Ink & Elm is getting quite a lot of press of late – including the feature dining review in the “Best of” issue of Atlanta magazine and breaking into the eater.com “heat map” last month. We originally planned to go to Decatur on Saturday, with Sobban as our goal. But when our plans changed to Decatur on Sunday, that spot dropped off the radar (they’re closed on Sunday and Monday) and Ink & Elm became our destination. The name draws (pun intended) from Frederick Law Olmsted’s (landscape architect of Central Park and the Biltmore Gardens among dozens of others) ink drawings of Druid Hills, where Emory Village is located.
Fine dining is fairly close to the last thing that I would have looked for in Emory Village, but that’s exactly what they have brought to that strip where Everybody’s Pizza used to be at the end. Designed by ai3, the design group behind Miller Union, 4th & Swift and Flip Burger Boutique (among others), the space looks fantastic. Combining a tavern by night / coffeehouse by day with a lounge and restaurant, the feel is both comfortable and upscale at the same time.
Before dinner arrived apple muffins showed up with an apple butter that was as rich and thick as applesauce. They were absolutely heavenly.
When we looked at the breakfast menu, we were torn as each of us both wanted two different dishes each. We both were intrigued by the biscuits and gravy, especially after the server said they came from the chef’s grandfather’s recipe, reaching back into the late 1900s. Jo also wanted the Belgian waffle and I was really looking forward to the fried chicken, so we compromised and ordered a side of biscuits and gravy for the table and our other choices.
The biscuits and gravy came out designed to split – two biscuits covered in a thick light brown gravy. The gravy had a little bit of pepper in it and a little bit of sweetness to it. And the biscuits were very flaky and very crumbly. And very good. This was great start.
I was surprised when my chicken came to the table. I was expecting an airline cut chicken breast, but instead found I had three pieces of chicken: breast, leg and thigh. The chicken was incredibly moist. The skin was crunchy and had a very nice flavor. I really enjoyed it. It was served on a bed of cheese grits, which made for a great flavor combination. (It also had Red Kale, which tasted a lot like kale.)
We checked out the dinner menu before we left. I imagine we’ll be returning one evening.
* Today’s blog post on Ink & Elm is by brought to you courtesy of Sobban being closed on Sunday.