New Chef Tasting Experiences in Atlanta

Top toques in Atlanta are stepping up their culinary skills with new, innovative menus. Tasting menus often reveal cunning prowess as a chef takes inspiration from the seasons in beautifully plated small versions of dishes. These chef’s tasting menus range from a couple of plates to tenfold coursed out plates with precision and flare.  

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White Bull is celebrating its first anniversary of serving farm-forward cuisine on the Decatur Square. When chef/owner Pat Pascarella uses terms like housemade and local, he really means it. He sources red wheat from Georgia and mills it in the kitchen. He churns his own butter to top off fresh baked puffy sfincione bread. The menu features a list of local farms and purveyors and those ingredients are pointed out when dishes are served.

 He is now offering a pasta flight with three housemade courses from the day’s selection of pastas. This season’s spotlight includes and Agnolotti with ricotta, baby carrots, lemon, bottarga, and a topping of chives; rigatoni with beef ragu, caramelized onion, mushroom and arugula; and black ferricelli with both shrimp and squid, jalapeno, scallions and crumbs. The tasting is $45 per person, with optional wine pairings from their eclectic list for $40.  

White Bull. 123 East Court Square. Decatur. 404-600-5649. whitebullatl.com.

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Tasting menu-driven restaurant Lazy Betty opened this Tuesday in Candler Park. Striving for an innovative and refined tasting menu, chef Ron Hsu’s menu will evolve based on seasonality of ingredients. He most recently showed his expertise and technique on the Netflix series “The Final Table,” where he cooked with chef Shin Takagi of the two Michelin starred Zeniya in Kanazawa, Japan as his partner. Hsu draws experience from his work as Executive Sous chef and Creative Director of New York’s Le Bernadin.

The tasting menu served in the dining room (Lazy Betty Tasting menu) features seven courses, each of which is sophisticated yet approachable. The Chef’s Tasting menu of ten courses is available at the chef’s counter, which seats 8. This allows for interaction with the culinary team while dining. Pairings are available from the free spirited wine list of domestic and international boutique wines.  

The setting is serene and the experience feels gracious. Delicately tweezered and sauced dishes are plated on hand crafted ceramics. Service is gracious.

Lazy Betty. 1530 Dekalb Ave. NE. Atlanta. 404-875-3692. lazybettyatl.com.

 

For a tasting menu that doesn’t break the bank, Chamblee’s The Alden has you sorted. This spring marks one year of service at the restaurant in the Parkview on Peachtree development. Helmed by chef Jared Hucks, who grew up in nearby Brookhaven, the menu is a modern twist on southern classics.  

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“The Alden is about nurturing our guests,” says Hucks. A wonderful place to experience this is from one of the eleven counter seats with full view of the kitchen. Hucks serves his $35 three course tasting Tuesday-Friday until 6:30 pm. The menu varies based on seasons and whimsy, but the menu is full of beautiful, full-flavored dishes. Lavender baked Springer Mountain chicken comes with local honey mustard, sweet potatoes gratin, and mustard greens. Instagram worthy basil cured and steamed Atlantic Salmon is served with red onion marmalade, thyme basted beet root, and a shiitake consommé. Quickly becoming a local favorite, his Pan Asian Egg is a soft coddled farm egg with bok choy, ginger, radish, and a crispy popped rice cake. It’s dreamy.

The Alden. 5070 Peachtree Rd. Chamblee. 678-395-6982. thealdenrestaurant.com.

Heather Sinyard