Rows of shotgun houses and old brick buildings once inhabited by Cotton Mill and railroad workers now comprise a charmingly dense and notoriously artsy enclave largely protected from the asphalt sprawls and behemoth developments plaguing many Atlanta neighborhoods. Cordoned off by a rail yard to the north and Oakland Cemetery to the west, the historically working-class district has meandered down its own narrow streets on a path to urban renewal in recent decades. Yet while its demographic character may have shifted, the community manages to hold fast to its tight-nit feel and bohemian hotspots its come to be known for.
East Atlanta staple for local and up-and-coming rock bands, as well as nationally established indie acts, and grub for the hipster-PBR set. Sundays also feature a hangover-friendly live music set, 1-4 p.m.
Part of Ford Fry's restaurant empire that Esquire named restaurant of the year in 2012. Although the Optimist has been open for a couple of years, reservations for dinner at this seafood spot can still be hard to come by, but you can eat a full meal at the bar or just make a meal at the oyster bar.
The paneled Southern seafood shack decor works (think wooden booths, long tables, a horseshoe bar). And so does the food. Shrimp, crab cakes, oysters, crab legs, clams, scallops, mussels, catfish and po'boys are all fresh and tasty. All in all, Six Feet Under fills the gap of the disappearing inexpensive seafood shack.
Holeman & Finch Public House has changed the face of Atlanta's dining scene since opening in 2008. From the outset, H&F's cocktail program set off a citywide race to blend obscure spirits into crowd-pleasing tipples. The 10 p.m. off-menu cheeseburger established a widely imitated gold standard. The house charcuterie program, once a unique feature, has inspired a whole league of competitors. The menu is unapologetically meat-centric with an extra focus on offal dishes and Southern-inspired small plates. Even after all these years, H&F's carefully crafted cocktails continue to be destination-worthy on their own.
For all the debauchery and bleary-eyed clubbing that ordering a plate of hash browns at 4 a.m. entails, this is the only place to go. Delightfully greasy burgers, eggs, grits, and other diner favorites stave off oncoming hangovers and settle woozy, boozy tummies. Stone-cold sober? This Atlanta institution can provide all the inspiration you need to write that picaresque novel.
Originally a cotton-gin manufacturer, the Goat Farm is a Westside haven for working artists and performance companies, a frequent location for movie shoots (cough cough, Hunger Games, cough cough), and a great live music venue.
Eclectic venue for hip-hop, spoken-word poetry, and up-and-coming soul artists. Home to Wednesday night jam sessions featuring a live band and open mic for vocalists to join in. Street parking available.
No sneaker store in town can compete with the 62-year legacy of Walter's Clothing. Being the old man on the block hasn't kept it from staying hip. Try squeezing in on a Saturday and you'll see why. Walls of Adidas, Nike, Fila, Reebok, and Converse have kept customers fresh-to-death for decades. If you can't find your footing here, you're probably lost.
The longest-running African-American comedy club in Atlanta, Uptown Comedy Corner has featured Chris Rock, the Wayans Brothers, Steve Harvey, and Chris Tucker in the more than 20 years it's served Atlanta's Westside.