Monday, December 10, 2012

Better than Santa in the Kitchen - Chefs in Restaurants for Your Holiday Dinners and Parties

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are drawing near, and Atlanta's best restaurants are ready with options, whether you're looking for a place to carry out for a home gathering or an elegant dinner out. Here is a list of restaurants with holiday happenings:

Roswell dwellers can gather at Aqua blue for their Christmas Eve dinner. From 4-9 p.m. on December 24, a special three-course menu will be offered at $29 per person in addition to the full à la carte menu. The special menu includes the Aqua blue daily soup, 12 oz. rib-eye with horseradish sauce and house-made warm chocolate cake. For reservations, call 770-643-8886.

Atkins Park in Virginia Highland and Atkins Park in Smyrna are open on Christmas Day, beginning at 6 p.m. at the Virginia Highland location and 5 p.m. at Smyrna. At Atkins Park Virginia Highland, dinner is priced at $22 for adults, $15 for young adults and $8 for children under 10 years old. The main course boasts Big Green Egg smoked turkey breast, braised pork shoulder with roasted root vegetables, green bean casserole, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, cranberry Gran Marnier compote and sweet potato biscuits. Save room for pumpkin cheesecake and Southern pecan pie for dessert. Dinner at Atkins Park Smyrna costs $20 for adults, $15 for young adults and $8 for children under 10 years old.  The meal starts off with pimento cheese, deviled eggs and pickled beets. Main courses include deep-fried Creole turkey breast and Dr. Pepper spiral-glazed ham along with squash casserole with cracker topping, herbed bread stuffing, sweet potato soufflé with streusel topping, southern-style green beans, cranberry orange relish and pull-apart rolls. Dessert tops off the meal with a pumpkin and mascarpone cheese roll. Reservations: Virginia Highland, 404-876-7249. Smyrna, 770-435-1887.

The holiday-hurried can pick up Bantam +Biddy's family meals. For $42, three to five family members or friends can take home a whole rotisserie chicken, meatloaf or herb-roasted pork loin, served with a family-sized organic green salad, jalapeño cheddar bread (gluten-free bread upon request), choice of dressing, three family-sized sides and a half-gallon of fresh brewed tea. Family meals are take-out only; 30 minutes notice required. Phone in your order to 404-907-3469 and pick it up curb-side.

Host an easy "down home" Christmas dinner by ordering the whole feast from Buckhead Barbecue Company. Offering selections for any size party, the restaurant is cooking classics such as hickory honey and cracked pepper smoked turkey, apple-brandy and brown sugar smoked ham and all-natural Black Angus brisket. Sides and desserts feed between 12 to 15 people and include squash casserole, cornbread dressing, sweet potato soufflé and macaroni and cheese sides and desserts of the Buckhead cobbler (peach, apple, blueberry, blackberry and chocolate) or a traditional pumpkin pie. They're taking holiday meal orders until 12 p.m. on Saturday, December 22. Stop in or call 404-792-9388

On Christmas Eve, Kaleidoscope Bistro & Pub turns two. Celebrate with their special three-course menu for $20.12 in addition to the regular menu. Reservations optional. Closed Christmas Day. Reservations: 404-474-9600.

Little Cake Bakery in Buckhead has holiday cupcakes galore! Eggnog, peppermint, German chocolate and Black Forest cherry flavors are available for order and pick up before Santa arrives. For more information or to place orders, call 404-841-8856.

Ray's Restaurants offers diners a warm place to gather this holiday season. Ray's on the Creek in Alpharetta is open from 4-9 p.m. on Christmas Eve and closed on Christmas Day. Reservations: 770-649-0064. Ray's on the River is open from 5-9 p.m. on Christmas Eve and closed on Christmas Day. Reservations: 770-955-1187. Ray's in the City is not open on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.

On December 24, South City Kitchen Midtown is open for a three-course prix fixe Christmas Eve feast priced at $42 for adults and $21 for children under 12. Each guest can choose one appetizer, entrée and dessert. Some menu options include fried green tomatoes with goat cheese and sweet pepper coulis, smoke-roasted filet of beef with celery root potatoes, roasted Brussels sprouts and truffle jus, and Southern chocolate pecan pie. Reservations: 404-873-7358.

For easy holiday meals, call on Market Street Café or Bistro 191 to cater anything from breakfast and lunch gatherings to fine dining affairs. As a bonus, guests booking a catered event for 10 or more people will receive a complimentary $10 Market Street Café gift card. Place pre-orders for take-home treats, such as holiday breads and pies. To schedule a catered event or for pre-orders, call Market Street Café at 404-816-4911 and Bistro 191 at 404-233-0500.

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