Midtown Atlanta is the heart of the arts. Visit the trendy neighborhood to dine in top-notch restaurants and meander through some of the city’s most popular museums.
Right now, at the Museum of Design Atlanta (MODA), a new exhibit is all about revolutionizing the food system in the United States to make it healthier and sustainable. It turns out, as you will learn, that the city of Atlanta is on the cutting edge of innovations in the food industry.
You could visit MODA and make it an easy twofer since MODA sits directly across the street from the High Museum of Art. Park once and make an easy hop from the art museum to the design museum.
Nearby, score another twofer when you visit The Worlds of Puppetry Museum at Center for Puppetry Arts, which is just across the street from Atlanta’s Jewish museum – The Breman.
Still got time? Drive a few blocks over to tour the Margaret Mitchell House and Museum, where Mitchell created Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler.
If all this museum hopping finds you hungry, you can visit a Midtown restaurant to refresh, including two restaurants – Longleaf Restaurant and Bacchanalia -- that exemplify the fresh-is-better message at the MODA exhibit.
Here are a few Atlanta initiatives featured in MODA’s “Food by Design: Sustaining the Future” exhibit, on view through May 7.
- Aglanta Allotment Gardens. This fall, the city of Atlanta will introduce Aglanta Allotment Gardens – more than 25 acres of farmland that will be located on easements below power lines in several communities. Unused and restricted for more than 75 years, this land is clear of trees and has rich topsoil, perfect for growing crops.
- Atlanta Community Food Forest. The city has acquired 7.1 acres of land on Browns Mill Road to create the city’s first community food forest. Food forests are designed and managed by public parks and make available to the public fruits, vegetables, nuts and mushrooms.
- West End Community Urban Garden and Nursery. This half-acre plot is a flourishing and sustainable community garden founded in 2004 by Haylene Green. Originally from Jamaica, Green planted her garden with fruits and vegetables native to the Caribbean as well as with herbs, spices, nuts, flowers and eucalyptus.
- Fulton Fresh Mobile Market. This market supplies low-income neighborhoods and retirement communities with fresh produce for free. It also offers cooking demonstrations and health screenings. In 2015, the market distributed 38 tons of fresh produce to 9,000 residents.
Among other highlights of the exhibit, learn: (1) to grow fresh herbs in your own kitchen; (2) that ugly fruit tastes just fine; (3) that you can eat crickets; and (4) all about guerrilla gardening.
When your appetite says, “Feed me,” consider one of these Midtown restaurants for really fresh food:
- Longleaf Restaurant. This beautiful and brand new restaurant inside the grounds of the Atlanta Botanical Garden has access to ABG’s edible garden. So it can’t be a surprise that chef Jason Paolini sometimes adds just-picked herbs to his dishes.
- Bacchanalia. Chefs/owners Anne Quatrano and Clifford Harrison often pluck fresh ingredients from their own farm.
For more things to do in Midtown, click here. For additional Midtown dining options, click here.
Carol Carter writes and edits for Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau.