:) = Awesome location right on the Beltline. Neat campground theme complete with wooden picnic tables in the dining room, stuffed deer heads on the wall (which are a great distraction for little ones), a huge mural featuring a large owl and a bear that makes you feel like you're lost in the woods (another good distraction for littles), and creative camp-style dishes (including Fluffernutter sandwiches... hellooo, retro). Staff is friendly and attentive to children, and the crowd there doesn't seem to mind children. Lots of nice outdoor seating.
:( = Parking is probably difficult when it's busy. Some of the dishes require some tweaking/perfecting. Small bathrooms with no changing tables.
|"We have to eat this burger before the bear gets it!"|
We arrived at Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall, recently crowned one of the hottest new restaurants in Atlanta, around 5 PM. Mommy, who was apprehensive about taking us there because Yelp says it is not good for kids, was elated to find that there were quite a few young diners present - even toddlers! And there were lots of high chairs by the hostess stand - a sure sign that kids are welcome.
The stylish hostess knew right away to grab a high chair for us and seat us at a table near the restrooms. We were awestruck by Ladybird's dining room. It was hip, artsy, retro, and down-home casual all at the same time. The natural wood tables and bar, authentic campground décor, and huge mural of a dark forest featured on the main wall made us feel like we were on a scouting trip and got us really excited about trying the food. We started our meal with "Trail Snacks": Navajo Fry Bread and the Fluffernutter.
|Navajo Fry Bread|
Photo taken by 3-year-old Toddler Foodie.
Photo taken by 2-year-old Toddler Foodie.
We got a sampling of dishes to taste and share: the creamy ham & potato soup, hearty greens and farro salad, grass fed beef carpaccio, Fisherman's Stew, and double-stack burger. What we loved: the soup, the Fisherman's Stew (steelhead trout, littleneck clams, chorizo, sofrito, yucca, & baby onions, served in a cast iron skillet with a cute tin camping cup for the shells), and the carpaccio (definitely made with high quality beef and topped with delicious grana cheese). What we thought could use a little perfecting: the burger (the meat and bun were clearly high quality, but the patty was a tad salty; we loved the pickles served alongside the burger, though - they had a sweet-smoky-somewhat spicy flavor and were clearly made in-house) and the farro salad (it had too much farro and not enough greens, and the farro seemed undercooked).
|Grass-fed beef carpaccio (top)|
Hearty greens and farro salad with bleu cheese on the side (bottom)
|"Floyd Mayweather is not The Best Ever. This Strawberry Shortcake is!"|
|"Can someone please bring the Fluffernutter back into fashion?! It is life-changing!"|
|"Okay, brontosaurus, I guess you can have some of my Fluffernutter."|