Sushi House Hayakawa: Art-fullness [Updates]

Posted by Foodie Buddha on January 09, 2012

It’s been a few years since I’ve said anything of substance on Sushi House Hayakawa, and that needs to change, even if my feelings towards this delightful Atlanta sushi bar have not.  Stashed away on the BuHi corridor of Doraville, I half feel like a damn investor.  Mind you, this isn’t due to some compromising relationship with owner Atsushi Hayakawa (call him Art or Haya-san).  Rather, it’s just that I’ve pumped more than a g-string’s worth of the green stuff into Haya-san’s pockets by way of an onslaught of visits in the near four year run for the restaurant.

During the unfortunate periods when my visits come at a snail’s pace, I find my impression of the restaurant seems to cool and I begin to question its place amongst the handful of better than average sushi bars around the city.  I leave realizing how fucking insane and seriously bat shit crazy those doubts are.  Each new visit washes away that pish posh and reinvigorates my warmth for the jovial little Japanese restaurant.

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Octopus Bar: A Disappointing Second Take

Posted by Foodie Buddha on November 20, 2011

After a strong first encounter with Octopus Bar, the late night East Atlanta eatery in So Ba’s porch, I returned last night eager to enjoy a repeat appearance.  I was stunningly disappointed.  Nearly all of the goodwill Angus Brown and Nhan Le had garnered crashed in a blaze of “unglory.”  This meal was such a disconnect and such a complete 180 from my first experience, that it is incumbent upon me to relay some portion of the updated experience.

Octopus Bar runs from 10pm until 3am on a daily basis (sans Sundays) and it’s a completely different execution than is So Ba’s.  Whereas So Ba is a dedicated Vietnamese restaurant, Octopus Bar is a culinary potpourri of dishes mostly in the $8-$15 dollar range.  To my surprise, the menu for last night’s meal was significantly reworked from my initial trip.  As nothing on the menu informed me that it would change with any frequency, this was an observation doused in apprehension.

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Gato Bizco Café: Sausage, Egg & Cheese Biscuit Gets Kid Tested … Buddha Approved [Updates] 2

Posted by Foodie Buddha on July 19, 2010

Alright … done with the awws and “how cute is she” declarative questions? Good! Now let’s get it on!

You see, this isn’t so much a review as it is a not so subtle smack over the breakfast burrito reminding you that Gato Bizco Café in Candler Park is where it’s at.  Having survived my nubile attempts at restaurant chatter, Gato Bizco remains one of my go-to breakfast spots in Atlanta.  Folks – have I told you before that getting me to rise before 10am is an exercise in futility?  Only the most seductive temptresses can coax me from my slumber.  Well, that and the promise of a breakfast like the one at hand.  Back in the stream of conscious: Gato Bizco lays a serious beat down to that disaster across the street (which has spread like a fungus).

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Woody’s Cheesesteaks Reopens: I Drink Your Cheesesteak Late Night [Review Updates] 3

Posted by Foodie Buddha on July 01, 2010

woody's cheesesteak porn

When word spread that Woody’s Famous Philadelphia Cheesesteaks in Midtown had closed, Atlanta’s food fans took a collective sigh.  Though not everyone found the place destination worthy, Woody’s had a distinct personality and better than average grub.  Opened in 1975 by David Pastoria, the free standing hut had served as a fixture of quirky Atlanta for roughly 35 years.

But 12,784 days is a stretch and Pastoria had his fill of the restaurant life.  Though I’m not exactly sure of the new ownership structure, Steven Renner decided that Pastoria’s departure was the opportunity he needed.  So in early June of this year, marked with a little elbow grease and some TLC, Renner gave Woody’s Cheesesteaks a new life in its old location.

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Yakitori Jinbei Restaurant Review – Smyrna, GA [Updates] 8

Posted by Foodie Buddha on May 06, 2010

Since my introduction to Yakitori Jinbei in late 2009 (thanks Spark Plug), the restaurant has worked itself into my regular rotation.  I’ve introduced several people to the joint, told countless others, and return whenever I get a hankering for some ramen. (occasional acts of indiscretion at Haru Ichiban notwithstanding).

