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GIVING BACK How chefs support the community PAGE 18

100 21

Great Restaurants

Classic Bars


Pizza Coffee Bakeries Markets Breweries

Halibut Nicoise at The Expat










18 Cooking up Community

7 Essentials

How Athens area chefs and restaurant owners give back

14 Interview: Rashe Malcolm Owner, Rashe’s Cuisine

17 Interview: Sam Johnson Owner, Bear Hug Honey

Sources for snacks, drinks, produce and more 8 Coffee Shops 10 Bakeries and Ice Cream 12 On-Campus Dining 14 Farmers Markets 16 Specialty Markets 24 Neighborhood Map

27 Restaurants 32 Interview: Reggie DiSante Owner, George’s Lowcountry Table

32 Interview: Matt McFerron Owner, The Old Pal

A guide to 100 favorite Athens spots 32 Pizza picks 36 Athens-based chains 38 Low-carb choices 39 Breakfast, brunch and lunch destinations

41 Bars & Clubs

A tour of 21 must-visit bars On the Cover: Halibut Nicoise at The Expat, photographed by Jason Born

44 Local breweries 45 Favorite liquor stores EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 3

THE EXPAT / Jason Born

Follow us online and on social Digital Edition You can flip through a digital version of this issue and share it with friends. Read it at

Social Media Track new discoveries, find out about specials and catch scenes from Athens restaurants and bars on our social media feeds. Instagram @EatandDrinkAthensGA Facebook @EatDrinkAthensGA Twitter @Athens_Guides

Newsletter Want to stay on top of the dining scene in Athens? Subscribe to our email newsletter, published every Thursday and covering events, specials, recipes, interviews and more. Subscribe at PROMOTION

Taste the Cover!

Giveaways and Promotions Enter to win gift cards for restaurants and bars around Athens. Contests are announced on Instagram and in the newsletter. 4 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

We’re giving away gift cards to The Expat! Follow us on Instagram to enter. @EatandDrinkAthensGA

CAMPUS DINING OPTIONS RESIDENTIAL DINING COMMONS Visitors are welcome to have a meal at any of our five dining commons across campus. Visit us at Bolton, Oglethorpe, the Niche, Snelling or The Village Summit.


Main Library Science Learning Center

Science Library Miller Learning Center Law Library









Center for Molecular Medicine Baldwin Hall

For locations and hours



STAFF POLL What’s your favorite date-night restaurant in Athens?

LAST RESORT GRILL The whole place has a really romantic feeling. OLYN


Olyn Gee, Zoe Maher, Ashi Patel PHOTO EDITOR Julian Alexander CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS

TRAPPEZE PUB It’s a nicer place but not stuffy. They have great variety, so anyone can find something they love, and they have a great, full-service bar. Overall, a perfect spot! CAROLINE

SOUTH KITCHEN + BAR A great menu of reasonably priced Southern food. Plus, they have a date night deal where you get a ton of food and bottle of wine for just $40. WILL

Gabriella Audi, Caroline Barnes, Jason Born, Caitlin Jett, Rebecca Wright

THE EXPAT The upstairs bar is intimate and cozy. Phenomenal drinks and great food. JULIAN


Madeline Laguaite, Rachel Priest ILLUSTRATOR Anna Purucker CREATIVE SERVICES ASSISTANT Adia Aidoo



Will Clarke, Rudy Dey, Valentina Drake

THE NATIONAL They have a delicious, ever-changing menu and cocktail list. DARBY


DONNA CHANG’S Their dishes are intended to be shared, which makes any meal instantly intimate. Plus, the wine list is super. REBECCA


Nishka Malik, Olivia Mandeville, Madeline Miller, Stephanie Park, Abigale Winograd, Madison Young DISTRIBUTION MANAGER Barri Leach DISTRIBUTION ASSISTANT Eli Wheeler

©2019 THE RED & BLACK PUBLISHING COMPANY, INC. No portion of this guide may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. The Red & Black reserves the right to refuse advertising for any reason. Opinions expressed by contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of The Red & Black. ADVERTISING For advertising requests or information, contact us at 706-433-3001 or BULK ORDERS Copies available for distribution at hotels, retail establishments, welcome centers and other locations. Call 706-433-3007 or email to arrange for orders. SINGLE COPIES Can be shipped outside of Athens for small fee. Order at ABOUT US A nonprofit, independent student news media organization, the Red & Black Publishing Co. publishes an independent weekly newspaper, The Red & Black, which has served the University of Georgia and Athens since 1893. We publish news and features daily at and produce specialty publications year round. Learn more at

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Fresh-from-the-oven baguettes at Independent Baking, Co. in Five Points. PHOTOGRAPH BY CAROLINE BARNES

PG 8 Sipping and relaxing at local coffee shops

PG 16 Seeking out ingredients at specialty markets EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 7


Get caffeinated Great local coffee shops (some of which are bars, too!) 1000 Faces Coffee

Franklin House Cafe

The Athens-based roasting company opened this Thomas Street coffee shop that has won rave reviews thanks to its fair-trade coffee and airy space. The cafe also serves espresso, teas and baked goods.

This Broad Street spot offers weekly specials and harder-to-find items, such as Nutella waffles and Fog of London lattes. Its prime downtown location makes it a great place to work or study.



An indoor porch swing is not the only feature that sets apart this Barber Street Euro-style cafe. Caffeine-infused drinks and pastries are available during the day, and aperitivos and cocktails during the evening.

This Prince Avenue location is more than just a coffee shop by day and bar by night. Along with serving lattes and pints, Hendershot’s hosts music, comedy and other performances.

Facebook: buvezathens

Iron Works Coffee Located in the historic foundry complex on the Graduate Athens hotel property, this quiet shop is a smart destination for meetings. From 7 to 11 a.m. Iron Works offers full breakfast: Fortify yourself with eggs and bacon or a breakfast burger.

IN THE SWING OF THINGS At Buvez, above and left, you can relax with a cup of coffee on the indoor swing, or kick back with a cocktail on the patio. PHOTOS BY JULIAN ALEXANDER


Jittery Joe’s

Veronica’s Sweet Spot

The Classic City’s best known coffee brand has several area shops — including four on the UGA campus. But the downtown cafe at the corner of Broad and Jackson remains a favorite. True fans will be fascinated by a trip to the Barber Street tasting room, where you can observe the coffee-roasting process and order a specialty latte.

At this cafe in the Chase Street warehouse district, musician Veronica Darby serves sandwiches, pastries and snacks, in addition to coffee, juices and teas. Stop by on the first Friday of each month for a comedy showcase. Facebook: sweetspotathens

Walker’s Coffee & Pub

Featuring a cozy patio and a homey feel, Sips is great for relaxing. It’s located in Normaltown, just across from the UGA Health Sciences Campus.

Virtually operating 24/7 (its hours are 7 a.m. to 2 a.m.) Walker’s caters to early birds and night owls alike. Located on College Avenue in the heart of downtown, its variety allows customers to enjoy coffee in the morning, and beer and cocktails in the evenings. Pastries, bagels and sandwiches are served throughout the day.

Facebook: SIPS-Espresso-Cafe

Sips Espresso Cafe

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Proud to betoyour Favorite Place to Shopto Local Buy Handmade Proud be your Favorite place buy&local art & handmade goods for the second year in a row! We thank you for supporting hundreds of small businesses through Indie South & invite you to come see us at our shop, follow us on instagram @theindiesouth, and join us at our quarterly markets!

