The early word on A Mano and Greens & Gravy

Handmade, Italian pasta and a ”soul bistro” right off the BeltLine
Fresh on the Scene, A Mano
From top: cacio e pepe, charred octopus, sparkling rosé, and Georgia trout at A Mano

Photograph by Iain Bagwell

A Mano
Handmade pasta is part of the focus of this Italian restaurant, which opened in July, and the must-order dish is cacio e pepe: fresh spaghetti tossed with black pepper and pecorino cheese. A modest free-standing brick and stucco building, A Mano is surprisingly cozy on the inside, with a snug bar and a separate rustic but contemporary dining area. Nothing else quite equals that elegantly simple pasta, but the slightly effervescent Italian rosé on tap goes a long way in making the menu feel modern. The mussels in brodetto can be undercooked, and the negroni could be stronger, but the slim Georgia trout hiding under a slew of cherry tomatoes is a fine post-spaghetti secondi. 587 Ralph McGill Boulevard, 404-549-7727

Greens & Gravy
Instagram darling Darius Williams (@dariuscooks) picked a good spot west of downtown and just off the BeltLine to launch his first “soul bistro,” as he calls it, in June. Lemon pepper honey fried chicken, braised collard greens served with watermelon chow chow, and toasted slices of pound cake with seasonal fruit are all executed with palpable brio, while other, less traditional dishes (sweet potato grits, chicken and biscuit on a stick, a dense collard greens lasagna) feel a little gimmicky. Make reservations, especially at brunch, when many seek out tender square biscuits with housemade jam and the best, mildest iced tea in Atlanta. 1540 Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard, 404-565-2074