Thursday, October 27, 2016

Bits & Bites

Atlanta-based Arby's announced earlier this week it plans to offer a limited time offer (LTO) venison (deer) steak sandwich in select locations next month. Seventeen restaurants in six states (Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Georgia) will offer the $5 sandwich.  In Georgia, only the one at  4415 Roswell Road in north Buckhead in an outparcel of The Fresh Market-anchored Roswell-Wieuca Shopping Center will offer the sandwich.  The sandwich, which features thick-cut venison and crispy onions, topped with juniper berry sauce, will be available November 4th through 6th only.   The restaurants offering the sandwich were selected because of their location in popular hunting markets.   "Hunters hunt the meats, and we have the meats, so it makes sense for us to connect with them and offer a sandwich that they can’t get at any other restaurant chain," said Rob Lynch, Arby's Restaurant Group CMO, said in a statement.  

A new Dunkin' Donuts is planned for Bethelview & Castleberry Roads in Cumming.  

The AJC reports that a new pasta joint is coming to Roswell.    Marietta residents Carlos Malheiros and his wife plan to open American Pasta Factory at 1123 Alpharetta Street this coming March.  The fast-casual restaurant will feature a menu offering noodles made on site and custom pasta dishes for both lunch and dinner.  The building, which had most recently housed Ladybugs & Lizards, a children's consignment shop, was built as a Burger Chef restaurant in the 1970s.  Burger Chef, once a hugely popular fast food eatery was founded in 1954, purchased by Hardee's in 1982 and ceased operations in 1996.  There are still a number of former Burger Chef buildings around Atlanta, something I plan to showcase in an upcoming series on ToNeTo Atlanta.  The Mid-Century structure is being reimagined by local design firm Square Foot Studios and Urban Eats, an Atlanta-based consulting group. 

The Dessert Place... a sweetery, once a very popular dessert shop in metro Atlanta, is returning, after a nearly 20 year absence.  The shop, which originally occupied 1000 Virginia Avenue where Taco Cowboy (previously TomTom) is today, is coming back as on online only business, for now.  While the original incarnation grew from the first location on Virginia Avenue to also include locations on East Paces Ferry in Buckhead, inside the downtown Macy's and at Underground, times have changed and the response from online customers has been overwhelming.   Marisa Meddin, the daughter and goddaughter, respectively, of original owners Sheryl Meddin and Bennett Frisch, is not ruling out a brick & mortar store in the future. (She'd love to return to 1000 Virginia Avenue one day.) Meddin, who quit her corporate marketing job and moved back to Atlanta after living in both Los Angeles and New York, is offering both classic and gluten free varieties of the popular cream cheese brownies but has plans to add to the offerings in the future.   Other Dessert Place favorites like the thumbprint cookies, a sugar-like cookie with shopped pecans and a  thumbprint of raspberry jam and “Puffins,” a cakey muffin dipped in butter and rolled in cinnamon sugar are likely to be added to the offerings.  In addition to making the products available online, (sorry, no international shipping) limited quantities are also available at Callie's Hot Little Biscuit in Virginia Highland and at times, via UberEats.  Meddin told me earlier this week she is also toying with the idea of a holiday "pop-up" shop.  Fortuitously, Meddin's father Stuart runs The Meddin Company, a real estate firm with a handful of well placed intown holdings.  The former Pie Shop on North Highland Avenue is one of Meddin's properties and would seem to be an ideal "pop-up" spot.  

The new Tin Lizzy's Cantina at the Avenue East Cobb is expected to debut tomorrow, Friday, October 28th.  The restaurant, the chain's eleventh in Georgia and thirteenth overall, replaced Cheeky, which closed in early September and "moved" to Gateway in Sandy Springs.  

Earlier this week I received confirmation that F&H Food Group will in fact bring a concept similar to Roswell's Little Alley Steak to the former Aja in Buckhead.  I first reported on this planned restaurant in August

Wagaya Japanese Restaurant plans to open early next year in former  Bad Dog Taqueria / Dankbaar Taco in Emory Village.  The original Wagaya opened last spring on 14th Street adjacent to Better Half and Moe's Original BBQ.  The restaurant features sushi and assorted other Japanese fare.  

The newest Verde Taqueria is expected to open next Tuesday, November 1st in Gateway on Roswell Road in Sandy Springs.  The new location joins existing Verde restaurants on Dresden Drive in Brookhaven and on Collier Road on the Westside.   Verde joins Cheeky and Chipotle in offering casual Mexican fare in the new Sandy Springs development. 

