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yet tuh

yet-tuh-3aOkay so I’m Asian and I love food, but that doesn’t mean I’m an expert on all Asian food. Of all the variety of Asian cuisine out there, I undoubtedly have strong opinions about Chinese food and Vietnamese food because that’s my heritage and that’s what I’ve been eating all my life. What I don’t know much about is Korean and Japanese cuisine. So when it comes to trying new Asian restaurants, it’s those that I’m going to go for because I want to continue broadening my experiences with each. Being in Atlanta, I have plenty to choose from! Last week I tried Yet Tuh, a small little spot off of Buford Highway. Thanks Instagram!

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We got there extremely early so the place was completely empty. Its location is definitely off the beaten path but it’s well worth the trip. Again, I remind you that I know nothing about what good Korean food is supposed to be like. But I very much enjoyed most aspects of this dinner. It was tough to only be a two-person party because of how many items we ordered (we just had to try them), but that made for plenty of leftovers to carry me through the week. Of all the dishes, my favorite was

8 arm

When a new coffee spot in town opens up, you know you’ll find me there drinking lattes like there’s no tomorrow. Typically I visit a new place just once or twice to take pics and feel the vibe, but with 8 arm I’ve already been there like 5 times since I first visited it a month ago. Is that insane? I very rarely find a place I love as much as Octane but this one is right up there.

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First of all, how come no one knows about this spot? It’s right on Ponce, in that spot that used to have all the scooters. It’s open morning until night and has a breakfast lunch AND dinner menu. While the pricing is a little too high to be my every day spot, everything I’ve tried there is delish. Atlanta magazine claimed that 8 arm now has the best biscuit in Atlanta, but the item I’m dying over is the CINNAMON BUN. Go get it. The dining room is flooded with natural light and a weekday is quiet enough to sit and really enjoy the morning.

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 This particular morning that I went, I was feeling really down, out, and tired.

double zero

When you get to your late 20s (or are in your last year of them), weeknight dinner dates with friends are everything. Everything. There’s nothing like enjoying a lovely cocktail and delicious food with your girl. So when my friend Elizabeth and I do get the chance to meet up, we try to keep it fresh. Last week we tried the newly re-opened Double Zero in Emory Village.

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Featuring a diversely Italian American menu, this recently relocated restaurant (formly in Roswell) is a very welcome addition to the Druid Hills/Emory neighborhood. I live in Woodland Hills which is right off of Cheshire Bridge Road and often find myself having to go a little drive south, west, or north for good eats. General Muir is one of my favorite spots close-by and this may become a staple as well. Though slightly pricey for a casual weeknight, my birthday was a good reason to splurge on a good selection of their small but shareable plates.

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Seafood and pasta is no question some of my favorite to indulge in. When cooked properly, it’s an indulgence unlike anything else. We started with the clams with toasted bread and I mean, anything with toasted bread has my heart. The perfect plate to go with the refreshing-but-packs-a-punch drinks. We asked our waitress to help us make our choices and we were pretty satisfied with all of them. Elizabeth loved those briny and bright clams, I was surprisingly very much into the arancini and I think both of us needed two more bowls of the tonnarelli pasta.

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The portions are definitely shareable and we had enough food, but I just wanted more. How could you not want more? We scraped up every little bit of the pork cheek ragu from the plate pictured above. I will say though the scallops were awesome, it was probably at the bottom for me. Just not worth $15, sorry. I probably would have preferred a second bowl of clams or pasta instead. But now I know!

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One thing we did not get to dabble in was the pizza. I’ve seen their pizzas on instagram so my eye is on them next. I’m glad the restaurant is big, open, and uncomplicated. The cocktails were light but strong, clear and fresh. I won’t be coming here often (like as often as I eat on Buford Highwat) but it’ll be perfect for the occasional date night instead of the farther away alternatives. All in all, a great addition to the neighborhood!

charleston meals: chez nous

Yes, two weeks later and I’m still ruminating on the best moments of our Charleston trip. That and also my normal life is just not that exciting. So I finally get to bring to you photos from one of my favorite meals in the Holy City, a lovely Sunday dinner at Chez Nous. We did our due diligence prior to the trip and Chez Nous was at the top of our list – the kind of place that focused on high quality simplicity, changing their menu every single day to suit the prime ingredients of the season.

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The day we drove to Charleston we checked Chez Nous’ instagram to see what was on the menu. Every day features two starters, two entrees, and two desserts – you can select however many you’d like for the table, even just a dessert if that’s your fancy. Their dishes are inspired by French, Italian, and Spanish cuisines – classic flavor combinations cooked exactly as they’re meant to be.

On top of that, we were lucky enough to get the best al fresco table in the house. Well, outside the house. Sitting outside as the light slowly dipped beneath the trees, everything felt exactly as it should be. The service, ambiance… it was all juuust right.

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I guess I should talk a little bit about the food, right?

bread & butterfly

It’s been high time that I try some of the new spots round Atlanta! Bread & Butterfly was at the top of my must-try list, knowing that a) I love breakfast and b) all pastries I’ve had from Proof Bakeshop are finger-licking good. These folks know how to do baked goods right and I’m so glad that more and more we’re seeing established Atlanta restaurants spread their wings into different neighborhoods.

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This Parisian-inspired cafe is open like all day long – perfect for lingering – and switches up their tastefully small menu at strategic times of day. My friend Alicia and I made it right as the breakfast menu was coming to a close. It was the perfect start to a weekday off; with time to really savor every item, it was simplicity that I sought and simplicity that I got. It was a Wednesday morning so the place was absolutely empty save for two loners. So if you’re near Inman Park and needing a new quiet place to hole up and read, study, whatever… here’s your new spot! It was way too cold to sit outside but I imagine once we warm up again, the patio will be just divine.

