Monday, November 25, 2013

ATL Eats: Ink & Elm

On Saturday, AR and I went to celebrate my birthday with some friends at Ink & Elm. I drive past the restaurant almost every day, but had not been there to eat. When a friend suggested it, we made reservations (a MUST at this place) for my birthday.
Having spent some serious time exploring the restaurant scene in Atlanta, I can honestly say that my meal was one of the BEST I have had here. I enjoyed every bite, from the moment I walked in, until the moment I left.
How it Looked: The décor in Ink & Elm is gorgeously elegant. Somehow, they manage to make a very large space seem intimate, but open. I'm considering going back and asking if I can order one of the leather chairs I sat in while I waited for my table. They were not on the menu ;) My friend Luciana and I commented several times that the lighting was perfect because we could actually see our food and each other (I hate obscenely dark establishments).
While waiting for our table, we sat in large chairs and chatted with drinks. It isn't often that a restaurant has seating other than the bar while you wait. Our table was ready before I could make it through the long cocktail and wine list - luckily they let me carry it with me.
What I ate: I confess, I ate lots of things. I love to sample! My friend Luciana and her husband are perfect to go out to eat with because they are the same way. We always order several dishes and share things.
My meal started with a half glass of chardonnay (yes, they have half-glasses. Yes, I am a light-weight) and lovely pop-overs. I skipped the amazing salads on their menu because I was dying to try their vegetable entrée. The vegetable entrée changes frequently, but on Saturday it included turnips, cauliflower puree, roasted pickled garlic, and fried Brussels sprouts. I was a little concerned that the garlic would overwhelm, but everything tasted perfect and I ate every bite.
I also sampled some of AR's polenta & greens (he ordered the pork), and some of Luciana's roasted brussels sprouts with hazelnuts.
For dessert, I splurged. The server brought me chocolate cake topped with whipped cream, caramel popcorn, and a candle! Our table also shared the banana split and the nutella & coconut gelato. If you visit, ORDER the banana split. It is incredible and our table devoured every spoonful.
Our Service: I should acknowledge that we are a hard table to please. Luciana always tastes several wines. I always ask about everything on the menu. We order lots of dishes. Yet our server answered every question, explained every dish perfectly, and never seemed overwhelmed by us. Cheers to her!
I cannot wait to go back - Luciana already made reservations for next week when her family comes to visit. If you are in Atlanta, be sure to head to Ink & Elm for an elegant evening and a wonderful meal.
(Note: These opinions are completely my own. I was not compensated in any way. I really just had a nice evening.) 

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