The verdict on 4 new Atlanta restaurants: Roshambo, Kamayan ATL, TKO, and Corner Slice

The American diner reimagined in Buckhead, Filipino fare on Buford Highway, Korean-American street food in EAV, and Detroit-style pizza in Oakhurst

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Roshambo
Roshambo

Photograph by Martha Williams

Roshambo
One could grow weary of all the formerly proletarian concepts that hospitality entrepreneurs are “elevating” these days: picnics, dive bars, bowling alleys. Alternately, one could just order a drink or two, snack on some tater tots, and leave their reservations aside—something supremely easy to do at this well-executed fancy-diner concept from Chris Hall, Ryan Turner, and Todd Mussman, the team behind area faves including Local Three and Muss & Turner’s. Tucked into the Peachtree Battle Shopping Center, Roshambo evokes the diner experience with its boxcar-shaped dining room, comfy booths and banquettes, and all-day menu, but departs from it by way of cocktails (including a “three-martini lunch pitcher”; schedule a nap afterwards) and fun fare that gestures at a kind of nostalgic Americana—eggs Benedict, grilled cheese with tomato soup—while making room for diners’ evolving tastes: This is a diner where you can also get a mezze platter, Thai basil snapper, and Louisiana-style redfish. Also, a whole steak dinner. Prices can seem a little wild—a native Alabaman at my table raised an eyebrow at the $19 fried bologna sandwich—but portions are generous. And, eclectic as the menu is, it hangs together, with everything we tried on a recent visit coming out perfectly congenial: a chopped iceberg salad enlivened with little pieces of country ham and preserved tomato; a Boursin-stuffed omelette du fromage with a side of tater tots Lyonnaise (i.e., garnished with sauteed onion); a chicken Parmesan dinner plate that was the picture of comfort. The cocktails are mostly classic (Sazeracs, aviations), and the wine list also distinguishes Roshambo from other diners, in the sense that it exists at all. Buckhead

Kamayan ATL
It’s fair to say this one has been long-awaited: Mia Orino and Carlo Gan launched it as a Filipino pop-up in 2018, honored as James Beard semifinalists (for Emerging Chef, in 2022) before they even opened a brick-and-mortar restaurant. And now here it is—a colorful, charmingly appointed dining room in a back corner of Asian Square. Already they’ve nailed that special Buford Highway combination of culinary artistry and unfussy atmosphere, exemplified by servers who treat you like old friends and dishes that are drop-dead gorgeous: whole fried fish garnished with starfruit, bubbling pots of kare-kare (a peanut-based stew available, on a recent night, either with beef or in a hearty vegan version with bok choy, green beans, and eggplant), and of course the classic dessert halo-halo—shaved ice drizzled with sweetened milk and topped with all manner of colorful goodies, including ube ice cream and a little slice of flan. Also available: lumpia, deep-fried spring rolls with fillings including shrimp, pork, and the mildly sweet cured sausage longanisa; sizzling lechon sisig, slow-roasted pork belly with chopped pork cheek, snout, and pâté; pungent fish sauce chicken wings; and more, on a menu that changes frequently. The name of the restaurant refers to the style of Filipino meal by which Gan and Orino made their name, a whole feast spread across a table on banana leaves that’s meant to be eaten communally, and by hand; keep an eye out for the ticketed kamayan feasts they’ll continue to hold regularly at this spot. Doraville

TKO
Since it opened in EAV in late 2021, the food hall Southern Feedstore hasn’t much distinguished itself by its culinary offerings—cheesesteaks, gyros, and chicken and waffles were about it, until Lino Yi showed up. A former sous chef at Lazy Betty, Yi launched TKO as a pop-up in 2021 (the initials are short for “the Korean One”), and its permanent digs here are a welcome addition not just to the building but to the area; this is a drinking neighborhood, and Yi’s food—playful, not overly healthy Korean-American fusion—is great drinking food. To wit: eggroll taquitos, filled with marinated beef and served with spicy mayo and sriracha; a Korean fried chicken sandwich or, if you prefer, Korean fried chicken nuggets; ultra-comforting fried rice with homemade kimchi and lots of cheese. As befits the concept and the area, Yi appears already to be having a lot of fun, with daily specials organized according to themes like WTFusion Wednesday (bulgogi hoagies, cheesy beefy kimchi burritos), FRYday (Krab rangoon, kimchi chili cheese fries), and so on. Plus, you don’t need to leave the building to do your drinking: Buteco’s got a bar inside the food hall serving wine, beer, caipirinhas and other Brazilian-inspired cocktails—and coffee, if at any point you need a little pick-me-up. East Atlanta Village

Corner Slice
The name has a double meaning: It describes the location of the building vis-à-vis College Avenue, and it describes the part of the Detroit-style pizza you’ll be fighting with your tablemates over—the corner slice, with its spectacular density of cheesy, crispy crust and meltingly soft interior. Implicit in the name is also a bit of a boast: Baked into a rectangular pan and cut into six pieces, the “regular”-sized pies are two-thirds corner slice, and even the other third contains a generous amount of edge, which is one of the main selling points of the focaccia-like Detroit pie. Owner Ben Horgan has been in the restaurant business for a while, getting his start in pizza decades ago at Everybody’s Pizza in Virginia-Highland; here, he offers a relatively simple menu with a few specialty pies (“Spicy” is indeed a symphony of spice, with jalapeños, Calabrian peppers, and capicola and pepperoni, plus a hot-honey drizzle to help sweeten the deal), the usual toppings if you want to build your own, a few Italian sandwiches served on housemade bread, and wings and salads. If a recent weeknight visit is any indication, Corner Slice is already feeding a local hunger, with a steady stream of residents coming in and out to pick up their takeout orders. No booze till the liquor license comes through, but luckily the beer market Ale Yeah is right next door. Oakhurst

This article appears in our March 2023 issue.

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