Sweet Auburn Curb Market?
I will have a few free hours when I come to Atlanta next month. I was trying to find something to do and I found our about the Sweet Auburn Curb Market. Is it worth a visit? Even on a Thursday -- my only free day? Are there other foodie destinations you would recommend. I won't have a car and I will be based at the Embassy Suites, Centennial Park.
I have a few ideas for you. Downtown Decatur, mentioned by another poster, is a good destination for food (and bars) and very easy from downtown by train. Not sure how much of a beer enthusiast you are (I'm a giant beer snob so I can't resist going into such things), but the Brick Store Pub there is the second best beer bar in the Atlanta area and has very good food too (though other restaurants nearby might be more exciting for food). Other things you might consider:
- Take the train east a few stops to Inman Park Station and walk ten minutes (through a neighborhood of huge, quite pretty 1900s houses) to Little FIve Points, where the best beer bar I've found in the U.S., the Porter Beer Bar, is located. They have 430+ beers, all of stellar quality, and their food is excellent too. There are a number of fun little record stores there to check out as well.
- Take bus 1 (or a $10 - $15 cab), which stops pretty close to your hotel, to West Midtown. There you'll find The Optimist (in fact, the bus stops in front of it), a seafood restaurant voted the best new U.S. restaurant in 2012 by Esquire recently (though I haven't been yet). There are lots of other stellar food options nearby: Abattoir, Bocado, and Miller Union are all spots with fairly big reputations, Bacchanalia has an incredible five course prix fixe ($85 though and you'll want a reservation), and West Egg is good for brunch. You also have a couple of very good high-end beer and wine stores (such as Hop City), a little food market and bakery at Star Provisions (same space as Bacchanalia), one of our best coffee shops (Octane), a few small art galleries, and some upscale shopping, all within a ten minute walk or so.
- One final idea: most of the great restaurants in (not west) Midtown are quite close to the North Ave., Midtown, and Arts Center train stations (or bus 110 which goes up Peachtree might be more convenient depending on where you start from). Empire State South and South City Kitchen are good destinations for upscale Southern food (and Empire State South actually also fills the role of excellent coffee shop surprisingly well), Ecco is quite good contemporary/European food, Babs is good for brunch, and there are a bunch of other easy options, plus Piedmont Park and the High Museum of Art (among others) are close if you want to do something other than just eat.
I think the Sweet Auburn Market is neat. If you were intown, didn't have access to a car or much time, it'd would be indispensable. There are several food-court-ish vendors that do good stuff.
One alternative would be to hop on MARTA to Decatur. You won't be able to hit the DeKalb Farmer's Market without a cab/bus ride in addition, but there are lots of great places to get food/drink within a couple hundred yards of the MARTA station.