Best BBQ In Atlanta, GA

Alrighty, question for the crowd here.

If you had 12 hours free in Atlanta, GA. -

  1. What sorts of things would you do?
  2. What’s the best place to get barbecue?
  3. (optional) What other sorts of local food/drink would you get?

It’s been a decade since I’ve been, and I have no idea if restaurants are open, but I enjoyed Ted’s Montana Grill last time I was there.


I lived in Atlanta for 12 years but moved away in 2018, and have no idea what things are like with covid, but most of this should still hold pretty true

  1. If you are in Downtown/ Midtown, I would definitely recommend a trip to Ponce City Market. It has great food, fun shops, and a carnival-like park on the roof with skyline views. If you have never been to Atlanta and want to do something touristy, the World of Coke and the aquarium are both pretty fun. If you want to get some steps in, and see lots of cute dogs, talking a walk on the Beltline can be enjoyable depending on the weather.

  2. I would generalize and say that Atlanta is not really known for amazing BBQ, but Fox Bro’s tends to be a favorite. There are some other places around the city as well, but if I were only there for 12 hours and wanted to get a taste of Atlanta, I would probably opt for something non-BBQ in midtown.

  3. Atlanta is probably best known for The Varsity, however, I would only go there to eat a meal if you truly enjoy eating several thousand calories at once and want to be in a food coma for the rest of the day. If you still decide to visit for the experience, I recommend sticking with just a “Frosted O.” If you are looking for more generic, but good, southern food, a few favorites are Mary Mac’s Tea Room and South City Kitchen. For sweets, Jeni’s ice cream and King of Pops are both staples, and have multiple locations throughout the city.

I haven’t been back in over a year so this doesn’t include any of the new, and probably fantastic, places that have opened since, but I made this a while back as a basic guide to some of my favorite things in Atlanta. Maybe someone who currently lives there can give a better update.


I’m assuming you’re looking at Downtown and Midtown areas.

In the “Other Category”. The Vortex has some good food. The Wrecked Tots are great.

FYI, it’s a 21+


If you happen to be 21+, feel free to message me and I can make lots of additional “other category” recommendations


I’m gonna recommend Hotlanta Wings. I’ve personally never been there but I’m just bringing it up to bother @kristinweiss because she doesn’t like it when I say Hotlanta.

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All excellent, thank you!

For background (which I probably should have led with):

  1. Yes am 21+
  2. Wife and I are roadtripping down to Florida and will have a stop-over in Atlanta. Having never visited anywhere other than part of the interior of the airport, figured I’d ask what the top recommendations for food were.

Thank you all!

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I last lived in Atlanta in 1990, having grown up there in the late 60s and attended Georgia Tech in the 70s-80s (all three EE degrees). Mary Mac’s Tea Room has been a lunchtime standby for a very long time. One of my Tech professors recalled eating there as a child with his own parents and grandparents, in the 1940s.

The Varsity is even older, recalling days when the Ramblin’ Wreck of Georgia Tech was a new model. My usual order is two chili dogs, a peach pie, and a PC. A ridiculous caloric intake, no doubt.

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I just started school in Atlanta two months ago so I don’t really know much about the food scene outside of Tech campus but I’ve been to a few places.

I had brunch at the Egg Harbor Cafe in Buckhead and that was really good food.

Silom Thai & Sushi is probably the best Thai food I’ve ever had.

Sublime Donughts is also really good if you want a good dessert.

Also if anyone else knows good places in midtown around the GT campus that would kinda work for a college kid’s budget please let me know.


A local to Atlanta restaurant chain that I love is Taco Mac or as some call it… T’Mac. It’s a sports bar chain with very good wings, burgers, tacos, etc. I recommend it far more than the Varsity.

If they are open like Kristen said… Georgia Aquarium, World of Coke…

Piedmont Park is very nice, and there is the Atlanta Botanical Garden. The weather outside is very nice right now.


Atlanta is a really big place. At least geographically. A lot would depend on where you are staying. You won’t have a problem finding a good restaurant close to anywhere you are staying and Atlanta traffic can be bad. The King center (complex really) and the Jimmy Carter library are worth a visit. The Municipal Market (Sweet Auburn) is close to the King stuff has a variety of food. As Kristen mentioned the Ponce City market (the old Sears building) and the Beltline in is interesting to wander around and has good beer and food.
I am not sure what is closed because of Covid. It changes a lot.

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In the general Georgia Tech area you have Rocky Mountain Pizza, Cookout, bartaco, Six Feet Under, Antico, West Egg, Cafe Agora, J. Christopher’s, Cyprus Street, Escorpion, Einstein’s, Flying Biscuit, and Henry’s just to name a few.


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