First Look: Hoyle’s in Marietta melds family tradition and out-of-the ordinary food


Hoyle’s Kitchen and Bar, which opened in Marietta in late 2017 , is a reimagining of the sprawling Roswell Road space most recently occupied by 120 Tavern and Music Hall.

The contemporary sports bar is named for George Hoyle Ivey, the grandfather of developers and property managers, Joe and Sam Ivey, who was a Marietta pioneer and owned a chain of farm-to-retail stores nicknamed “Milk Jugs.”

Executive chef Zach Starr is a Gwinnett County native, and a Texas Culinary Academy grad with a fine dining background. Before returning to Atlanta to take over the kitchen at Hoyle’s, Starr was the founding chef at the Ordinary Pub in Savannah, where he presided over an ever-popular menu of “reimagined pub fare.”

Hoyle’s offers an all-day menu until 10 p.m., augmented with lunch and dinner specials, plus late-night and weekend brunch menus.

Signatures include house-made loaded tots, pecan-smoked pulled pork tacos, the hefty Hoyle’s Burger, and sous vide and grilled steak frites with both compound butter and bacon chimichurri sauce.

Last week, Starr sat down with Sam Ivey and managing partner David Smedlund at a table at Hoyle’s, where they discussed the concept and the menu.

“This building goes back to 1962, when my grandfather built it for A&P as a grocery store,” Ivey said. “From 1996-2012, Sidelines Sports Bar took it over. We took it over in 2011, and turned it into 120 Tavern (in 2012). We were a sports bar with a music venue, with country, rock and all kinds of things.

“After about five years, the concept just kind of ran its course, so in January of last year, we closed it down and started developing Hoyle’s. We just realized there was a need for something a little more upscale. The feel is more modern, more West Midtown, and something a little different for Marietta.”

The remake retained a couple of pool tables, shuffleboard and arcade games, and added rows of flat-screen TVs and two big-screen projection TVs, along with a bocce ball court and a putting green out on the patio.

“It’s a twist on the sports bar concept,” Ivey said. “It’s not just a sports bar, clearly, but we’re definitely geared toward sporting events. We were packed for the Super Bowl. And we’re working with Atlanta United, trying to work out a deal. But regardless, we’ll be hosting all the games here.”

Two different bar areas serve up house cocktails with local spirits, and craft beers from nearby breweries, including Red Hare and Burnt Hickory.

“The main focus for the beer and the liquor is local,” Smedlund said. “We’re using Old Fourth Distillery for some cocktails, and we’re doing a whiskey dinner with American Spirit Works in March. And we’re hoping to find a good price point to do some local wines next.”

Speaking about his approach to the food at Hoyle’s, Starr explained that his stint at the Ordinary Pub changed his style of cooking.

“I found my niche there doing bar and tavern food, taking stuff I did in fine dining, and putting that twist on it,” Starr said. “I want to create something fun here like I did down at the Pub. What we had there worked because we had great culture and I wanted to bring that here and have people be a part of something new.

“I started making my own tater tots down at the Pub. That really took off there, and it’s turned out to be one of the most popular appetizers here. The Hoyle’s Burger has three pieces of bacon woven together like lattice so you get bacon in every bite, and we do it with house-made pickles and tomato jam. My motto is ‘Don’t Be Ordinary.’ I got that on a tattoo when I was in Savannah, and we’ll keep doing that here.”

1440 Roswell Road, Marietta. 770-509-3320, hoyleskitchenandbar.com.

More images from a First Look at Hoyle’s Kitchen and Bar

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