Baronda, Midtown Atlanta Restaurant Review

baronda atlanta wine list

Baronda in Midtown would be easy to dismiss as just another restaurant out to make money off Fox Theatre patrons due to its proximity. But take a closer look at the tasty salads, pizzas and pastas and you’ll soon realize it is worthy of a visit.

Baronda midtown atlanta italian

For starters, the Gorgonzola salad ~ with apples, dried cranberries, walnuts, lemon honey dressing is a simple yet delicious item that could easily work for a light meal. So does the Polipo, a grilled Octopus. While I did like the tomato jam and parsley oil it was served with, I did find it a bit tough.

baronda midtown atlanta restaurant

Pizzas average just $14 and can feed 2-3 depending how hungry you are. My favorites? The lamb sausage and Prosciutto. The Prosciutto, offered with arugula, is lovely with the prosciutto being quality, but not extremely unique. However, the lamb sausage with feta, olives and mint, was not something you find at every other pizza joint.

baronda Italian restaurant atlanta

Left: Lamb sausage pizza, Right: Prosciutto Pizza

Pasta favorites like linguini, spaghetti, and lasagna can be found on the menu, but our group couldn’t resist the Gigli, a house made pasta served with wild boar sausage. For more hearty appetites, there’s veal, steak, and a lamb rack.

Note that there is 2 hours validated parking across the street on 3rd. However, if you are planning on seeing a show at the Fox, I’d recommend paying the $10 or $15 for the entire evening in a lot nearby. That way you can head to Publik Draft House after the show for a cocktail.

710 Peachtree Street
Atlanta, Georgia 30308

Disclosure: Our dinner at Baronda was complimentary.

#FoodieGifts Under $20

Last week, I attended a preview of some of the newest items at The Cook’s Warehouse. Here are some of the very reasonably price items that caught my eye. If you are looking for a gift for a foodie, and are stumped, these are sure to please.

foodie gifts, foodie gift guide

Easily spread cold butter, cream cheese and more with Spread That!

Spread THAT! and Scoop THAT!
$19.99
• Technology uses the heat from your hand to make spreading and scooping easy
• Spread cold butter, chocolate or cream cheese without waiting
• Scoop ice cream 25% faster than other ice cream scoops and quick non-stick release

 

foodie gifts, foodie gift guide

Whiskey Wedge by Corkcicle-A new slant on whiskey sipping
$14.99
• The artful way to perfectly chill, but not water down your favorite spirits
• Silicone form fits perfectly in the glass, fill glass with water, freeze and remove form-now you have a
perfect wedge of low melting ice in your glass.

 

 

 

Joseph Joseph Garlic Rocker
foodie gifts, foodie gift guide $14.99 Stainless
$9.99 Black or Green
By using downward pressure and a ‘rocking’ motion, this tool breaks up garlic cloves quickly and
easily, forcing the pieces up through the mesh of holes in its base.
The crushed pieces are then held in the curved design, allowing them to be spooned or scraped
conveniently into a pan or bowl.
Additional cloves can also be crushed at this stage before emptying.
Rocker™ is easy to clean under running water but is also dishwasher safe.

SiftStir by the Everyday Gourmet
foodie gifts, foodie gift guide $15.99
• Unique whisk AND sifter combination
• Strong wires enable you to whisk heavy, wet ingredients
• Slip on the custom designed mesh cylinder and you can sift dry ingredients together
• Dishwasher safe, 18/8 Stainless Steel
The SiftStir is a unique whisk designed with sturdy, strong wires that are tough enough to whisk heavy
wet ingredients such as pudding, batters, sauces and even stiff dough. Just slip the custom designed
mesh cylinder over the whisk and it becomes a sifter that allows you to sift dry ingredients as easily as
whisking them. Uniformly combine dry ingredients with the ease and convenience of using a whisk.

Stocking Stuffer

Garlic Cone
$6.99
What is GarlicCone? GarlicCone is a new kitchen utensil that makes peeling garlic quick and easy.  The new GarlicCone is the result of a quest to make garlic peeling as quick and easy. The GarlicCone is made out of environmentally friendly, silicone-like, soft plastic. By popping one or a couple of garlic cloves inside the cone and rubbing it between your palms, the peel is removed.

Old Fourth Distillery Now Open

old fourth ward distillery

Photo Credit: OFW Distillery

The first distillery in the city of Atlanta since prohibition, in 1906, has officially opened. Old Fourth Distillery, is now open for tours and tastings. While it only produces vodka right now, they have plans to begin producing gin, whiskey and bourbon shortly.

Before Prohibition, there were numerous distilleries throughout the city of Atlanta. However, they all left or shuttered when Georgia enacted its prohibition laws. More than a century later, a group of friends wanted to open a distillery once again and bring some history back to Atlanta.

They chose Old Fourth Ward, because not only is it in the heart of the city, but it is a vibrant historic district experiencing so much revitalization right now. The founders feel the neighborhood is extremely special and want to be part of history that happens here.

What’s so unique about this distillery is that in order to fund it, the group turned to Kickstarter to fund it. Their Kickstarter campaign raised funds in the amount of more than $40k to complete the construction of the distillery.

“We’ve always been passionate about the history of Atlanta and wanted to make sure we paid respect to the past with our products by blending old traditional distillation method with new technology,” says co-owner Jeff Moore.

Tours and tastings will be offered to the public on Thursdays 2 – 7 p.m. and can be scheduled online or by phone. O4D vodka will be available for purchase in stores on December 19.

