Alpharetta Restaurant News – November 2011

Every Friday Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series called Foodie Friday.

For the small price of fixing a window an Alpharetta restaurant got itself a viral marketing campaign. Even the best social media expert couldn’t have produced this much nation-wide publicity.

I’m talking of course about the deer at the Windward Taco Mac. And unless you’ve been living under a rock, you saw the story this week. Here’s the video in case you missed it.

This deer wasted little time leaving Taco Mac. I suggest you do the same if you ever consider eating here. Instead try one of these fabulous new restaurants.

Boga Taqueria – Milton

You’ll find these guys building out in the old Meyer’s Deli location on Highway 9 in Milton. Getting in and out of this stripmall can be treacherous. I don’t see much thriving here except Scratch. Nevertheless this is a decent endcap store that should have a healthy restaurant. I know practically nothing about Boga at this point. More to come.

Chepe’s – Johns Creek

This will be the fifth location for this fairly new Mexican chain. Look for them on Old Alabama near Haynes Bridge. I’ve tried their two locations in south Forsyth and have never been impressed. While the service is usually very good, the food has never distinguished itself from the dozens of other ubiquitous Mexican joints around here.

Scootz – Closed

The folks just quit comin’. I think locals gave these guys a try and didn’t return for more. Scootz had a lot of potential. I hate this for them.

Wildflour – Dinner Hours

Alpharetta’s sandwich king is experimenting with dinner hours. They’ll offer a menu pretty close to what you’d expect at lunch plus a dinner special. There’s a lot of locals who never get to enjoy this gem of a restaurant because they work elsewhere. If that’s you, here’s your chance. Don’t miss it!

New York Butcher Shoppe – Closed

They shut down their McGinnis Ferry location. One other metro-Atlanta location remains in Sandy Springs.

Yamato – Closed

I suppose the onion volcano doesn’t impress us anymore. Yamato has flung their last airborne shrimp. I doubt you’ll see a new occupant in this space for a while. It’s a fairly large restaurant and I don’t see new eateries of this size opening these days.

Coming Soon

Dulce Chocolat – Gourmet chocolate shop coming to Old Milton Parkway.

Twisted Taco Express - The buildout continues. I spied some of their decor after a visit to Wildflour. Looks kinda cheesy.

Fire Fly - They are in a soft opening period with a grand opening planned next week. The lunch menu is a little small right now with mainly burgers and sandwiches. This weekend they’ll bring in some live music. They’re fighting an uphill battle to get folks there after lunch. Maybe this will do it.

Saigon Café - Looks like they are getting closer to an opening on Windward, pho sure.

El Molcajete Mexican - Coming soon to the old Zola Bistro location on Highway 9 in Milton.

15 comments on this post.
  1. Kim:

    Wildflour dinner hours? Can’t find it on their website. Have they begun already or when they plan to begin? Certain days/hours? Interested in trying them and generally can’t do lunchtime.

    Dulce – Do an APB when they open, please. :)

    Chepes – The gourmand teens seem to like it and it is pretty inexpensive.

  2. Robert:

    “This deer wasted little time leaving Taco Mac. I suggest you do the same if you ever consider eating here.”
    Care to explain?

  3. Jaime:

    Hey Lee,
    My wife and I frequented Yamato often and enjoyed it. We talked to some of the staff there and they said they are going to try (or in the process) to move to the shopping center across the street, one of those new units across from Best Buy. They were very positive about this move as the rent at the present location was killing them…the place was just too big. They asked for our email so they could keep us informed on their progress.

  4. SCSA:

    Hey there, I love Taco Mac. Where is the Fire Fly place?

  5. Sydney:

    I may avoid Chepes just based on the signage. Tacky glowing bright red all hours of the day. IMO, the management company should never have allowed that. It cheapens the look of the whole shopping center and Old Alabama/Haynes Br corner.

    I found a website for Boga. No info yet, but pictures look nice. http://www.bogataqueria.com/

  6. SCSA:

    I went to Firefly today for lunch. Ran into a few people leaving that were raving about the place. We went in with out son to try it out. The service was great, the waitress even remembered our son’s name every time she came around. We had the bleu cheese potato chips, which were covered in blue cheese, in house smoked bacon and tomatoes. Very good. I had the chicken Caeser Salad and my wife at the cheddar burger. Both very well done. One of the best salads i’ve ever had. The bill for 2 sodas, appetizer and 2 entrees came to $31. Not cheap for lunch. They didn’t charge us for the milk for my son, which was nice. We’ll probably go back, but at those prices, not very often. The decor was very nice. Granite table tops and large fireplace that remained from previous places. Worth trying out.

  7. David:

    I saw a “Space for Lease” sign at the Tutti Frutti next to Smashburger on Windward. That sure didn’t last long. We went in there once and walked out because the place reeked of cleaning products. I guess the glut of self serve yogurt places is starting its purge.

  8. Lee:

    Thanks for all the comments, guys. Sorry I’m just now getting around to them.

    @Robert – I just don’t like Taco Mac. It’s marginal bar food.

    @Jamie – Thanks for mentioning this about Yamato. I’ll keep an eye out for them at this location. A lot of restaurant closures are influenced by rent negotiations.

    @SCSA – Thanks for the mini review. The decor is indeed nice. Burgers are decent. They grind brisket in with angus beef. I’ve always liked that combination.

    @David – Thanks for mentioning Tutti Frutti. I also noticed this last week and probably should have mentioned in this column. I normally don’t cover froyo happenings. But this is the first of possibly many more closures to come.

  9. A:

    The worst self-serve fro yo place was the Slimberry on Haynes Bridge. Not only reeked of cleaning products but never had more than 4 flavors with the other machines turned off or broken. Give me Pinkberry anyway. Much prefer where they serve you really good quality stuff than making you serve marginal fro yo that everyone has.

  10. Cool Papa Bell:

    Speaking of marginal bar food, how is Erwoods doing these days?

  11. Mala:

    I agree with the tackiness of the ‘Cheppe’s’ sign. I drive by this place everyday and I think it could be more attractive.

  12. Mala:

    Wildflour: I’m one of those that lives but doesn’t work in Alpharetta and always heard great things about Wildflour and was excited to try it. On a day off a few months ago, I tried it out for a late lunch. The service was terrible and the sandwich was ok. I was SO disappointed as I wanted to support a local place. The lady that took my order asked if I wanted a drink (but the drink machine was taken apart and obviously out of service). I was there a half hour before they closed, but that’s really no excuse for sub standard service (it’s just sandwiches). Can’t say I care that they’ll be open for dinner and won’t waste my time giving them a 2nd chance.

  13. Dan:

    Lee – Alpharetta and Atlanta love Taco Mac….wings and beer. Quit hating on this Atlanta institution…..

  14. Lee:

    Sorry Dan, no me gusta Taco Mac. And while I’m hating on Atlanta institutions… I don’t like the burgers at The Varsity either.

  15. ChefMeinhardt:

    I have to agree with you, Lee. Not too fond of the Taco Mac food. Has always tasted fresh from the freezer. Not saying I don’t go every once in a while but with that large of a beer selection, its not the food I’m going for.

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