Last Thursday I had the pleasure of dining at The Optimist Atlanta, a sustainable seafood restaurant located in West Midtown. The restaurant’s name was suggested by owner Ford Fry’s father and refers to a small, single-handed sailing dinghy intended for use by children up to the age of 15, and Fry also appreciates the reference to being an optimist about the “day’s catch” and “catching the next big fish.” The Oyster Bar which is adjacent to The Optimist has a more casual “fish camp” style venue featuring a raw bar and an outdoor patio with a two-hole putt-putt golf course.
So I liked everything, literally everything, but let me tell you what I loved…
Loved the decor. The oyster bar is light and breezy very beachesque while the dinning room is a little masculine and a lot chic. The bar in it’s deep navy blue reminds me of a den/library in a house I could never afford while the large white subway tiles bring in the lightness and beachy feel that every seafood restaurant should have. It’s sophisticated, but not stuffy.
I loved the portion sizes. Not too small, not too big, just perfect portions.
Loved the starters and snacks. Though I didn’t try everything on the menu which would be near impossible, every starter and side I had I loved. For me they stole the show over the entrees (though don’t get me wrong the entrees were fantastic). The crispy long beans were light rather than heavy and the homemade creamy dill sauce was scrumptious. I’ll take these over fries any day. The potato gnocchi in a lobster corn sauce was summer in a spoonful and the gnocchi was pillowy rather than dense like some gnocchi can be. And my favorite the fish fried rice. The curry, the peanuts, the cilantro I could have just had that and been happy. Side note, if you don’t like curry or spice than the fried rice is not for you. But speaking of spice the homemade hot sauce is amazing! If they bottled it I’d buy it.
I loved the key lime push pops to go. Key lime and push pops…enough said.
Below are my pics of the evening for you all to enjoy, but if you’re in Atlanta I highly suggest you check The Optimist out. And a special thanks to everyone at The Optimist for making the evening fantastic. Till next time (which as an FYI will be the 29th when our Chicago friends are in town). xoxo
Starting the night off right with some Belle Glos Pinot Noir
The Oyster Bar…try The Punch (pic courtesy of The Optimist)
The bar…love, love, love the bar. So chic. Perfect for happy hour drinks.
The dining room kitchen view (pic courtesy of The Optimist)
Homemade hot sauce…they need to bottle this & sell it.
Salmon and fried caper with your martini? Yes please.
Fried long beans…no words. Must eat!
Fried Rice. Probably my favorite thing I ate all night.
Hot Fudge Sundae with grilled pound cake and fried peanuts. Fried peanuts = yum.
Buttermilk doughnuts with sweet corn ice cream and hot pepper jelly…enough said.