If you’ve been wary of the scandalous prices at this St. Regis Atlanta showstopper, there’s another way to savor the experience—and contemplate the world-class art collection—without raiding Fort Knox.
Just open the massive wooden door in the hotel lobby, and tell the folks behind the welcome desk that you’d like to plop down for a while and have a drink. They won’t mind. The onyx and emerald room is among the loveliest in the city, and you have your choice of intimate lounge chairs in a book-lined library with a marble fireplace; a sitting area graced by a Chagall; or the bar itself, where I like to sit and eavesdrop on fellow tipplers.
While you can graze from the bar menu (pimento-cheese biscuits, fries or a $29 burger), you can also order á la carte from Chef de Cuisine Christopher Grossman’s menu. (You’ll get all the proper utensils, bread service, the works.) But first ask for a Piscoux Sour, a South American classic with a French accent. Watching the bartender make this is like witnessing Matisse dash off a masterpiece. After straining the drink into goblet, the cocktail craftsman uses an eyedropper to dot the egg-white layer with crème de cassis for a touch of Burgundy, then swirl it to make a pretty little design that looks like a laurel wreath—you know, like latte artists do at the coffee shops.
To go with, consider Grossman’s signature Truffle Potato Pierogi Dumplings, scattered with mushrooms and extraordinarily tender morsels of Wagyu beef, and topped with a Parmesan crisp. I also liked the Crispy Wianno Oysters, perked up with slices of pickled peppers, shishito peppers, pepper jelly and avocado bacon mousse. For “dessert,” I asked for a Cocktail á la Louisiane, a potent New Orleans-style drink of Rittenhouse Rye 100, Benedictine, Dolin Rouge vermouth, Herbsaint and bitters. In a whiskey glass with a sphere of ice and a swath of orange zest, it’ll make you feel like a Rockefeller, even if you’re on my “Brockefeller” budget.
88 West Paces Ferry Road N.W.