The neighborhoods of Westside, Bolton, and Riverside are steeped in Atlanta’s industrial and railroad history. Small enclaves of charming bungalows dating as far back as 1910 are scattered throughout the city’s northwest corridor.
Flanked by Collier Road to the north, Ivan Allen Jr. Boulevard to the south, Northside Drive to the east, and I-285 to the west, Westside and Riverside have become popular (and affordable) places to live for families, young professionals, college students, and creatives. Those buying homes now have the last portion of the Atlanta BeltLine to look forward to in their future. Anchored by Bellwood Quarry Park just west of Marietta Boulevard, the northwest section will snake through quiet, tree-lined neighborhoods and past destinations such as Star Provisions, TopGolf, and Monday Night Brewing.
While most associate dining and drinking here with the trendy Westside Provisions District, residents in this part of town are likely to be found dining as regulars elsewhere around the neighborhood. Here, now, are 23 restaurants, bars, breweries, and coffee shops, mapped north to south, that make the west side of Atlanta worth a visit.
1. B’s Cracklin’ Barbecue
Pitmaster Bryan Furman and his wife Nikki opened an Atlanta outpost of their Savannah smokehouse in September 2016. Located in the former Hottie Hawgs space in Riverside, the Furmans serve heritage-breed whole-hog ‘cue, South Carolina-style hash and rice, and more. The Furmans recently added breakfast to their weekend menu, which includes chicken biscuits.
2. Acapulco Mexican Taqueria
Acapulco Mexican sits at the Y intersection of Hollywood and Bolton roads on the edge of Riverside. It’s a popular neighborhood spot for fast, affordable Mexican food that happens be to be darn good, too. Everything on the menu here is under $10. It’s hard to beat $1.75 for a chorizo taco or a Cuban torta stuffed with ham and cheese and topped with a fried egg for $5.
3. Scofflaw Brewing Co.
Westside is becoming somewhat of a brewing mecca these days. Good news for thirsty residents of the area who now can add one more brewery to their list. Scofflaw Brewing Co. located in northwest Atlanta’s Bolton neighborhood focuses on beers the brewery’s staff likes to drink. Look for double IPAs, Imperial wheats, and pale ales.
4. Nuevo Laredo Cantina
Nuevo Laredo opened on the Westside in 1992 and soon became a popular neighborhood spot for both lunch and dinner. Serving authentic, home-cooked Mexican comfort food, the Cantina’s compact parking lot is always full from the time the doors open until they close.
5. Hankook Taqueria
Born from a food truck and billed as Korean-Mexican fusion, Hankook on Collier Road has been feeding this northwest Atlanta neighborhood spicy pork and chicken tacos, burritos filled with Korean-marinated meats, addictive sesame fries, and a spicy “firedog” with green cabbage kimchi six days a week. Try the crispy calamari taco, which is dressed with jalapenos and chili sauce.
6. Second Self Beer Company
Second Self prides itself on using the freshest ingredients to make beers that are full of flavor and personality. The brewery, owned by a couple of Georgia Tech alums, is located on Logan Circle off of Chattahoochee Avenue and recently expanded its canning and tasting rooms to accommodate the growing crowds.
7. Star Provisions Market & Cafe
Star Provisions’ sandwich counter — dubbed Little Star — is still at Westside Provisions District, but Anne Quatrano’s market and cafe has moved to a brand new building on Ellsworth Industrial Boulevard. The cafe has quickly become a neighborhood gathering spot for omelet sandwiches with prosciutto, herbs, and brie served on fresh baguettes in the morning and charcuterie and cheese boards paired with wine in the afternoon. Feeling fancy? Make a dinner reservation at Quatrano’s fine dining stunner Bacchanalia, located next door.
8. Bone Garden Cantina
Hidden in the back of the Lumberyard complex off of Ellsworth Industrial, Bone Garden serves up solid Mexican food and premium mezcals and tequilas. It’s a popular neighborhood spot for families gathering early for dinner and friends in search of queso and margaritas after work. The food is fresh, the drinks are strong, and the patio is large and dog-friendly.
9. The Warhorse Coffee Shop
This underground coffee house located at the Goat Farm in Westside, and it plays host to local writers, artists, readers, and those seeking quiet respite from Atlanta’s frenetic pace. Visit Warhorse for coffee, tea, and the occasional spoken-word performance or impromptu art show.
