty sure we could eat this every day of the week.

Build Your Own Meal…

With The Side Of Your Choice

Memphis Baby Back Ribs With Jamaican Jerk Spiced Collards

This was another plate of smoky, delicious meat.  This time it was a generous portion of baby back pork ribs rubbed with Memphis style spices.  And, those jerk spiced collards still managed to grab our interest.  They were alive with a bright flash of vinegar and a hefty dose of spice.  Loved them!

Coconut Lemongrass Pork Spare Ribs

Even though it was a little bit on the salty side, this was a serious favorite for one of us.

We were hooked at the first sip of Ruby Ruby Rhubarb.

There are a lot of big flavors to be had at Sweet Auburn.  Match them wisely and you’ll be rewarded.

Super friendly service, too!

Sweet Auburn Barbecue
(Sweet Auburn BBQ)
656 North Highland Avenue NE
Atlanta, GA 30306
678 515 3550

‘Cue Barbecue

‘Cue BBQ

Pulled Pork…

And Chicken

Ribs

The meat was a bit dry… even under a rather thick coating of sauce.

Collards & Sweet Potato Casserole

If we were in the area, we might consider a return visit.  But, it’s not likely.

Cue Barbecue

Man Chun Hong

Sichuan Wontons With Red Chili Oil

We’ve never been soup lovers.  But, oh my goodness, we do love this dish.  This is one rich and spicy broth that holds our attention from the first bite to the very last.  Both the red chili oil clinging to each wonton and the peppery broth bring their own unique heat.

Imperial Shrimp

After the Sichuan wontons in chili oil, the sweetness of this dish was soothing.  It paired nicely with the tingly, numbing heat of the Shan City chicken, too.

Shan City Chicken

Sichuan pepper clings to each piece of chicken.

The grind of the Sichuan and other peppers ranged from coarse bits to a fine powder.  The powerful bite of those coarse chunks had us reaching for another sweet shrimp.  Paired with that sweetness, we were able to truly appreciate the flavor of the Sichuan pepper without being overwhelmed by it.

This was another really great meal at Man Chun Hong.  With each new visit, we fall a little bit deeper under their spell.

Man Chun Hong Chinese Restaurant
5953 Buford Highway
Atlanta, GA 30340
770 454 5640

Paris Baguette Cafe — Another Visit

Paris Baguette Cafe Pastries

Two Canelés, Two Almond Rum Pastries,
& One Chocolatine

You can even see the flecks of vanilla dotting the top of the canelé.

Decisions, decisions…

Clearly, the chocolatine must be our last bite.

But, those sheer, glossy layers were tempting us.

The layers were feathery light and beautifully fluffy.

The delicate scent of vanilla hits your nose first.  But, it’s the bright taste of rum that wakes up your taste buds and adds complexity and depth to this lush, creamy custard.  Almond?  We missed you here.

Oops, it’s already sweet.  Note for next time, taste first.

We’re pretty sure that’s a streak of ganache and not a bar of chocolate.  The chocolate flavor was a bit muted.  We might need another taste …just to be sure.  Two visits in one weekend, how did we manage to miss the almond croissants?

Next time:

First stop, almond croissant.  Then, we’ll take a loaf of barley or chestnut bread to go.

Paris Baguette Cafe
5252 Buford Highway NE
Doraville, GA  30340
770 455 8552

Paris Baguette Cafe

The Paris Baguette Cafe Cronut

Or Croissant Doughnut

Coffee Cream Croissant Dougnut

Crisp, thin layers flake beautifully on the exterior.

Fluffy layers and generous quantities of cream mingle inside.  This was one extremely rich (bordering on too rich) doughnut.  One of us thought that one croissant doughnut made a deliciously rich and very satisfying breakfast.  The other thought that even just one was a bit too rich and a little bit too greasy.  Also, we experimented with taking two croissant doughnuts to go.  But, this is a doughnut extravagance that you are going to want to consume immediately.  Those delicate layers filled with cream lost their interior volume and got a bit soggy after a couple of hours.

There’s a lot to explore at Paris Baguette Cafe.

On another visit, we couldn’t resist…

The Canelés

We’ll talk about those next time.

Paris Baguette Cafe
5252 Buford Highway NE
Doraville, GA 30340
770 455 8552

Serpas

“Cronuts” Serpas Style

Rich and dense, these doughnuts are made out of danish (or laminated) dough.

Served warm with the buttery glaze just beginning to set, these were a lovely, edible mountain of fried dough. We were expecting smaller bites to start our meal.  Instead, we received two big, fat, fluffy doughnuts that should come with a warning.  ”You’re going to eat a full breakfast after these beauties?  Good luck with that.”

Fried Oyster Eggs Benedict

Lightly breaded and perfectly crisp, those oysters were distractingly good.  What about the poached eggs, creamed spinach, and crisp potatoes with onion and red pepper?  It was all good.  But, we’ll remember those fried oysters.

Shrimp & Scallop In Tomato Ragu with Grits

There might only be one scallop, but, it was a good one.

Shrimp & Scallop Mugshot

The lone scallop and shrimp were tender and full of flavor.  But, it’s not the most appetizing of meals.

Serpas
659 Auburn Avenue
Atlanta, GA  30312
404 688 0040

White Oak Pastures

White Oak Pastures — Beautiful Brown Eggs
(Laid with love by their cage-free, free-range hens)

They really are beautiful eggs.

But, more importantly they’re seriously delicious eggs.

We are two lucky people who’ve had the good fortune to eat the eggs of hens raised by our mother (and mother-in-law).  Her small hen house held a wide variety of breeds of chicks over the years.  She experimented with quail and pigeons for awhile, too.  But, her pampered Rhode Island Red hens were everyone’s favorites.  (Her gorgeous Dominique hens were another favorite.)  She would hand feed her precious babies like family members.  And, these White Oak Pasture eggs take us straight to breakfast morning at her house.  We’d eat fresh eggs for breakfast every day of our visit.  So, outside of Mom’s kitchen, these are some of the tastiest eggs we’ve ever had the good fortune to eat.  To truly appreciate the richness of the yolk.  It’s best to cook the egg gently and slowly.  Give the yolk the time it needs to properly thicken and become the magical thing that it is.  But, take care to keep the whites tender.

These eggs are worth each and every extra penny.

White Oak Pastures

Where to find White Oak Pastures Eggs, Beef, Lamb, Pork, Or Artisan Goods?  Click Here

We found our eggs at our local Whole Foods.

No. 246

Brioche Zeppoles With Pecan Praline Cream

So rich, one makes a satisfying start to the meal.

Sadly, two out of three were slightly under-cooked in the center.

The Breakfast Burger

Breakfast burger, or you might want to call it the one meal of the day.  It’s a sausage burger with pancetta jam, gorgeously fried egg and pimento cheese.  We’d be happy with that.  But, no!  It’s paired with a mountain of super crisp, spicy fried potatoes that were too good for words.  We loved everything about this dish.

Mushroom Tart With Yellow Foot Chanterelles

It was lovely.  If you want to have a productive day, this might be a better breakfast choice.

Batdorf & Bronson Cappuccino And Italian Roast Coffee

Both so perfectly divine, every sip made our day brighter.

Hello, Spring!

And, Hello Patio Dining Season!

That’s where we’ll be headed, next time.

No 246
129 East Ponce De Leon
Decatur, GA 30030
678 399 8246