The first weekend in February, I flew down to Atlanta to celebrate the marriage of a very kind, beautiful couple. I’ll detail my favorite food & drink from the weekend and you’ll probably think I stayed a week.
While D.C. was busy getting white- washed, Atlanta was busy getting GREY. No siree, not a sliver of sunlight until the day we left. I think temperatures reached a high of 43. I had to warm up and warm up quick! While checking into the NY architect William L. Stoddart’s Georgian Terrace Hotel, I spotted a luggage cart with two 12-packs of Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale. Never tried it! So I went across the street to a gastropub and ordered one up with my fish & chips. The beer’s citrus hopped freshness is likely favored in the hot months down in Georgia.
The hotel, aside from once hosting my boy F. Scott Fitzgerald, was the world premiere reception site of Gone With the Wind, back in 1939. And wouldn’t you guess it, the site of my friend’s wedding reception in 2010.
I decided to take a walk down Peachtree St. and buy some wine for that evening. Two blocks in and I spot Barrelman Wine & Cheese shop. I decided on a Rhone varietal by Owen Roe called “Sinister Hand” and it was as dark as its name. But I remember being more struck by O.R.’s 2008 “Lady Rosa” syrah and its mouthwatering bouquet of cedarbox and candied berry. Lush West Town had some bottles, last I checked!
On to the evening… the out of towners were invited to the rehersal dinner at Pittypat’s Porch, in Midtown Atlanta. Southern Dining outfitted with rocking chairs and earnest, simple food. Plus the nicest waitstaff of all time– I’m lookin’ at you Willi! I had fried chicken, mashed taters, and cornbread, plus side plates of collards and black eyed peas floated table to table. Oh yes, and some bubbles to refresh. Followed by peach cobbler + cinnamon ice cream. Followed by Hendricks gin martinis back at the hotel bar, and ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ, end day 1!
Wedding Bells! The church where the couple was married was also the site of a Backstreet Boy’s wedding (Brian). Stained glass and a live organist!
The cocktail hour back at the Georgian Terrace was my cue to have a Bloody Mary and follow the waiters around. There were 3 important hors d’oeuvres: fried mac n’ cheese lumps, shrimp skewers with spicy dipping sauce, and mini crab cakes! All incredible.
The reception and all was over by 5pm, remember that the ballroom was a historical landmark? Oh well, another night free to dine. Too bad everyone else wanted to goto an Irish Pub. Turns out it was passable food, I had beef roast and a Tullamore Dew/ ginger ale.
The bride, who is from Atlanta, told us we had to goto Mary Mac’s Tea Room for a meal. So I set that up and my family and I sat down and ordered more southerin comfort food, all made from scratch, and all so delicious. I got the shrimp n’ grits, cheesy grits! For some godforsaken reason I ordered all purees… creamed corn and house apple sauce as my sides. Wouldnt repeat that, but I do recommend the sweet tea and checking out the wall of famous customers (including a young and supple Richard Gere and the Dalai Lama!)
That was that, my friends. Hope you jot down all the places and bevvies I mentioned and try them out when in the hilly and sometimes silly Atlanta, GA.