my first blog entry is a dedication to good, pure food made with love. cakes and ale has been around since 2006ish but they recently opened up a new and different location on the square in decatur. with this opening came the opening of the wonderful, cozy, 50s-esque bakery next door. in the three years i have lived in atlanta i continuously say to people ‘i need to get to cakes and ale.’ alas, i finally went, and enjoyed. i love their concept and story. wife/husband team who made their passion their daily life. from the website they attest to the following: “cook unassuming food using the highest quality ingredients and serve it in a comfortable and welcoming setting.” was it unassuming? yes in a fantastic way. ingredients were amazing as i devoured the house made gnocchi with duck ragu in seconds. anytime someone says ragu i come running. my friend and i also ordered the octopus. the bartender warned us the combination of octopus and roasted endive would seem like an uninvited guest to a dinner party in our mouths, yet we adventured and ordered. the octopus was cooked to perfection, meaty and perfectly complimented by the harissa (which i must make in my kitchen this weekend) and sunchoke puree. we ate the endive completely separately per the bartender’s request and felt that we basically ate two dishes in one. great for me, but some may not enjoy.
the duck ragu with gnocchi was perfection. the gnocchi melted in my mouth and i constantly distracted my dining partner on several occasions to steal more bites for myself. i wont talk about it more, just go in to the restaurant and order it. do this soon, because their menu is seasonal.
anyone that dines with me knows i subscribe to the following when making drink choices.
drink one: dirty martini (dusty) with either prairie, square one or hangar one vodka. i also ask for blue cheese stuffed olives. one of the many reasons i love atlanta is the availability of blue cheese stuffed olives.
drink two: a wonderful glass of red wine. depending on my mood i choose accordingly. last night i was craving a smooth cotes du rhone and asked the bartender to give me a glass she recommended. this is what i drank. it was amazing and i hope one day i can find it again.
to complete the meal, we went next door to the bakery (weren’t feeling anything on the restaurant’s dessert menu). i asked before ordering if the chocolate chip cookies were soft. they were soft, and divine and had that hint of salt to them that i love so much. also eat the almond joy. i didn’t want to share that so we ordered two. a latte and good conversation. perfection.