VUE Eyewear is expected to close tomorrow after about two years in business at Powers Ferry Square in Buckhead. VUE owner Wendy Salle continues to operate Salle Opticians in Phipps Plaza which is expected to relocate to a space adjacent to Nordstrom next month to accommodate the upcoming restaurants in the former Twist space.  The designer eyewear retailer  is located in the north portion of the center, close to baraco, which has been more a curse, than a blessing for the retailer, and its current and former neighbors.  VUE follows the closures of Bridge boutique, Yum Yum Dessert Co., the beloved bakery Full Cup, and most recently Tuxedo Frame Gallery, which relocated south on Roswell Road and was replaced by Sabot, a boutique that relocated from Irby Avenue.   

In related news, Cafe West Express, which currently operates out of West Coast Workouts at 107 West Paces Ferry Road, is opening a satellite location in the former Yum Yum space in Powers Ferry Square.  Cafe West features offerings similar to those in Arden's Garden and Souper Jenny with an emphasis on "clean" eating and healthy options.  The space they will occupy is not even 600 square feet and will seek to capture more of the neighborhood market.  The current food and beverage offerings will reportedly remain in place at the existing shop when the new location opens sometime early next year.  

Elif Fine Jewelry, located on Paces Ferry Place in Buckhead, is closing after nearly 35 years in business.  The family-owned jewelry store was robbed not once, but twice, over the past few years, most notably in late 2013 when multiple masked & armed assailants made of with about $5 million in jewelry.  

To commemorate the 254th anniversary of the invention of the sandwich by the 4th Earl of Sandwich, the recently opened Earl of Sandwich at Phipps Plaza is offering its gourmet sandwiches for just $2.54 all day on Thursday, November 3rd, when the country celebrates National Sandwich Day. 

The recently renovated and enlarged Whole Foods Market midtown  is planning to open "The Roast", a full-service restaurant with live music, and beer and wine on tap next year.  The restaurant is currently expected to open "early spring 2017" in the grocer's Midtown Place store at 650 Ponce De Leon Avenue.  The Roast name may only be temporary given the following statement I was provided by a local Whole Foods Market representative. 

"Our Whole Foods Market Ponce de Leon location is expecting to open its first in-store restaurant, The Roast, during “phase three” of the store’s current renovation plan. Currently, the venue is expected to open in the Spring of 2017 and will serve beer and wine on-tap. Additional details around the restaurant concept, final name, and amenities are currently under development and will be released at a later date."

When the neighboring Staples store downsized last year, Whole Foods expanded into the retailer's space, adding nearly 5,000 square feet.  The newly renovated Whole Foods Market Ponce 2.0, as it's referred to internally, now includes amenities like a beer and wine  bar, cold brew coffee on tap, text-to-order juice and pizza bars and a ramen venue by Genji Sushi Bar.  A four-day "grand re-opening celebration" will begin next Thursday, November 3 through Sunday, November 6. 


Anonymous said...

It's hilarious Arby's chose a Buckhead location for their venison sandwich. Aside from the pun it doesn't seem the best choice.

Atlantan99 said...

@Anon RE: Arby's,

I agree with you 100%!

Thanks for your comments and readership.

Anonymous said...

Bambi Burgers

G.G. said...

I am looking forward to the Burger Chef series!

Ham said...

I agree Arby’s should have chosen a location in Barrow or Forsyth counties for their little promotion. However, the reality is all the folks out there probably already have a freezer full of Bambi steaks, so I guess they’ll “shoot” for the trendy crowd in Buckhead.

Also, look forward to the Burger Chef series. I really miss similar things on the Atlanta Time Machine site and wonder if anyone has heard how Mr. Germani is doing? It makes me so angry to think about what happened to him. Although I don’t personally know him he seemed to go out of his way to bring enjoyment to a lot of people with his WEB site.

I’ll also take a moment to say thanks for what you do here and to everyone that takes time to comment.

skigator93 said...

At first glance, Buckhead seems like a strange place to debut the venison sandwich. But who do you think owns all those hunting plantations in south Georgia?!

Also, ditto to what the above poster said about Greg G. I'm a big fan of the Atlanta Time Machine.

Unknown said...

The Dessert Place brings back fond memories of late nights and warm Cinnamon twirls with Ice Cream. Bring it back as well. They were terrific. Hope the pop up happens and we all get to share in the joy!

Anonymous said...

FYI....a new Dunkin Donuts is also being built at the corner of Grayson Hwy and Grayson New Hope Road in Grayson on the site of the former Village Station Texaco which was torn down about 15 years ago. And also....what is going on at and in front of the old Lowes on Pleasant Hill Rd in Lilburn?

fbenario said...

"There are still a number of former Burger Chef buildings around Atlanta, something I plan to showcase in an upcoming series on ToNeTo Atlanta."

I love this kind of historical review of old restaurant chains, so I'm really looking forward to reading it, Eli. Marie, Let's Eat! does these reviews fairly often, and they are all worth reading. For past chains in architecturally interesting buildings, like Shrimp Boat, they often show current tenants in the old buildings, too.

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