November 10, 2010

H. Harper Station

Now open in Atlanta: H. Harper Station. Billed as "a modern watering stop serving the finest libations and tasty bites" the concept is an upscale bar that also happens to be a restaurant. The emphasis is on the bar...in the description of the place, the menu with 40+ cocktails, and the fact that the boxcar-shaped building is visually dominated by a long bar behind which sit dozens of bottles of top-shelf spirits.

Which brings us to our sidebar topic:
What kind of a nincompoop brings a baby to a bar?
We were seated a few tables away from a couple with a baby in arms. Of course, within about six seconds that baby starting fussing. Newsflash: Some of us aren't interested in paying $14 for a cocktail that we'd anticipated sipping peacefully in a swanky setting, but then instead find ourselves listening to a baby howl and watching as it's paraded up and down the center aisle in a feeble attempt to calm it. Now instead of sipping that cocktail, we're holding the cold glass to our foreheads and groaning from a sudden-onset headache. I can guess what happened: Young couple heads out for the evening to check out the newest establishment in town without knowing what to expect. They discover it's not a family-friendly place, but shrug and ask for a table anyway. "After all," they think, "our baby is so cute." The hostess suggests perhaps they'd be more comfortable at another restaurant, but the couple doesn't take the hint. So let me spell it out plainly: Do not bring babies or young children to H. Harper Station. GET A BABYSITTER. You'll have a more enjoyable date night and won't infuriate fellow patrons.

Opened Sunday, November 7, Reynoldstown’s newest drinks and dining destination offers dinner service Tuesday through Sunday. Inspired by speakeasies and southern diners, Chef Duane Nutter, Mixologist Jerry Slater and Chef Reggie Washington have crafted a menu that blends southern and international influences. The extensive beverage menu features over 40 cocktails and punch bowls, 16 craft beers and 30 sustainably-grown wines by the glass.

Last night's amuse bouche paired soft cheese, pecan and honey:
Root vegetable salad ($7) features roasted beet, shaved radish, petite lettuce, goat cheese, parsnip chip and roasted carrot vinaigrette:
Key Party ($10) combines Ransom Old Tom gin, Bonal Gentiane-Quina, honey syrup and Regan’s bitters:
Lamb sausage ($9) with curry applesauce and fennel potato salad:
Parsnip and fennel soup ($6) with toasted almonds and paprika oil:
Bison short rib ($22) with black-eyed peas--arguably, the best black-eyed peas I've ever had-- broccoli raab, honshimeji mushrooms, preserved lemon and cherry cola:
Turnpike grits with crab ($6 for a side dish; a small tasting portion is pictured). So good I devoured every bite before Dean could dip his fork into the dish:
Mac & Cheese with barbecue sauce ($3 for a side dish; a small tasting portion is pictured):
Bottom Line: Masterful cocktails expertly served alongside delicious upscale fare in an adult-oriented environment. Some menu items are pricey, but values can be found. H. Harper Station is a great option for date night or meeting up with friends to reward a hard day's work.

H. Harper Station on Urbanspoon

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