Sure, Alpharetta is the hometown. It’s my hometown. But, by day, I work in midtown. And occasionally by night I gotta enjoy the cornucopia that IS Atlanta.
So, the husband and I decided to go to the Colonnade on Cheshire Bridge Road last Friday. What is the Colonnade? Oh, my friend, it is the food equivalent of gospel, of tradition, of the Eiffel Tower! It is the restaurant that has been serving up fried chicken since 1927. And not just fried chicken; the Colonnade is the cathedral of perfect blue cheese dressing, of tomato aspic with a dollop of mayo, of lima beans, of chicken fried steak and perfect iced tea. The husband had many a business lunch there when working in Buckhead. For me – it’s simply always been a special treat.
We chatted with our waitress, Debbie. She, like many of the servers at the Colonnade, has been there awhile; in Debbie’s case, for 17 years. She loves it. She tells us that if we really want to hear about the Colonnade, we should talk to the owner, Jodi Stallings. So, we do.
Jodi is a friendly, personable lady who looks a little bit like a soccer mom. But at the Colonnade, she is restaurant owner extraordinaire.
It was her dad who bought the place in 1979. She told us that her dad decided on the Colonnade only after deciding not to buy that bastion of Decatur fine eating – Evans Fine Foods (I can’t even count how many dishes of cheese eggs and grits I had at Evans in the ’80’s). He even turned down the venerable Ms. Lupo of Mary Mac’s. Her dad saw something in the Colonnade and he went for it.
Amazingly, the Colonnade still serves up basically the same menu that the Colonnade served in 1979 when her dad bought the place. She credits their chef, Ryan Cobb, for keeping it the same, but better. In fact, on the Friday evening we were there, the specials are “Tapas”.
No Tapas for me Ms. Stallings. Please, please bring me my tomato aspic before the drool shows on my chin.
Colonnade Restaurant, 1879 Cheshire Bridge Road, Atlanta