A brass band marched through the restaurant playing a lively rendition of “When the Saints Go Marching In” at full tilt, the musicians weaving through the tangle of tables and motioning for diners to join the impromptu parade.
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Overall rating: 3 of 5 stars
Food: a blend of Creole/Cajun, Asian and Southwestern flavors
Service: a little slow and overly familiar, but well-meaning
Best dishes: veal porterhouse, lemon crab cream cheese fritters, venison
Vegetarian selections: eggplant hushpuppies, salads, sides
Price range: $$$
Credit cards: Visa, Mastercard, American Express
Hours: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and 5:30-9 p.m. Sundays, 5:30-10 p.m. Tuesday-Thursdays, 5:30-11 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays
Children: well-behaved ones
Parking: yes, valet
Wheelchair access: yes
Noise level: high
Address, phone: 659 Auburn Ave. N.E., Atlanta. 404-688-0040.
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Part bistro and part pub, P’cheen opened in 2005 as one of the Atlanta’s premier gastropubs. The restaurant, now smoke-free, recently received an interior face-lift and menu redesign. The beverage menu also now features moonshine-based cocktails. 11:30 a.m.-midnight Sundays and Tuesdays-Thursdays, 11:30 a.m.-1 a.m. Fridays-Saturdays. 701 Highland Ave., Atlanta. 404-529-8800. $$.
Barcelona Wine Bar sits on the main drag in Inman Park, forever bursting with customers overflowing the generous interior to a wrap-around patio. Chef Shane Devereux helms the kitchen at the Atlanta location of this Connecticut-based restaurant group. Stop in for tapas like the cuminy spinach and chickpea casserole or the octopus, with its nice char and hearty paprika-spiced fingerling potatoes. Linger to try the many wines by the glass. 11:30 a.m.-late Sundays, 11:30 a.m.-4 p.m. and 5 p.m.-late Mondays-Saturdays. 240 N. Highland Ave., Atlanta. 404-589-1010. $$-$$$.
The small kitchen at Rathbun’s cranks out a hefty menu and list of daily specials. It’s easy to hover in the small-plate region of the menu, with items like thin slices of lamb scallopini topped with cubes of salty pancetta and soft goat gouda. But you’ll also want to indulge in dishes like the perfectly crispy duck with Thai risotto and a sweet-and-spicy green curry essence. Pastry chef Kirk Parks prepares an impressive list of sweet temptations to end your meal. 5:30-10 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 5:30-11 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays. 112 Krog St. N.E., Atlanta. 404-524-8280. $$$-$$$$.