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I will warn you, the prices aren’t as casual as I had hoped. It’s the perfect place for a day date, a nice brunch, or treating yourself with your girls. But everyday pit stop it is not. Should you need to go somewhere a bit more friendly to the wallet, I’d recommend Amelie’s.

The food itself was carefully made and I took my time in eating it. It was worth enjoying the moment, the flavor, the textures. You could probably go there and spend less than I did if you just ordered regular coffee and a pastry. But if you’re going to indulge in a nice breakfast, just let it happen. I’m pretty happy I did.

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chef liu’s

It’s been far far too long since I’ve written about food on here. My time is getting ever more precious to me so it’s been difficult for me to take the time to write about food experiences over using that time to paint or do a quick outfit post. So here I am to remedy that, with my thoughts on Chef Liu’s.

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People come to me frequently for restaurant suggestions, but really.. I don’t have as many as you think. Yes, I’m adventurous and yes I love to experience new things and explore Atlanta. But I, much like you, have only a handful of tried and true go-to spots. It’s partly due to financial constraints and partly due to the comfort of convenience.

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Asian food is quite obviously essential to my weekly dining. I’m no expert on cooking Asian food myself (apart from random stir frying), so what ends up happening is I have a few key restaurants on rotation to get my fix. Though I’m more partial to Vietnamese food by nature (and childhood upbringing), every now and then I just neeeeed Chinese. Like… better than stupid takeout Chinese. So I’m always on the hunt for a good Chinese restaurant that can cook correctly and leave me feeling satiated without feeling like a grease face. Chef Liu’s is one such place.

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As you can see by these photos, we were hungry and ordered way more than we could finish. But of course that gives us the upside of leftovers, which is almost required when eating family style Asian. From what I can remember, we ordered pork intestines, jellyfish salad, cold spicy noodles, dumplings, beef stew, and some sort of chicken chow fun deal. Whatever, you can use your eyes. 

lady brunch at ladybird

I had been hearing lots of things about Ladybird, so it was time I find out firsthand. Perfect opportunity for a lady brunch, right?

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When you get into your late 20s, brunch unfortunately starts to lose its luster. You no longer have the availability to devote hours and hours on a Sunday to sitting around gabbing over mimosas. But every now and then, it’s necessary to indulge and enjoy the company of other lovely ladies. A couple hours out of your errand-running is nothing compared to to some good-hearted laughs with friends. Ladybird was a great spot to spend some quality time – family-style tables, down-home casual breakfast food, and endless cups of coffee.

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Everything was pretty darn delightful here (company included obviously). Their brunch selection covers anything you might be craving for a cozy weekend morning. I myself went for the savory mexican flavors with a cast iron pan full of chips, salsa, avocado, an egg. You know, tasty stuff. Other delicious choices on our table included the deviled eggs, beignets, farro bowl, hot chicken biscuits, and breakfast flatbread.

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buttermilk kitchen

The upside to working retail is the beauty of my days off. Sure, sure, it would be fantastic to have my two-day weekends back. But sometimes you just have to look at the silver lining and soak in what you can. I get to explore sweet little local places unburdened by crowds and every now and then I’m lucky enough to have the company of women who are quite lovely. This week, Buttermilk Kitchen was our southern brunch nirvana.

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There’s not much I can convey in words to add to what these pictures already show you. The atmosphere was perfect, particularly on the patio with the sun moving up, and the service was extremely on-point. Everything was in a perfect state of balance, very thoughtful but not at all fussy. The menu was pared down and every piece of food on our table was exactly what we wanted it to be. It was fresh, it was rich, and well worth the trip.

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I imagine that the weekends could be overwhelming in a place like this. It’s undeniably awesome and I’m sure the entire neighborhood knows and loves it. If you ever get a weekday off, make a day date for Buttermilk. I swear to you, probably one of the best brunches I’ve had in Atlanta. 

varuni napoli

If you’re an avid local restaurant eater like me, then I’m sure you know that pizza is super hot on the street right now. Neapolitan style, in particular, is having a great 15 minutes of fame on the Atlanta food scene. Ever since Antico made waves among the Buckhead crowd, new spots have been popping up all over town. Varuni Napoli, one of the newest, has taken its stand in the heart of Midtown and Ansley Park at the corner of Monroe and Piedmont. An ideal spot for sure, but was the pizza going to live up to its rustic Italian namesake? Last week I found out.

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First impressions can make quite a difference and by looks alone, Varuni has all the makings of a great culinary spot. The decor is clean and modern with a hint of homemade here and there – just enough to feel of the moment. Their sweet little back patio is also quite quaint, a nice spot to eat your pie as the sun goes down.

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We sat with baited breath waiting for our pizza to come to us. Though all the choices sounded pretty good, we opted for a classic combo of mozzarella, sausage, mushroom, onions, and roasted smoked peppers. As you can see by these pictures, it looked every bit our dream of the perfect neopolitan pizza. By all accounts, things were looking good.

flip burger boutique

For how big a fan I am of Richard Blais, I surprise myself by how few times I actually visit his restaurants. I’ve been to Flip Burger a number of times now, but with the Ponce location having just opened their rooftop patio, it was time to make another visit. I went on a weekday, so it was pretty empty and for a little while, we had the brand new rooftop patio all to ourselves.

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