Friday, February 7, 2014


It feels a bit like Christmas morning - we have been patiently waiting for Ford Fry's newest gem of a restaurant, St Cecilia, to open.  Knowing it was the day before my son's 27th birthday, we chose that date to dine with the entire family (even though having to wait a few weeks was difficult!).

St Cecilia is located at the corner of Lenox Road and Peachtree Street in a spot that housed Bluepointe formerly.  It's a great layout, and Ford Fry's team has done a magnificent job of redoing it.

TEL 404 554 9995

Valets are waiting as you arrive, and the restaurant is to your left as you exit your car.  When you enter the restaurant you are in front of the hostess stand that's on an upper tier overlooking the massive 11,000 square foot space.  It's just beautifully decorated and laid out with a huge crudo bar and 3 chefs tables.  The bar was loud and bustling when we arrived at 6:45PM on a Thursday.

But the best part is not the decor..

We were seated and handed menus  - - - 

Our waiter (who was really great throughout the night) appeared almost immediately, and we ordered drinks while perusing the menu.  We had to start with some appetizers.  My son (who lives within walking distance) had already gotten a  taste a couple of weeks earlier, so he had some recommendations.  We went with:

Kumamoto oystersOYSTERS meyer lemon, bronze fennel
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
I LOVE kumamoto oysters!  They are nice and small and not briny - perfect in my book.  They are topped with an icy frothy fennel dollop and 2 meyer lemon wedges to squeeze. Devine!

Yellowfin tuna: YELLOWTAIL TARTARE salt & vinegar chips, smoked trout roe, horseradish
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Whoa!  The tuna tartare was fabulous.  We ordered TWO of these, since my son had been before and raved about this dish.  The mixture of flavors was fabulous, although in my opinion the chips on this night anyway, were way too salty (and that's coming from someone that LOVES salt!).  But, we gobbled every last bite of this dish.

We also chose a Sancerre to go with all of the seafood (my favorite), and it was delicious!

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Next up we went with 2 more small plates to sample:

The pasta - AGNOLOTTI red wine braised beef short rib, parmigiano
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
This dish was the money dish!  It was rich and hearty and honestly we were fighting over the last bite!  I would definitely come back and order this one NOT TO SHARE!   The pasta pockets are delicate and melt-in-your-mouth, and the short rib flavor is terrific.  Loved this dish!

And the octopus - HEARTH ROASTED OCTOPUS cured tomato, “Italian” bean salad, oregano
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
This octopus dish might be my new favorite octopus dish!  I love Ford Fry's octopus at The Optomist, with harissa, but I think I like this one even better.  The flavors are so enticing, and the bean "salad" is just amazing.
Since it was a special occasion, we all decided to get main dishes to sample.

My daughter and I both got the skate wing: SKATE WING “MILANESE” artichoke, caper berries, brown butter & lemon
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
The skate wing was nice.  It was a huge portion, and I loved the artichoke and caper topping.  It was slightly greasy for my taste, but it was still very tasty.

My son (aka the birthday boy) got the swordfish: BLOCK ISLAND SWORDFISH wood roasted, olives, garlic, tomato
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

This swordfish was wonderful.  I love the mediterranean way of preparing fish, and this one did not disappoint.  The kalamata olive mixture with the roasted tomatoes was really really good.  So good, that my son ordered it on a previous visit and declared that he HAD to have it again - the sign of a great dish for sure!

And my husband got the tilefish: 
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Unfortunately I didn't get an accurate description of the tilefish dish.  It was a very rich and buttery textured fish, and I loved the preparation.  There wasn't a speck on the plate and the end of the meal, so I'd say it was a hit with my husband.

I had baked a cake, so we didn't sample the desserts (got to save something for future visits!).

Thank you Ford Fry for yet another spectacular restaurant!  I'm proud to say that Atlanta really has some amazing quality dining that we can boast about, and all of Ford Fry's restaurants are gems.  We will definitely be back to St. Cecilia, and two words of caution about this restaurant - - - arrive hungry!
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
 My pride and joy right here:
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
In the main dining room of St Cecilia:

And...the birthday cake! White Texas Sheet Cake with Chocolate Frosting. For the recipe go to:
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
It was a great night, and we enjoyed some fabulous food!  
Happy Birthday to Ross!!!