One of the best things to do in Atlanta is visit the food hall Atlanta and that’s Krog Street Market. Krog Street Market is a foodie’s dream and home to some of Atlanta’s best locally-owned Inman Park restaurants. Krog Street Market is located in Atlanta’s Inman Park neighborhood and sits right off the Atlanta’s Beltline’s Eastside Trail, it’s a popular destination for local Atlanta diners.
The market is home to some of the best food in Atlanta. It’s housed in the historic building of the former Atlanta Stoveworks where they originally made cast iron stoves from 1889 to the 1980’s. In 2006, Tyler Perry Studios bought the building. In 2012, the building changed hands once again and Krog Street Market opened as one of Atlanta’s first food halls.
The market is home to about 20 restaurants so it’s easy to do your own Atlanta food tour. It’s hard to choose from so many, but here is a list of some of my fave must-eats at Krog Street Market.
Little Tart Bakeshop
For those lucky enough to have taken our Food Tours Atlanta Inman Park tour, you already know Little Tart’s high quality pastries and other delectable baked goods. Owner and pastry chef, Sara O’Brien, has been nominated twice for a Jame Beard Award for baking. You can taste the French techniques she learned during her time working in France. It’s heaven for those with a sweet tooth! From her perfectly buttery and flaky croissants to her crisp lemon tarts anything you choose will be delectable. They also have savory options as well. Their veggie quiche slices are made with local vegetables, and the creamy egg and cheese pairs excellently with the pops of fresh veggies. I’m a big fan of their breakfast sandwiches: a house-made English muffin topped with a fresh shuffled egg with tomme cheese. I always spring extra to add bacon on my egg sammie — it’s so worth it! Next time, try adventuring outside the sweets offered at Little Tart Bakeshop!
Fred’s Meat and Bread
This stall is home to one of my biggest guilty pleasures in Atlanta: garlic fries! Don’t try these on a first date but your taste buds will thank you. These crispy, thick-cut fries are tossed in freshly chopped garlic and parsley. The spicy bite of the fresh garlic cuts through the warm fry’s starchiness… Just typing this description makes me want to go order them! The portion is large on its own, but sharing isn’t necessarily encouraged from me. They’re also home to one of Atlanta’s best burgers; the Burger Stack is a double patty with melty American cheese, mayo, and bread and butter pickles. If you’re hungry the Italian Grinder is most of Atlanta’s best sandwiches piled high with Italian meat, provolone, crisp lettuce, tomatoes and cherry peppers. If it’s hot and cheesy you crave their ribeye cheesesteak will hit the spot. Voted one of the best cheesesteaks in the country you’ll think you’ve landed in Philly.
If funky hipster is more your vibe check out Ticonderoga Club. Their James Beard Award Finalist nomination for their cocktail program means their bartenders sling some of the best drinks in town. Yet beyond their drinks, Ticonderoga Club offers a full dine-in menu with a dish that’s easily in my top 5 dishes in all of Atlanta: their Club Mussels. These steamed mussels are served with a umami-heavy sake broth and toast. One of these slices of toast sits underneath the mussels at the bottom of the bowl, becoming what can only be described as this delicious sponge of flavor I look forward to devouring each time I order the mussels. Their seasonal menu is always changing and they have vegan and gluten-free options for those looking for variety. Also fun nowadays is the “Ticon-To-Go” Club, their take-away cocktail window. I recommend their frozen margarita (with added seasonal fruit, currently peach), which makes this Texan miss Texas, and their Ticonderoga Cup, their signature rum-based cocktail that’s always been on their menu.
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Now located inside their sister restaurant, Bar Mercado, this place offers healthier fare like grain bowls, salads, and grilled paninis for when you don’t want something ridiculously heavy. Not everything on my list has to be sweet and fattening. Personally, I like the fresh salads they offer — my favorite is the Maize Runner. This salad reminds me of elote, a favorite dish to make at home. I always add-on a boiled egg for extra protein. Don’t forget their amazing veggie sides, either! If I’m being honest, Recess has made me a fan of cauliflower. That vegetable has had a glow up like no other and I’m a fan.
Bar Mercado’s menu has gotten a covid update. The Spanish tapas menu now also has fewer small plates and more featured items like the Mercado Bowl featuring sofrito rice, sweet plantains, black bean with your choice of protein. The real star on their menu is the seafood and meat filled Paella. Eat it while sipping a cocktail on their outdoor patio.
Right next to Little Tart Bakeshop is Gu’s Dumplings, an absolute must for adventurous foodies. Widely known and widely praised for their dumplings (ask for the chicken ones with extra dumpling sauce), Gu’s Dumplings also offers Szechuan dishes that go beyond beef and broccoli. My absolute favorite main dish is their Dan Dan noodles: warm noodles topped with veggies and ground beef. In fact, I’ll order a side order of the dumpling sauce and mix it in with these noodles. Other favorites are also their spicy dried eggplant (a meal unto itself) and the stir-fried string beans. All together, the aim of spiciness with the Sichuan numbing pepper contributes to the dish’s complex flavor profile. Can you take the heat?
Indian food makes many of our Atlanta Food Tour guests nervous but fear not. Jai Ho features complex sophisticated flavors that will make you wonder why you don’t eat Indian food all the time. Their chef and owner, Anish Nair, takes pride in using fresh, quality ingredients that make his dishes irresistible. A favorite on the Atlanta food tour is the paani poori a hallowed deep fried crisp bite stuffed with potatoes and chutney and their crispy samosas filled with seasoned potatoes and green peas. If you’re hungry go for the chicken Tikka Masala a creamy tomato based sauce over rice and don’t forget the garlic naan. Finish it off with a mango lassi, a mango and yogurt drink that tastes like a delicious mango smoothie.
No one does restaurants in Atlanta like restaurateur Ford Fry. His restaurant empire spans the Atlanta footprint and you can’t go wrong with any of his Atlanta restaurants. Fry hails from Texas so TexMex is near and dear to his heart. That love is found throughout the menu from classic TexMex dishes like wood fire grilled fajitas, to crispy fried flautas to his assortment of classic enchilada dishes. Start off with some fresh guac and chips. Ditch the thick corn chips that come with the guac and use the crispy ones that come with the chips and salsa you get once you’re seated. They offer two salsas, a chargrilled tomato, mild salsa and a spicier tomatillo salsa. Order a fresh lime margarita and wood fired steak fajitas. They have fresh flour tortillas or soft corn ones if you prefer a gluten-free option. Their chicken verde enchiladas are also a staple. Add a fried egg to take it up a notch. Not to be missed is their Sunday brunch. Their pancakes with buttermilk syrup will be all it takes to get you out of bed on a Saturday. They’re hot and piled high. Split an order with the table or eat them at the bar alone. Either way the pancakes are worth a trip. The line to get in gets long and they don’t take reservations. A pro dining tip for you, Superica allows you to join their waitlist from home just go to their website and put your name on the list. If you time it just right by the time you arrive you should have a table.
If it’s oysters and cocktails you crave, Watchman is the Atlanta restaurant for you. Watchman is the sister restaurant to Kimball House, one of my favorite restaurants in the Atlanta dining scene. Like Kimball House, Watchman has a craft cocktail program you don’t want to miss. Their food features local and sustainable seafood. Kimball House has been nominated for a James Beard Award for their cocktail program and that tradition continues at Watchman. If you’re like me and want to maximize your raw oyster intake go at Happy Hour from 5-6p Tuesday through Thursday. You won’t regret that their oysters are pristine and taste like they were just taken out of the water. I like mine with a glass of bubbles or a vodka martini. Once you’re awash in briny goodness, order the hushpuppies with chili honey butter. They’re fried to a crispy golden brown and are soft and doughy on the inside. The grouper collar is bigger than you think and just as delicious. Their flavors always change but they like to use Atlanta wing flavors as inspiration; think lemon pepper or fresno buffalo. If you’re still hungry their shrimp roll or Watchman’s burger are good options. Or if you’re feeling bold get the fried Captain’s Platter with catfish and shrimp with fries. Skip dessert and get another cocktail to finish.
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If it’s pizza you crave you won’t be disappointed with Varuni Napoli. Chef Luca Varuni is from Naples Italy and imports his san marzano tomatoes and flour for his dough. The dough has just 4 simple ingredients, water, sea salt, yeast and 00 flour. Once put in his brick ovens the crust gets smoky and charred while all those fresh ingredients melt together creating a transcendent pizza experience. They’re by far one of the best pizza restaurants in Atlanta and have been featured on Food Network. Go classic with the Margherita or take it up a notch with the Bianca, a white pizza with buffalo mozzarella, buffalo ricotta, pecorino and romano with black pepper and basil or go full meat with Chiattona Benni with pancetta, pepperoni cups, artisanal salami, hot soppressata, pecorino romano and basil. Throw in an arugula salad and some meatballs because can you ever be too full?
Soul Food & Culture
If southern food is what you crave, Soul Food and Culture is the Atlanta restaurant you’re looking for. Chef Todd Richards is an award winning chef and two-time semifinalist for James Beard Foundation Awards for Best Chef Southeast. His cookbook, “Soul: A Chef’s Culinary Evolution in 150 Recipes” was released in 2018. His Krog Street Market food stall features fried catfish, wings and his famous chicken and waffles. Start with an order of fried green tomatoes with pimento cheese and you’ll feel like you’re sitting at your grandmother’s table. Go classic with one of his fried chicken sandwiches or indulge in an order of chicken wings with a variety of classic sauces to choose from. Get a sweet tea and don’t skip the homemade banana pudding. You can thank me later.
If a hot bowl of Pho is what you’re craving, this is the place to eat at Krog Street Market. It’s not the best Pho in Atlanta but it’s a solid option if you’re craving some slurpy, brothy deliciousness. This Vietnamese stall serves up spring rolls, Bahn Mi as well as vermicelli noodle bowls. I don’t know about you but I love fish sauce on anything. They also have their own seating area as finding a place in Krog Street Market can be a challenge with it’s busy.
Jeni’s Ice Cream
Ok hear us out. Food Tours Atlanta only features locally owned and operated restaurants on our food tours. Jeni’s isn’t locally owned. It’s a chain. But honestly, take my money. I’m a sucker for the smell of freshly baked waffle cones and can’t walk by when I know there’s a cup of darkest chocolate waiting for me. Try all the flavors and find your favorite. I’ve gone between flavors but always end up with darkest chocolate.
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These are just some of the amazing places I always find myself eating and drinking at Krog Street Market. This Atlanta food hall has something truly for everyone and for every palate. It’s one of the best things to do in Atlanta. Hope to run into you!