Located in the heart of downtown is White Oak Kitchen and Cocktails an upscale Southern restaurant. I’d only visited once before for lunch on a weekday earlier this spring so I was excited to come back for a full meal.
For cocktails, they seem pretty heavily steered toward Bourbon. While it isn’t my booze of choice, I decided to partake in a bourbon cocktail. The Red Earth was much sweeter than I had expected. Muddled with strawberries, I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised.
I decided to swap to wine after our appetizers were nearly finished. Our server recommended I taste two Pinot Noir’s and select one to go with the my dinner. By the time I got the taste and made my selection, our entrees had been on the table for a while. I found myself eating painfully slow to make sure there was some food left to actually pair with the wine.
Our appetizers may not have been anything those watching calories should consume, but darn if they weren’t fantastic. First let’s talk about these eggs (pictured at the top of the page). There’s a good amount of mustard seed that gives it an certain umph and the chicken skin is just a nice bonus.
Who doesn’t love pimento cheese? How do you make it better? Fry it, of course and serve it with some strawberry jam. While I did love this, I thought the price of $10 for only 3 pieces was a bit steep.
But we weren’t done yet. The beignets, more savory than sweet were quite yummy, especially with the rock shrimp inside and a dollop of creamy white barbecue sauce. I had high hopes for the Bresola salad but this wasn’t my favorite. The sweetness of the butternut squash didn’t play well with the salty cured meat. Hey, three out of four winners ain’t bad.
There were four of us and we chose all different entrees to get a good feel for the offering: Lamb, Shrimp, Flounder and Short Ribs. Too often I’m disappointed by short ribs; either a unfair meat to bone ratio or just a general pot roasty flavor. Thankfully, this wasn’t the case at White Oak Kitchen. The tender beef came apart almost effortlessly with my fork and the flavor of the mild bbq sauce was just right. The lamb was another stunner. It is a huge portion served with tomato pie and chive yogurt. I kinda wish I’d ordered it myself. The small taste I sampled was a total tease.
But my Flounder was nothing to discount. I don’t know why they threw so much green on top of it as it didn’t really add to the presentation but the texture and taste was rather delightful. The slightly salty breadcrumbs on top made it pair well with the sweet Butternut Squash.
Entrees at White Oak Kitchen hover around the $30 price point. The food was incredible, but the service could use a bit of work. Overall, I felt like our server knew the menu well and could point out good selections, yet she wasn’t really in tune with the pace of our meal. Keep in mind, White Oak Kitchen caters to those downtown for conventions and conferences, so while it was packed on a weekday evening, weekends are generally slower and I suspect you can get more attentive service as well.
Tip: The overworked valet may not be there when you pull up as he’s probably running to get someone’s car. They have a lot directly across the street which you can park in for five bucks for up to 12 hours. Cash and credit cards are accepted.
270 Peachtree St
Atlanta, GA 30303