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Robert Phalen, Steven Satterfield, Linton Hopkins, and Ford Fry dish on their all-time favorites
I arrived at Holeman and Finch Public House on a recent Saturday at 7:30 p.m., expecting to wriggle through a surge of bodies to reach the bar. Since it opened in 2008, I’ve introduced the Buckhead trendsetter to dozens of visitors, always prepping them to brace for the crowds, assuring them that the cocktails and the charcuterie and the famous cheeseburger served after 10 p.m. are worth the hassle.
4th & Swift. Bocado. Flip Burger Boutique. Local Three. Holeman & Finch Public House. Miller Union. Gunshow. These restaurants may all look different, have different menus, and serve different facets of the community, but they have one thing in common: They were designed by ai3.
Hmm, I think I can pick up on at least one theme: pork. Both these restaurants built their menus (and cult appeal) around the pig. We get the appeal. Chefs do, too. In our Southern issue this past November, we showcased eight local culinary mainstays with pig tattoos. (We also had a nice essay on the appeal of pork's cousin, country ham.)
It's time for the fifth round of our Final Fork contest, which brings us one step closer to voters determining Atlanta's favorite restaurant.
After almost four years of working at Holeman & Finch mostly as a general manager, Jordan Smelt left Buckhead to come to Cakes & Ale in Decatur, where he took over the beverage program last June. Since his arrival, Cakes’ offerings have both expanded and become more focused, giving visitors the option of simple old world wines, craft cocktails, or specialty beers to accompany their meal.
No establishment has done more to raise Atlanta’s cocktail consciousness than Holeman and Finch, a bastion of free-thinking alchemy where smoked egg whites may be a secret ingredient and where Greg Best and Andy Minchow (co-owners among several others) encourage democracy, with the staff banding together to create quirky, exquisite drinks.
For many people, myself included, beer is an acquired taste. Compared with wine, whose familiar fruitiness caresses the palate, beer brings bitterness to the forefront. As a child in Paris, I was occasionally given beer diluted with carbonated lemonade while the adults around me drank thin Alsatian drafts I thought were just awful. Known in England as shandy, in Spain as clara, and in Germany as radler, beer cut with citrus-flavored soda is something I still love. Snakebite is a strong variation made of hard cider and beer in equal proportions that most respectable bars (including Manuel’s Tavern in Poncey-Highland) will pour into a tall pint glass for me.
ATL Food Chatter—June 19, 2009Where do Atlanta’s chefs go after a grueling day at the “office” when they want to kick it with their comrades in arms? Well, according to one of Atlanta’s top toques, Holeman & Finch Public House is the current hotspot where Atlanta’s chefs meet, eat, and decompress.
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