Wintry weather has us craving an extra-cozy place for our next meal. And it doesn’t get much cozier than nestling up near a roaring fire to enjoy a belly-warming meal and a smooth glass of red wine or hot, spiked cider. There’s just something comforting and nostalgic about fireside dining that we never tire of. If chilly temps have you feeling the same way, let these restaurants in Atlanta’s northern arc fuel your flame.
Fire Stone Wood Fired Pizza & Grill
Located in downtown Woodstock, Fire Stone offers a cozy dining room for a casual meal. A ceiling-high fireplace warms up the interior space on extra-cold nights, while an inviting patio features a dramatic stacked-stone fireplace (with heat lamps for some extra warmth) for enjoying a drink or meal outdoors on less frigid evenings. The restaurant offers a host of pizzas cooked in a wood-fired oven; try the spicy smoked chicken bacon ranch with jalapeno-Sriracha ranch sauce. Stop by on a Wednesday for half-priced wine specials, or bring the whole family on a Monday for Kids Eat Free (one free kids meal with the purchase of an adult entree or pizza).
120 Chambers St., Woodstock. 770-926-6778, woodstock.firestonerestaurants.com.
Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails
Dining by the fire inside a restored 150-year-old farmhouse and 1930s cottage makes for an extra-snuggly meal at Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails. The historic spaces were restored and preserved with classic elements, including a red-brick fireplace that warms up the restaurant’s wood-paneled Mayfield Room. Enjoy a menu of contemporary Southern dishes made from local ingredients, many of which come from the restaurant’s very own garden, for brunch and dinner.
800 Mayfield Road, Milton. 770-817-0161, miltonscuisine.com
If you’re shopping in downtown Norcross, pop in to Farmhouse 17, a wine shop and boutique featuring both New and Old World small-production wines, craft beer and unique gifts. The shop regularly hosts wine tastings with complementary cheese pairings and live music on the patio, warmed by a propane fire pit and heaters. If the weather gets too cold, they move the fun inside. Check out its Facebook page for upcoming events.
141 S. Peachtree St., Norcross. 770-409-1717.
Mix up your lunch routine in Alpharetta and take your time at Village Tavern, where the fireplaces go full force in winter. The restaurant’s relaxed ambience, dim lighting and warm wood tones make for a comfy dining experience beside the fire. The expansive menu makes it a great choice for dining with co-workers. Kick your meal off with baked Brie, the hot crab dip or Thai chicken nachos, then order some flatbreads to share or try the crowd-pleasing fish tacos or a lunch combo (soup/sandwich or salad/sandwich). Portions are on the generous side, so come hungry.
11555 Rainwater Drive, Alpharetta. 770-777-6490, villagetavern.com.
Trackside Grill & Patio Bar
Get rosy-cheeked by the multiple wood-burning stone fireplaces at Trackside Grill & Patio Bar in Kennesaw, which also offers an enclosed patio where the fire is cranking. With a subtle touch of railroad-themed memorabilia and a menu of comforting classics, Trackside is a low-key spot to enjoy a meal by the hearth. Southern-influenced starters like the fried green tomatoes with goat cheese and roasted red pepper sauce and house-made pimento cheese are solid choices. Don’t miss the Comfort Plates (think buttermilk fried chicken and chicken pot pie) for a satisfying food feast.
2840 South Main St., Kennesaw. 770-499-0874, http://www.tracksidegrill.com.