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Buford Highway’s Top Hidden Gems

Last Updated: July 12, 2021

We’re so lucky as  a city to be able to enjoy all the unique flavors and cuisines from Buford Highway’s hidden gems, a hotbed in Atlanta for hole-in-the-wall, delicious finds that are just out-of-this-world. Here are some of our favorites that you must try, listed below in alphabetical order! 

BBQ Corner 2 - Orange Chicken
BBQ Corner 2 – Orange Chicken

BBQ Corner 2 

It’s absolutely nothing special on the outside nor inside, but this little corner spot has been a go-to for Chinese food lovers in Atlanta for decades. They have a mix of everything, but it’s the hard-to-find Cantonese dishes that they excel in. Enjoy some savory congee with a century egg, a soupy comfort food that’s excellent for breakfast.

Bismillah Cafe - Chicken Shwarma
Bismillah Cafe – Chicken Shwarma

Bismillah Cafe

There definitely are some homes in Tuxedo Park with closets larger than this restaurant, and we say that in the most loving way possible. This total hole-in-the-wall spot is no frills but serving up an excellent biryani and butter chicken that’s kept them going for years and years. Available for delivery or takeout only!

Canton House - Dim Sum
Canton House – Dim Sum

Canton House

Canton House is all that and dim sum! This place is a go-to for great Cantonese food and dim sum ITP that’s a total bang for your buck. Their har gow, or shrimp dumplings, and BBQ pork buns hit every time, and their Chrysanthemum tea is the perfect complement for every dish. Canton House has been up and running for over a decade–go visit and see why this Buford Highway mainstay keeps locals coming back again and again.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Churreria Panaderia & Pasteleria

For what our editor OJ describes as the “BEST FUXXING CHURROS IN TOWN,” head to hole-in-the-wall-spot Churreria Panaderia & Pasteleria! The caramel infused churros at this small supermarket are phenomenal, and they also have fabulous arepas and pupusas.

 

Food Terminal 

Less of a hidden gem and more of a rip-roaring success, we nevertheless have to give a massive shout-out to Food Terminal for offering the best of Buford Highway. What we love about this Malaysian restaurant most of all is that it’s like a microcosm of BuHi all in one spot. There’s Chinese, Thai, Indonesian, Indian, and Malaysian staples on the menu that are all ridiculously tasty. You can’t go wrong with anything! 

 
Good Harvest - Seafood Hot Pot | Photo: goodharvestatlanta.com
Good Harvest – Seafood Hot Pot | Photo: goodharvestatlanta.com

Good Harvest 

Good Harvest is unmatched for fantastic Chinese hot pot in Atlanta. Hot pot, a simple method of cooking from China in which you add ingredients like meat, seafood, and leafy vegetables to a simmering pot of soup stock, is one part show and all parts deliciousness. Something different they do is serve “dry” hotpots with unique meats like frog. Be sure to also order their “charpati,” an addicting flat bread/pancake that’s popular in regions like India and Nepal. 

Gu's Kitchen - Cold Noodles
Gu’s Kitchen – Cold Noodles

Gu’s Kitchen

Gu’s Kitchen is the best of Szechuan cuisine. Chef Gu brings all the flavors from Chengdu and that spicy, numbing, and totally addciting Sichuan peppercorn to ATL in Gu’s Kitchen. Their Zhong style dumplings are always a go to and their cold noodles, served suspended in the air on a chopstick statue, are definitely a showstopper. Gu’s Kitchen is currently closed for dine-in service, but they are available for delivery and takeout at this time.

 
Kochi Maru - Skewers
Kochi Maru – Skewers

Kochi Maru 

Meat skewers Monday > meatless Monday. Sit down at their do-it-yourself grills and grill your meats to your liking, or sit at a grill-less table if you prefer they do this for you. The charcoal and Chinese spices add another dimension of flavor.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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LanZhou Ramen

For a great meal and a show, LanZhou Ramen is the place to be! Their noodles are the perfectly savory, carby treat when you’re just in the mood for noods, but the best part of going to LanZhou probably has to be getting to watch their chef handpull and make the ramen noodles in front of you. Choose from their thicker knife cut noodles or their thin hand-pulled noodles, and don’t skip out on the pan fried dumplings either!

 
Lee's Bakery - Banh Mi & Pho Combo
Lee’s Bakery – Banh Mi & Pho Combo

Lee’s Bakery

Ask anyone in Atlanta where to get the best banh mi, and you’ll get the answer back “Lee’s Bakery” nine times out of ten. And that’s because their simple sandwiches come packed with flavor and at a great price, too–there’s almost always a line at lunch time. Their pho and Vietnamese iced coffee is also wonderful!