Athens, we love you! EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 9



Satisfy those cravings Bakeries, ice cream shops and other sweet destinations Alumni Cookie Dough

Bee’s Knees Bakery

This cafe offers safe-to-eat-raw dough in varied flavors including Snickerdoodle and “Freshman Fifteen” (salted-caramel chocolate chip). The batter can be ordered on its own, topped with scoops of ice cream or swirled into milkshakes. Proceeds from special flavors benefit area charities. Our tester’s report: If you can’t finish a big tub of raw dough, the leftovers can be baked at home with success!

Specializing in cakes doesn’t stop this Epps Bridge Parkway bakery from offering other treats, such as cake pops, chocolate-covered strawberries, savory cheese straws and six flavors of gooey bars.

Athens Bagel Company If you’re looking for a quick New York-style bagel, this downtown spot near campus is the place to go. A variety of breakfast platters offer a more substantial morning meal.

Condor Chocolates Chef Peter Dale and his brother, Nick, pay tribute to their family heritage at Condor, using fair-trade cacao from their mother’s native Ecuador. In addition to bar chocolate and truffles, the Five Points cafe serves coffee, hot chocolate, gelato and other treats. Pro tip: Truffles and toffees from Condor are gorgeously packaged and great for gifting.

Four Fat Cows This ice cream shop on Baxter Street, just up from campus, boasts a large menu of flavors, such as red velvet swirl and blueberry buttermilk pie.

Hodgson’s Pharmacy

Caitlin Jett 10 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

This drugstore, which has served Athens since the 1950s, operates a tiny soda fountain with drinks and treats. The menu features fresh limeade, malts, floats, old fashioned sundaes and hand-

dipped ice cream — still just $1 a scoop!

NEW Lil Ice Cream Dude’s Cool Word

High schooler Beau Shell has been selling frozen treats from carts and trucks since he was 8 years old. This spring his vision became reality with the opening of this East Side shop that features shakes, sundaes and scoops of all kinds.

Ideal Bagel Co. Operated by Luna Baking Co., Ideal Bagel on the western edge of downtown is a great place for a bagel sandwich loaded with house-made cream cheese spreads.

Ike & Jane Cafe and Bakery

Sweetie Pie by Savie

Inventive doughnuts with toppings such as Lucky Charms or Cocoa Pebbles are the trademark of this Normaltown shop. Ike & Jane also serves sandwiches, salads and soups. Turn to page 46 for more on the doughnuts.

This East Side bakery has roots in Bangkok. For takeout, try a buttery scone with Thai tea. Owner Savie Arnold, who supplies desserts for local restaurants, also creates custom cakes for weddings and special occasions.

Independent Baking Co.

Zombie Coffee & Donuts

Five Points residents head here early for freshfrom-the-oven classic French breads. For everyone else, this cozy bakery is a destination for a cafe au lait, croissants or the signature morning roll, a luscious swirl of cinnamon and pastry.

Opened by a UGA alumnus, this downtown bakery offers customizable doughnuts with options such as maple icing and bacon. It’s open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., meaning that you can satisfy a craving at just about any time.



BULLDOG BISTRO / Courtesy Georgia Center

Dine like a dawg Selections of the best on-campus food options NEW Athena Mediterranean Kitchen TATE STUDENT CENTER

Opened in fall 2019, this carry-out spot brings fresh flavor to the university’s dining landscape. For your sandwich, salad or platter, Athena offers vegan falafel, chicken souvlaki or traditional gyro meat. Desserts include baklava. For a savory treat, try the spanakopita — flaky phyllo stuffed with feta cheese and spinach. Fun fact: The vegan falafel is from Taza, founded by UGA alumni. Open 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays and on select gamedays.


The dramatically revamped lunch spot in the University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education and Hotel serves breakfast

items, salads, soups and sandwiches. Good to know: Bulldog Bistro also features a small bar that serves craft beer, wine and cocktails. A good spot to linger after a long day of meetings or before a game, the bar offers good views of the bustling lobby and outdoor courtyard, and also serves small plates and appetizers,. Open daily 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. with quick service breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday.


Look carefully or you might miss this tiny spot which has operated from the Environmental Health Science Building since 1941. The Creamery serves sushi, salads, sandwiches and ice cream. The latter, alas, is no longer made on site as it was when the Creamery processed milk from the UGA dairy herd. Open weekdays, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Coffee & Bagels NORTH CAMPUS

Occupying a sunny corner of the Main Library, this is a great spot for a meeting or to take a break from a conference or campus tour. A partnership between Einstein Bros. 12 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

Bagels and Caribou Coffee, the café offers salads and sandwiches, as well as the namesake java and bagels. Opens at 7:30 a.m. weekdays and in the afternoon on weekends.

atmosphere for formal matters. Open weekdays for lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and dinner from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Sushi with Gusto EAST CAMPUS


If you can only visit one dining hall, this should be it. The Niche offers made-toorder burgers, sandwiches, pizzas and calzones. The copious dessert options include cookies, fruit and soft-serve ice cream.

While sushi can be found in retail locations scattered throughout campus, the best selection is at Sushi with Gusto, housed in the Joe Frank Harris Commons. In addition to a variety of specialty rolls, one can find poke bowls and nigiri. It’s open from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on weekdays.

REMODELED Savannah Room Restaurant SOUTH CAMPUS

Taqueria 1785 Food Truck

Featuring locally-grown ingredients, the newly remodeled Savannah Room in the Georgia Center provides contemporary Southern dishes along with creative entrees and desserts. If you’re here for a conference or other business, the Savannah Room offers the right


In 2016, this red wagon became UGA’s official food truck, serving Tex Mex-inspired dishes. Menu highlights include churro ice cream bowls and chicken tinga tacos. Track the truck’s location and hours on Twitter by following @ Taqueria1785.

Come see what all of Athens is talking about...

Gourmet Edible Cookie Dough, Ice Cream, Milkshakes, Sundaes and more! 480 North Thomas Street (next to the Hyatt) 706-254-9171 EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 13


Eat fresh Discover locally grown and produced foods and get to know your neighborhood farmers ATHENS FARMERS MARKET On Saturday mornings, this market is held at Bishop Park, not far from the Health Sciences Campus. The market features chef demos, bands, ready-made foods and, of course, a spectrum of fresh produce. Vendors include Pastures of Rose Creek, Rhonda’s Blueberries and Full Moon Farms. The 2019 season at Bishop Park runs through Dec. 21. On Wednesdays from 4-7 p.m., a version of this market sets up downtown in the Creature Comforts Brewery parking lot, offering shoppers the chance to pair locally sourced foods and local craft beer. This market runs through Nov. 27.

DOWNTOWN CULINARY SHOWCASE This newest Athens market is organized by the Culinary Kitchen of Athens, a program that helps small businesses through education and free resources. Running through Oct. 29, the Showcase is located in front of City Hall and operates from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesdays.

GATHERING SPACE Held at Bishop Park each Saturday, the Athens Farmers Market includes chef demos, music, crafts, coffee and plenty of fresh produce. Staff file photos 14 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

Vendors include R&R Secret Farm, Rise Baking Company and Holy Crepe food truck. In addition to hosting the market, Culinary Kitchen runs the Sunday Food Truck Brunch Fair, which is held in the parking lot at the Jittery Joe’s coffee roaster on Barber Street.

