Eating in Marietta, GA
I live in East Cobb and don't think much of the restaurants. I don't know why we don't have much better places along the lines of Alpharetta or even Duluth. We really ought to but we don't.
As for East Cobb, there is a deceptively good Cuban place called Cubano on Johnson Ferry. It is in what used to be a Philly Cheese Steak chain, but the food is anything but chain-like now. I have found the food to be pretty good for take out. My mother-in-law says he makes the best coffee around.
One place that stands out in East Cobb is Ritter's. Very good American Bistro and the prices are reasonable. The chef and his wife both trained at Johnson and Wales. Consquently, her desserts stand out.
If you are willing to come to East Cobb, I recommend that you drive a couple miles further to Old Roswell. Lots of great options there and all very near to each other. If you haven't spent time in the historic district I think you will enjoy it.
There is an upscale (modestly) Thai place called Rice that I really like. It is in an old house and it is nice to sit on the porch on a summer evening.
Right down the street from Rice is The Fickle Pickle. Chef owners used to have a great restaurant in the same location (another old house) called Asher. I thought it rivaled Bachanallia and was an undiscovered gem. They reopened as a walk up counter sandwich type place, although there are also really good entrees and frequently good specials. I particularly like the chicken pot pie, which I will be having for dinner on Friday. The grouper sandwich is very good too. I have never been anything less than happy there. The patio is very pretty and on Thursdays you can sit outside and listen to some music and eat fried pickles with creole remoulade.
Oak Street Cafe is nearby in a cool little corner of Roswell. There has been a push to make Oak Street a destination and they have had some success and this restaurant is a reason why. Small, family owned with a good bar. Good pasta dishes. Also right down the street from a Krispy Kreme.
My other favorites are Swallow at the Hollow and Greenwood's on Green Street. There has been a lot written on the boards about both places. Swallow has great BBQ and very cool music due to a relationship with the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville. Greenwood's is traditional Southern (great fried chicken) in a very funky atmosphere. Best and biggest pies in Atlanta.
I have only had one or two meals at Pastis and I enjoyed them but I haven't found myself itching to go back. Good but not remarkable French food, but I tend to go before or after dinner for a drink at the bar. It has a nice vibe for the burbs, without being club like.
Would be interested in knowing if you have been to any of these or if you decide to go.
re: bananna slug
Yes East Cobb is dire. Have you been to any memorable Marietta Square restaurants?
I haven't been to Ritters but have seen their menu. Maybe my hubbie and I will try it for our next big date. Cubano? I have seen it , but never gone in. Next time I itching for a quick bite.
Of your above places, I have only been to Swallow in the Hollow. It was a fun time with the live music. I remember the bbq being pretty good. Have you tried Sam and Dave's BBQ1 or BBQ2? Their mac n cheeze is good enough to write a song about it. I loved the decor of Swallow.
Have you tried Sugo's in Historic Roswell at the Old Clocktower? I have been twice. Good tapas, the cheese on the antipasto plate was excellent. Our dinner a few weeks ago was memorable!
I'd also recommend Ritter's. I've had two very good meals there, and the fish and chips were the best I've ever had.
As far as another hole-in-the-wall type suggestions try Sessions near Marietta Square. They have delicious gyros and their sauce is really good. It's not even close to Tzatziki- there isn't the slightest hint of cucumber in it-but you'll end up putting it on everything there. The place is very rundown though, so if that type of thing bothers you stay away.
I have been to Sugo's and really enjoyed it. My wife didn't prefer her last meal there (I forget what it was) but it wouldn't keep us from going back. For some reason we tend to make the left at the mill and head toward the old part of Roswell, rather than going right toward Sugo's and what used to be Salvatore's (now Amalfi's after reopening - same family though). No good reason why because both are great. I would recommend both to others.
Have you tried Stefan's Off the Square (formerly Slovakia)?
For pizza: Vito Goldberg's on Whitlock
For BBQ: BBQ II, also on Whitlock.
Lemongrass Thai is good. It's on Roswell Rd.
Grapeleaf Grill is a very good Vietnamese place on Canton Rd.
Tasty China on Franklin Rd. has some of the best Chinese in town.
A little further down the road in Smynings is Muss & Turners.
This is closer to Cumberland/Galleria area, but it is honestly the best Chinese food I've ever eaten.
House of Chan- on Cobb Pkwy next to the Office Depot just past Windy Hill Rd.
Very reasonable pricing, friendly staff, a bit cramped and crowded at lunch, but the food is spectacular. P.F. Chang doesn't hold a candle to this one.
If you are going to be coming into Roswell, definitely try Little Alley. It is a Tapas restaurant that you will love. The web site is littlealley.com On some saturday evenings they have piano and/or flamenco dancing. It is really nice inside and the food is excellent. Go to Pastis or Ragamuffin music in the square afterwards for some music to top off a nice night out. You will not be disappointed in the food at little alleys.
I have not been to Little Alley, but my wife and her girlfriends meet there often and really enjoy it. It is nearly always the place they choose.
I second the recommendation for Ragamuffin. It is a very unique and pretty place. We are fortunate to have it in the neighborhood. I am pretty sure they don't serve beer or wine, but I know that they have had coffee and desserts in the past. (I had a very good red velvet cake there.) Thursdays are usually open mic and the performances I have seen were terrific. Cover on Thursdays is only $5.00. I can't see how anyone wouldn't enjoy going there after dinner in East Cobb or Roswell. www.ragamuffinmusic.com