One day a few weeks ago, I got a random email from my high school bff Harvey about “French Restaurant Week.” How could I not know about this? I did some research and realized that it wasn’t a real thing, but that France-Atlanta, an organization designated to be the liaison between (duh!) France and Atlanta, was offering a promotion: special prix fixe menus at select French restaurants in Atlanta as a way to introduce us southerners to the cuisine. Harvey and I decided to try Atmosphere Bistro. And I made up my mind that I would finally try escargot! That’s right, the snails!!
Atmosphere is located on Piedmont just north of Ansley mall; a small house with simple signage that’s easy to pass. We walked into the teeny restaurant and were seated immediately at a table with a view of piedmont. We asked about the France-Atlanta menu, but the server seemed confused. He brought back a special menu only valid on Wednesday and Thursday that didn’t match what we saw online. Instead of inquiring further, we decided to start with drinks and just order from the regular menu.
Champagne! How festive and fun. I knew it was going to be a good meal.
I ordered an endive salad to start and the Coquilles St. Jacques for an entrée. My friend ordered the split pea soup and the veal liver entrée. Don’t ask for the French name. So, how was the food? Lets just say that he and I spent half the meal debating who had ordered the best. The split pea soup was delicious. It almost had the consistency of mashed potatoes with great pea flavor. The endive salad wasn’t the best salad I’d ever had, but when my entrée came- I knew I had won! The sauce and mushrooms were so perfect with the scallops that I starting laughing when I put it in my mouth! When I tried the veal liver I swayed from side to side in my chair with a long sigh—making my friend laugh too. It was great…
So who won! Of course I did. Harvey’s veal liver was perfect, but it was served with mashed potatoes. How original. My Coquille St. Jacques wasn’t just scallops with mushrooms, but scallops with mushroom ravioli! The tender pasta, the white wine sauce, the garnishes… I cleaned my plate!
Oh but that wasn’t the end. We also ordered dessert: profiteroles and chocolate lava cake. The profiteroles were more like mini ice cream sandwiches than anything. And as I’m not a big chocolate eater, Harvey had the entire chocolate lava cake to himself. It looked… chocolaty. And he never complained, so I assume it was good.
Would I recommend Atmosphere Bistro? Absolutely. I’m not an expert in French cuisine, but I enjoyed it. Will I go back? Hecks yeah! I forgot to order the escargot!!!