WEST BROAD FARMERS MARKET This market operates out of a historic former school on the edge of downtown from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. The grounds serve as a community garden and training facility for young, urban farmers. In addition to music, educational booths and chef demonstrations, the market hosts activities such as yoga classes and craft fairs. Vendors include Good Roots, Bread and Butter Farms and Soul Food With a Twist. The 2019 market runs through Dec. 14.

Q&A Rashe Malcolm RASHE’S CUISINE Malcolm’s business, which specializes in authentic Caribbean cuisine, offers services that include catering, cooking lessons and private chef services. Malcolm, an organizer of the Culinary Kitchen of Athens, first came to Athens in 1993 and lived here on and off before moving here permanently in 2005. How would you describe Rashe’s Cuisine for those not familiar with your business? Rashe’s Cuisine specializes in food near and far. This means we appreciate food culture as a whole and understand how foods from around the world make up a great cultural experience. However, we put a Caribbean spin on everything we do. People use our services because we offer high quality foods with affordable, family pricing. We understand eating should be an experience. Our experience is healthy, delicious and affordable. How have you seen Athens change? Whew, a lot. When I originally lived in Athens, I paid $315 for a two-bedroom apartment that had a pool. What are some of your favorite places to take people when they visit from out of town? This may sound funny, but the first place I take everyone is on the Loop. I’ve always found it so fascinating that Athens is pretty much one big circle. It takes about 20 min-

utes in each direction to get to a destination. I think that’s so symbolic of the way I see Athens — as this great circle of opportunity where anyone can be reached. When you’re not eating Rashe’s Cuisine where do you go out to eat? Whoa, that’s a loaded question! I have so many friends in the industry, from the mom and pops to the chain restaurants. Athens is unique where you can know the owner of a large chain restaurant and an authentic Ethiopian restaurant like Mannaweenta or, of course Jamaican, like Kelly’s. How has the food scene changed since you’ve been in Athens? In my opinion, the food scene has definitely become a lot more focused on fresh, sourced food. People want to know where you get your products. The community as a whole is getting back to nature. The call for more locally owned, smaller restaurants shows we’re getting back to the idea of knowing and supporting your neighbor.

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The Expat is a Five Points neighborhood bistro with a French accent. Chef Savannah Sasser, uses high-quality products from the surrounding area to make magic. Owners Krista and Jerry Slater lead a staff that emphasizes gracious service, while serving one of the region’s best wine and cocktail programs. 1680 S. Lumpkin St., Athens, GA 706.521.5041



FOOKS FOODS / Caitlin Jett

Expand your horizons

Find every ingredient on your list with a visit to these specialty shops Bear Hug Honey Company

Fooks Foods

This cozy store in the heart of downtown carries pure raw honey, as well as infused flavored honeys. In addition, pick up beeswax candles, bath and body products and other gifts worth, ahem, buzzing about.

Like one of those magic boxes that opens to contain far more than you’d guess from the outside, Karen Fooks’ shop on South Milledge Avenue holds a literal world of discoveries. Whether you’re looking for fresh Asian produce and tofu to create your own dishes or want to pick up convenience foods from India or Thailand, Fooks stocks essentials for many cuisines.

Costa de Jalisco This Barber Street store stocks a dizzying array of packaged and canned products from Mexico and Central America, as well as exquisitely displayed produce. The real highlight is the meat, seafood and poultry counter, staffed by helpful butchers.

Half-Shepherd Market & Cheese Shop This Normaltown store stocks a selection of high-end cheeses and wines. For easy appetizers at home, pick up a pint of pimento cheese.

Facebook: CostaDeJalisco2

Daily Groceries Co-Op

Opa Robby’s Market

This co-op on Prince Avenue stocks organic and local foods. Select from bulk items or vegan and vegetarian convenience foods.

The colorful shop on Atlanta Highway offers local produce, along with jams, pickles and prepared foods, such as soups and casseroles. At this family business, old recipes are given a healthy twist, like shepherd’s pie topped with mashed cauliflower.

Earth Fare Sure, the Five Points location is one of 40-plus outlets in a national chain, but it serves as a community hub and a source of natural and organic foods. The compact full-service supermarket is noted for its variety of meat, poultry and seafood, as well as organic bulk food items. The daily selection of prepared foods make this a convenient takeout stop.

Facebook: OpaRobbysMarket


Uncommon Gourmet Wine and foods great to pair with wine are the focus of this Baxter Street shop, which hosts tastings and chef demonstrations. Check out the coolers for delicacies such as smoked salmon.

Q&A Sam Johnson BEAR HUG HONEY COMPANY A 2006 graduate of the University of Georgia, Johnson founded Bear Hug Honey Company in 2017. The specialty honey shop is located on College Avenue, in sight of the Arch. How has Athens changed since you opened? Businesses have come and gone. We recently lost Frontier, and that was always one of my favorite shops downtown; had been here forever. I was bummed to see Frontier go, but you see new places pop up that are fun and unique. Do you have any favorite places to take people when they visit from out of town? I always recommend, whenever people are in our shop, Community, which is right around the corner. I tell people to go there and then Wuxtry. I love records and going to Wuxtry. There are some cool vintage shops downtown. Atomic is one of my favorite spots and I go there quite often.

Where are your favorite places to eat? I love The National, Seabear and Last Resort. Our spicy honey is on the table at Ted’s Most Best, and that’s always fun. I just had somebody walk in the shop, and that’s how they found out about it — eating at Ted’s and trying our Sriracha honey on the pizza. Has the local honey scene changed? You know, there are a lot of great beekeepers in town. There’s us, a group called Classic City Bee and also Booger Hill Honey. I think it’s good to be able to give options to people.

Local Food Fast 706-850-7999




Cooking up Community How chefs and restaurateurs give back to Athens

On a Sunday afternoon in late July, as the brunch rush ended at restaurants across Five Points, staff left their own kitchens and dining rooms to gather for the first Five Points Block Party. Neighborhood restaurants ranging from The Expat and LRG Provisions to Kelly’s Jamaican Foods and Fully loaded Pizza, set up tables and prepared to serve samples. Newcomer el Barrio hosted the event, which raised money for building gardens at nearby Barrow Elementary School. Hundreds of community members made their way down the sidewalks for the $40 a person fund raiser, sampling goodies from a dozen restaurants and drinks from Five Points Bottle Shop and Terrapin Beer Co. “It’s a great feeling to give back and to make a difference,” said Tina Eckard, Five Points Business Association president and one of the event organizers. For the participating restaurants, taking part meant donating the food and the time of their staffs. “Our restaurant’s outlook is that our hospitality should exEAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 19

tend beyond just serving dinner to guests,” said Ryan Sims, chef and co-owner of participating restaurant Donna Chang’s. “We wish to support our community the best we can.” Beyond the block party, Donna Chang’s supports organizations such as Athens Pride, Athens Area Homeless Shelter, Wholesome Wave and Project Safe throughout the year. The block party is just one example of

how chefs, restaurant owners, farmers and others in the Athens food business strive to give back to the community. These activities include organized events, individual contributions by restaurants or direct contributions of food.

GATHERING TOGETHER One major annual event is the Athens Farmers Market’s Autumn Harvest Feast (scheduled this year for Oct. 13 at The Hill).


