Mary Mac’s Tea Room
224 Ponce De Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA
Web site: http://www.marymacs.com/
One of my objectives this week was to have a sit down, traditional Southern meal in a classic setting. While I have had some good Soul Food examples in Florida and New York City recently, they were both modern restaurants, and the last time I had a truly exceptional Southern/Soul Food experience that could be considered to be truly classic would be at Willie Mae’s Scotch House in New Orleans, back in May of 2005. Willie Mae’s was destroyed by flooding three months later as a result of the levvee breaches following Hurricane Katrina, and it is in the late stage of being rebuilt — so I probably won’t be able to have another meal in there for at least several months. When I heard of Mary Mac’s Tea Room, a similar, but more upscale (and much larger) Southern/Soul Food restaurant in the Poncey-Highland section of Atlanta, which has been around since the 1940’s, I jumped at the chance to eat there.
Fried Chicken, Cornbread, Okra and Tomatoes. Click on the “read the rest of this entry” link below for more.
The historic Mary Mac’s restaurant opened in 1945, and attracts people from all walks of life, from blue collar to the highest ranks of Atlanta society.
Today was St. Patrick’s day, so people were dressed up. I’m not sure if these are Church Ladies or if this is their costume.
The walls of the restaurant are adorned with photos of famous people who have eaten there.
Like this Southern gentleman.
Mary Mac’s own tabasco pepper vinegar, for sprucing up your greens and fried chicken.
The lunch menu.
An assortment of warm rolls and bread hits the table, which is very easy to fill up on because its so good.
At Mary Mac’s its customary for you to fill out your own order and hand it to the server.
Mary Mac’s corn bread muffins are excellent, although not sweetened terribly much. That’s just fine with me, cause then you can put the nice sweet butter on it.
The real stars of the bread basket, however, are the Cinnamon Rolls which the restaurant is famous for.
You can buy them up front to take home, too.
A trio of Soul Food sides — Mac and Cheese, Okra and Tomatoes, and Collard Greens. All made fresh from scratch.
Fried Chicken with “Hoppin’ John”, a mixture of blackeyed peas and rice.
Fried Chicken closeup.
There was clearly too much food, so I brought it home for later.
This house across the street reminded me of the historic houses in New Orleans’ Garden District. My, I do declare!