For Southerners, the humble biscuit is a foodstuff as hotly debated as barbecue or fried chicken. Ask someone where to get a good biscuit in the Atlanta, and you’ll get recommendations with passionate proclamations on the benefits of lard, shortening, or butter. Let me make things easy for you—just go to 8ARM, where baker Sarah Dodge is making my current favorite biscuit in Atlanta.
Before 8ARM, Dodge worked at Octopus Bar (which is owned by Angus Brown and Nhan Lee, the team behind 8ARM and the now shuttered Lusca), Little Tart Bakeshop, Spice to Table, and, most recently, the Preserving Place, where she managed special events and cooking classes. Teaching a how-to class on biscuits actually landed Dodge in her role at the Preserving Place. Her Instagram feed is total bread food porn: You can see Dodge posing with rounds of crusty, artisan bread or take a behind-the-scenes look at her latest creations, like last week’s sausage, Georgia apple, and cheddar turnovers.
Dodge’s biscuits are butter and buttermilk based. What makes them noteworthy is her light touch. Biscuits are notoriously fussy and quickly turn tough when overhandled, but Dodge’s are delicate yet sturdy enough to serve as the base for 8ARM’s daily biscuit sandwiches, which are filled with items like pimento cheese, a perfectly round fried egg with lacey edges, and thick slices of bacon. You’ll start eating with your hands, but finish with a knife and fork. The biscuits are buttery, crisp, and super crumbly, and they’ve got the perfect amount of salt. They are good on their own with a dollop of homemade honey butter or as a sandwich. Fear not if you don’t see any in the glass pastry case; the kitchen may have some in the back.
Most of the baked goods at 8 Arm, including the bread for the crab toast (from the Lusca days), fall under Dodge’s purview. So, don’t forget to grab a chocolate chip cookie or a cinnamon roll on your way out. While you are there, check out the rest of the menu, which includes grain bowls and cool creations like the “50/50,” a combination of baba ganoush, hummus, roasted sweet potatoes, delicata squash, and Indian fry bread. With Dodge in its corner, 8ARM’s dreamy space in the shadow of the Ponce City Market behemoth is quickly becoming the breakfast, brunch, and lunch destination on Ponce. 710 Ponce De Leon Ave NE, 470-875-5856, www.8armatl.com