Downtown Atlanta got a whole lot more interesting!
I don’t go Downtown often, but when I do it’s usually not to eat. There really aren’t many places Downtown that I want to eat at which is kind of a bummer. There are great lunch spots for the people who work there (like the new Fish Bowl Poke Shop and my husband’s go-to, Aviva by Kameel) but for the rest of us who go down on evenings and weekends? Meh.
This is why I was really excited when I found out about Amalfi Pizza. It’s brick oven pizza, which even at it’s worst is never that bad, and it opened in conjunction with a speakeasy beneath it. Sign me up! Jon and I went down on a Sunday evening for a Downtown date night with Red Phone Booth and Amalfi Pizza.
Red Phone Booth
Originally in Buckhead (then known as Prohibition), Red Phone Booth pulled out all the stops in its new location. They’re serious about the whole speakeasy thing: you need a password in the form of a phone number to get in. You actually go into the phone booth and dial it. It changes every so often, but there are memberships available to ensure that you’re always in the know.
It’s plush and beautiful with hand-painted ceiling tiles and a dark bar. There are plenty of nooks and crannies to curl up with your cocktail, but I recommend posting up at the bar. This is where the magic happens! The cocktails are all fancy and made with special care by the bartenders. Huge blocks of ice get chopped, flames fly and there’s lots of shaking. The bartenders are also super into their jobs so it’s fun to chat with them.
My husband especially loved his smoked old fashioned. Watching the bartender craft it was cool – there were wood chips and fire – and the resulting tipple was great, too. I enjoyed the Ramos Fizz , an effervescent blend of gin, cream, and orange blossom water.
Red Phone Booth is also a nice spot for cigar connoisseurs as they have a room dedicated to them.
Note: The drinks aren’t cheap, on average they’re $15, but they’re really good and the atmosphere makes them worthwhile.
After we were sufficiently buzzed, we headed upstairs to Amalfi Pizza.
Amalfi Pizza definitely doesn’t feel like a restaurant set in Downtown Atlanta. There’s a charming courtyard leading to the stairs that take you up to the restaurant and you kind of forget where you are for a bit. The restaurant itself is light and airy with an open kitchen. If you’re like me your eyes will immediately go to the beautiful 6000-pound ovens. There are also plenty of TVs around the restaurant. It’s still Atlanta, after all!
This is the Pizza Amalfi done “Carnevale”. It’s loaded with spicy sausage, bacon-jam, peppers, caramelized onions, and cheese. Carnevale means the crust is stuffed with ricotta cheese and formed into triangles, calling back to Italian carnival masks. This pizza was definitely the best of the two we tried. The other one, a white pizza with mushrooms was good, but we liked this one more. All of the pizzas are made with San Marzano tomato sauce and housemade mozzarella – bonus points for that!
We also couldn’t resist sharing the meatballs. Meaty and saucy, not too dense, with more homemade cheese. Not much more you can ask for here.
Whatever you do, don’t leave without a cannoli!
Definitely keep Amalfi Pizza in mind for:
Lunch and dinner with friends
Lunch and dinner with the kids
A pre-concert or game nosh
Note: parking is hairy in that area, be prepared to pay for garage or lot parking (or Uber!)
Amalfi Pizza can be found at 17 Andrew Young International Blvd. NE Atlanta, GA 30303 and they’re open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner.
Thank you, Amalfi Pizza and Eskimo Advertising for hosting us. Thoughts and opinions are my own.