Bocado is a roomy but small restaurant on Atlanta’s Ground Zero for restaurants, Howell Mill Road. To say that it has attracted a lot of attention is an understatement. It was hard,  in 2009 and 2010, to read any reviewer without a mention of (or allusion to) this place. I was waiting for the buzz to die down a bit before meandering into Midtown to try this restaurant, but the buzz never seems to go away. Something about this place hits a sweet spot with people.

Perhaps it’s the signature Bocado burger. I didn’t have one this day but plenty of people did. Perhaps 70% of the clientèle this day were chowing down on the Bocado burger stack. The weather was bad, which is why I was here in the first place. I’d rather eat than fight hellish fall thunderstorms.

They have a set of really good sounding small plates as well as entrées at dinner. I aimed for the cheese plate and Bocado’s chicken.

The cheeses were good, the Roquefort the best of the four, in my opinion. I like my cheeses with some bite and a lingering aftertaste. The chicken was moist, great crust. I could have used more collards and fewer grits, the sauce adding just a hint of worthwhile heat (I’ll ask for more of the sauce when I go back). The service was fantastic, perhaps even indulgent. The food never missed a beat, and I wasn’t even eating this restaurant’s signature item.

The plates are smaller, so if you’re wanting huge servings for your dollar, this isn’t a place to go. I was comfortable, though, after I ate, and the richly flavored servings make Bocado a perfect “on the way to” place: on the way to the movies, on the way to a party, on the way home on a harsh, rainy day.

Verdict: Graceful. Good food, superb service. Highly recommended.

887 Howell Mill Road
Atlanta, GA 30318
(404) 704-5850

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