1591 S. Lumpkin St. in Five Points

706-543-5000 Lunch Sushi Buffet on Tues & Wed 11:30a-2:30p, $12.95 all you can eat. Free soft drink for UGA students with the purchase of a lunch buffet. Not valid with other offers. *Must show UGA ID. Expires 11/30/19

196 Alps Road, Suite 22 Athens, GA 30606 (706) 552–0488 FB.ME/RUSANSDAWGCITY 20 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT Giving back takes many forms, whether direct assistance, as offered by Sarah Thurman and the staff of the Athens Farmers Market, left, or restaurants such as The Pine participating in a block party fund raiser, right. PHOTOS BY OLYN GEE

Farmers, chefs and volunteers donate their time and produce to benefit the market’s community outreach programs. “Buying a ticket for the Autumn Harvest Feast is a fun way to show your support,” market manager Sarah Thurman said. The 2018 feast raised $13,000 to fund the market’s two assistance programs: Double SNAP and Farm Rx. Double SNAP assists individuals who are eligible for SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps). When shoppers visit the market to purchase fresh produce, the market matches every SNAP dollar the individual spends, enabling people with limited means to afford more farm-fresh fruits and vegetables.

The FARM Rx program — short for Food As Real Medicine Prescription program — goes a step beyond. This program targets those in the community who face food insecurity and provides nutrition education and financial assistance. During the six-month program, the market gives each participating family member $1 a day to assist them in buying fresh produce. “We have found that when the issue of affordability is off the table, people overwhelmingly choose fruits and vegetables,” Thurman said. Smaller scale events that benefit charities in and around Athens happen throughout the year. For example, in August, Milledge Ave-


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“We have found that when the issue of affordability is off the table, people overwhelmingly choose fruits and vegetables.” SARAH THURMAN, MARKET MANAGER Athens Farmers Market

nue Baptist Church held its third annual Food Truck Party. Taqueria 1785, the official food truck of UGA, joined other trucks, such as Holy Crepe and Da Munchiezz, on the lawn of the church. A percentage of the proceeds went to Project Safe, an Athens-based organization that works to reduce domestic violence.

PERCENTAGE NIGHTS AND POP UPS Throughout the year, many restaurants participate in programs in which they donate a percentage of their proceeds to a given nonprofit. In August, Pulaski Heights BBQ , Seabear Oyster Bar and Trappeze Pub were among the Georgia restaurants contributing to Giving Kitchen, which helps food-service workers who are facing a crisis. During a fourday event, each restaurant donated 10% of its sales to the Giving Kitchen. In September, Condor Chocolates held a

percentage day, donating 10% of its sales to Athens Pride, while The National and The Expat supported the organization by donating $1 for each sale of a special cocktail.

DIRECT DONATIONS Restaurants sometimes donate food or food products directly to organizations that provide food for those in need. While the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia is not allowed to accept processed food from restaurants, it receives support in other ways, said Susan Dodson, external relations manager. UGA, for instance, supports the food bank by fundraising, canned food collection and participating in the holiday Hunger Bowl, Dodson said. David Williams, the food procurement manager of the food bank, said UGA’s horticulture department donates produce on a weekly basis from the UGArden student-run farm.

Cozy & relaxed local breakfast and lunch experience Weekly chef specials Fast service Catering service

An Asian Market

From Chaat to Chinese Roast Duck

We Carry it All!

Fresh Asian Produce & Pastries Fresh 89¢ Tofu Tues-Sun 10am-7pm 2026 S. Milledge Ave. 706.208.8839 22 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

Find us on

On-site group meeting room Breakfast Hours:

Monday - Friday 7:30 am - 10:30 am Saturday Brunch 8:00 am - 1:00 pm

Lunch Hours:

Monday- Friday 10:30 am - 3:00 pm


975 Hawthorne Ave 975 Hawthorne Ave

FOUNDING A NONPROFIT The parent company of Five Athens and Chuck’s Fish goes even further and operates its own 501c3 nonprofit. Each of the company’s restaurants contributes a portion of its sales to pay the expenses of the nonprofit American Lunch, said the Five Athens’ assistant general manager Ethan Bruck. In Athens, American Lunch distributes meals — soups, garlic toast, water and sweet tea — three times a week to locations such as health care facilities, Bruck said. “The soup is made here fresh every single day we serve it,” said Bruck. Employees volunteer their time distributing the meals by food truck, and if an employee meets a goal of 100 volunteer hours, the company pays him or her $1,000. In addition to the restaurant staff, UGA students in the dietetics department sometimes volunteer to deliver the meals. “I personally do the truck at least one day a week,” said Bruck. In addition, Five Athens provides a free traditional holiday meal each Thanksgiving. In addition to restaurant employees who prepare the food, 80 to 100 people in

Lunch & Learn Find out more about programs supported by the local food industry

Athens Farmers Market Programs

The Giving Kitchen

American Lunch

Food Bank of NE Georgia

the community volunteer to assist in serving the meals. The restaurant accepts donations, which last Thanksgiving went to benefit Project Hope. Last year, Five Athens served almost 800 plates of food. Everyone is welcome. “It doesn’t matter who you are,” Bruck said. You can be the homeless guy sitting on the corner or the mayor of Athens. We don’t care — we have enough food to go around.”

where tasty meets healthy Come and enjoy a healthy meal!





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e Avenu ledge l i M North

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o Hanc West

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Fresh and inventive tacos, bowls and salads at newcomer, el Barrio. PHOTOGRAPH BY CAROLINE BARNES

PG 28 100 destinations, from fine dining to comfort food

PG 32 Pizza pizza: The scoop on six spots for great slices EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 27

THE PINE / Julian Alexander

From inventive chefs to Athens institutions and from budget-friendly student fare to twists on ethnic cuisine, this list offers you a guide to exploring dining options in the Classic City.

The Athens 100 DOWNTOWN

menu items are served on cute take-home Frisbees. $

Blind Pig Tavern There is something for everyone here, whether selections from the lengthy beer list or the vast menu. (We recommend the fish tacos and wings.) Entertainment options include trivia and lots of massive screens playing all kinds of sports. In addition to the downtown location, Blind Pig operates on the East Side on College Station Road and in West Athens on West Broad Street. Good to know: You can bring the whole family for lunch or dinner here, and kids

Clarke’s Standard


NEW Chuck’s Fish

¢ $ $$ $$$

Entree + Sides, under $10 Entree + Sides, $10-20 Entree + Sides, $20-30 Entree + Sides, over $30

The Red & Black special publications editorial staff independently reviews restaurants and other businesses, which are included in our guides without a relationship to advertising. We do not accept free meals or other compensation. Send comments, tips or or restaurant suggestions to


This restaurant is located one door down from the Georgia Theatre, making it the ideal spot to grab a bite before a show. Known for: Burgers and fries smothered in various toppings. $

Clocked! American Diner Just up from the 40 Watt Club, this eatery’s signatures are sci-fi themed decor and inventive burgers made using organic local ingredients. Don’t deprive yourself of a milkshake or sweet potato fries. $

Opened in the renovated former Greyhound station on Broad Street, this restaurant is part of the same group as Five Athens, and features seafood fresh from the company’s Destin docks. Along with daily specials, Chuck’s serves sushi and classics like seared scallops and stuffed shrimp. $$$

