ATL = heaven for hip-hop foodies.
I’ve been to Atlanta, Georgia four times now, but my most recent trip was one of my favourites.
For a massive hip-hop head like myself, ATL has always been on my radar, but for the average holiday-maker (particularly from the UK), a trip to America usually means jetting off to one of the more well-known tourist cities such as New York, Vegas, LA or Miami.
So consider this little round up of cool spots, snacks and drinks, which I mostly discovered on my latest visit, as a brief introduction to the coolest city in the South (and arguably in the States). And check my Instagram for more ideas.
Food Worth Gaining Weight For:
The food alone is a reason to go to Georgia and this list is very hard to keep short, but let me attempt…
I went here twice on my latest trip and I had to have it as my last meal in ATL before my flight because the ‘creamy dreamy grits’ are unmatched. If you’re after some real southern flavour then you cannot go wrong with Flying Biscuit. It’s best for brunch in my opinion and they are experts in cooking up a plate of sausage gravy with biscuits and eggs. Yes the gravy looks different from UK gravy, but it’s worth trying, I promise.
Honeybubble Banana Bread
This cute café isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea (lol) because bubble tea can be a bit of an acquired taste BUT if you’re nearby, I’d recommend heading inside just to grab some of their banana bread. I’m low-key obsessed with banana bread and now I’m back in the UK, I’ve found myself having dreams about this one. I don’t know what it is; it’s so good toasted and super buttery. The craving is real.
OMFG. This is Cinnabon on STEROIDSSSS. Seriously, you have to go here if you have a sweet tooth – and if not, just go anyway. It’s a gourmet cinnamon roll, topped with creamy frosting and whatever else you want. I had the Cookie Monster, which was loaded up with cookie dough and chocolate sauce, but I was stood there for 15 minutes trying to make my mind up before I settled on that one. So. Much. Goodness.
Waffle House – I have to mention that this is my go-to as soon as I get off the plane. Straight from the airport to Waffle House. And it’s open 24/7 so it’s a perfect end to a night out too.
Old Lady Gang – Opened recently by one of the Real Housewives of Atlanta (if you’re into that). I only had the cornbread when I visited because we were focused on cocktails not food, but every plate I saw coming out of the kitchen looked super Southern and delicious.
Ammazza Edgewood Naples Style Pizza – You place your order like you would at Nando’s (at the cash register and not via a waiter), so it forces you to make a quick, instinctive decision on what you feel like eating. So efficient. Black truffle pizza, yes please.
Zaxby’s – If you’re going to get fast food, go here because I’m mad that we don’t have anything similar in the UK and texas toast is much better accompaniment to chicken than a soggy McDonald’s burger bun.
We Don’t Drink at the Club:
ATLiens know how to party and lounges and bars are often a lot more poppin’ than the club.
I went to a few lounges during my time in Atlanta, but this was my favourite. A cool place that has really good music and still feels low-key, even though it is frequented by a number of celebrities and local stars. We went for RnB Wednesdays, so the music was on point all night and ladies have free entry and free margaritas before midnight. Score.
A buzzing little neighbourhood that is great if you don’t want to drive between bars. Walk down the street on a Saturday night and the atmosphere is fun and friendly. A standout spot for me was Mother bar, which has a little club upstairs and gets packed out with locals. The Music Room is also meant to be good but I didn’t have the energy left in me to check it out!
I loved heading to Peter Street. There is a cool, older crowd and there are a good number of places to dip into for a cocktail, including Escobar Restaurant & Tapas (which is co-owned by 2 Chainz), Blu Cantina and SPIN. SPIN is described as a Pizza Lounge (?!!!) and serves drinks and hookah, as well as having a DJ playing all the hottest Atlanta anthems. If you go, order a slice of buffalo chicken pizza with your Hennessy.
A few ideas when you’re not eating or drinking…
Go to a concert, please
If you are a music fan then I implore you to go to a concert while you’re out in Atlanta – especially if you are a fan of hip-hop because you’re really in one of the best places for it. The crowd is completely different to the often mildly-excited crowds in the UK. They take the infamous words of Travis Porter “All the way turnt up” very seriously.
If you don’t plan a concert to fly out there for (which is what I usually do), then you’d be surprised how many artists have shows that you may not have known about and could align quite nicely with your trip once you arrive.
I’d recommend checking out Ticketmaster etc when you get there and if there isn’t a superstar rapper in town (I’d be surprised if not), then head to a smaller venue and open your mind to some up and coming artists – there are SO many rappers and singers in the city on the come up. Whether at a small bar on a Sunday night or playing at The Tabernacle concert hall, get your music fix fo’ sho’.
A great way to burn off all those biscuits and see new views of the city on a sunny day. Take a walk along the BeltLine, which runs through a number of Atlanta neighbourhoods, and watch the world pass you by. Don’t feel like you have to walk the whole distance though – it’s pretty long!
Ponce City Market
A mix of different eateries and pretty little shops (including the Mothership aka Sephora), but the real gem at Ponce is the 9 Mile Station rooftop bar, which has gorgeous views of Atlanta city and also sits alongside a rooftop carnival experience, complete with slides and mini golf. Very cute.
Have you got a trip planned to ATL or have you been? Would you like me to share more places I’ve visited and unconventional travel guides? Tweet me @natashananner or leave a comment.