Mamak - Chow Kway Toy
Mamak – Chow Kway Toy

Mamak

Ask an Atlantan where they like to go most on Buford Highway, and Mamak is going to very likely be the answer. Malaysian cuisine is great in that infuses quite a few flavors and dishes from various Asian countries. You’re gonna love the Hainanese chicken here (Taiwanese), roti canai (Indian), salt and pepper squid (Chinese), and chicken satay skewers (Thai). The Lamak shrimp, chow kway toy, and curry laksa are other Atlanta Eats staff favorites. It’s all fantastic!

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Man Chun Hong

Man Chun Hong features favorites from Chinese and Korean cuisine. Unlike some other hole-in-the-wall outfits on Buford Highway, their interiors are pretty sleek and clean. On the Korean side, you’ll love the Jjajangmyeon, or Korean Black bean noodles and Tangsuyuk, or Korean sweet and sour pork.  From the Chinese food side, don’t pass on the fried dumplings or the Imperial Chicken and Mongolian beef! This place is going to be your next go-to. 

Mango Mango - Crepe Cake | Photo: Facebook/mangomangoatlanta
Mango Mango – Crepe Cake | Photo: Facebook/mangomangoatlanta

Mango Mango

Mango lovers rejoice, because this is the place to indulge your sweet tooth in Asian inspired deliciousness.  Mango Mango is great for a casual get-together with a friend or even a first date, or for a sweet treat right after some noodles at neighboring LanZhou. Dig into a classic mango sticky rice dish or something more fusion-y like their mango crepe cake. 

 
Mariscos El Veneno - Prawns
Mariscos El Veneno – Prawns

Mariscos El Veneno

If you’ve ever had the great fortune of spending time along Mexico’s coast, you’ll know their take on seafood is fabulous. And luckily, there are a handful of mariscos selling fresh Mexican style seafood up and down Buford Highway. Mariscos El Veneno has been a staple for years, with tasty fare like ceviche, stuffed fish, lobster, and more! 

 

 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Matcha Cafe Maiko 

One of the most refreshing things to have in the summertime–or heck, anytime of year–has to be a matcha soft serve ice cream. And we love the rich version at Matcha Cafe Maiko, especially with a vanilla swirl. We’re equally as crazy about all the seasonal specials and variations they’ll bring in from time to time, from Thai tea to ube flavors. You’ll also love digging into their massive shaved ice special. 

Miss Gogi - All You Can Eat Lunch Special
Miss Gogi – Chadol Baegi

Miss Gogi

Korean BBQ is never not delicious, but what sets this place above the rest are the high-quality cuts of meat. Everything is tender and juicy and an umami explosion in your mouth. For the uninitiated, Korean BBQ is a fun, do-it-yourself kind of spot where you’ll first be treated to an array of banchan, or small dishes of fermented veggies, and then brought out your pick of veggies, seafood, and meat to add to a hot plate in the middle.  Their all you can eat lunch special is an awesome feast! 

Nam Phuong - Bun Thit Nuong Cha | Photo: Yelp/tiffhuangry
Nam Phuong – Bun Thit Nuong Cha | Photo: Yelp/tiffhuangry

Nam Phuong Buford Highway

It’s authentic Vietnamese flavor at budget prices that’ll satisfy your vermicelli craving time and time again! And something special they’ve got (because this is Atlanta) are fish sauce wings that are sweet, salty, garlicky, and craveable AF. The shaking beef, a style of cooking ribeye or filet mignon in the pan with oyster sauce, passes with flying colors.  

Northern China Eatery's Soup Dumplings
Northern China Eatery – Xiao Long Bao / Soup Dumplings

Northern China Eatery

This is the place to be for soup dumplings. Xiao long bao are a Chinese dish usually made with pork and filled with a soupy liquid meat broth. Half the fun is figuring out how to eat one of these, but here are the two main ways: you can either nibble a hole in the side of the dumpling to slurp the soup into your mouth first, or just pop one whole in your mouth for a soup and culinary explosion! Just make sure you wait for them to cool down first!

La Pastorcita - Tacos
La Pastorcita – Tacos

La Pastorcita 

What’s a trip to Buford Highway without some fantastic tacos? And La Pastorcita makes some mean street tacos—try their tongue tacos if you’re feeling adventurous—but we love their menudo best, a traditional Mexican soup made with tripe and red chili pepper that’s the perfect hangover cure and available on the weekends.

Pollos Asados Auténtico Sinaloense - 1/2 Pollo Asado | Photo: spatialdrift.com
Pollos Asados Auténtico Sinaloense – 1/2 Pollo Asado | Photo: spatialdrift.com

Pollos Asados Auténtico Sinaloense

The smell of smoke is just heavenly at this totally underrated Buford Highway gem that’s also a favorite of local Atlanta celebrity chef Kevin Gillespie! Pollo asado, or roast chicken, is moist and smokey with a nice and citrusy marinade. Get the half chicken platter for a nice portion of bird with corn tortillas, salsa, rice, and beans.

