Tonight we were invited to join several of our colleagues and one of our vendors at Pittypat’s Porch for a meal. Richard Darrell from Synrevoice likes to select a restaurant that typifies the cuisine of the host city for his client dinners. Since we are in Atlanta, his research led us to Pittypat’s as the epitome of Southern dining. Our party of 24 converged on the downtown location, and we had quite the party.
The place really plays upon its Southern heritage. While the entrance is in the lowest level of an urban building, the interior exudes Souther elegance. There is an upper entrance and bar set up as a porch with rocking chairs. These overlook the main dining area below. The main dining area has wooden tables and chairs, and hunting trophies and tools (guns) decorating the walls.
The menus are printed on old-styled church fans. There is a variety of appetizers, such as blackeyed pea cakes, gumbo, and crab dip. These start at $5 and run to $8. The entre’s include some Southern basics, such as fried chicken, but there are also some dishes with steak, salmon, and pork tenderloin. Prices start in the high teens and go to the mid twenties.
In addition to these, there was a listing of exotic drinks for $10.50 and several desserts.
We started with a sampler selection of appetizers. The shrimp was delicious. The blackeye pea cake was good, especially if accompanied with a bit of the salsa. The fried catfish strips were equally tasty with the tartar sauce.
Several of us ordered drinks. Mine was an "ankle breaker," so named because Stonewall Jackson supposedly broke his ankle after a half dozen of them. For me, it would only take one, but I managed to keep my ankle intact. This was by far the most potent drink I’ve ever had, consisting of 151 proof rum, cherry brandy, lime juice, and simple syrup. It had the effect of three martinis.
A salad bar was included with our meal. There was a bowl of lettuce and some salad dressing, but the rest of the bar reminded me of the potluck dinners we had at Laurens Pentecostal Holiness at Homecoming time. There was chicken salad, pickled watermelon rind, and several other unusual salads. I sampled several, and they were all fantastic.
I had ordered Rhett’s Mixed Grill, which had beef, pork, and chicken served on a bed of rice. The flavors were good. However, to be honest, by this time I was so far under the influence of the ankle breaker that I don’t remember much about the entre except that it was quite good. Don’t ask me to describe flavors, etc.
In for a penny, in for a pound. Or, in our case, several pounds around the waistline. We had come this far, so we had to have dessert. Several from our group ordered either pecan pie or peach cobbler. I ordered the bread pudding, which was rich and covered in some kind of undefined liquor. I couldn’t finish all of it.
With a group our size, service is always iffy. Their staff did an admirable job, making suggestions for appetizers as we made up our minds about the meal. It took awhile to get the food out, but we were busy socializing, so we didn’t notice. Again, I think this was function of the size of our group, and not a reflection on the efficiency of the staff.
Pittypat’s obviously plays upon the "Gone with the Wind" tourist crowd. However, the food is excellent, and is a welcome stop if you happen to be in Atlanta and want some good southern food.