Affectionately named as a nod to the strong-willed, Southern women Chef Joey Ward knows and loves — including his wife and restaurant co-owner, Emily — Southern Belle is connected through a secret passageway to his second restaurant concept, Georgia Boy. Georgia Boy will offer a separate, 16-seat tasting menu by RSVP only.
Southern Belle’s Multicultural Flavors of the “New South”
Southern Belle’s plates are designed to be shareable and will change frequently. Small plates include Ceviche with Local Sweet Potato, Fermented Chilis, and Leche de Tigre; Crispy Brussels Sprouts with Chicken Ham, Bama White Sauce, and Fried Chicken Skins; and Beef Short Rib Braised in Dr. Pepper with Warm Spices, Fermented Black Bean, and Dried Plum, to name a few.
The restaurant’s cocktail program, designed by Greg Best and Paul Calvert of Atlanta’s acclaimed Ticonderoga Club, is an ode to Southern distilleries. Centered around seasonal twists on classics, the cocktail menu draws inspiration from across the South to complement Chef Ward’s savory cuisine. Alongside cocktails ranging from a classic Vieux Carre to the more modern Long Way Down (O4W Gin, Lemon, Benedictine, and Angostura Bitters), bar selections also include a number of zero-proof cocktails, local craft beers, and a biodynamic wine list curated by General Manager and Sommelier Cate Hatch.
To end meals on a sweet note, Executive Pastry Chef Billy Cole serves Warm Sticky Toffee-Coffee Puddingfor Two with East Pole Coffee & ASW Bourbon Toffee Sauce. This decadent pudding is paired with Biscoff Cookie Ice Cream churned tableside on an authentic Delta galley cart, an homage to the Atlanta-based airline.
Every Sunday afternoon on the patio (weather permitting; heaters are in place), Southern Belle will host “Sunday Fundays” with live music. In addition to Southern Belle’s regular food and beverage offerings, guests can look forward to specials on the Big Green Egg, which will change each week. To kick off the series this Sunday, November 17, Chef Ward will offer a Platter of Grilled Oysters with House-pickled Garnish and House-made Andouille Sausage.
Designed with a Nod to the Neighborhood’s History
The restaurant’s interior design evokes a Southern, homey feel with exposed brick walls, tufted furniture, salon-style art, and the historic building’s original tin ceiling.
Southern Belle, furnishings, fixtures, and interior detailing translate varied design influences: curved corners; soft archways; petite curved bar; neon blue “Bless Your Heart” sign; bright blue lacquered tabletops, high gloss trim, blue milk glass accessories; Opal globe lights and wall sconces; patterned wallpapers, & indulgent velvets and mohair.
Southern Belle seats 45 guests inside and 40 guests on a seasonally-open outdoor patio. Long picnic tables line the patio, which was designed with “Sunday Fundays” for restaurant industry workers in mind. With a Big Green Egg and a mural of Azalea Flowers designed by Creature Comforts Brewing Company, Southern Belle’s outdoor space is an ode to both Brooklyn’s alley patios and a lively urban beer garden.
The Plaza on Ponce, 1043 Ponce De Leon Avenue NE, Atlanta, GA; 404-698-3961 www.southernbelleatl.com
- By Nancy Radlauer, Editor-in-Chief, editor.InboundMagazine@gmail.com