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Monday, April 29, 2013

Quick Bites: Zeb Stevenson to leave Livingston, PushStart Kitchen update, Peasant Bistro closes, and more

Chilaquiles, one of the new brunch items to enjoy on Mi Cocinas new Midtown patio
  • Chilaquiles, one of the new brunch items to enjoy on Mi Cocina's new Midtown patio

PushStart Kitchen, the popular supper club hosted by husband-and-wife duo Cristina and chef Zach Meloy, is now focused on opening a new brick-and-mortar restaurant. The Meloys are hoping to raise $50,000 over the next month via Kickstarter for the new 40-person eatery.

After a seven-year run in downtown Atlanta, Peasant Bistro - the last of the remaining Pleasant Peasant restaurants started by Serenbe founder Steve Nygren - has shuttered. Owner Maureen Kalmanson has another eatery in Midtown, Campagnolo, which recently celebrated its one-year anniversary on April 10. Kalmanson is also planning to open another Midtown eatery, Henry's, in the former Mint3 Thai & Sushi space this summer.

Last week, chef Zeb Stevenson announced that he will leave Livingston (659 Peachtree St.), the fine dining restaurant at Midtown's Georgian Terrace Hotel in July. After four years as executive chef, Stevenson feels he's reached the limits of this position. No news yet on his replacement or where Stevenson will ultimately land.

Villains Wicked Heroes, Midtown's edgy new sandwich restaurant opened last week at 903 Peachtree St. in the former Little Azio location. CL caught up with co-owner Alex Brounstein (also the brains behind Grindhouse Killer Burgers) to get the scoop. He details the special sub rolls - done by a German baker - selected for the 15 clever sandwiches, as well as the iconic villains they're named for - including Clubber Lang and Mum Ra - and the restaurant's healthy "Henchmen" sides, like cherry tomato and charred tofu salad. Read the full-length interview here.

As of Mon., Apr. 29, chef Asha Gomez's award-winning Cardamom Hill restaurant (1700 Northside Dr.) will no longer server lunch. The restaurant will, however, open earlier for dinner. New hours are as follows: Mon.-Thurs., 5:30-10 p.m.; Fri.-Sat., 5:30-10:30 p.m.

Originally slated to open in October 2012, and later "winter," Decatur's forthcoming Mexican coastal restaurant MAR (314 E. Howard Ave.) is now officially six months behind schedule. Latest reports on its ongoing renovations suggest that the eatery could open as soon as mid-May. The white-washed building, complete with rustic, coastal-inspired decor, will be a welcome source for wood-roasted fish, tostadas, sashimi, carpaccio, ceviche, mojitos, and margaritas that, - let's face it - are much better suited to summer. We'll take a shot of tequila to that.

After a stint at Virtue Feed & Grain in Alexandria, Va, mixologist Michael Searles has returned to Atlanta, landing at the Pinewood Tippling Room (254 W. Ponce De Leon Ave.) in Decatur. Before his initial move, Searles has spent time behind the bar at Holeman & Finch, served as bar manager at Restaurant Eugene, and lent his talents intermittently at Top Flr.

Steady Hand Pour House update. Earlier this month we learned that the Emory Village coffee shop would be displaced at the end of April by new pizza and beer bistro, Slice & Pint. Steady Hand went out with a bang last Wednesday and will reemerge on a pop-up basis at Iberian Pig in Decatur. Renovations to Steady Hand's former location at 1593 N. Decatur Road are scheduled to begin soon. Look for Slice & Pint to arrive some time in June.

TWO urban licks (820 Ralph McGill Blvd.) has launched Badass Brunch and Blues, held every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., starting April 28. The blues begin at 11 a.m. The new series is one of the finest additions by newly appointed executive chef, Todd Stein, who comes to the restaurant from Chicago's mk the restaurant, cibo matto, The Florentine, and more. His brunch dishes include brioche beignets, a crawfish scramble with cured tomatoes and whipped creme fraiche, and a pimento cheese BLT with fried green tomatoes and lemon aioli.

Midtown Tex-Mex restaurant Mi Cocina has opened its new patio at its ‪1080 Peachtree St. address‬, prime for the warmer weather rolling in. The new outdoor dining space is best enjoyed with the new weekend brunch menu, which serves up breakfast quesadillas, brunch tacos, classic American dishes, and more. We're craving the huevos with chorizo.

Ocean Prime, "Buckhead's modern American supper club" at 3102 Piedmont Road has a new weeknight bar menu, spruced up at the hands of executive chef Jason Shelley. Enjoy oysters on the half shell, spiced king crab dip, a cold Maine lobster roll, and shrimp-watermelon ceviche. Wines are a slim $7-$8 by the glass.

In Brookhaven, Cafe at Pharr's Baci concept, which opened in early 2012, has reverted to its former menu. After allowing chef B.H. Hibbs to get creative with the seasonally changing cuisine for about three months. Cafe at Pharr owner Johnny Liu has decided to take back control of the cuisine and revert to the favorites that kept customers coming back - like lobster mac 'n' cheese and a Kobe burger with duck fat fries.

Athens' Georgia Theatre - which suffered a devastating fire in 2009 and reopened in 2011 - has been freshly renovated, and it's partnered with the Branded Butcher to open a new concept, The Rooftop by the Branded Butcher. Chef Matt Palmerlee has crafted the menu, which includes a smoked bbq sami with pulled pork or tofu, and a veggie banh mi. It's a great time to make the trip to the college town, as the Twilight Americana music festival kicked off last night.

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