Dawg Gone Good BBQ Serving recipes passed down from his grandmother, owner William Hardy keeps things

simple but tasty at his small restaurant on West Hancock Avenue. The menu features essentials such as mac and cheese, pulled pork and brisket.­  $

Lindsey’s Culinary Market Farm-fresh salads, hearty sandwiches and soups are highlights at this North Thomas Street spot. It’s open until just 6 p.m. on weekdays. $

DePalma’s Italian Cafe What started in the late 1980s as a quest for good pizza has evolved into an Athens institution. There’s still pizza, served by the slice or by the pie, but also classics, such as eggplant Florentine and a daily lasagna special. In addition to the location downtown near the Arch, DePalma’s operates in West Athens on Timothy Road, and on the East Side on Barnett Shoals Road. $

The National This Mediterranean-influenced restaurant on West Hancock Avenue was co-founded by chefs Hugh Acheson and Peter Dale. With serene decor and excellent service, it’s ideal for lunch meetings and family celebrations. The adjoining bar is a destination in its own right. $$$

Pauley’s Crepe Bar Five Athens Those who hate being overwhelmed by choices will love the simplicity of the menu at this Hull Street restaurant: Five selections each of appetizers, entrees, wines, beers and specialty cocktails. Specials feature seafood delivered from the owners’ market in Florida. $$

The Globe This friendly bar across from the Georgia Theatre which just turned 30 is a faculty favorite. The inspiration is Britain, but the food is all over the map — from tandoori chicken salad to croque monsieur sandwiches. For dessert: A glass of milk and Grandmother Ruby’s layer cake. $

Popular for date nights and celebrations with friends, Pauley’s on East Clayton offers sweet and savory crepes, sandwiches, cocktails and 150 craft and domestic beers.  $

Porterhouse Grill Students love to have their parents take them to this swanky steakhouse, which also has a sizable seafood selection. $$$

Pouch Pies Try world flavors bundled up in flaky crust. Some of the featured meat pies are traditional, such as British steak and kidney. But the owners — who came to Athens via South Africa, Scotland and Malta — also offer more ambitious options such as a Thai green curry pie. ¢

The Grill Open 24 hours daily, this College Avenue spot can become as crowded as most bars during post-midnight hours. The Grill serves plenty of standard diner fare, but the iconic order is a mountain of fries served with feta dip. $

The Place If you’re craving Southern specialties, The Place, across from historic North Campus, has you covered. Sip on a “Peanuts and Coke” — Coca-Cola and peanut-infused bourbon — while perusing the menu, which includes a decadent twist on chicken and waffles. $$

Iron Factory In this chic restaurant, Korean-style barbecue is prepared on a cast iron grill right at the table. With live music at night, private karaoke rooms and a large alcohol selection, Iron Factory is a favorite spot for celebrations. $$

Saucehouse Barbeque This expansive restaurant on West Broad Street has an enormous selection of meats, sides and sauces. The owners claim the menu can be customized in a thousand combos. $

Last Resort Grill Opened as a music venue in 1966, this West Clayton Street restaurant now is known for food and art-filled decor. Brunch includes an array of omelets and fancier dishes such as crab cakes Benedict and quiche. $$ SOUTH KITCHEN / Rebecca Wright EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 29

Q&A Reggie DiSante GEORGE’S LOWCOUNTRY TABLE The question seems obvious: Why is Reggie’s restaurant named George’s? Answer: It’s an homage. DiSante, who came to Athens in 1995, started out working for George Davis at Gus Garcia’s. Later, when Davis opened Harry Bissett’s Restaurant on East Broad Street, he promoted DiSante to the position of chef. Davis taught DiSante the restaurant business, so when DiSante opened his own restaurant nine years ago, he named it in honor of Davis. more people than you planned for, and the event will not start at the time you told me.

How has Athens changed since you moved here? The population is definitely growing and downtown is getting more commercial with more restaurants, student housing and hotels.

Where do you take out of town guests when they visit Athens? My tour of Athens when family and friends come includes a visit to the Butts-Mehre building to look at UGA stuff. We go to see The Tree That Owns Itself and possibly a UGA sporting event.

What tips do you have for people who may be planning a special event? Two things I know about special events, like wedding rehearsal dinners: There will be

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South Kitchen + Bar Elegance abounds in this restaurant/bar tucked into the first floor of the historic Hotel Georgian. From the stained glass windows and vintage tiled floors to the gleaming wood bar, South combines old-school gentility with fresh takes on classics such as shrimp and grits, pork belly and even Tater Tots (they’re cooked in duck fat and served in an iron skil-

let). Leave room for desserts, locally made by Sweetie Pie by Savie. $$

Shokitini With a wide selection of sushi and other Japanese dishes, this West Clayton Street spot also boasts a small outdoor patio. A grilled vegetable dish or a sirloin steak are available for those who aren’t seafood fans. If you’re

Locally owned & operated since 1998.

Breakfast & Lunch | Saturday & Sunday Brunch Catering & Special Events

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Pizza Picks In a college town with endless pizza joints, these stand out Automatic Pizza Tucked into a onetime service station, this Normaltown landmark is known for hand-tossed New York style thin-crust pies.

NEW Doughby’s Pizza & More Founded by a group of friends, this downtown

Watkinsville restaurant has a full-service bar, live music, a busy outdoor space for gathering. All of this has made it an instant hit with families.

NEW Fully Loaded Pizza Co. This Watkinsville pizzeria opened a location in Five Points this spring, and offers pizza, wings, salads and pasta.

Little Italy Open until 2 a.m. on weekdays and 3 a.m. on weekends, Little

looking to celebrate an event, karaoke rooms on the upper level are available to rent by the hour. $$

Italy satisfies late-night munchies with extra-large slices of thin-crust pizza.

Starland Pizzeria & Pub This downtown spot has great bar service and interesting pies. The $6 slice-and-salad special is a great deal.

Ted’s Most Best Along with enviable patio seating — complete with a bocce court — Ted’s offers artisan pizzas and a large beer and wine selection. Pasta dishes and salads add variety.

doors from the 40 Watt, serves hearty sandwiches, burgers, wraps and quesadillas. $

Weaver D’s Delicious Fine Foods Trappeze Pub Famous for its enormous craft and imported beer selection, this pub at the corner of Hull and West Washington streets serves superior bar fare with an emphasis on locally sourced foods. The menu caters to meat lovers with items such as the Double Pig (braised pork plus bacon) but also shows love to vegetarians and vegans with options such as a veggie Reuben. $$

NEW Uncle Ernie’s Pub N Grub This casual sports bar, which opened in late August on West Washington Street a few

Made famous for owner Dexter Weaver’s slogan, “Automatic for the People,” which became the title of an R.E.M. album, this bright green restaurant on East Broad Street is popular for juicy fried chicken and signature meat-and-three plates. Try the sweet potato souffle or broccoli casserole. $

The World Famous “This is it!” proclaims the sign above the door of this tiny bar with a massive following thanks to its eclectic live music, thoughtful food and fun cocktails. The chicken and waffles have devoted fans. $


5&10/ Caitlin Jett

Baxter Street/West Broad D92 Korean BBQ The interior of Baxter Street restaurant gleams with high-tech equipment, but the menu draws from old traditions: meats grilled at your table and served with a half-dozen side dishes. With a full bar, D92 is a fun destination for a date night or a group outing. $$

