Saturday, May 18th, 2013
As Atlanta’s oldest continually operational dining establishment, Horseradish Grill’s gentrified interior belies its original use as a country store in the 30′s, becoming a full-fledged restaurant in 1946 under the management of entrepreneur Bill Daly. His passion for horses is evident in the space’s furnishings, reminiscent of a horse stable, much of which is still intact today. The property was purchased by Steve Alterman in 1995 and renamed Horseradish Grill.
On a recent rainy night, LC and I met our friends JE and AA there for dinner, arriving early in hopes of snagging a table prior to their reservation time. Luckily, a few folks left the bar so we took up residence there instead, starting off with martinis for the guys and bubbly for the girls before uncorking the bottle of Silver Oak cab they brought along.
We shared orders of fried green tomatoes and shrimp and grits to start. As you may be aware, the improper preparation of fried green tomatoes is my pet peeve, especially the common but silly adornment with aiolis and such. Although Horseradish Grill tops theirs with goat cheese, spicy pecans, and remoulade sauce, the tomatoes themselves were thinly sliced and pan fried with a breading so minimal one could see the green through it…like you’re supposed to! Fabulous. Now just get rid of the fussy toppings.
Shrimp and grits were equally impressive. A generous portion of fat shrimp, fire-roasted red peppers, and caramelized onions topped a bowl of Logan Turnpike grits. At $14 it was pricey for an appetizer, but it could easily sub as an entree, in which case I’d request it without the peppers and with extra caramelized onions.
When we heard the chef’s soup of the day was she crab, we all said “yum!” and ordered a couple of bowls to split, plus another of potato leek for me and LC. However, the kitchen had run out of the she crab and brought out cream of vidalia instead, complimentary of course. Two hearty, cream-based soups were a tad too rich, but I particularly enjoyed the addition of andouille sausage and collards in the potato leek soup. After polishing off our starters, we had the bottle of wine opened….one of the smoothest cabs I’ve ever tried.
Predicting enormous portions, I suggested LC and I share an entree. We chose the pork chop served with gouda grits and braised greens. The chop was a double-cut monster, crusted with cornbread crumbs, then pan sauteed and finished with homemade apple butter. I couldn’t help compare it to the pork chop we recently shared at Rosebud, another huge hunk of meat but cooked medium and much more tender. Horseradish Grill serves it well done, like any decent Southerner (like my Dad) would require. Otherwise, the vinegary greens contrasted nicely with the sweetness of the applebutter.
There was no room (or time) for dessert, so we headed back to my neck of the woods, full of all things Southern.
4320 Powers Ferry Road NW 404-255-7277