Having successfully convinced many a foodie that I am not actually cuckoo for cocoa puffs, the newly minted Ramen Brigade set out late last week for a little Hi, Hello, and some much needed sustenance.  Having grabbed Spark Plug and @NoKungFu in route, we met up with Dea (website) and Weigy (website) for some good ole fashion yakitori.  Needless to say, I had no business at the table with people who might as well bleed Asiatic cuisine.  Still, I managed to sneak a seat, and the Ramen Brigade was up and running.

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Frank Ma South For Chinese New Year [Updates] 1

Posted by Foodie Buddha on February 15, 2010

frank ma south sampler

The love affair with Frank Ma South has come and gone in this city.  Late in 2008 when Frank Ma moved in with the gang at Chopsticks in the Emory area, all hell broke loose.  Most everyone got all giddy at the idea of a seemingly authentic Chinese restaurant located somewhere other than BuHi.  I was never all up in that … shocking I know.  At the time, I recapped my thoughts on “THAT SITE” during my pre-blog days.

Suddenly, like a fart in the wind, Frank up and vanished.  In his wake, chef’s have come and gone and the crowds have thinned.  However, the menu remains basically the same.  I’ve been diving in and out of there intermittently since Frank’s departure with the latest visit being yesterday for the Chinese New Year.  While the restaurant still satisfies my urging for non-nationalized Chinese grub, it’s still unable to compete with our cities top dogs.

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Eating Bugs (Bunny) At Westside’s Miller Union [Updates] 4

Posted by Foodie Buddha on January 29, 2010

david-naugle-miller-union                                                                                                  Photo by David Naugle via MU

A recent dining excursion took me to the ever bustling Miller Union, a Westside eatery that has become one of the “it places.”  MU is a restaurant that showed up on the scene roughly two-months ago and is currently in the middle of a love fest not uncommon around these parts.  Some heavy hitters love it and judging by the packed house we witnessed, so too do the lay folk.

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A DBA Barbecue Redux In Virginia Highlands [Updates] 2

Posted by Foodie Buddha on November 02, 2009

dba barbeque - the logo by foodiebuddha.

As time goes by, I am presented with the opportunity to head back to some of the restaurants I’ve already chatted up.  Since my initial visit to DBA Barbecue, there have been a number of changes.  Doug Morgan has moved on, and in his place, we have Drew Kirkland.  Kirkland, who was previously stationed at The Albert, spent four years under celebrity chef Kevin Rathbun.  According to Matt Coggin, one of the three owners, Kirkland has brought with him a Lang Smoker.  I’m not sure if that’s a big selling point or not – my knowledge of smoker producers is definitively lacking.

After a fairly lackluster blind date, I was hopping to see an improvement from the restaurant.  Unfortunately, the food seems lost in the doldrums of barbecue mediocrity.  Given the high price point and the extended opportunity to fix the problems, I would say this return visit was far more disappointing than the first.

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Notes On Publik And Bocado [Updates] 4

Posted by Foodie Buddha on October 21, 2009

Since my initial notations on Publik Social House and Bocado, I’ve made multiple return trips to both.  Unfortunately, things weren’t as good on subsequent visits in either case.  Keep reading for details on these two new Atlanta dining options.

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5 Seasons Brewing Company Restaurant Review: Still Stale And Annoying – Midtown, Atlanta 8

Posted by Foodie Buddha on July 08, 2009

Overall: ☆☆☆☆

Despite my initial impression of 5 Seasons Brewing Company over in Midtown, Atlanta, I was both willing and able to make a return visit.  In the two months since, I’ve made three return trips.  To be honest, I’ll have a very hard time mustering up the guts for a 4th.  As you may have surmised, this cavernous restaurant spends a lot of time talking, and little time delivering (both figuratively and literally).

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