If you love food, history and culture then this food tour in Atlanta is for you! Thanks to the Atlanta Food Bloggers’ Society I was able to participate in the “Downtown Southern Food Walk.” Even though I have lived in Atlanta for almost 3 years this tour introduced me to places in the city I have never been. And, even though I am a major foodie covering Atlanta restaurants on the Food-Atlanta section on my blog, this food tour in Atlanta also introduced me to new restaurants and new foods! Here is what to expect on your Downtown Southern Food Walk in Atlanta.
The Host of the Downtown Southern Food Walk:
This tour was created from idea to implementation by Akila who is a food writer at TheRoadForks.com and FoodTravel.About.Com. She is also your tour guide! From the start it was obvious that Akila was passionate about food and her hometown of Atlanta. She combined these two passions into this food tour in Atlanta. She limits the size of each group to make things more intimate and arranges everything with the restaurants in advice. I felt like a VIP every time I entered a different establishment with her! Akila talked while she walked telling us the history of Southern food. Akila described in detail how Southern food combines aspects of Native American, West African, British and French Cuisines. She incorporated history on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speaking on how he loved Southern food and restaurants frequently visited during the civil rights movement. In addition, Akila obviously did her research on all her food vendors telling us their path to success and food inspirations.
The Restaurants & The Food:
Our food tour in Atlanta consisted of 7 restaurants throughout downtown Atlanta. While at the restaurants Akila reviewed the different cuisines of the South as it related to our meals. These include cajun & creole cuisine, soul food and southern food, Gullah and lowcountry cuisine, barbeque and food from the Appalachia region.
We started at Paschal’s which was the unofficial headquarters of the Civil Rights Movement. We had the pleasure of eating fried chicken, cornmeal dressing and sweet potatoes!
The Smoke Ring:
Fairly new to the area since 2013 this restaurant serves up contemporary barbeque. Before our meal we were treated to some of the best fruity moonshine I have ever had! This was followed by small delicious samplings of mac and cheese, collard greens, pork belly and pork barbeque.
Arden’s Garden is a juices and raw foods store. You may be familiar with their products sold in Whole Foods Store. We had refreshing apple ginger and vegetable juices as well as cheesy kale chips that were made without cheese! It was great to see such a healthy and wholesome store in the heart of downtown Atlanta.
Just Add Honey:
This is a black owned specialty tea boutique. It is so cute! We sampled their sweetened and unsweetened teas as well as their flavored teas. They also sell bakery items in the store.
Sweet Auburn Seafood:
I had the pleasure of returning to Sweet Auburn Seafood restaurant during this tour. My first visit was for their Aroma Mondays event. Chef Sammy Davis did it again with delectable shrimp and cheese grits which included tender chicken sausage. It was to die for!
Metro Deli in Sweet Auburn Curb Market:
I am almost embarrassed to admit that I have lived in Atlanta for over 2 years yet this was my first time at the historic Sweet Auburn Curb Market! Our first stop was at Metro Deli which serves classic soul food. We were treated to a different style of corn bread (which looked and tasted like pancakes) and red beans. This was followed by banana pudding for dessert!
Miss D’s Pralines in Sweet Auburn Curb Market:
Miss D came to Atlanta from New Orleans after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. I am glad she has found a new home in Atlanta since her pralines and popcorn were delicious!
The City of Atlanta:
This walking food tour in Atlanta took us through several areas including Castleberry Hill, Five Points (not to be confused with Little Five Points), Fairlie-Poplar and Sweet Auburn. I enjoyed learning about new places and taking in all the vibrant scenes of this historic city in the South.
Wear comfortable clothes and shoes! Plan ahead for the fact this food tour in Atlanta starts at Paschal’s on Northside Drive but ends at Sweet Auburn Curb Market. I parked at the start of the tour so I took Uber back with another attendee. Others took the street car back to the starting area. Although water is provided at all locations, part of this walking tour took approximately 45 minutes through downtown Atlanta so bring a bottle of water. Make sure to also bring your camera to capture downtown Atlanta! Come with a friend or solo and get ready to meet food lovers from all over the world.