NEW Eden’s Cafe This all-vegan restaurant opened on West Broad Street in early fall. In addition to lunch and dinner, it offers takeout items that include a tempeh banh mi and generously portioned hummus platter. $

Hilltop Grille The interior of this steak and seafood restaurant is like an upscale lodge, making the restaurantis popular for meetings and events. It hosts a football radio show and regular musical performances, $$$

home.made Updated Southern fare shines at this elegant, understated restaurant which evolved from a catering business. The menu varies but features such staples as shrimp and grits and a stellar vegetable plate. Show up early for the prix fixe Supper Club, two courses for just $15. $$

Normaltown/Boulevard/ North Chase Agua Linda Loyal crowds wait in line to splurge on huge Tex-Mex platters and generously poured margaritas at this Prince Avenue restaurant. The menu also features authentic Mexican tacos and dishes such as rajas con crema. There is a second location on Timothy Road. $

Heirloom CafĂŠ and Fresh Market This restaurant partners with farmers to



vibe and special events such as trivia night and drag shows. Along with a sizable beer list and creative cocktails, Hi-Lo serves more than bar staples. Try the Cincinnati chili. $

Maepole Peter Dale applies the attention to ingredients and technique that make his restaurant The National a standout to a casual setting. At Maepole — voted best new restaurant of 2018 by readers of The Red & Black — diners select from bases, sides and proteins to create new twists on meat-and-three standards. Beer, wine and a signature spritz make this an affordable way to experience the work of a master chef at a modest price. $

Pulaski Heights BBQ EL BARRIO /Gabriela Audi

source ingredients on a menu that includes updated Southern fare. The vegetable plate is always a highlight. Heirloom hosts wine tastings and other events, and its North Chase Street patio is a great place to linger. $$

Hi-Lo Lounge A neighborhood favorite thanks to a cozy


Locally sourced pork and brisket are the stars at this small restaurant, where meat is smoked daily and served until it runs out — sometimes at 9 p.m., sometimes earlier. The menu also features some inventive vegetarian options including hearty smoked cauliflower. The restaurant is tucked into a former factory building on Pulaski Street, next to the train tracks, making for a scenic spot to eat on summer evenings. Another plus: It’s BYOB. $

Five Points

NEW Square One Fish Co Calling this spot “new,” is a technicality. Square One previously operated downtown in space vacated for construction of the new Hyatt hotel. Now reincarnated in Normaltown, the restaurant is drawing former regulars as well as new customers. Options include the extravagant seafood tower appetizer, daily fish specials and steaks and charcuterie. $$$

5&10 Before gaining fame on “Top Chef,” Hugh Acheson made his name here with innovative takes on Southern fare and locally sourced foods. Now located in a renovated house on South Milledge Avenue, this is a destination for special occasions. $$$

Cali N Tito’s Tlaloc You can get Salvadoran pupusas (stuffed cornmeal cakes) or order a Tex-Mex platter with a chalupa and chile relleno. It’s the breadth of options that makes this small restaurant at the edge of the North Chase industrial district a favorite of students and the Athens Latino community alike. $

White Tiger Gourmet Operating out of a former neighborhood grocery on Hiawassee Avenue, White Tiger serves luscious barbecue, hearty sandwiches and comforting soups. The grilled pimento cheese is a perennial favorite. On spring days, locals congregate at the picnic tables in the side yard and take advantage of the BYOB policy. $

This Central American themed restaurant (empanadas, fish tacos, Cuban sandwiches) is popular with students thanks to its Lumpkin Street location, affordable prices, outdoor seating and a BYOB policy. $

Donna Chang’s Offering Asian fusion and twists on classic Chinese fare, Donna Chang’s is a great place to take a date or a group of friends. A good strategy is to order a few dishes to share for the table. The Five Points restaurant carries an exceptional list of organic wines. $$

NEW el Barrio Tacos and Tequila Operating out of a cheerily renovated bungalow, this newcomer has drawn crowds with its menu of affordable, creative tacos and

Home of the Ooey Gooey

Tues-Fri 7am-2pm | Sat 8am-2pm Sun 9am-2pm

1075 Baxter Street 706-850-9797 EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 35

Chain Reaction Restaurant companies based in Athens Barberitos Southwestern Grille and Cantina Inspired by his time in Colorado and the Southwest, Downing Barber founded this chain of fast-casual Southwestern fare focusing on healthier options. (The menu includes nine meals that weigh in at 500 calories or less.)

Prime local location: Tate Student Center on the UGA Campus

Locos Grill and Pub What started as a deli and general store catering to students in the late 1980s now is a business with locations across Georgia. The massive menu includes wings, sandwiches, tacos, burgers and desserts. Prime local location: East Athens, where you can get breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays.

Your Pie Inspired by a trip to Italy, UGA alum Drew French launched this national chain which features woodfired, customizable pizzas. Prime local location: Beechwood, a good spot before a movie.

Zaxby’s This chicken-finger franchise was founded in Statesboro by childhood pals Zach McLeroy and Tony Townley. Prime local location: Downtown on Clayton Street, minutes from UGA.

specialty tequilas. It’s an inviting place to linger, thanks to a screen porch and broad front lawn — complete with putting green! $

or sweet potatoes glazed with agave — at this Five Points sibling establishment of downtown’s Last Resort Grill. $$$

The Expat

Marker 7 Coastal Grill

This venture from Jerry and Krista Slater emphasizes inventive cocktails and a French bistro–inspired menu. A refreshing change from the Southern fare at most higher-end Athens restaurants, The Expat features dinner specials, such as roast chicken for two, and special events, including wine and whiskey tastings. Don’t miss: The chic upstairs lounge. $$$

If you’re looking for a flashback to your beach vacation, head here and select from a menu heavy on coastal standards like grouper platters and crab cakes. Get in the spirit with a mojito or ginger margarita. $$$

Kelly’s Authentic Jamaican Foods This Lumpkin Street eatery is low on pretension and big on flavors, with dishes such as jerk pork, curry chicken and spicy rice. $

Mediterranean Grill A location of a small metro-Atlanta group of restaurants, this spot pleases vegetarians and carnivores alike with specialties such as hummus and falafel as well as gryo meat. Everyone’s a fan of the rice pilaf. $

The Pine Food & Drink LRG Provisions Southwestern meets Southern — think shrimp and grits with chorizo and mojo picon

A wood-fired oven is at the heart of this stylish eatery, popular with faculty and Five Points residents. The oven is used to produce flat-



breads but also for entrees such as salmon and roast chicken. You can order a daily Transfit approved lunch item, or — on the opposite end of the nutrition spectrum — indulge in the weekend biscuit brunch decadence. $$

The Royal Peasant Watch the week’s top Premier League and Bundesliga matches and chow down on bangers and mash at this small pub with a British vibe. Regulars know this Five Points spot, the best place in town to watch soccer, also has a terrific beer list. $

Prince Avenue/Cobbham The Grit An Athens institution, this pioneering Prince Avenue vegetarian restaurant draws omnivores, too, thanks to a massive menu including sandwiches, burritos and noodle bowls. $

this is a popular destination for groups. $

The Falls A dramatically open space and views of the river are hallmarks of this relative newcomer. Dinner features seafood entrees such as Georgia banks scallops and shrimp and grits and a range of steak and pork specials, including the “Flintstones” short ribs. Good to know: Wednesday date-night specials allow couples to sample a starter, two salads, two entrees and a bottle of wine for $55. $$

