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Restaurant Eugene v. Woodfire Grill - Help!

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I have a foodie friend visiting in a few weeks and am crafting a culinary tour of Atlanta. I have most of the tour in place, but need to make a decision regarding the Fancy Notable Chef Dinner option. My friend has narrowed it down to Eugene or Woodfire, and has asked me to make the final call. I have not been to either and won't have a chance to check them both out before she gets here. Can anyone point me in one direction or the other? Thanks!

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Restaurant Eugene
2277 Peachtree Road, NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

Woodfire Grill
1782 Cheshire Bridge Road, Atlanta, GA 30324

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  1. Haven't been to either but have heard really outstanding things about both - what a tough decision you have in front of you!!!! Let us know where you end up and how it goes.
    I've heard Woodfire has a wait for reservations, not sure if that might impact your timeline.

    8 Replies
    1. re: laurendlewis

      I know opinions in town differ on this, but my experience at Eugene was far better than Woodfire, although Woodfire certainly wasn't bad.
      At Eugene I had one of the better meals I've had in the city, if not the best (save Bacchanalia).

      1. re: rcburli

        Hmm, thanks. I'm leaning towards Eugene at this point...Bacchanalia was one of the two options that did not make the cut (the other was Rathbun's). Sigh, guess I will just have to make my way to those two without the excuse of an out-of-town guest!

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        Rathbun's Restaurant
        112 Krog St NE, Atlanta, GA 30307

        1. re: lmerlyn

          I'd lean that way too. But honestly I'd pick Bacchanalia over both. I like Woodfire, but it's wacky expensive and doesn't wow me like Bacchanalia does. The last time we stopped by Woodfire for drinks and a couple apps it cost $60 for the two of us (IIRC that was a drink apiece and 2-3 apps).

          I'm also easily susceptible to sticker shock at Eugene, but I think the food is closer to being as good as Bacchanalia.

          1. re: ted

            OK, thanks. My friend had Bacchanalia on the list of options but she eliminated it from the final two. I will definitely be going there another time though...it's a crime to live in Atlanta and never have been there. There are just so many wonderful affordable dining options in Atlanta, you kind of need a special occasion to justify the high end stuff.

            I think we are pretty much settled on Eugene at this point. If only opentable would recognize the fact that it is possible to make more than one reservation in the space of 2 1/2 hours, I would have a table booked already!

            1. re: lmerlyn

              I'd go with Eugene too.

              (Has anyone else heard the gossip that K. Gillespie is wanting to turn Woodfire into a prix-fixe-ONLY situation, a la Quinones?)

            2. re: ted

              I agree with ted.... Bacchanalia hands down.

            3. re: lmerlyn

              It would be a huge mistake not to visit those! Anything should be an excellent excuse, but Rathbun's can be done semi-casually. I don't mean that in reference to dress code, but instead of reservations, how about visiting the bar on a weeknight? Its my FAVORITE thing to do in this city! (I personally prefer his steakhouse, don't miss the yaya eggplant fries!)

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              Rathbun's Restaurant
              112 Krog St NE, Atlanta, GA 30307

            4. re: rcburli

              I would do Bacchanalia as well if given the option. Eugene and Woodfire are both topnotch but I would give the edge to Eugene as much as it pains me to type that.

              On an aside, avoid Rathbuns. I've been there at least 5 or 6 times and every time I go I am underwhelmed and over salted. The sides the last two times I have been had to be sent back due to being so salty they were inedible.

          2. I have to agree with those suggesting you reconsider Bacchanalia. I would not go to Woodfire or Eugene over it.

            Bu I also have to say I don't get all the positive reviews of Restaurant Eugene. I've never had a service problem there, but -- in spite of all the many "heirloom" ingredients in every single dish -- I've never thought any of it tasted very good, and you'll walk out having spent almost as much as you would have at Bacchanalia for fantastic food.

            If Bacchanalia is just absolutely out of consideration, I'd encourage you to look at Aria instead. Far better food and less expensive than Eugene or Woodfire.

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            Restaurant Eugene
            2277 Peachtree Road, NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

            1. Haven't been to Eugene but I have been to Woodfire and we will not be going back. It was just OK, nothing was bad but it did not impress on any level and the price was out of whack with what we got IMO. The flovors were noting special, all in all it was average but at those price it needs to be significantly better. Hope you have a great experience whatever you choose.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Kevin C

                1. Bacchanalia
                2. Eugene
                3. Aria

                1. re: GianniB

                  Had a spectacular meal at Aria just last week, and I recommend not only Restaurant Eugene but also Holman & Finch for a more casual meal. Went to Woodfire last year and will never go back. Surly valets, slow service, and the restaurant seemed just a little bit dingy and dirty. If the food had been spectacular, that would have made up for it, but the food was just OK.

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                  Restaurant Eugene
                  2277 Peachtree Road, NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

              2. Never been to Woodfire but have been to Eugene's 4 or 5 times.
                First 3 were good but not blow me away great. The last 2 were not. I would steer clear. There is way better food available at this price (Aria, Kyma, Antica Posta to name 3)

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                Antica Posta
                519 East Paces Ferry Road, Atlanta, GA 30305