Inman Park. Italian food. Covered patio. These are all words that entice me and probably every other 30-something living in Atlanta.
Despite what my Instagram may have you think, we actually don’t eat out really all that much. Save for BuHi, but that doesn’t count! Asian food is my comfort food so BuHi is like going to a cozy mom and pop shop down the street. At least that’s what I tell myself. For Ben’s birthday, we decided to revisit a restaurant we had remembered enjoying – BoccaLupo.
I can’t remember what was in this cocktail (this is how old I’m getting) but I do remember that it was tart, bright, and Florida themed. I really really enjoyed it. The cauliflower appetizer was delicious but I was disappointed by how much it cost given that it wasn’t a huge amount and the flavors weren’t revolutionary. A roasted cauliflower is always good, but when you pay double digits for a vegetable appetizer, you kind of want it to be extraordinary. Or at least a healthy amount. The picture above is the full amount that was given to us.
What we DID feel was worth it was the pasta. Oooohhhhh that pasta. I’m a real sucker for flat wide pasta; something about the mouth feel I think just really hits the spot. With the ragu, it was just delectable. I finished the whole. Thing. Ben’s pasta (below) was lovely but mine was totes better.The good thing about not ginormous portions is that there was plenty of room for dessert. And it was Ben’s birthday so that called for TWO desserts!! What can I say. I like to indulge.
All in all, BoccaLupo was good but I think our choices from the menu were just not the top notch ones. I guess that happens when you don’t frequent a restaurant often – you are more likely to stumble onto some things that are not their best. I think it’s also a challenge given that the restaurant scene is growing exponentially in Atlanta so everyone is asking themselves, what is gonna make me come back here? I like this place, but do I love this place? Hard to say.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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!
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.
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.
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.