George’s Lowcountry Table George’s offers cajun inspired jambalaya and etouffee along with a variety of grilled seafood and steaks. Open daily for dinner and for Sunday brunch. $$

East Side

Seabear Oyster Bar

Choo Choo

The namesake shellfish is definitely the main draw, but you’ll find quality fare, such as shrimp and grits or po’boys, and an interesting cocktail selection. $$$

Late-night cravings are satisfied at this spot that serves affordable Japanese-Korean foods and is open until 3:45 a.m. Depending on how hungry you are, you can choose from a series of bowls, entrees and side dishes, such as kimchi. $

Viva! Argentine Cuisine Owner Gaby Lindsey’s mother, Elena, is the inspiration for the flavors and spirit of this Prince Avenue restaurant, with offerings that include empanadas and sandwiches as well as steaks, chops and a signature sausage plate. $$

Macon Highway

Craft Public House Updated pub fare is featured at this East Side spot with offerings such as a Springer Mountain chicken sandwich and a burger topped with duck confit. The Sunday brunch ranges from Scotch eggs and a Monte Cristo sandwich to a lox platter and a special fritatta. $$

The Butt Hutt

La Puerta del Sol

In addition to standards such as pulled pork and brisket, this family-operated restaurant offers turkey and chicken entrees and sandwiches. With a full-service bar and lots of seating,

The expansive East Side sister restaurant of Cali N Tito’s is a sprawling building on Cedar Shoals Drive that houses arcade games and rides as well as huge family-size tables.



Going keto or low-carb?


Just Pho

These places have you covered

You can order any burger on the signature house salad, and have a side of veggie frites.

If you’re a fan of noodlesoups, check out this Baxter Street restaurant that offers shirataki noodles, made from yams.


J. Christopher’s

Go ahead. Order the famous gooey Cubano sandwich — wrapped wrap in lettuce.

At the Five Points location of this Atlanta-based brunch chain, virtually all dishes can be modified.

While students might prefer the BYOB policy at the Five Points location, for older Athenians the friendly bar service at this location is a plus. $

Mannaweenta This East Side restaurant is notable for its selection of Ethiopian and Eritrean dishes such as spicy doro wat, chicken simmered in hot spices, herbs and butter, or injera, a traditional spongy flatbread. Hand-woven bowls and placemats, along with brightly colored wall hangings depicting life in Ethiopia and Eritrea, decorate the pastel yellow walls, creating a welcoming atmosphere. $

Maepole Craft a low-carb plate with super greens, veggie sides and lean proteins.

Watkinsville Chops & Hops The name says it all: Steaks, chops and beer reign supreme at this restaurant in the heart of downtown Watkinsville. $$

Girasoles Chef Jose Zambrano serves upscale Mediterranean-Mexican fusion. $$$

Pub on Main This airy space in the historic courthouse offers family-friendly lunch fare, dinner specials and an impressive whiskey list. $$

1225 N. Chase St., Athens 706-613-9301

Present this coupon to receive a FREE Appetizer or Dessert with the purchase of an $8.00 entrée. Valid October 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019. 38 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

Early-bird specials

Favorite destinations for breakfast, brunch and lunch ADD Drug At this old-school Five Points counter, regulars meet for breakfast and linger over coffee and newspapers. Neighbors come in for lunch specials that include such favorites as slaw-smothered hot dogs and chocolate malts.

Big City Bread Cafe While known for breakfast, this medium-sized restaurant also offers hearty sandwiches, a wide range of desserts, soups, salads and rotating lunch specials. The spacious outdoor seating area is a draw, especially in spring and fall.

Donderos’ Kitchen With seating tucked into rooms of a historic home in Cobbham, this place has the cozy feel of a tea room or B&B. In addition to breakfast and lunch, Donderos’ offers to-go items, such as lasagna and pot pie. While the shop is open until 5 p.m., the kitchen closes at 2. Good to know: If you walk, bike or ride the bus, you get a 5% discount.

about this spot on his podcast). If you want to sample everything from the buffet, go for the $12 all-you-can-eat deal that includes a slice of homemade cake. The meat-andtwo option satisfies more moderate appetite, though it’s hard to narrow down the choices from a buffet that includes more than a dozen sides, plus seasonal fruit or veggie items.

Mama’s Boy Consistently voted Best Brunch in Athens by Red & Black readers, Mama’s Boy opened near campus at the corner of Oconee and Oak streets in 2006. It became a beloved destination thanks to its charm and a menu that puts creative twists on classics. In 2017, the restaurant opened a location on Macon Highway.

Em’s Kitchen At this eatery in Hawthorne Drugs, the breakfast menu features omelets and made-from-scratch biscuit sandwiches. Lunch includes clas- MAMA’S BOY/ Caitlin Jett sics such as pimento cheese and chicken salad sandwiches, heaping salads and homemade Brunswick stew. Em’s Mama Jewel’s Kitchen serves a Saturday brunch that includes eggs Open until 2 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, Benedict and quiche. this Southern destination on Baxter Street pairs a chic industrial interior with downNEW Farmcart home comfort foods like the award-winning After years of operating a food cart serving Ooey Gooey (fried chicken, melted brie and hand-crafted biscuit sandwiches at the Athens jalapeno-peach jelly on a giant biscuit). Farmers Market, husband-and-wife team Michael and Iwalani Farfour opened this Baxter Marti’s at Midday Street spot in early summer 2019. From the Huge salads and hearty sandwiches are the organic flour in the biscuit dough to fillings draw at this cheery Normaltown cafe with a grown in the owners own farm, everything is small indoor area and large patio. You also locally sourced. can pick up entrees and salads to go.

Food for the Soul

Mayflower Restaurant

This understated lunchroom on West Broad Street hosts everyone from construction workers and professors to preachers and off-duty chefs (Hugh Acheson has raved

This Athens spot has been owned and operated by the Vaughn family in the same Broad Street location since 1948. Ravenous? Try the Country Boy Special. Cash only. EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 39

We’ve covered Athens hot spots since 1893



Told through the pages of The Red & Black, Dear Old UGA is a classic gift for everyone who loves the Classic City.


Athens Welcome Center Clubhouse Dick Ferguson’s Normal Books UGA Bookstore University Spirit Walls of Books Learn more at 40 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA


The namesake cocktail at Normaltown’s Old Pal bar. PHOTOGRAPH BY CAITLIN JETT

PG 43 Five exceptional restaurant bars

PG 44 Exploring and sampling the craft beer scene EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 41

MAGNOLIAS /Caitlin Jett

There are reportedly more bars per square mile in Athens than any other city in the country. Start a tour by sampling these favorites.

21 must-visit bars

Allgood Lounge Two full bars plus a rooftop tiki lounge make this a great hangout, whether you’re catching the game or catching up with friends.

hallmarks of the Athens outpost of Atlanta’s famed Sister Louisa’s Church of the Living Room and Ping Pong Emporium.

Cutters Pub Blue Sky A (sort of) secret entrance above Walker’s Pub & Coffee gives this bar a speakeasy vibe. Further distinguishing it from typical college bars is the drinks menu — more than 300 beers and a serious whiskey list.

Stellar service, huge screens and excellent drink specials make this enormous bar a prime spot to catch the game.