Cooks_and _Soliders

First Look: Cooks & Soldiers, Midtown, Atlanta, GA

Subjecting oneself to dining at a new restaurant the first week, let alone the first day, is a game of craps at best which normally ends up with you rolling snake eyes on the first roll.  It was fun for a second and then you walk away empty handed.  This has been mostly my experience this year with new openings, but, happily, I can say Cooks & Soldiers was one of the notable exceptions to these mostly lackluster experiences.

Cooks & Soldiers, the highly anticipated new restaurant from the Castellucci Hospitality Group (Iberian Pig, Double Zero, Sugo), opened quietly to friends and family on Wednesday, November 19, 2014 on the Westside of Atlanta and came out firing on all cylinders from the minute we walked in to the minute we left.  It focuses on cooking from the Basque Region (specifically San Sebastian) of Spain; a region that houses some of the best restaurants in the world and access to ingredients from the mountains to the sea at its fingertips.  The menu attempts to capture many of those flavors in the various pintxos (small snacks) as well as a small variety of asador (grilled meats and fish).

On this particular night our experience spanned roughly half of the 35 dishes that make up the menu (including dessert).  We left the entire menu up to the restaurant which was the right choice.  We had the pleasure of having Bethany assist us for the night which always enhances the experience.  It was sad to see her leave 4th & Swift, but great to see she landed at a restaurant that allows her hospitality skills to shine.

Grilled Spanish Octopus + charcoal potatoes + piquillo + rosemary Cana de Cabra + Bayonne Ham + 25 yr. sherry vinegar + mint

The meal began with a flurry of meats and cheeses.  We started a small portion of Iberico Ham which was simply mouthwatering before moving into a beautiful cheese plate featuring regional cheeses and then followed it up with a charcuterie plate of various other cured meats.

Soon thereafter began the flurry of pintxos which were all amazing.  Grilled Spanish octopus with “charcoal” potatoes (died with squid ink), various toasts with items like bruleed figs, coal roasted mushrooms, white anchovies (to name three – see above) and seared scallops with beet and asparagus purees exploded with color on the plate and flavor on the palate.

Cured tomatoes + traditional accompaniments + carrot yolk  Boquerones

The dish of the night, as simplistic as it sounds, was the tomato tartar (above left) .  It consisted of cured tomatoes prepared with traditional accompaniments and adorned by a carrot yolk.  A vegan dish even the most carnivorous diner could appreciate.  The bite mirrored in all respects beef tartar which was impressive and incredibly delicious.  The beef was not missed.

Grilled Tuna + Iberico Broth + piperade + chorizo pepper  oil + garlic parsley pistou Bone-in Ribeye + Tempranillo Bordelaise + ensalada verde

The Asador proved no less remarkable.  We tried three of the five: Maritako Hot Pot, Pork Tenderloin and the Chuleton.  Although it was a close call between the perfectly grilled bone-in ribeye and the Hot Pot, the Hot Pot won the day.  Serving four diners easily, we prepared our own mini soup bowls with the complex broth, exquisite tuna and the various Basque accompaniments including piperade (sautee of peppers), pesto and a chorizo oil.  The combination was absolutely faultless.

After finishing up our savory dishes we moved into dessert.  Although we were closing in on full we wound up finishing with three of their offerings with the most whimsical being C&S’s take on breakfast cereal which incorporated the flavors of Fruity Pebbles and Lucky Charms.  I found it nostalgic if nothing else.  The desserts were just the right size to just give you that last touch of sweetness before closing out a flawless meal.

Cooks and Soldiers is a perfect addition to the already thriving Westside restaurant scene.  All of the dishes I had were memorable for the right reasons.  If this opening night is any indication of its future, Cooks and Soldiers is positioning itself as yet another example of a great eatery on the Westside that continues to elevate the Westside in the conversation when it comes to food in Atlanta.

 

Cooks & Soldiers  Menu      Fried Fruity Pebbles Iced Milk; Lucky Charms marshmallows

 

Cooks & Soldiers Website
691 14th Street
Atlanta, GA 30309
404-996-2623

Cooks & Soldiers on Urbanspoon

Gingerbread Workshop at Davio’s

WHAT:      This holiday season, Davio’s Atlanta is throwing a house party. A gingerbread house party, that is!On Sunday, December 7th, 2014, from 12:00PM to 2:00PM, children of all ages are invited to participate in a workshop with some of Atlanta’s pastry chefs.

Join Pastry Chef Kathleen Miliotis of Davio’s Atlanta to lead a demonstration and workshop, teaching guests how to build personalized gingerbread houses. The event is $40 per child (excluding tax & gratuity), and adult admission is free. Each participating child will receive one gingerbread house to decorate (with delectable decorations included) as well as delicious afternoon snacks.

In the  spirit of the holidays, Davio’s asks that each family help in one small way: arrive at the workshop with one unwrapped toy and help North Atlanta Toys for Tots spread the seasonal joy! To register, please emailAshley@davios.com to secure your seat!

WHERE:    Davio’s Atlanta | 3500 Peachtree Road. NE, Atlanta, GA 30326  | 404.844.4810 | www.davios.com/atl

WHEN:      Sunday, December 7th, 2014 from 12:00PM to 2:00PM.

COST:       $40 per child must be accompanied by an adult. Adult admission is free. Reservations are necessary. Please call 404.844.4810 for more information or email Ashley@davios.com.