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24 Hours in Atlanta with Ginny Branch

ginnybranchsatlanta_libbyvanderploeg
This week we’re continuing our “24 Hours In” series (click here if you missed Grace’s guide to Brooklyn last week!) with a guide to Atlanta from the talented prop stylist, and D*S alum, Ginny Branch. Ginny lives, works and plays in the Atlanta area and today she shares with us her ideal day in the city she calls home. Thanks for helping to plan a perfect 24 hours in Atlanta, Ginny! -Stephanie

Illustration by Libby VanderPloeg

Click through for the full guide after the jump…

9:00 am I start my morning off at Octane for a decaf cappuccino and purchase the newest issue of Brother Journal, a great publication showcasing good food processed and prepared honestly by solid folks. The coffee shop is home to a variety of creatives getting their morning caffeine fix and cranking away on their newest projects so it makes for excellent eavesdropping :) Next door is one of my favorite menswear stores, Tweeds, where I’ll poke around getting gift ideas for my husband and swoon over the clothing and visual merchandising. The furniture and props come from this great guy David, an antique scout who finds everything old and wonderful. You can find him at Brick and Mortar for the most special curiosities.

10:00 am As soon as the doors of Star Provisions open I am in there marveling at the newest store displays and filling a basket with beautiful objects for my prop collections. Star is my gold standard of shopping in Atlanta. The store houses everything from linen tea towels, Keith Kreeger pottery, wooden spoons of all sizes, to the best edibles and potables in the city to be enjoyed immediately or to stock your pantry. I recommend skipping the ridiculous lunch lines and ordering a sandwich to take on a picnic for later. Things to order: proscuitto and parmesan baguette sandwich or the falafel( for a vegetarian option) and their brownie or dossant (Atlanta’s version of a cronut) for dessert. And don’t forget to visit their cheesemonger, Tim the Cheeseman and pick up some Many Fold Farms Brebis or Condor’s Ruin cheese and some Banner Butter. Both companies are local and unbelievably delicious!

24 Hours in Atlanta with Ginny Branch
all photos by Andrew Thomas Lee

11:00 am Here is where I make my rounds. The Westside is chock-a-block with amazing boutiques that provide endless inspiration. Sid and Ann Mashburn are the reigning tastemakers in Atlanta and purveyors of all things cool and classic. Their stores should be on everyone’s list of places to visit in Atlanta. From there I’ll overstay my welcome with the sweet crew at Billy Reid. Their store is dreamy, the clothing is covetable, and the folks that work there are the best. Then I’ll bounce over to Steven Alan (still pinching myself that Atlanta has one) and stock up on more journals + quarterlies and maybe a candle or too. I’ll wrap up the area by visiting Seed Factory to pick up a present for my niece. This children’s store is perfectly curated with selections from Atsuyo et AkikoCaramel BabyOeufMakieJess BrownTamar Mogendorff and Fog Linen.  I’ll also pop on over to Simply Put next door and stock up on fantastic greeting cards so I’m ready for any celebration or occasion.

1:00 pm This is when I’m ready to ditch the car and enjoy Atlanta’s outdoors so I’ll head over to the beltline and enjoy a picnic. This is the best way to explore trails and parks and is a huge score for our city in improving transportation, growth, and sustainability.

3:00 pm Now I’ll get a midday pick-me-up at Cacao, a darling chocolatier in the heart of Virginia Highlands.

4:00 pm Time to take a walk on the wild side ;) Little Five Points is such a great people-watching spot filled with tattoo artists, skaters, drifters, artists, and musicians. I always have to stop by Wax n Facts to pick up some vinyl that my husband and I agree on. Things I look for: The Allman Brothers, The Band, The Grateful Dead, Fleetwood Mac, Neil Young, and Sam Cooke.  To round out my experience I’ll dig up some crystals, stones, and astrology guides at the new age store Crystal Blue. For the ultimate mecca of all things alternative and unique,Junkman’s Daughter is the place to go. In junior high it was the store where I stocked up on platform wedges, faux-fur trimmed everything, and tarot cards… it is like walking into the costume department of Tank Girl. Bonus points if you get that reference.

24 Hours in Atlanta with Ginny Branch

7:00 pm For dinner I have been on a Kimball House streak. Their oyster program is phenomenal and I am powerless against their cocktail menu although I am not brave enough to sample their famous absinthe offerings. Also the interior is one of my absolute favorites and transports me to New York or Paris. Moody lighting and cozy atmosphere wrapped up in old train depot? Yes, please.

9:00 pm If I’m feeling particular adventurous I could be persuaded to take in some live music at either Variety Playhouse for cool bands or The Northside Tavern for bluegrass, jazz, and blues.

10:00 pm Holeman + Finch is an upscale watering hole and a good late night hang. Be prepared to be elbow-to-elbow with fellow eager patrons, especially once the bell rings. 24 burgers made every night, announced at 10, and sold out by 10:15. I’ve yet to snag one of these elusive burgers but I’m confident they’re worth the hype. Drown your missed opportunity with a drink from their quality cocktail menu.

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Other honorable mentions… Atlanta has some good eatin’ y’all.

