Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Atlanta Restaurant Review: West Midtown Corner Tavern

I must admit, it would have never occurred to me to eat at The West Midtown Corner Tavern if I hadn't been invited to a media dinner. There are, in fact, four Corner Taverns, located in East Point, Edgewood, Little 5 Points and West Midtown. Each has its own personality, and the chef is able to customize 20% of the menu to suit his style and the neighborhood vibe. 

The West Midtown location definitely has a chill, juke box and a beer vibe, but the menu is definitely an improvement over the typical bar fare. Of course, the nachos and wings are still there, but so is a pretty adventurous list of new burgers and cocktails.

The burgers range from the mainstream (the Bruiser, topped with blue cheese and applewood smoked bacon) to the decadent (The Carpetbagger, a fried - yes fried! - burger with blue cheese and buffalo sauce) to the totally unexpected (Somerset, topped with cheddar, bacon, and a compote of apples, onion, cinnamon and apple cider.)

The Somerset Burger and Green Bean Casserole
I was mighty tempted by the two deep fried burger options, but I wasn't ready to commit to completely blowing the button off of my skinny jeans. Fortunately, they were kind enough to send out some samples of the Carpetbagger and the Southern Gentelman (deep fried in PBR batter, topped with pimento cheese and gravy.) While frying might be gilding the lily when it comes to burgers, it was just as tasty as you'd hope something that uber-bad for you would be! I particularly liked the buffalo-y goodness of the carpetbagger and *might* have eaten more than just the taste I intended! Seriously, buffalo sauce makes everything better.

The Mr. and I opted to split the unusual sounding Somerset and the El Chignon (topped with oven roasted chilies, fresh jalapenos, and queso dip). The latter was evocative of our Summer 2011 trip to New Mexico and was bursting with spicy Southwestern flavors. My spicy jalapeno margarita was a perfect accompaniment. These were my fave in Santa Fe, and Corner Tavern's take is pretty darn good. 

Although we had it as a burger, the Somerset would likely make a better chicken sandwich, which is also an option for all burgers. Fruity flavors simply work better with chicken. You can also choose between regular beef and grass fed, so we went with the latter option. I honestly forgot it was grass fed beef until I was writing this so I certainly wasn't missing the fattier corn fed beef. The Mr, true to his heritage, opted to wash his burger down with an Italian margarita, which included amaretto. His drink was a bit sweet for my taste, but he contended mine was sweeter, so I guess it's a draw. 

El Chignon and Homemade Fries
No burger is complete without delicious fries, but to many bar and grill restos are serving up sad, frozen Sysco fries. Color me impressed, Corner Tavern is serving fresh made, never frozen fries. They were thick, perfectly salted, and all 'round delicious. The Mr. tried the green bean casserole, which is a nice twist on the usual options, although, I'd take the fries as my side any day of the week.

Given all of their locations and the much better than expected food, Corner Tavern strikes me as a great neighborhood option for a chill night out and a tasty, inexpensive dinner. Looks like there's one more worthy competitor in the ongoing Atlanta battle of the burgers!

West Midtown Corner Tavern

1133 Huff Road   
Atlanta, GA 30318

West Midtown Corner Tavern on Urbanspoon
*Full disclosure: Although my meal was comped, I always endeavor to offer my unbiased opinion of the experience!



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