The sweet side of town: Our guide to Atlanta’s best pastries (and breads!)

We celebrate the city’s finest, from bejeweled macarons to no-frills doughnuts, flatbreads to cornbreads, gooey Filipino blondies to fancy Rice Krispie treats, Korean cream breads to French fruit tarts—and everything in between.



In Chamblee, a baker nearing retirement age clocks in a short time after midnight—he’s got doughnuts to make. On the Westside, one of the city’s best pastry chefs creates desserts that double as works of art. Off a busy stretch of road in Gwinnett County, sweets shops are so plentiful that they’re practically stacked on top one another, while all over the city, independent bakers working out of shared kitchens and rented spaces are bringing an invigorating array of flavors to Atlanta’s palate—delicate Filipino cookies, floral-scented Persian cakes, beautiful Mexican conchas, and Asian-influenced Rice Krispie treats. If you’re a pastry person—or a bread head—there’s never been a sweeter time to live here.

edited by sam worley | with contributions from heather buckner, von diaz, mike jordan, christiane lauterbach, and lia picard | photography by brinson + banks


The essential elements of Atlanta pastry

Essential Atlanta pastriesCreamy, flaky, fancy, red, green, vegan, Brazilian—whatever kind of treat you’re looking for, here’s where to find it. Keep reading

Atlanta’s sweetest strip

Pleasant Hill Road pastries

Photograph by Brinson + Banks

Bejeweled macarons, mountainous bingsu, Japanese honey toast, fish-shaped bread, cat-shaped cake—and great coffee: Gwinnett County’s Pleasant Hill Road has got it all. Keep reading

Rise of the microbakers

MicrobakersWorking out of shared kitchens, rental facilities, and sometimes their own homes, these pastry artists are bringing an invigorating array of flavors—and colors!—to the city’s palate. Keep reading

Hot dough action!

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On a cornbread quest

CornbreadEverything’s better with a little sugar—especially cornbread. Keep reading

Claudia Martinez is at the top of her game

Claudia MartinezNow in the kitchen at Miller Union, the pastry chef combines the flavors of her Venezuelan and Southern roots with an artist’s visual flair. Keep reading

The night shiftDandy Donuts

A 67-year-old Vietnamese refugee, Dandy has been making doughnuts by hand, in the middle of the night, for more than 30 years. Now, he gets ready to hang up his apron. Keep reading

Bread planet

Breads AtlantaAtlanta is a crossroads of scores of breadmaking cultures and techniques. Here’s the proof. Keep reading

These articles appear in our February 2022 issue.