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4 Great Food Spots in Atlanta

Six Feet Under

This place sits amidst warehouses and other random machine shop in what my step-sister Jennifer described as "West Midtown." It's new construction, and artfully perched on a hill, so the rooftop bar and patio has great views of the many skylines of Altanta (for now, until some high-rises go up nearby).

Fish was the meal, with fried catfish, blackened catfish, scallop quesadillas and plenty of beer to round things out. My blackened catfish was a refreshing break from fried catfish, as you're able to catch more subtle flavors of the fish, not the mention the Cajun seasoning, with blackened fish. Still, a light, cornmeal-based batter on catfish, with a little lemon, is heavenly.

I'd also comment on the beer; I had a 60 Minute Dogfish I.P.A. (India Pale Ale for all you beer newbies) and it was nice. I've taken a liking to IPA's lately, as they're more than just beer (no offense PBR, you're the original three-letter acronym in life), since IPA's got a very distinctive taste (hops are like Pine-Sol to some, manna to others).

Trader Joe's

It'd been way too long since I'd been to a Trader Joe's, and for those of you aren't familar with this unique grocery store, here's the gist of it: Dollar General prices, Costsco selectivity, Dean & Deluca quality. I like them because they've got tons of natural/organic items, but unlike some other places (EarthFare, Whole Paycheck, ahem .. Whole Foods, Greenlife, etc.), you won't break the bank. Plus, they push doing the right thing and having fun at the same time.

Need a reusable shopping bag? Why use some unbleached cotton bag when you can use a durable, vinyl bag that's flashed out with pop art and the word "Mmmmm." Top highlights of that shopping trip were $2.50 bottles of wine, $6 6-pack of good beer, crazy Asian rice crackers wrapped in seaweed (sorry you had to brush your teeth Judy!) and Bay Blend coffee, strong enough to wake up even the crankiest of non-morning people (yours truly).

South City Kitchen

This mini-chain (http://www.southcitykitchen.com/vinings/index.htm) in the Atlanta area mixes traditional Southern food with French/California and other nouveau influences for great results. I had chicken and dumplings, and before you get all grossed out, let me say they were awesome! It was almost more like BBQ and gnocchi, as the potato dumplings were super-firm, not runny/slimy like traditional ones.

For desert, I went with my tenet that whatever's local/seasonal will likely taste best. Apple cobbler (with apples from North Georgia or Western NC) got raves all around the table (and ice cream on the side never hurts any warm apple dish).

Your Dekalb Farmer's Market

Yes, that's the official name of this place, but a more apt one could be, "You want it? You got it!" http://www.dekalbfarmersmarket.com/
This international market has food and people from all over the world, and they're both interesting to observe. Great finds here include spices, teas and bakery items (dried cranberry bagels, yes!)

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