White Oak Kitchen & Cocktails quietly opened its doors Monday night for dinner service. The downtown restaurant, located in the 270 Peachtree building, is the latest to jump on the Southern chic, farm-to-table bandwagon. The menu offers the expected pimento cheese and deviled eggs but also ventures out with dishes like caramel fried chicken, trout ravioli, and a stew with roasted prawns.
Executive Chef Ben Vaughn is helming the kitchen and comes from Memphis, Tennessee. Perhaps an out-of-town chef is what Atlanta needs to fill the culinary void of mediocrity that blankets most of downtown. In an interview with the local paper there, Vaughn described his style as seasonal, a mindset that jives well with Atlantans. Vaughn also seems to have a rather contentious reputation, judging by the comments about his now-closed restaurant Au Fond.
Since WOKC happens to be next to the Atlanta Magazine offices, we've had a daily view of the renovation's progress, which cost a reported $1.275 million. Natural light pours through tall windows, accenting high ceilings, raw wood and whiskey barrels.
For now, WOKC will be open only for dinner but owner Cindy LeBlanc says they hope to start offering lunch in two weeks. The bar is open from 4-11pm every day, while dining room opens from 5pm until 10:30 pm. Complimentary valet parking is also available.
WOKC is owned and operated by Cindy and Alan LeBlanc of Brewed to Serve Restaurant Group Inc., the same group that manages Max Lager’s. For those wanting to check out the full menu, here it is.