10. Urban Tree Cidery
Urban Tree, located on Howell Mill Road, has become the happy-hour hang out for the Westside neighborhoods of Berkeley Park and Underwood Hills. Ciders are all produced on site from apples harvested and crushed in the North Georgia mountains. For those not into high-octane apple juice, order cocktails from the bar that features many of the city’s local spirits.
11. Miller Union
When James Beard award winner Steven Satterfield opened his farm-fresh, Southern restaurant in 2009 on Brady Avenue, he set the bar high for the Westside’s fledgling dining scene. The farm egg baked in celery cream with grilled bread is a top-10 Atlanta dish, and the restaurant has one of the best vegetable plates in town (not to mention an impeccable wine list).
12. Taqueria Del Sol
The line begins to form the minute the doors open at this Westside taqueria. The loyal regulars come from around the neighborhood for chef Eddie Hernandez’s mix of Mexican and Southern flavors like fried chicken, brisket, and smoked-pork tacos.
13. Fellini’s Pizza
Located at the corner of Collier Road and Howell Mill, at $2.75 a (massive) slice, one or two helpings at Fellini’s and a drink makes for a great, walkable neighborhood pizza joint. Calzones run less than $10 and include everything from plain cheese to those stuffed with pepperoni, spinach, and mushrooms.
14. Westside Provisions District and Ironworks
Westside Provisions District and the newly-opened Ironworks across the street could be considered the heart of dining and drinking on the Westside. While both complexes lean on the trendy and spendy side, the variety of dining options are impressive and include old-school steakhouse Marcel, Jeni’s Ice Cream, cocktail bar Little Trouble, Basque-inspired Cooks & Soldiers, sushi bar O-Ku, and health-focused Upbeet.
15. West Egg Cafe
West Egg has been serving breakfast and brunch in Westside for more than a decade and is still considered one of Atlanta’s best bets for a morning meal. It’s tough to beat sour cream pancakes with syrup and spiced honey butter or the simple comfort of the blue plate (two eggs, biscuit, choice of breakfast meat, and roasted garlic grits or skillet potatoes).
16. Northside Tavern
This iconic Westside haunt is so much more than drinks. It’s a blues dive bar serving up shots of Wild Turkey, PBR, and live music into the wee hours of the night. The bar has been part of the Westside in one form or another since the 1940s as a grocery store, a gas station, and a blue collar bar serving the area’s mill and stockyard workers.
17. Brash Coffee
Brash works directly with coffee farmers in El Salvador in order to source beans as fairly and ethically as possible. Located in a repurposed shipping container at Westside Provisions District, Brash offers coffee drinkers everything from pour-overs to drip as well as selections from Emerald City Bagels in the morning.
Beloved Atlanta coffee staple Octane has been sold to Birmingham-based Revelator. But despite the sale, the coffee shop’s original location on the Westside continues to channel its start-up past with folks meeting to collaborate and exchange ideas over coffee and cocktails. During the school year, Octane is often full of Georgia Tech and Georgia State students studying or taking a break between classes.
Bocado has been feeding the Westside for nearly eight years. Now a neighborhood staple, people come in for the burger stack but come back for the cocktails and seasonally driven menu. Try the quinoa salad with avocado and field peas or the shrimp po’boy. Don’t forget to order a side of herb fries.
20. Monday Night Brewing
One of the founding fathers of Atlanta’s craft beer scene, Monday Night Brewing on the Westside has been tying one on for years with cleverly named classics like Fu Manbrew, Drafty Kilt, and Nerd Alert. Eventually, the Trabert Avenue location will be situated along the BeltLine’s Northwest Trail. The MNB gang will open their second outpost at the Lee + White development in the historic West End located off the BeltLine’s forthcoming Westside Trail on September 23, 2017.
21. Le Fat
Le Fat opened on the Westside in March 2015 and has become a go-to for Vietnamese dishes and inspired cocktails in the neighborhood. The menu features pho and noodles and entrees such as spicy chile prawns and shaking beef served family style.
22. Amélie’s French Bakery & Café
This French-inspired bakery and sandwich shop on the corner of Marietta Street and Northside Drive is a popular spot for Georgia Tech students as well as the community’s freelancers. Amelie’s comfortable atmosphere and shabby chic decor coupled with its cafe food offerings have made it a neighborhood favorite.
23. Thumbs Up Diner
This local, cash-only chain now serves one of the best breakfasts in town. The Westside location is always full in the mornings with college students and neighborhood regulars looking to start the day off right with coffee and the skillet heap piled high with potatoes, eggs, cheese, meats, and vegetables.