Foodie Friday: Atlanta

If you’ve been following me on twitter, you know that I’ve been in Atlanta at the 2010 American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting, a gathering of 15,000 Rheumatologists and Rheumatology health care professionals. It’s truly information overload and a LOT to process, but also a chance to gather with old and new colleagues and friends. I’ll have more on that later.

But it’s Foodie Friday, so here’s the Atlanta dining summary. First of all, we were staying downtown around the Georgia World Congress Center and preferred that restaurants were walkable or not a terribly long cab ride. Second, the majority of the groups I dined with were vegetarians. Highly meat-centric or BBQ places were pretty much out.

Our first night we walked into The Peasant Bistro downtown, walkable from the hotel, recommended by the concierge. We enjoyed a creative cocktail menu, many vegetarian small plates and salads and tempting desserts. I had a burger which was not exactly a slider but not full sized. It had a sweet onion relish which was fantastic. I didn’t take photos.

Upon the recommendation of a friend of a friend who used to live in Atlanta, the next night we took a cab ride over to the Inman Park area and enjoyed the ambiance of SottoSotto. Lots of great pasta dishes. One with butternut squash and crispy sage I think was the winner. I wish it wasn’t dark and late – I would have liked to see that area a little more. The waiter was really nice and waited for a cab with us, as it seemed to take forever for it to come.

Another friend of a friend recommendation was Nan Thai – advertised to us as, “The best Thai I’ve ever had, maybe anywhere, but definitely in Atlanta.” While my dish was not as photogenic as this beautiful papaya salad with sweet sticky rice cakes and the curry that came in a pineapple bowl, I ate every bite of my salmon on red pumpkin curry rice. Someone in my party also had the roasted maple duck and it was fantastic.

My last day I wandered over to Centennial Olympic Park to soak up some of those sunny 75 degree skies I knew had long left Massachusetts. I figured, “eh, why not” when I saw the little burger hut by the fountain. What a surprise! Googie Burger had probably the best veggie burger I’ve ever had! With pepper jack cheese and BBQ sauce – incredible! And I figured, as long as I’m getting a veggie burger and no fries I’m being pretty healthy, right? I got a Georgia peach shake and amused the other diners as I tried to get the perfect shot:

Rounding out the food offerings was a pretty standard but good pizza at Max’s Coal Oven Pizza, which also won high points from being walkable from the convention center.

So, ATL friends – how did I do?

*Standard disclaimer – I paid for everything in full, no discussion of blogs, etc*

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