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The Optimist

914 Howell Mill Rd. NW (Ninth St. NW) Send to Phone
404-477-6260 | Make Restaurant Reservations | Menu
Comprising a restaurant and an adjacent raw bar, The Optimist is all about seafood.
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Local Deals: 120 * 90

Cuisine
Open
Lunch Mon.-Fri., Dinner nightly
Bar open late
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The Optimist, Atlanta, GA

The Optimist Restaurant Review

: With décor inspired by the classic fish camp, The Optimist offers an upscale yet casual ambience. The establishment has two operations: a restaurant and an adjacent raw bar that stays open until it no longer has guests. Here's where you stop for a late plate of raw or wood-roasted oysters. We forgo the fancy fixin's, which include house-made wheat crackers, and just order some lemon wedges. The bar's noise levels are friendlier than in the main dining room, where a high curved ceiling reverberates sound. While gumbo is available, we also like the smoked fish chowder, with chunks of potato and creamy chive-flecked richness. Classic fish 'n' chips is a cut above the crowd in every respect, with torn fried pieces of potato accompanying the fish. Duck fat-poached swordfish is moist and still slightly pink, topped with cured swordfish belly meat. We recommend steering clear of embellishments that don't enhance fresh seafood, such as the passion fruit vinaigrette accompanying pristine scallops. Look for unusual fish types you may have never seen before, such as tilefish, a mild Southern fin. Other menu mains include roasted organic chicken, a pork chop and skirt steak. For dessert, check out the house-made ice creams and sorbets, like the refreshing coconut sorbeto. Wines come from coastal wine regions. A Vermentino from Bolgheri on Italy's Mediterranean coast is a seafood lover's ideal wine.

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