Atlanta has been an amazing city to live in. There’s so much to do and (especially important to people who love food as much as we do) so many amazing restaurants at which to eat. Unsurprisingly, our goodbye tour of Atlanta has been centered around food and drink.
This weekend we tried out the newly reopened Polaris restaurant at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta in downtown. Polaris is a rotating restaurant and lounge accessed via a glass elevator that shoots guests 22 stories up to the top of the hotel. The restaurant, which first opened in 1967, looks kind of like a UFO from the ground, but when you step off the elevator you are swept into a glamorous, retro-chic world that harkens of happy hours past with a modern twist.
A long bar facing the Atlanta skyline greets you as you enter the dining room. Diners have the option of sitting there, in cute little coves with low couches and chairs, or at traditional dining tables. We sat at a table close to the kitchen, giving us stunning views of both the city and the food. We soon realized, though, that the kitchen was stationary and we were not; the dining room rotates a full 360 degrees every 15 minutes.
The atmosphere of the restaurant made it feel wrong to not start with a pre-dinner cocktail. So Matt ordered a Manhattan with Polaris Bourbon (which is made in partnership with Elijah Craig, the Kentucky distillery that is credited with inventing bourbon) and I got the Maple Fall which is a champagne cocktail spiked with a maple, bourbon-infused sugar cube and apple bitters. We enjoyed our drinks with the meat and cheese tray which included healthy portions of Pine Street Market Speck (a local prosciutto), local cheese, cornichons and pickled okra.
For dinner, Matt moved onto the Cox Farm Short Rib which sat on a creamy sweet potato puree and was topped with a delicious lobster ragout.
I got the Garlic Chive Gnocchi which sat in a light, creamy red sauce and was garnished with fresh mozzarella, parmesan and tomatoes. We paired our dinners with a bottle of private label Pinot Noir.
The portions were perfectly sized so we didn’t feel stuffed and we could practice for French restaurants by cleaning our plates (from what we’ve read, asking for a doggy bag is faux pas in France).
I’m typically the one with the sweet tooth, but it was Matt who convinced me we should share a dessert–and I’m glad we did! We ordered a creamy, caramel tort dressed with ground hazelnuts. I initially said I’d only have one bite, but couldn’t help eating half of it once I tried it.
Eating dinner at Polaris while watching the sun set while 360-degrees over the Atlanta skyline was a perfect way to spend one of our last weekends in town.