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Athens, Georgia


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I will be in Athens for 5 days, on a specific mission that probably won't allow much dining flexibility.  On the off chance that I'm able to get away by myself, any good places I should try?  Open to any cuisine, any time of day, any prices range.

Would love to find a good place for coffee in the mornings.  Also, anyplace that offers carryout would be a blessing.


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I went to college in Athens - it is a lovely place.  Where are you staying, and what will your car situation be?  While the city isn't terribly huge, it can be tough to navigate on foot.

For coffee, if you can, definitely go to Jittery Joe's in Five Points (at the intersection of South Milledge Avenue, South Lumpkin Street, and Milledge Circle).

I feel like most restaurants in Athens would offer food to-go (though maybe not delivery - if you can pick up the food yourself, the options are probably much wider).  However, my favorites are the Blind Pig Tavern (divey, but great burgers and beer), DePalma's (Italian), Mama's Boy (breakfast), and the Last Resort Grill.  Hugh Acheson's places, Five & Ten and The National, are both very nice as well (more upscale).

The Flagpole is the local "City Paper" equivalent, and they have a good city guide: http://guide.flagpole.com/

Let me know if you have any other questions.  I am jealous!

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And *I* ... <snort, fume> ... went to Clemson. :angry:

But I dated a girl from Athens, so it's okay. :)

Hey, before this year, I had nothing but love for Clemson - I loved watching them beat up on South Carolina.  I am definitely looking forward to next season's rematch, on our turf.

I think Clemson belongs in the SEC.  We should trade Kentucky or Vanderbilt to the ACC in exchange for your Tigers.  :D

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Thanks, Betty - I will have a car.  I'm staying with a relative who just had heart surgery; she lives a little southeast of the UG Golf Course, on the other side of the river.  She's recovering quite well and expects to be able to go out on a drive with me; it's sketchy whether she'll be well enough to dine out.  I'll be cooking for her, and her parishioners have been bringing meals, but I expect she'll appreciate some variety.

I love her dearly but I need some time to myself.  Also, she doesn't drink coffee.

She loves all cuisines but doesn't dine out much herself.  She used to love visiting me in part because I'd always take her to a good restaurant; having an Indian meal was always on the to-do list.  I don't think she has in-depth knowledge of the dining scene in Athens.

eta: looks from the map she's about a mile from the Jittery Joe's in the Green Acres Shopping Center.

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Right!  I forgot that JJ's has expanded like crazy and that the 5 Points location is not their only one anymore.  I have a tendency to remember Athens for what it was when I was in college, not what it is now - though, the two aren't THAT far apart.

Athens has a nice little food scene - depending on what you are in the mood for, there really should be something to fit the bill.  Between my recs and Flagpole (and perhaps asking around at the first place or two you visit), you should be in good shape.  Please do report back, and all the best to your loved one who had surgery.  She is lucky to have you.

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Etiquette dictates that I write about my findings, but I don't have much to say given the nature of the trip.  One day I got carryout lunch from Mirko's and Siri Thai Cuisine; both seemed like very nice suburban restaurants and I thought the tom kha gai from Siri was very good, just what it should be.  Jittery Joe's was respectable but not great (this from a coffee fanatic, though).  Athens Bagel Company had pretty good bagels (that's all I tried) and a total collge-town vibe.  The one resto I was able to dine in was Big City Bakery.  Had a nice egg and country ham biscuit and some barely acceptable coffee.  Loved the vibe there.  It's the kind of neighborhood quasi-diner with basic foods (at least at breakfast) that you look for when you just want to read the newspaper and hang out someplace other than your kitchen.  Also took home a loaf of excellent whole grain bread for my cousin.

Did a lot of running out for groceries, etc. as she felt better and started wanting different things to eat.  Healthy Gourmet is a sweet little shop with lovely owners, who unfortunately hadn't re-stocked yet after Christmas.  But if you're looking for special olive oils and vinegars and specialty chocolates and that sort of thing, this is the place to go.  Got a jar of chocolate-pistachio spread (like Nutella) that was out of this world.  Fresh Market is a good large grocery store that's like Whole Foods: The Next Generation.  Earth Fare is the same concept but smaller and more, I dunno, intimate? with super-friendly and helpful staff.

I kept wishing I had time to just wander around and stick my nose into all the little cafes and such and just explore.  Athens seems like a neat little town.  Maybe when cuz is better I'll go for a real visit and hit some of the high-end restaurants.

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