I wasn't much in the mood to experiment last weekend, so I ate at a few familiar places, starting Friday with lunch at La Pietra Cucina. I felt something of a need to stop in because I was shocked to see that Christiane Lauterbach had given one of my favorite restaurants a very ho-hum update review in the latest issue of Knife & Fork.
My friend Frank Miller and I found nothing to complain about except the huge amount we ate. We started with a plate of prosciutto over flatbread with pineapple mostarda and ricotta. Then I had the day's special panino made with roasted rabbit. Frank ordered another special -- buttery veal scallopini with a tomato sauce. We finished with a toffee gelato and a pineapple one.
Want to make tax day, April 15, less painful? Pietra is hosting the next Slow Food Atlanta dinner then. Call the restaurant, 404-888-8709, for details....
Friday night, Wayne and I were in the mood for Mexican, so we headed to Holy Taco in East Atlanta Village. Holy freakin' traffic, Señor Batman! It took us forever to get down Flat Shoals Road because -- WTF? -- a city truck, manned by one person, was collecting garbage -- at 8:30 on a Friday night.
By the time we did get to Holy Taco, it was overflowing with customers. So we kept on driving, back to Grant Park, and back to Young Augustine's (formerly The Standard), where I had a burger with bacon, cheese and a fried egg. I've paid a couple of visits to this reincarnated newbie and it seems to be attracting a good crowd.
Also worth mentioning from my weekend eating is a visit to Sheik Burritos n Kabobs. The restaurant marries the tastes of the American Southwest with the those of the Middle East to produce some of the best burritos in the city.
I had a conversation with owner Jahan Ostad. The restaurant should have its liquor license by next month. Meanwhile, he's still struggling to get approval to sell his food from street trailers. (He'd received approval...and then the city changed the law, reversing his plans.) Lauterbach, who has taken up the street food cause, featured him in a recent post on her new blog, Atlanta Food Carts.
I took a tour out back where Ostad has begun preparations to install an herb garden -- not far from the spot he plans to park his first trailer.
I left with my ususal "kosher Halal" burrito and a container of the restaurant's new hummus. Don't miss it. It has a spicy bite with a sweet note, possibly mint.
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