Food & Drink

article placeholder

Take a break from leftovers with hearty steaks, warm soups

Parker's on Ponce offers tasty steaks and more...

We were in Decatur, already tired of thinking about turkey, and wanted a nice hearty steak with a spicy glass of pinot noir, but we didn’t feel like paying high Buckhead prices. Plus we wanted something “neighborhoody.” Parker’s on Ponce was the perfect choice.

Open since 2008, Parker’s offers style and class without being pretentious. It’s the perfect setting for good friends or a holiday gathering. The romantic interior is warm with dark woods and soothing ambient stone fireplaces, causing Parker’s to immediately release your stress. When we were there the scene was a Decatur mélange of gay, lesbian and straight. Service was convivial and inviting. They are open for brunch and there’s a big bar. The large scenic patio will be nice in the spring.

The cuisine is decadent without being too over the top.  Sometimes it’s nice to revisit classic steakhouse fare like fried calamari, and Parker’s take was fresh and crispy with a drizzle of garlic and onion aioli. We decided to continue the splurge and split the lamb lollipops, little savory chops with mint balsamic reduction. Our friend got the Irish beer cheese soup with a white cheddar crouton.   It was a butch French Onion.

article placeholder

Dining: Fabulous fall brunch spots

West Egg Cafe

This is a great time to be in Atlanta. The autumn days tend to be crisp and bright making weekends perfect to hit a patio and have brunch.

You must try West Egg Café located in a refurbished warehouse in the gentrified West Midtown district. The scene is mixed in the industrial open loft space with towering windows, plus there is a scenic patio. West Egg has numerous accolades from the AJC, Atlanta Magazine and Creative Loafing for best breakfast and brunch due to efficient service and superlative cuisine by Chef Patric Bell.

West Egg has a can’t-go-wrong menu of breakfast and brunch “new-Southern” comfort foods. Where else can you get a huge pimento cheese and bacon omelet with scratch-made roasted garlic grits and a fluffy Southern biscuit? The consummate Southern author Fannie Flag would gush over the West Egg’s fried green tomatoes that are golden and tangy with dollops of pimento cheese and a horseradish dill sauce.

article placeholder

Gay favorite Radial Café enters new era

Philip Palmer is moving to London at the end of the year and recently sold his restaurant, Radial Café, to Frank Bragg

Eleven years ago, Philip Palmer opened up Radial Café as a small restaurant that has thrived with its delicious menu and strong support of the LGBT community as well as other local groups.

But at the end of December, Palmer begins a new chapter in his life when he moves to London to be with his partner, Allen Roberson, who recently found a job there after earning an MBA from Emory.

“He’s been here his entire life, I’ve been here 15 years, so we knew it was definitely time for something different,” Palmer says while seated on the patio of Radial Café on DeKalb Avenue.

article placeholder

Don’t be afraid to venture beyond I-285 for great dining

Crepe Revolution

In the ‘70s and ’80s, all the gays and lesbians in the city lived inside the Perimeter. As an Atlanta native I’ve seen everything change. Now we are everywhere, and I’m so tired of this “I don’t do OTP” because there are plenty of delicious OTP chef-driven restaurants.

Here are some noteworthy places worth venturing close to or even beyond the circle of Interstate 285. The scene is mainly straight but most Atlanta restaurants couldn’t care less about your sexual orientation so long as you are polite and tip well. Plus everyone knows if you attract the gays the place must be good.

There are so many fabulous restaurants in Vinings, but did you know there was a revolution? Try something different and head to Crepe Revolution in the charming West Village development. The restaurant serves fabulous sweet and savory crepes. We had a blast with our gay waiter on the beautiful patio with its scenic view, which is not on a busy street like many ITP places. The interior is modern chic.

article placeholder

The best on Tap

What a great Pride that was! My partner and I exchanged vows at the group commitment ceremony and had our reception at Tap, the chef-driven Gastropub by the same people who own One Midtown Kitchen and Two Urban Licks.

I’ve always had congenial, efficient service here. Tap had Pride flags flying outside of their people-watching patio. It’s a mixed scene. The inside has a cool postmodern décor with high ceilings, three levels and a nice view from the third level.

I started with the Buffalo calamari, which is the wing’s gay cousin drizzled with wing sauce and tossed with rich chunks of bleu cheese.  It was followed by the juicy Pub burger seared on a flat top with American cheese and on a crispy English muffin with scratch made fries. The best part was the shot of chocolate shake served with it.

article placeholder

Pride: Plenty of options for dining near Piedmont Park

Festival food

Showing Pride can make you hungry. If you’re from out of town, you’ll see there are hundreds of places to eat in the Atlanta metro area. As a native Atlantan, here are some good choices around the periphery of Piedmont Park. Food snobs may not agree, but if you’re hungry at Pride, listen to me.

Some festival food carts at Pride are really delicious but not the healthiest and prices can be high. My weakness is corn dogs dipped in jalapeño cornmeal batter and fried in front of you. Yum. There are also those fried mushrooms and onion blossoms.

article placeholder

Fall Preview: Rooftops to escape the late summer heat

The view from FAB restaurant

As fall nears, we’re all yearning to escape the late summer heat. Act like the superhero you are. Did you know you were “different” when you had a crush on Superman or Wonder Woman? Me too. So now, fly high in the sky and try these lofty rooftop bars and restaurants.

Whenever my partner and I have friends in from out of town, they always ask to go to downtown Atlanta. We always reply that Atlanta is a commuter city, but there are still some very viable places to entertain out of town guests.

We start by going to the bar at the Sun Dial restaurant on top of the Peachtree Plaza. I remember when I was a kid and my mother took me there. I had a Shirley Temple and felt like I was the most metropolitan child ever, sipping my pink fizzy drink as the bar rotated slowly to reveal the Southern Empire Skyline. On a clear day you can see forever. It’s really pretty at night.

article placeholder

Philip Palmer from Radial Café on 11Alive

Philip Palmer, owner of Radial Café, winner of the best Vegetarian/Organic restaurant in the Georgia Voice Best of Atlanta survey, will be on local news station 11Alive tomorrow morning to discuss the nation-wide egg recall.

Radial Café, known for its organic breakfast menu, has not been affected by the recall, according to Palmer, who is gay. So far, more than 550 million eggs have been recalled due to fears of salmonella contamination.

article placeholder

Restaurants where gay PDA is A-OK

Atlantans joined in the celebrations earlier this month when a federal judge ruled that Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in California, was unconstitutional. Sure, the case is being appealed, but we can still rejoice in the strongly worded ruling that affirmed our rights as lesbian and gay Americans.

All of the Prop 8 revelry made me think about places where I could truly be myself and grab my partner’s hand on the table and say, “I love you.” I’m not a big PDA person, but I don’t see anything wrong with a quick kiss or hand-holding as long as it doesn’t turn into an adult movie.

Here are some gay places in Atlanta where you can give your same-sex partner affection without feeling awkward. You may even want to propose and plan your California wedding.