24 Hours in Atlanta with Ginny Branch

The Optimist: Ford Fry’s oyster bar and fishcamp receives every culinary accolade under the sun and the restaurant interior and branding is unparalleled. The wood roasted oysters and smoked white fish chowder are too-die-for and the desserts are worth creating room for.

If you’re over in Buckhead, Ford’s newest restaurant King and Duke is a must eat. The restaurant’s center is its open hearth and the dishes are warm and comforting, stick-to-your-bones fare. Bring a healthy appetite whether you are a meat lover or strictly veg.

Abattoir: Anne Quattrano is the grande dame of Atlanta’s culinary scene (see Bacchanalia, Star Provisions and Floataway Cafe) and this restaurant is one of my epicurean stomping grounds. Get the french fries with the pimento cheese foam, trust me. Best in the nation.

Boccalupo: Before this restaurant I thought good Italian in Atlanta was a myth. This proved me wrong and I’m so glad.

24 Hours in Atlanta with Ginny Branch

Empire State South: You can order here blindly and walk away in a happy, food-induced stupor. The Farm Egg is revelatory and the In Jars are phenomenal. Boiled peanut hummus and pimento cheese with bacon… what more could you ask for?

Miller Union: I love coming here for lunch and the ice cream sandwich is legendary.

Iberian Pig: A modern Spanish restaurant boasting delicious tapas you won’t want to share. Get the charcuterie plate and bacon-wrapped dates.

Brunch spots: Can’t go wrong with Sun in my BellyWest EggButtermilk Kitchen, or Rise n Dine (don’t let the lack of online presence fool you, this spot is ridiculously tasty). These places consistently deliver the goods when it comes to the best meal of the day.

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24 Hours In / city / Georgia / guides

16 Comments

Jenna

This is a great guide! I live in Atlanta and can vouch for many of these places. That being said, there are some listed that I haven’t been to! I look forward to touring in my own city. :)

eyeroll

yikes. that map. more like the 24 hour guide to white, gentrified atlanta.

Laura

Great job, Ginny! These are some of my fav spots, as a local. I haven’t been to Steven Allen, so I’m excited to check it out. I would also put in a plug for Beehive Co-Op in Little 5 Points and Youngblood Boutique in Poncey-Highlands for locally crafted gifts, jewelry, clothing and cards.

Taryn Fiol

Awesome list, Ginny! I’ve called Atlanta home for 5+ years and pleased to see a lot of my favorite spots are here!

norma toraya

This is a wonderful starter list for Atlanta!

The beltline is a wonderful continued outdoor public project in Altanta. Think the High Line in NYC on steroids. It really sets the Atlanta apart from other cities in terms of public works. I live and use it every day to run errands on my bike (just as many others do) around ow4. The location on the map is very wrong though. The westside section has not at all been developed).

Ginny Branch

I’d also like to add Morgan Kylee boutique in Buckhead!! Awesome lines like Rick Owens and Maridadi Trading, coupled with great books on fashion and beautiful gifts like tortoishell combs and cashmere scarves. Minimal, classic with a hint of gypset! A must visit for the sartorially-inclined!

Annette

great spots ginny you did a great job…although atlanta has so much to offer you could not do it in a day…right? xx

stephieZ

Your food choices are mostly good, but you forgot homegrown for breakfast or brunch. Also if you are going to order a sandwich at Star Provisions one of your top choices should be the shrimp po’boy. shoutouts for Criminal Records in L5P and Young Blood Gallery in Poncey Highland.

You did forget about mentioning awesome ethnic eats on buford hwy or Busy Bee’s meat and three. I love Matthews too, but that is a ways out. Come on now, this is Atlanta, talk about some fried chicken. I guess it’s your 24 hours:)

Grace Bonney

stephanie

this is a personalized guide- we have a full guide to atlanta already on d*s. this is ginny’s personal favorite list, so it’s not designed to cover everything- only her personal favorites. these new mini guides are designed to show the city through one specific creative person’s eyes.

grace

Sarah Phillips

I can absolutely vouche for tweeds along with brick and mortar. Truly swoon- worthy. Great recommendations, Ginny! Look forward to checking many of them out next time I’m in town.

Rachel

This list is great, in that everything on it is excellent. however, make sure you have a full wallet if you plan to make these stops. I’d love to see a more affordable roundup for the rest of us.

Atlanta is awesome. There are many more awesome neighborhood and attractions. Come for a week. not a day! :)

Keith Kreeger

Thank you Ginny and Grace!!! I’m flattered to be part of this amazing list and absolutely love working with the folks at Star Provisions. Thanks again for including my work…it looks like I have a lot to do when I get to Atlanta next time.

Rhonda

Octane is a great start to any day, be sure to check out the Grant Park location as well and Victory Sandwich/Paper Plan when you make it over to Decatur.

Tasha

Grant Park IS a great place to start your day. Another
awesome place to check out is Stone Soup Kitchen-they serve
breakfast and lunch all day. So you can have a bowl of Chicken
Curry Soup at 6:30 am if you dare- or the Fiesta Bowl at 3:00 pm -a
bowl of delicious poblano cheese grits, black beans, eggs and spicy
red sauce.

Stephanie

Oh my! I love Star Provision. Wouldn’t get my bread anywhere else. Now my husband is trying out his version of Atlanta’s best bread! Stephanie Fig at The Enchanted Fig Tree

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