Mar 22, 2014
Kim Rivers

Quick Bites: Ration & Dram now open, food truck legislation, and more

Miller Unions chef/owner Steven Satterfield (right) named James Beard Foundation Award finalist for Best Chef Southeast.

  • Dustin Chambers/CL File
  • Miller Union’s chef/owner Steven Satterfield (right) named James Beard Foundation Award finalist for Best Chef Southeast.

Miller Union‘s Steven Satterfield is the latest Atlanta chef to be named a finalist for the James Beard Foundation’s Best Chef Southeast. Known for his simple, fresh-from-the-farm fare, Satterfield has made great strides since opening his restaurant at 999 Brady Avenue in 2009, winning acclaim from Food Wine magazine, beating cancer, and preparing to publish a cookbook, Root to Leaf, in January 2015. This is Satterfield’s second nomination for the award in two years. Stay tuned to see if he takes home the esteemed honor this time, following the NYC awards ceremony on May 5.

In case you missed it, the Atlanta City Council passed an amendment Monday with the potential to transform the way Atlanta food trucks operate. Once signed by mayor Kasim Reed, the bill should allow street food vendors to serve patrons from specific public streets around Atlanta proper, starting with South Downtown. Details as they arise.

Andy Minchow‘s new restaurant and bar, Ration Dram, is now open in Kirkwood at 130 Arizona Ave. Rumors of a new venture from the former Holeman Finch founding partner first surfaced about a year ago. Minchow has taken a slightly offbeat approach with his Southern-centric new establishment, catering to both parents and children with to-go edibles, housemade sodas, and “cookies and cocktails” classes in the future.

Former Empire State South chef and upcoming Staplehouse executive chef Ryan Smith is the latest culinary personality to pop up at Octane Grant Park. Smith follows in the footsteps of chefs David Sweeney and Guy Wong to assume his new post at the hip coffee shop and bar, where he is slated to serve pair-able dishes every Sunday at 5 p.m., beginning April 20.

After delighting late-night foodies for two and a half years, Octopus Bar chefs Angus Brown and Nhan Le will open a restaurant with regular old dinner hours, by March’s end. Lusca will feature fresh seafood, an on-trend raw bar, and an impressive wine program at 3455 Peachtree Road. The restaurant will also serve lunch (look for the lobster roll) and Sunday brunch.

Canadian-based healthy fast food joint Freshii has opened at Fashion Cafe (3393 Peachtree Road), the chichi name for Lenox Square’s newly renovated food court. Freshii was begun by a former marketing manager of Oscar de la Renta in New York, and now boasts 35 locations worldwide, including 20 in the U.S. This is the first in the Southeast, serving health-conscious salads, wraps, smoothies, and more.

New York-based Caribbean concept Negril Village soft-opened in Midtown at 30 North Avenue. Though this marks the first location in Atlanta, it is the second outpost of husband-and-wife duo Marva Layne and Carlton Hayle’s 19-year-old “jerk, rum, reggae, and more” concept in the U.S. Available dishes range from slow-braised oxtail to curried goat stew, while the liquor license remains pending.

Perla Taqueria, the drive-through-equipped taco joint at the corner at 1958 Piedmont Road, will soon close, Tomorrow’s News Today reports. The eatery will reportedly be replaced by neighbor Taco Cabana, while Perla’s owner, Haykel Arfaoui, vows to reopen Perla at a new location soon. Arfaoui continues to operate Couscous Mediterranean Kitchen and Bar, the successful spot he opened at 560 Dutch Valley Road in early 2013.

Capitalizing on a recent upswing in sophisticated dining options in the arty downtown neighborhood, Castleberry Hill has welcomed Super 7 Pizza Shoppe, located at 110 Centennial Olympic Park Drive. The casual eatery offers far more than just piping-hot pies, serving up dishes like grilled pork chops and burgers for dinner, tuna melts and French onion soup for lunch, and eggs Benedict and sourdough French toast for breakfast – plus an on-site convenience store for basic sundries.

After foundering for several months, the North Buckhead location of Twisted Taco has shuttered at 4629 Wieuca Road. The Midtown location at 66 12th Street already closed its doors in 2010, making the Emory University outpost the only remaining in-town location. (Others reside in Alpharetta, Suwanee, Johns Creek, Fayetteville, making this an increasingly OTP-centric attraction.) A new concept – presumably from the same owners – is preparing to take the Buckhead Tex-Mex cantina’s place within eight months.

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