It’s that time of year again. The days are longer, the temps are warmer, the pollen is coming and the legs are whiter than ever. It’s springtime. Residents are venturing out of their homes to take advantage of all the outdoor activities the Alpharetta area has to offer, and that includes dining.
Many restaurants offer some sort of patio or deck for alfresco eats. The problem is that the vast majority of them are terrible. They’re just add on spaces with no real reason to exist. A few tables and chairs with umbrellas, a unique outdoor dining experience does not make. Places like Scratch, The Corner Deli, The KFC (sorry, Salt Factory) and Burger Fi have smallish patios where you can enjoy your entrees with a side of exhaust and nothing to look at but concrete.
Why can’t we have a cool place to eat outdoors? This is Alpharetta after all, the place where the elitists can drive high tech golf balls into giant nets.
One of the best outdoor spaces that I’ve eaten at is the Crab Shack on Tybee Island. It’s a true experience. Huge trees adorned with Christmas lights cover a deck overhead with a view of the marsh in the distance.
Now I know we have no such marsh or water feature here, save Lake Lanier or a rare retention pond, but can we at least have a view of something that wasn’t made by man?
Hop Alley’s front deck is pretty cool. The view isn’t too great, but at least there is shade (and beer) and you’re protected from the traffic. The potential rooftop deck at South Main Kitchen in downtown would be a large step in the right direction. Taco Mac on Windward as well as the nearby Hudson Grille have patios with giant TV’s all over. It takes away from the connecting with those around you, unless you want to stare at Sportscenter, then by all means.
The rooftop deck at Cincos as well as the patio at Tanners in Vickery Village are both winners in my book. The whole vibe of Vickery is pretty cool. You feel as if you are in a neighborhood.
Some places can transform to bring the outside in by opening up garage type doors like Pure or Marlow’s at the Collection. Nice, but it’s just not what I’m looking for and what Alpharettians deserve.
We’ve got great weather in the south. That’s why we all live here. Why are we trapped inside to eat? I would love someone to step up and make a truly unique outside eating experience. Your hard work will be rewarded.
Photo credit: jeanphony (creative commons)