Henri’s Bakery is an old-guard, Atlanta tradition located in the heart of Buckhead. Like the Colonnade, it is one of those places that has “been there forever.” In this case, forever is actually 75 years. While I find it difficult for a place like this to live up to its lofty reputation, Henri’s has done a fairly good job of doing just that. Things aren’t quite the same as they used to be; but, I cannot name any institution (food or otherwise) that hasn’t evolved.
Nestled in a free-standing building, tucked away on Irby, Henri’s has expanded from a small, shotgun bakery into a serious operation. In recent years, they have added a coffee bar, a dinning area, and a covered patio. In fact, Henri’s has become so popular that they opened a satellite location on Roswell Road.
You don’t come to a place like this for ambiance, so I will spare you the details. Needless to say, the places is clean and well organized. The staff is friendly, though they stay well fortified behind the extended counters.
The main draws for me, and for many others, are their sandwiches. The undeniable king of Henri’s is the Po-boy. All come topped with Swiss cheese, pickle fillets, ham, salami, mayo and mustard; however, you have your choice of turkey or roast beef as your primary protein. Gone are the days when every Po-boy was made fresh to order. Now they are rolled out with military tradition. While the ingredients are fresh and the Po-boys still taste wonderful, the fact that they are stashed in an open refrigerator leaves me disappointed each time. Keep in mind, I still think the ‘boys, along with the sandwiches at Lee’s Bakery, are the best thing on french bread you can find in Atlanta. Still, they just ain’t what they used to be.
Many of their other sandwiches are prepped and ready to go; however, you can get anything but the po-boy made to order. If you have the patience for the sandwich line, do it. Nobody likes cold bread! I love the onion rolls, but all of Henri’s grains are tasty. The bread selection is accented by a few artisan choices.
The meat selection is fairly straight forward, and all of them are solid. I prefer the smoked turkey, the ham, or the salami. In recent years, Henri’s has added egg, tuna, and chicken salad to the menu. I am not overwhelmed by any of these.
Henri’s is a bakery at heart, and they have a pretty solid selection. Since I am not one for sweets and treats, you should really look elsewhere for your cues in that department. However, the thumbprint cookies (shortbread with a touch of icing) will always have a special place with me. This spot does not have the flash of say H&F Bakery or Alan’s, but it is a solid option.
Be careful when about what time you go. If you hit them up during the lunch hour – you’ll be fighting for your life. I suggest going early in the day or for a late lunch. I always pick up a bunch and eat them over a day or two. Before I forget… insiders tip: take the po-boys home and toss them in a panini press!!!!
Address: 6289 Roswell Rd NE, Atlanta, GA, 30328 // P: 404.256.7934