The Downtown Southern Food Walk Tour runs Thursday thru Saturdays, starts at 11 am and lasts approximately 3.5 hours. The cost is $65 per person which includes 7 food stops. The distance traveled is 2 miles so it is a great way to walk off all that good southern food! For more information on this food tour in Atlanta please visit their website.
Have you ever done a walking food tour in your hometown or while traveling? About 2 years ago I did my first one in San Juan Puerto Rico and thoroughly enjoyed it as well. I plan to make this a routine! Please share your thoughts with us below!
Although I received complimentary attendance to the Atlanta Food Walks tour all opinions expressed in this post are my own.
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And now I have seven places to check out next time I’m in Atlanta. Which, based on these photos, I hope is sooner rather than later! 🙂
Great! Thanks for reading and commenting Tara!
Nadeen – this is awesome! Atlanta is growing so fast, just like major cities in the Northeast and DC. I wish I’d known about this tour last year when we had a family reunion in Atlanta. This would have been perfect! But next time I’m in ATL, I hope to do this. Thank you so much!
Thank you Rani! Atlanta is really making an effort to keep up with the “BIG” cities! The food choices here are endless!
Thank you for sharing. I live in Atlanta..well one of the suburbs and have yet to visit some other areas. Life can do that to you. But it is about to change. Your images have me scheduling some time to visit the REAL ATL. in addition, that TEA..yummy!!!
Thanks Josselyne! The tea was very yummy! I totally understand that life can be so busy you dont get to explore outside of your neighborhood!
Great article I need to take the kids on walking trip and visit places around my home town here in Atlanta. Traffic & parking in the city is my great concern me . Love your images. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks Patrice! There are many parking lots downtown so don’t let that be a deterrant!
Great post! I am heading to Atlanta in September and will definitely be adding this to my trip!
Thank you! It will make a great addition to your trip!
This sounded fun. I am glad you enjoyed yourself. Great tips too. You also got some great shots as you were walking. The food looks great.
Thanks Holly! All pics on my Iphone 6!
This looks like a great way to visit lots of cool places in one day. Walking from place to place would make me feel like I’ve made a healthy choice even after eating some of that fried chicken! I can’t wait to try a tour.
Demetra I did try to tell myself that! lol
Everything looks delish. Atlanta is definitely a city full of wonderful places to eat.
I totally agree! Thank you for reading it!
I keep seeing all these wonderful posts of food and dining in ATL and I’m starting to get envious. Maybe it’s time for me to take a road trip! 😉
Stacie you should! The summer is the perfect time for a road trip! Although it is also very beautiful here in the fall.
Why didn’t I know about this?!?! I love Paschal’s back from when I went to Clark Atlanta. I’ve got to try some of the others! Thanks for sharing
Your welcome! Paschal’s is so historic! I love eating there.
I’ve never heard of a walking food tour, but now I’ll have to look and see if this exists in my area (DC). I had the pleasure of dining at Paschals when I attended a blogging conference a couple of years ago…their food was absolutely delish!
Glad you enjoyed it Christine! Most cities have these tours now so check it out for your area! I have an events page on my website so you can seearch there!
I have a friend coming in town that would love to experience this. I have to check the dates because this would be so much fun.
Thats great MJ! I am sure both of you would enjoy it!
That is great MJ! I am sure you both would enjoy it!
I’m not even a “foodie” but I’m over here drooling lol. This is awesome and I would definitely check to see if they do something similar here in Dallas.
Glad you liked it Vashti! They probably do have something similar in Dallas.
I absolutely adore this post! But can you get me Akila’s number so I can get the hook up when I go down South? Besides loving to learn about Black history, I love experiencing the culture of a place through the native foods. Can’t wait to see the next food tour!
Thanks Julian! Definitely click on the link to book a tour with Akila when you are in this area!
I am going to get my line sisters together and we are going to do this. Great activity to catch up with your girls, get some exercise and some good eats. I think we’ll wait until the fall when it’s cooler.
Great idea Mimi! The fall is so pretty here as well!