Will Bike for Food in Atlanta
City Tour, 3+ miles
Atlanta's Beltline trail and the food scene are a marriage made in heaven. Take a relaxed, 3+ mile tour of 3 foodie hotspots while taking in breathtaking murals along the trail. And if you need to work up an appetite between food stops, we've noted 2 parks and the Stone Mountain Trail to explore. The route is curated and inspired by "Will Bike for Food", an article published in the Atlanta-Journal Constitution written by its food and dining editor Ligaya Figueras.
"You’ll love Atlanta,' friends and colleagues said when they found out I was moving here. In the same breath came the warning: "You’ll hate the traffic."
Oh, swell! How was I going to learn this city and its maze of culinary destinations if I was stuck in traffic all day? I needed a plan of action and decided my crash course was absolutely going to involve alternative forms of transportation lest I go nuts hearing the Weeknd’s "Can’t Feel My Face" on every radio station while my car idled on I-85.
I appreciate MARTA (thanks to Atlanta Journal-Constitution radio and TV reporter Rodney Ho, I now correctly refer to the train as just “MARTA” instead of “the MARTA”), but I wish she went further in every direction, so I could more easily get outside the Perimeter.
Enter into the picture my bike: a reliable, comfortable Marin hybrid that can handle street and sidewalk just as easily as a trail. Call me crazy for attempting to cycle in a car town, but biking gets you up close and personal with neighborhoods while giving you the mobility to hop from one ’hood to the next far easier than on foot (Will Bike for Food, AJC, Oct 2015).
map & Logistics
Ride with GPS
- Atlanta BeltLine Bicycle 151 Sampson St NE | atlantabeltlinebicycle.com | 404-588-9930 - $20/day for hybrid bike
- Bicycle Tours of Atlanta 659 Auburn Ave NE | www.biketoursatl.com | 404 273 2558 - Besides offering the best city bike tour, "Falling in Love with Atlanta", they also rent bikes and are conveniently located near Krog Street Market. $40/day for city bike, helmet, map and bike lock. Extra costs & services include drop off / pick up, lights, basket and tube kit.
- Skate Escape 1086 Piedmont Ave NE | www.skateescape.com | 404-892-1292 - $40+/day for single speed, tandem or mountain bike. Lock and helmet extra.
- Start of Route - Midtown station off Red/Gold lines
- End of Route - Peachtree Center station off Red/Gold lines
What to bring?
Empty belly, money, picnic blanket, basket or pannier for take-out
A. Central Food Hall at Ponce City Market 675 Ponce De Leon Ave NE | www.poncecitymarket.com/food-hall | 404.900.7900
The Beltline seems to be everyone’s first answer to cycling-eating bliss, so I jumped on the trail at Piedmont Park and rode a mile south to Central Food Hall at Ponce City Market. I remembered my bike lock, but it wasn’t even necessary. Walking through the breezeway, I was greeted by a bike valet who tagged the bike, hung it and watched over it while I found sustenance in the form of spicy green gazpacho, a Reuben sandwich and a tomato salad from Farm to Ladle.
I refrained from weighing myself down with a lobster roll at Dub’s Fish Camp, but I did grab a bag of addictive Utz crab-flavored potato chips to munch while perusing the shops. I know there’s fried chicken at Hop’s and a burger at H&F next door, but when I’m hungry at noon 20 minutes is too long to wait in line (Will Bike for Food, AJC, Oct 2015).
B. Krog Street Market 9 Krog St NE | www.krogstreetmarket.com | 770-434-2400
Passing by the converted warehouse that is home to Two Urban Licks, accessible from the trail, I made a mental note to head to its patio for Sunday brunch one of these weekends when I want to bathe in sunshine. Oh, and what is this laid-back Ladybird place? Gotta grab a co-worker and do Friday happy hour there.
In short order, I reached Krog Street Market, where I wanted to stuff my pannier silly with a Soul Rebel chocolate bar from Xocolatl, croissants and scones from the Little Tart Bakeshop and beef brisket from Grand Champion BBQ. Alas! Those don’t travel well when you’re peddling.
However, finocchiona from the Spotted Trotter does, and the folks there even sliced it for me so I could eat it at will as I hit the street (Will Bike for Food, AJC, Oct 2015). M-Th 7am-9pm / F 7am-10pm / Sa 8am-10pm / Su 8am-9pm
C. Sweet Auburn Curb Market 209 Edgewood Avenue, SE | www.thecurbmarket.com |
Headed west, I came upon Sweet Auburn Curb Market. My tummy could’ve handled a meat pie from Panbury’s had it not been closed for vacation. Another reason for a repeat visit (Will Bike for Food, AJC, Oct 2015). M-Sa 8AM-6PM
1. Piedmont Park 1342 Worchester Dr NE | www.piedmontpark.org | 404-875-7275
Whether you need to walk off some food, take a nap, have a romantic picnic, escape Atlanta's heat with a refreshing dip or simply wander urban greenery by bike, Piedmont Parks' 189 acres has you covered with gorgeous old growth trees, the coolest public pool, and landscapes designed by the infamous architect, Frederick Law Olmsted.
2. Atlanta BeltLine www.beltline.org
Measuring 2 miles at its current development stage, the Atlanta BeltLine Trail is arguably responsible for an "about-face" by a city known to be dominated by cars. The trail has spurred revitalization in park space, public art, local restaurants and retailers, employers moving downtown, community connectivity and the bicycle as a transportation choice.
3. "HOW ARE YOU?!?" mural by Brandon Sadler, aka Rising Red Lotus www.risingredlotus.com
"With this painting, I wanted to show what the Beltline is to me. The giant fish is the Beltline and from it explodes all the other fish (Atlantans) with all their personalities and interactions. This piece was meant to inspire interaction and congregation, much like a school of fish; in that, I feel it's been successful," by Brandon Sadler.
4. Historic Fourth Ward Park 680 Dallas St NE | www.h4wpc.org | 404-590-7275
Relax in this zen garden which also serves as a city storm water run-off facility.
5. Stone Mountain PATH Trail pathfoundation.org/trails/stone-mountain
If you really need to burn off some calories, feel free to take a 30 mile round trip ride to Stone Mountain, America's largest rock!