Highwire Lounge Adjoining Trappeze Pub, this chic bar is known for creative cocktails and Silent Disco.

Boar’s Head Lounge Huge indoor and outdoor performing spaces make this dive bar a prime destination for sampling local music.

NEW HyBar This rooftop bar at Hyatt Place Athens Downtown offers spectacular 360-degree views, as well as craft beers, cocktails and frozen drinks.

Church Bar Irreverent humor, table tennis, a sizable whiskey selection and an inclusive spirit are

Flicker Theatre & Bar This townie-friendly bar has an adjoining stage that hosts music and film screenings.

Go Bar Known for karaoke, dance parties and concerts, this little bar on Prince Avenue is a favorite with all ages.

Little Kings Shuffle Club

HYBAR / Courtesy Hyatt 42 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

Catering to the town, not college, crowd, this bar has plenty of craft beers

THE EXPAT / Caroline Barnes

and a spacious outdoor area. Catch live music on the intimate stage.

Magnolias Bar of Athens

5 terrific restaurant bars

This classic college bar at the edge of campus is known for happy hour specials, Long Island iced tea and shots.


Manhattan Cafe

The Expat

This quirky hole in the wall is a local favorite thanks to the chill atmosphere and cocktails served with zero pretentiousness.

Trust your drink to owner Jerry Slater, coauthored of “Southern Cocktails.”

Signature cocktails, beer and wines by the glass from the restaurant’s huge list.

The National The Max Canada A huge patio, air hockey, arcade games, cheap beer and dance parties make this popular with locals and students.

Normal Bar A mellow bar catering to Normaltown locals, this place has a huge main room and a small outdoor area.

Snag a prized window seat and order a hummus plate and cocktail.

South Kitchen + Bar The historic location in the former Hotel Georgian is a lovely spot.

The World Famous This pocket-sized spot made Esquire’s list of best bars in the country. Deservedly.

Nowhere Bar Laid-back and known for darts, pool and a cast of regulars, this bar was opened by Craig “Sky” Hertwig, a former Georgia All-American who returned to town after an NFL stint.

The Rooftop at the Georgia Theatre For a great view, head to this bar atop the iconic music venue.

The Root The Office Sports Bar & Grill Claim to be “at the office” while tracking a sports ticker and enjoying craft beer and a menu with categories such as “best practices.”

The Old Pal Wood paneled and serious about mixology, this Normaltown bar has a nice selection of whiskeys. Do yourself a favor and sample the namesake Old Pal cocktail.

Tucked below sister restaurant, The Pine, this Five Points hideaway is a lively destination.

Wayward This chic lounge is known for cocktails, a piano bar and sophisticated jazz nights.

Wonderbar Athens Play classic arcade games and down beers at this downtown bar. EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA | 43

Drink local A quick tour of Athens breweries and tasting rooms AKADEMIA BREWING COMPANY In addition to its own beers, Akademia serves wine and cocktails and offers a lunch and dinner menu featuring flatbreads, burgers, wings and entrees such as shrimp and grits. The Atlanta Highway brewery has a side space called the Odeon where it hosts performances and events.

CREATURE COMFORTS BREWING CO. At the corner of Hancock Avenue and Pulaski Street, the Creature Comforts tasting room welcomes patrons to sample a variety of beer, including limited edition brews as well as year-round favorites such as Athena and Bibo. The adjoining parking lot has recently been enhanced with a permanent shelter. The company completed a second facility off North

159 W.Clayton St, Athens, GA (706) 850-3330 44 | EAT & DRINK ATHENS, GA

Chase Street in June 2018 and has since used the building for increased production.

TERRAPIN BEER CO. Since its founding in 2002, Terrapin has become Athens’ most widely distributed beer, with brands that include Hopsecutioner, Up-Hi and Luau Krunkles. In 2016, the craft brewing division of MillerCoors bought a majority interest in the company. At the Newton Bridge Road brewery, visitors can sample unusual brews, browse the gift shop and enjoy the large outdoor grassy area.

THE SOUTHERN BREWING COMPANY Southern Brewing Company joined the Athens brewery family in 2015. The Highway 29 hotspot features spacious indoor and outdoor area. The company’s year-round brews include Hobnail IPA, Red and Black sour ale and I.P.hAzy. Seasonal brews also are available.


Q&A Matt McFerron THE OLD PAL Co-owner and mixologist Matt McFerron opened The Old Pal in Normaltown in 2013 after wanting to “raise the bar” in the Athens scene. Along with being named as one of the “South’s Best Bars” by Southern Living Magazine, The Old Pal stands out from the sea of downtown bars by offering high quality, signature cocktails, as well as an extensive list of wines, beers and whiskeys, in a neighborhood setting. How did you start making cocktails and what do you love about it? I started making cocktails when I was living in New Orleans. I guess what I like most about it is the creativity, because I personally just find it fun and interesting when you can throw three, four, even five ingredients, together and kind of come up with a whole new unique drink. When you come up with something like that and people enjoy it and you see that little light go off in their head: I guess it’s more rewarding for me than just pouring beer out of a tap or pouring a glass of wine. Again, not that I don’t appreciate that and don’t enjoy that, but I just don’t personally get the same satisfaction out of pouring someone else’s product as opposed to something me and my staff create here at the bar for people.


5 favorite liquor stores 5 Points Bottle Shop Voted best liquor store by readers of The Red & Black, this retailer is a landmark of the Five Points neighborhood, known for its knowledgeable staff, selection of craft liquors and growler service. There’s a large second location on Atlanta Highway.

What is your favorite drink to make? That’s a tough one. As far as a classic cocktail, I love just having a standard martini, a Negroni, Manhattan — those sorts of drinks. As far as something that we come up with, there’s a couple of drinks on our menu that I’m excited about. One is called Easy, Tiger and another one is called Eau de Vida. Where do you like to go to eat and or drink in Athens? Donna Chang’s, Seabear, The Expat. I go to Heirloom on occasion, or home.made — all those places are definite go-to’s. It all depends on the day and my mood, but in general, I just look for a place that you can tell whoever owns the business or runs the business that they care, that they put something into it.

ABC Package


This massive Atlanta Highway shop is stocked with a wide variety and offers discounts on case purchases of wine, liquors and its fun mix-and-match beer singles.

With locations downtown near campus and on Lexington Road on the East Side, Perry’s is a favorite for gamedays and parties thanks to its low prices. Kegs available.

J’s Bottle Shop

Village Wine & Spirits

The spacious array of this Normaltown shop offers a wide selection at great prices. Can’t find what you want? Talk to the staff about ordering it.

Located on the East Side next to the Barnett Shoals Publix, this shop has an ample selection. Mix and match brews to create your own six pack.



Normaltown’s Ike & Jane Cafe and Bakery is named for the owners’ grandparents; Nana Jane ran a bakery for decades in Tully, New York. The Athens bakery celebrated its 10th anniversary, and has won legions of fans over the past decade with its creative doughnuts, topped with everything from Lucky Charms to bacon crumbles. PHOTOGRAPH BY JULIAN ALEXANDER




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Eat & Drink Athens GA, Fall 2019  

The authoritative guide to bars & restaurants in Athens, Georgia.

Eat & Drink Athens GA, Fall 2019  

The authoritative guide to bars & restaurants in Athens, Georgia.