Top 10 Eastern European Tastes in Atlanta

Top 10 Eastern European Tastes in Atlanta

If you’re like me, you’ve had this experience.  I have a friend who is of Polish decent.  Staying with her family for a few weeks had me begging her mother afterward for long held family recipes.  Some of the things I ate were so simple but delicious, it was unbelievable that I had never had them before.  While others took days to create, explaining why I had never tried them before.

Or maybe like me, you have traveled and had this similar experience.  I was in Slovenia during December, which means outdoor food and holiday festivals galore!  Street food bought steaming hot from booths manned by little old ladies that don’t speak a word of English.  The smells of things I’ve never tried and couldn’t name, all made in front of me so that I could eat and walk through crowds, while trying as many things as my stomach would allow.  Oh, so delicious!

The problem with this, is now I find myself in the uncomfortable position of having little hope of ever eating these things again.  And now that I know what I’m missing?  I crave it!

This article concentrates on the food culture and traditions of Eastern Europe found in the Atlanta area.  Eastern Europe commonly includes 18 to 24 countries depending on who is defining the region and why.  Covering such a large area and so many cultures, the food is unique, oh so tasty, and often sadly overlooked.  So with cravings and memories of deliciousness in mind, I explore how Eastern European food has influenced Atlanta.

Nikolai’s Roof

Located at the top of the Hilton with a stunning view of Atlanta’s skyline, this Russian restaurant keeps true to its premiere reputation.  Be prepared to be impressed, not just with the view but the service, atmosphere and menu’s which are created daily using only the freshest, seasonal ingredients prepared prix-fixe or a la carte.  Unsure about Russian food, that’s not a problem, the food here is mostly Modern American with a nod to Russian influences.  The seating is conversational and can accommodate groups of all sizes.  Discover an elegant, upscale atmosphere with a refreshed, modern vibe.

Verdi Banquette Hall

This is a Russian banquette hall, caters or creates buffets for all event types.  A large, festive space full of bright color is the perfect backdrop for live music entertainment and beautifully presented dishes.  Customers will find all the comfort foods of Eastern Europe that they crave.  Using the European approach to food preparation, patrons will discover dishes created only from quality, all natural, fresh ingredients.  Be prepared for an authentically fun Russian experience for any event held here, from the decor, food, servers, and entertainment.

A-Priori

Located on Buford Highway, this venue includes restaurant, bar, live music, hookah lounge, and catering – this restaurant pretty much does it all, for any event!  Here customers will experience fine dining with a superb mixed Eastern European and Central Asian menu, with a special emphasis on Russian dishes.  Atmosphere is classy, trendy, and fun.  Guest can book for events and celebrations.  Be mindful of the times you go, the later at night the louder the DJ gets and the more people are there for the lounge and night life.

Grand Polish Bakery and Deli

The only Polish establishment in the Atlanta area, this humble bakery, deli and grocery offer counter service only with no seating available for Polish pastries, rye breads, desserts, pierogi, sandwiches and grocery items.  Customers will find delicious, authentic Polish treats.  Their grocery section carries a wide selection of popular European sweets, sausages, pierogi’s and other hard to find European goods.  For lunch, expect a simple but filling sandwich made from their own daily baked bread with all fresh ingredients.  Also order ahead for custom European cakes to delight guests.

Palacsintha LLC

This bakery prides itself on being the most authentic Hungarian bakery for the Atlanta area.  Baked goods are created from generations old recipes passed down to make the best breads, pastries and desserts.  Crepes are also made by the owner, a Hungarian woman, outside on the patio (depending on weather).  These aren’t French crepes so expect something a little thicker with a variety of options, both savory and sweet.  Located near Chandler Park, this tiny road side bakery is full of character with its eccentric, fun garden patio entrance.

Sweet Chimney Bakery

This bakery is a mobile operation, meaning customers have to follow social media or find them at events by happy accident.  That being said, it is worth it!  The unique style of cooking is not only fun to watch but great tasting.  Their forte is Chimney Cakes, a traditional Hungarian street food which gets its name from its hallow cone shape.  The pastry is wrapped around a wooden rod and placed rotisserie style over hot coals, caramelizing the sugar and cooking the pastry.  Toppings can be added to the outside and once fully cooked spreads like Nutella or peanut butter can be added on the inside.

Mia’s European Market

This market run by Mia herself, has a great selection of authentic Eastern European food, much of which customers can’t find anywhere else in Atlanta.  A variety of goods including sausages, cheese, breads, candies, teas, and coffee are available.  A specialty here are Romanian goods, with special appreciation for all customers on Great Union Day, a Romanian holiday, with a give away of ROM chocolate bars.  Also good prices especially considering that these are all hard to get, imported items.  So have fun, explore, and take a chance on something you might not be able to read the label on.

Neretva Euro Grill & Market

This establishment is a casual grill connecting to a market which shares an outdoor patio area.  The quaint restaurant side serves Bosnian and other Eastern European dishes.  The decor feels truly Eastern European with flags representing those nations and a varied decor that isn’t found often in the USA.  A unique feature of this grill is the brick fireplace inside that has a small waterfall and fish pond.  The market contains brands and products that are uniquely Eastern European, including sweets, spices, soups, mineral waters, cheese, vegetable spreads, dried meat, teas, and everything needed for Turkish coffee.

Truva Turkish Kitchen

Looking for a fun, Turkish experience?  This is the restaurant to visit.  A stylish, relaxing interior with a variety of seating options provides a comfortable and colorful, upscale backdrop for Turkish cuisine.  Complimentary warm bread and olive oil starts off the fine fusion Mediterranean meal with a large selection of delicious food in filling portions to follow.  The nightly belly dancers are fun and encourage participation from patrons.  With the unique setting and comfortable but large space, this restaurant can accommodate groups of all sizes for all events.

Basil’s Restaurant & Tapas Bar

Located in Buckhead this casual, energetic restaurant features a large patio dining area.  Basil’s menu includes a wide variety of Mediterranean fare, revised seasonally to include the available freshest ingredients.  Customers will find traditional fusion created from regional Mediterranean flavors, classic and modern techniques blending with global accents.  Look forward to a charming atmosphere, tapas, happy hour and an extensive wine and cocktail menu.  Basil’s mission is to serve delicious affordable food that guests will want to return to week after week.  Also always a bonus, parking is complimentary valet.

 

Didn’t see your favorite restaurant on the list? Check out our Twitter and let us know which restaurants we missed. Or visit us on Facebook and leave a comment if you’d like to see more lists for different areas in the Atlanta area!

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Kaela is a Content Editor with CulinaryLocal. Graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah. Originally from Sonoma County, California, she has grown up surrounded by good, fresh food and people who love to love food. Her philosophy is to try everything (food and drink related) at least once.


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