Deciding on where to eat can be tough in a city as full of great spots as ours. That’s why, every week we’re going to a new spot and giving you the inside scoop. We’re telling you the best time to go, the best seat in the house and, of course, the best food and drink you can order. This is The Lowdown.
When You’re Going
The new Buckhead location is indeed bigger than the former one down the street (and definitely bigger than the Midtown location), but the parking can be a bit tricky. During lunch, Cafe Agora has hired a valet service to take care of this. Still, we definitely recommend getting there a bit on the early side.
Where You’re Sitting
When you first come in, you’ll be ordering at the counter before finding a seat. If you have a small group, or are dining solo, grab a seat at the bar. If this is your first time make sure you mention it and you’ll be rewarded with a miniature version of their maza platter. You’ll get to sample everything from hummus to babaganush to the incredible carrot salad. And when you grab a seat at the bar, you’ll also be rewarded with conversation with the owner Al Ozelci. Ozelci is the heart and soul of Cafe Agora and he’ll instantly make you feel like you’ve known him for years. Ask him what’s good and you’ll get a different answer each time. Always go with what he says.
What’s in Your Glass
There is a full bar at Cafe Agora, and if you decide you want something stronger than sweet tea you’ll have plenty of options. When you’re trying new foods, why not try a new drink to go with them? Craving a new beer? Try Efes Dark, a traditional Turkish beer. Our personal favorite is Raki, an unsweetened Turkish liquor that tastes like Anise.
What’s On Your Plate
Your plate should be overflowing here. Start off with a maza platter. You’ll get creamy hummus, eggplant that will change the way you think about the veggie and the carrot salad that you’ll want to spread on everything. After that, you’ll have to get the lamb and beef gyro. The meat is perfectly tender and incredibly well seasoned. Not overwhelming, but a delicate flavor. It’s wrapped in a warm gyro and topped with one of the best tzazikis you’ll ever have; creamy and flecked with dill. And if you’re in the mood for something a bit lighter, Cafe Agora has the best salad in the city. The mixed lettuce is tossed in a light vinaigrette and then topped with moist chicken. It’s served with a side of tzaziki sauce and a warm pita.
For more info, check out Cafe Agora here.