Dining Atlanta: Week of March 5, 2012

By Eric Harvison

Dining Atlanta spotlights what is opening and closing around the city. Check in at the beginning of each week to find out what is changing in your neighborhood.

Click here to read earlier columns

Berkeley Heights

No more brown bagging it. CARDAMOM HILL received its liquor license last week.

Nearby, TERIYAKI EXPERIENCE at The District at Howell Mill has closed.

Decatur

Madrid based LA TAGLIATELLA pizza/pasta restaurant chain, with over 100 locations throughout Spain and France, is opening their first U.S. restaurant at the Emory Point development on Clifton Road. TIN LIZZY’S and FRESH TO ORDER have also recently signed onto the development, slated to open this fall.

DeKalb (unincorporated)

Reminder to those residing in unincorporated DeKalb County, tomorrow’s election includes decisions more impactful than selection of the potential future leader of the free world. Sunday alcohol sales are on the ballot. Same is true in Cobb, Forsyth, Gwinnett, Henry and Rockdale counties, plus a few scattered townships (…and yes, I get the irony between “free world” and the inability of a citizen to purchase a can o’suds on a Sunday).

Downtown

For when you tire drinking out of the fountain at Centennial Olympic Park, the folks from SIDEBAR and ENGINE 11 FIREHOUSE TAVERN have just opened PARK BAR at 150 Walton Street in the former SABOR LOUNGE location. Basic pub grub menu.

Eric Dauce, former head baker and pastry chef at HIGHLAND BAKERY, and prior to that ALON’S, is opening his own place, LA FRENCH QUARTER CAFÉ in the Healey Building. According to the press materials, the café “will focus on fresh breads and a legacy of baking.”

New Caribbean restaurant opening on Auburn Avenue at Piedmont. MANGOS hopes to be open within the month.

Little 5 Points

Former LUNA NUEVA space has converted into a new sushi and Thai curry/noodle parlor – THAI 5. 1148 Euclid Avenue.

Midtown

Back in July I reported that CRAVE was “opening soon” at 239 Ponce (onetime WHITE DOT nightclub and birthplace of Pork & Bean Wrestling for those of you taking notes). This project has been shelved, and Jermaine Day will go before the Neighborhood Planning Unit tomorrow night to make his case for a liquor license for his ORGANIX FOOD LOUNGE. If successful, he hopes to have the lounge open in three to six months offering a menu aimed at the “Whole Foods demographic,” consisting largely of organic tapas and cocktails.

Speaking of liquor licenses, Richard Blais’ newest concept, THE SPENCE comes before the NPU for their liquor license hearing on April 3rd. 75 5th Street.

Morningside

Nick Salpekar, longtime wine guy from MURPHY’S, has purchased his own wine shop up the road, taking over HIGHLAND WINE & CRYSTAL, 1402 North Highland. No changes to the overall concept are planned, though Nick advises to expect a name change sometime in the intermediate future.

Westside

New brunch option. SWIT BAKERY & CAFÉ is opening at 1000 Marietta Street, adjacent to TOSCANO & SONS ITALIAN MARKET.

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Eric Harvison’s Dining Notes began a few years ago as a sporadic e-mail exchange with a friend, sharing restaurant openings and trying to satisfy that vague urge to dine “somewhere new.” That friend started forwarding Eric’s messages to some of her friends, several of them food industry professionals. They in turn began passing along bits of restaurant news and gossip that they would come across. These exchanges became more frequent and took on a viral life of their own that has evolved into what you read today.

Aside from the occasional editorial comment, Eric won’t attempt to review these restaurants. There’s plenty of others better qualified, with much more refined palates — probably you. Rather, this is an attempt to help you keep up with the constantly changing Atlanta dining scene, for better or worse.

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