Atlanta restaurant reviews, culinary news, and gluttonous gossip by admitted foodaholic Serina Patrick

Birthday Dinner at Watershed

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Although LC treated me to a lovely pre-birthday brunch at Highland Bakery, and a casual dinner at Goin’ Coastal on my birthday, I still had the urge to celebrate in a more formal setting…but where?

I surprised myself with the choice of Watershed, a restaurant that didn’t impress me in its original location in Decatur, but has become a different beast now that it’s in Buckhead and Joe Truex is in the kitchen. I hear he is keeping the fried chicken tradition alive, but my craving was for a bird of a different sort…the duck.

Unlike the bright and sunny decor of the former location in Decatur, the Buckhead space is a series of intimate rooms dressed in shades of deep blue, with unfinished wood floors and dim lighting…too dim for decent photos with my outdated camera. It would be a great spot for a romantic dinner, if you’re lucky enough to be dating someone that comprehends romance.

To hell with romance, we invited friends TH and D, a couple we hang out with at the Kentucky Derby, to join us. Late as always, we arrived as they were sipping wine and nibbling on a cheese plate at the bar. Once seated, I ordered a glass of the same spicy red zin that TH was having, the 2012 Prisoner “Saldo”.

An order of deviled eggs and shrimp wrapped with country ham were ordered to share. Both dishes we tried on our first visit here, I was particularly fond of the shrimp served with fiery little calabrese peppers.

For entrees, our friends shared a bowl of Joe’s jambalaya, a nod to the chef’s Louisiana roots, while LC tried the seared sea scallops and a side of hot pepper slaw. But who cares…I had the duck! Moulard duck breast, roasted medium-rare, was paired with grilled radicchio, peperonata, and compressed Georgia apples. This is one of those dishes I fantasize about, the sweet apples and bitter radicchio perfectly matched with the rich meat. Although it was more than enough in quantity and calories, I also felt compelled to order a side of mac ‘n’ cheese since someone else at our table ate mine on our last visit. The substantial portion was baked in its own ramekin, loaded with melted cheddar. A second glass of zin washed it all down.

LC’s plump scallops were divine, paired with radicchio and caramelized onion panade, and roasted cauliflower, but I would order it without the charred tomato salsa.

What would a birthday dinner be without dessert? The list at Watershed is extensive, yet strangely unappealing…keep in mind I dislike cake. And pie. And anything lemon. TH and D ordered the chocolate terrine with pistachio and sea salt while LC and I reluctantly decided on the pecan tart with bourbon pecan ice cream. It was a mini pie, so needless to say, I wasn’t thrilled, although the ice cream redeemed it to an extent.

In between scrumptious bites, we laughed until we cried. It was a memorable meal despite the lack of birthday candles…and romance.

1820 Peachtree Road NW 404-809-3561

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