Every Friday Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series called Foodie Friday.
To round out 2011 I’m going to run a short replay series in my Friday food column. Today I’m re-printing my review of Bite, Alpharetta’s best new restaurant of 2011.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again… the best pork you’re likely to find in north Fulton won’t come from a barbecue joint. You’ll find it in unlikely places like Bite.
Their red chile pork tacos are getting a lot of attention, as they should. They start by rubbing pork shoulders with chiles before smoking them. Next the pork takes a bath in a mole sauce braise. The pork is then pulled and cradled in a corn tortilla. These morsels of swine are smokey, tender and bursting with flavor. The texture contrasts with a crisp pickled jalapeno slaw and a creamy goat cheese.
Bite quietly opened several months ago behind the Webb Bridge post office in the old Field Good location. It is an intimate space with just a handful of tables and some seating overlooking an exposed kitchen. I suggest sitting here to observe the chefs in action. You’re close enough to smell the lemon and garlic as they hit the saute pan.
The decor is modern yet sophisticated and classy. I appreciate Bite’s artwork, photography on wrapped canvas. The restaurant will certainly appeal to affluent women from east Alpharetta and Johns Creek, drawing those who might frequent restaurants like Never Enough Thyme or Wildflour. Their distance from the offices on Windward and Old Milton should keep most of the cubicle dweller riffraff away (with the exception of yours truly, who was willing to brave Windward’s bevy of four way stops to get here).
These guys at Bite are serious about layering flavors and textures in entrees like tacos, sandwiches and salads. The menu makes prodigious use of cheese, many varieties are smoked in-house. Check out the pimento cheese, made daily. Or how about the cotija cheese on their “street corn” side dish as an alternative to boring Parmesan. I’m by no means a cheese snob, yet I enjoyed this cheesy grilled corn.
Bite’s steak sandwich both impressed and disappointed. The combination of caramelized onions, white cheddar and a sweet fig sauce on ciabatta bread was fantastic. The use of filet medallions was impressive on a sandwich, yet the steak wasn’t very tender. Unable to shred them as I was biting, I was left with entire medallions in my mouth. I was forced to discretely consume a pretty big hunk of cow that I’d hoped would have lasted for several bites.
However, none of the sides have disappointed. Bite’s potato salad hits your taste buds with a pungent tarragon kick. You can’t go wrong with the pickled jalapeno slaw or the aforementioned street corn.
Bite is a winner and will likely add themselves to many a favorite restaurant list. Try them before they completely overwhelm this small space. I’m surprised they don’t have lines out the door.