Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Enjoying a bite at BOCADO!

Last Friday, following a Lacrosse game at Georgia Tech, my brother (who was visiting from Orlando) wanted to take us out to dinner.  So, a group of ten of us headed over to Bocado for dinner.  I had read good things about this restaurant, and it's location made it perfect for that night.

Photo Credit: Bocado

The restaurant has gotten great reviews for the owner, Brian Lewis, and Executive Chef Todd Ginsburg, prepares simple foods with flair. Their website states that they focus on original gourmet sandwiches and savory small plates.  Looking at other reviews, the dishes are varied and change often, so you might not find your favorite dish upon a second visit.

887 Howell Mill Road
Atlanta, GA 30318
(404) 815-1399

The restaurant has an industrial look on the outside and inside, with utilitarian tables and chairs.  Each table has a vase with fresh herbs.

Photo Credit: Yelp

We started with some appetizers and drinks while we waited for my nephews, one who is a freshman Lacrosse player at GT, and the other from Orlando, to arrive.

The menu is very small, as it changes daily.

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Bocado has a great wine and beer selection as well as (my favorite) unique cocktails that change with the season.

This drink was by far the favorite of the group!  It was a version of (my new love) a Moscow Mule, but it was made with tequila.  It was called a SMOKED MULE - el espolon reposado, lime, ginger, mezcal, grapefruit bitters, and house-made ginger beer.

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Then we went with the following appetizers:

Deviled eggs topped with Edwards country ham, Devil relish

Fried Oysters, Napa cabbage kimchee, nori and srirachi mayo

Fried Avocado quinoa, cilantro, cucumbers, radishes, lime cream 

The deviled eggs won the crowd over so much that we started with 2 orders, and then we had to get another order to satisfy our craving!  That addition of country ham is killer!

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
The fried oysters were delicious.  We plowed into them before I could snap a good photo, but I'd definitely order them again - very yummy indeed!

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

The fried avocado was something I HAD to order, as I had read great reviews about them, and I adore avocados. Unfortunately, they were my least favorite appetizer. The quinoa and cucumbers that surrounded them were great, but, alas, the avocado was very bland.

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

We ordered entrees next, and they only have around 6 to choose from. Fortunately all we sampled were delish!

Several of us went with the Burger Stack. It's 2 patties topped with American cheese and house-made pickles on really good bread. But what is TO DIE FOR is the fries. They are tossed with herbs and parmesan cheese and served with a Buttermilk Ranch dressing with dill. So good.

My photo of the burger stack really wasn't very appetizing, but this picture does it justice.
Photo Credit: Yelp

Photo Credit: Serious Eats

I do need to note one thing about my burger however. About half way through the dinner, I bit into something very hard that I couldn't chew that was about a half an inch long. Yuck. At that point I was squeamish and unable to eat any more of the meat, so I simply scarfed down the amazing fries. The burger was tasty, but sadly I wouldn't order it again.
Another entree that was terrific was the French prepared Sole.

It's served over succotash with a garlic, thyme and lemon vinaigrette.

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

My mother and her husband ordered the pasta and raved about it. It's freshly made strigoli pasta with clams, peppers, tomatoes and shallots.

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Both of my nephews ordered the flat iron steak dinner. From the looks of their plates afterward, the dish was a success.
It's served with potatoes, marinated zucchini, heirloom tomatoes and a horseradish cream sauce.

Photo Credit:
So our dining experience was a success at Bocado!  And our server was out of this world.  We had a large group, and 2 of the group arrived long after the first 8, so we were ordering in shifts.  She couldn't have been more pleasant and helpful with navagating the menu.  We'll be back...

*One other note - they only have one bathroom for women and one bathroom for men, and there was a line to get in it seemed most of the time. So, every time someone in our party left, they were gone for what seemed like an eternity. Not the end of the world, but I felt like it should be mentioned.

Monday, September 3, 2012


So excited to try this restaurant!  I went with my family to Florence and Tuscany last summer, and I'm eager to see what this Tuscan restaurant in Atlanta is all about.

519 E Paces Ferry Road
Atlanta, GA  30305

Antica Posta is owned by brothers (Owner Marco Betti (Right)
and brother Chef Alessandro Betti)
 who hail from Tuscany.

Photos courtesy of Antica Posta

Photo Credit: Antica Posta

Inside Antica Posta
Photo Credit: Antica Posa

The menu is quintessential Tuscan fare including: Tuscan salumi, fresh prosciutto and mozzarella, Ossobuco, Grilled lamb, Veal scallopini as well as an assortment of pastas and pizzas and more. It is way too vast to include here however.

We dined there on a Friday night with friends.  As you drive up to the restaurant (which is in an old house), you are greeted by the valet quickly, and then you walk a few steps to the non-descript front door.  Upon entering, we were immediately at the hostess stand, and the hostess was very peppy and welcoming.  Our seats were in their back dining area (see picture above), and there were only a few other patrons there at 7:00PM.

The ambiance of the restaurant is a little different.  When you walk in the bar is to your right.  As you are being taken to your table, you must go past a short hallway past the restrooms, and the main dining area is in the back.  In spite of the photo from their website, at 7:00PM, it was very dark.  Also, we were there on a Friday night in Buckhead, and the restaurant was never more than half full.  

Our waiter arrived promptly and handed us our menus and took our drink orders (we went with a bottle of pinot grigio).  He was OK albeit very soft spoken, and at times it was difficult to understand him.  When we were trying to decide on appetizers, he recommended an antipasto platter that he customized, along with a plate of octopus, that he claimed was one of their specialties.  The difficulty at Antica Posta is deciding on what to order.  The menu is vast, and I just couldn't include it here.

The antipasto selection with a caprese salad, a filet of beef and veal meatball and a ravioli stuffed with spinach and sage:
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

This little selection was so good.  The caprese was fresh and delicious; the meatball was to die for with delish tomato sauce, and the ravioli was decadent.  It actually made me wish I had ordered pasta as my main course!

The grilled octopus plate:
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Not sure I've ever had octopus presented in this way?  But it was very good, and I was glad we ordered it. For our main courses we went with the following:

veal chop
veal scallopini
seafood risotto
sea bass

Our salad of arugula with shaved parmesan:

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
The salad was OK.  It contained romaine and arugula, so for me it lacked something, as I really like the contrast with the arugula and parmesan in a salad.  But the presentation was nice.

My veal scallopini with peas and green beans:
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
The veal was prepared perfectly.  The capers added just the right amount of saltiness and tang, and I actually liked the baby peas and green beans, even though I don't think I'd ever serve them together myself.

My husband's veal chop (another highly recommended dish by our waiter):
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
I'm not a big veal chop fan, but this veal was very good.  It was tender and seasoned well.

My friend's seafood risotto:
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
This risotto was the risotto special of the day, and it was delicious! It was loaded with a cornucopia of seafood items.  So good!

And my other friend's sea bass:
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
I love sea bass, and this one was very tasty.  It was well prepared and was moist inside and lightly crispy on the outside.  The rosemary added and nice contrast in flavor.

We opted out of dinner and had another glass of wine.  It was a very nice evening with friends.  The food at Antica Posta was very good, and the only drawback was the price (well over $300 for 4 people).  And our waiter and bus staff were a bit awkward at times - not sure who had what dish and a bit of difficulty deciding to serve dishes to the right or left etc.  But if you are on an expense account or in the area, it's a good representation of Tuscany for sure.

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Doug Bogue