#11: The Optimist


Ford Fry’s Westside seafood palace stands above the rest of his brood (which also includes JCT Kitchen and Decatur’s No. 246). Temptation Exhibit A: the lobster roll piled with fleshy lumps of sweet meat, no mayo in sight. Order it in the main dining room during lunch and at the adjoining oyster bar during dinner. Executive chef Adam Evans impresses with dishes like crisp halibut collar given an Asian edge with a garlic-ginger sauce.

914 Howell Mill Road, 404-477-6260, theoptimistrestaurant.com

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  • James Donovan

    My wife and I celebrated her birthday here last week. Festive, open, urban feel. Excellent server that was happy to answer questions about all the dishes and provide wine pairing recommendations. Their house bread is excellent. The starters, seafood bisque and gumbo were extra flavorful. Outstanding sides. Carrots with honey and ricotta – excellent. Hush puppies are a must – out of this world. Grouper as an entree – not bad, certainly fresh (the accompanying tomato broth just wasn’t my favorite). Scallops as an entree – highest quality and perfectly cooked. Can’t forget the beignets with ice cream for dessert – tasty. Just a tweak pricey, though certainly a pleasant ride for the taste buds.

  • Margaret

    Best shrimp dish ever! Coming back from Oregon in August for a wedding and you are my first stop

  • jhr

    Very very good, but we’ll never go back until they fix the noise. It’s just wayyyy too loud. Louder than JCT, which is also loud.

  • Suzanne

    Don’t go there in a nice car. The valet parks cars on a side street, and it is in a sketchy neighborhood. I was truly worried my car would be either vandalized or stolen if parked outside of the lot next to the restaurant.
    It is understandable the lot has limited parking, but the spots were taken by employees’s cars(I asked whose cars they were). I asked, they refused. Several of the cars were old and one was an old, beaten-up pick-up truck. I left.