The Spence or Abattoir?
Which would you choose for dinner and why.
The places I'm currently planning on visiting are: Lunacy Black Market and The Optimist.
It's a definite "it depends." The Spence features some very creative Richard Blais - like dishes with all the whimsy you expect. The dining room can be really loud, however. Abattoir is also creative, but a bit more grounded and, IMO, is more focused on the food than on the overall image. I am a fan of Abattoir, so YMMV, but neither is a bad choice.
I am a fan of Abbatoir since I live nearby, and the head-to-tail concept (or fad, if you wish to argue that) appeals to me. The comment I see most about The Spence is that it has some dishes that are hits and others that are misses. But both are good choices, as are Lunacy Black Market and The Optimist.
Abattoir is my favorite restaurant in Atl, but Chef Tyler just left to helm the kitchen at Woodfire Grill. I think i"d do the Spence or Empire State South till the dust settles.
The Spence failed to impress us on a number of fronts. Weak service. Very loud dining room. Incredibly cramped quarters (the couple next to us was on a date and I felt embarrassed that we were so close that neither us nor they could enjoy a private conversation). And, perhaps worst of all, the food was very hit or miss. I actually sent my dessert back...something I don't think I've ever done in all my many years of eating dessert. I wanted to love it. And I just really, really didn't.