Category Archives: Atlanta

Miller Union/Atlanta turns out to be James Beard nominee – and Iowa place!

I  was somewhat surprised to see Miller Union – the restaurant I ate at on Monday in Atlanta – among the nominees  for best chef: Southeast from the James Beard Foundation. The place didn’t bowl me over but, again, not sure I selected the right things. The only Iowa nominee was Archie’s Waeside, a steak joint in the out of the way northwest town of LeMars, of Blue Bunny ice cream fame. Who knew?

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Filed under Atlanta, DESTINATIONS - Iowa, DINING

Centennial Park, Decatur, cakes & ale: Atlanta

Centennial Park

Centennial Park

Camellias near MLKings's birthplace

Camellias near MLKings’s birthplace

We didn’t have much free time today (a work day) but when we did, I grabbed it, in part because the weather was gorgeous. And the trees are starting to bud. – pear trees, red buds, camellias, plus daffodils. I took a quick walk to centennial park which I found too vast and spread out. But I followed the street car tracks back to my hotel stopping against at sweet auburn market which didn’t have much in the way of light breakfast options but I did buy an apple turnover at the savory pie place. For dinner tonight four of us piled into a black SUV and drove out to Decatur, which was full of gorgeous old stately homes on vast lots with, yes, flowering trees. The downtown was bustling with restaurants. We had a really good meal at cake & ale (once we found it. We discovered the newspaper article I had about it was from…2012 and the place had since moved. Fortunately  not far.) anyway, very good food, fairly simple but with just very fresh ingredients, cleanly served and prepared, with nice flavors.

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MLK Historic sites, sweet auburn market, modern tribe, miller union: exploring Atlanta

Ebenezer Baptist Ebenezer Baptist

Must say that the last thing I expected to see as I walked along an inner city neighborhood en route to the MLK National Historic site was a story selling “Jewy goods.”  Say what? But sure enough, the little shop called Modern Tribe was full of the most clever Judaica (Jewy goods) and with Passover fast approaching, I couldn’t resist the matzohs patterned toilet cover that says “Let My People Go” although I didn’t buy the book “how to raise a Jewish dog” (although I was tempted.)

sweet auburn market sweet auburn market

It was one of several discoveries in the neighborhood, including the Sweet Auburn Market, an old brick building full of fruit vendors and butchers and take out places from afro Caribbean to soul food to arepas. I had an excellent pulled pork sandwich on Texas toast with the best sautéed brussel sprouts,  at the BBQ place there.

On to the MLK sites, where I lucked into a last minute ticket on the last tour of the day inside the early 20th century house where MLKing was born and spent his first 11 years. Only 15 people tour the place at a time and is been told the tix were gone for the day (spring break here) but managed to…

Modern Modern
MLK Birthplace, Auburn Street MLK Birthplace, Auburn Street

Get a tix when I was inquiring about how to get a ticket tomorrow. We had a terrific tour guy who told all kinds of interesting stories about the young “ML” including that his best friend when he was three was the son of a white family that ran a local business… Until the boys were six and the white boy suddenly announced that they could no longer be friends, his father had decided. That was a formative experience, apparently. The tour guide was blind which made him all the more impressive.

Sitting inside the Ebenezer Baptist Church, with a tape of MLKing giving one of his stirring sermons also packed a punch.  I took the new streetcar (still free) over to centennial park but couldn’t quite get a feel for the place. Tonight I had dinner with a nice friend of my aunts  at Miller Union. The food didn’t blow me away but not sure I ordered the right thing. Cool place though, kind of industrial chic meets southern porch.


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Flying home from Atlanta on Wednesday?

My husband D is supposed to fly home from Atlanta on Wednesday after a business meeting there. Here’s hoping – He reports it’s “pretty awful” there right now due to a huge winter storm that is moving across the south and up the east coast. the airport there, the world’s busiest we’re told, was pretty much shut down today. And tomorrow doesn’t look much better. Meanwhile, here in Iowa, we’re having our very own little snowstorm which is supposed to dump up to 9 inches – last I heard – by the time it ends sometimes tomorrow. Ahhh winter.

D did report that he had a terrific meal in Atlanta at the Woodfire Grill, whose executive chef is  Kevin Gillespie (of Top Chef fame.)…so now we’ve each eaten at a Top Chef contestant’s restaurant (mine was Stephanie Izard’s The Girl and the Goat in Chicago.)

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Filed under Atlanta, DINING