 
El Rey Del Taco - Assorted Meats | Photo: elreydeltacoatl.com
El Rey Del Taco – Assorted Meats | Photo: elreydeltacoatl.com

El Rey Del Taco

For authentic taco-y goodness, Buford Highway is always a smart choice. There’s plenty of great spots all over this stretch of Atlanta, but El Rey Del Taco has long been a favorite amongst locals. From carne asada to al pastor, they do well with all, all served on handmade corn tortillas. If you’re looking for a little adventure, try the buche (pork stomach) tacos! 

Rincon Latino - Pupusas
Rincon Latino – Pupusas

Rincon Latino

Rincon Latino has plenty of great Latin American dishes to try, but our favorite has to be their pupusas, a fantastic Salvadorian treat! Pupusas are a corncake filled with cheese and beans or meat, and they’re also one of the best ways to combine carbs, cheese, and meat! They are cooked on a hot griddle until the dough puffs up slightly and is browned in certain spots, and the dough is made with corn masa flour.  They’re the perfect cheesy meal. Rincon Latino makes a great one with all the fillings you could think of.

 
Seafood Eggrolls from Roc South.
Roc South – Seafood Eggrolls

Roc South Cuisine

Honey-glazed fried chicken and some of the best mac and cheese in town are what’s on the menu at Buford Highway’s biggest craze right now. This Black-owned brunch, lunch, AND dinner spot is always packed, but the wait is well worth it. Expect elevated soul food, some bomb mimosas, sexy blue velvet seating AND blue velvet cake and a rockin’ playlist that brings on the good times.

Arroz con pollo from Sabor Dominicano.
Sabor Dominicano – Arroz Con Pollo | Instagram/chefvharper

Sabor Dominicano

We love the traditional breakfast options at this Dominican outpost, like mangu with cheese, eggs and salami. But we keep coming back for the arroz con pollo – one of the most accessible and delicious savory Caribbean dishes.

Snackboxe Bistro - Mango Sticky Rice
Snackboxe Bistro – Mango Sticky Rice

Snackboxe Bistro

Snackboxe Bistro is Laotian goodness! Dig into their beef jerky, and nam khao, a sort of cold fried rice dish with lettuce wraps that’s a fantastic mix of savory, sweet, and sour. 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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So Kong Dong Tofu House 

Hello, comfort food. There’s not really much out there better than a savory bowl of Korean tofu soup, and luckily, they also offer delivery in case of a raging hangover. For some additional protein, try the always tasty Korean galbi short ribs for your appetizer.  

 
 

Sweet Hut

When we want a sugar fix on Buford Highway, this place comes top to mind. From cupcakes to Asian fusion pastries, they have it all. And all with a Taiwanese twist. If you don’t have a giant sweet tooth, they have plenty of savory treats as well. But, whatever you order, make sure to wash it down with a bubble tea. Sweet Hut is making one of the most in-demand versions in Atlanta.

Yen Jing - Omelette Fried Rice | Photo: Facebook/YenJingChineseRestaurant
Yen Jing – Omelette Fried Rice | Photo: Facebook/YenJingChineseRestaurant

Yen Jing 

Black noodles. Seafood noodles. It’s a noodle bonanza at Chinese and Korean Buford Highway spot Yen Jing, and they do them all so well. Their sweet and sour pork is also off-the-charts good, and the dumplings are perfectly fried with nice and crisp bottoms. Portions are huge for hungry hungry appetites! 

Use our map below to find a spot near you! 

LanZhou Ramen
Canton House
Rincon Latino
Lee's Bakery
Northern China Eatery
Bismillah Cafe
Gu's Kitchen
Pollos Asados Autentico Sinaloense
Man Chun Hong
La Pastorcita
Yen Jing
Mamak
Miss Gogi
Snackboxe Bistro
Churreria Panaderia & Pasteleria
Roc South Cuisine
Kochi Maru
BBQ Corner 2
Mariscos El Veneno
Food Terminal
So Kong Dong Tofu House
Sabor Dominicano
LanZhou Ramen

Hand-pulled Chinese noodles & broths take center stage here, with a noodle viewing window in back.

Canton House

Casual Chinese restaurant specializing in dim sum & traditional Cantonese cuisine.

Rincon Latino

Salvadorean pupusas & other unfussy Latin specialties are served at this laid-back locale.

Lee's Bakery

Lively Vietnamese eatery known for its banh mi sandwiches serving dishes such as pho & spring rolls.

Northern China Eatery

his is the place to be for soup dumplings. Xiao long bao are a Chinese dish usually made with pork and filled with a soupy liquid meat broth. Half the fun is figuring out how to eat one of these, but here are the two main ways: you can either nibble a hole in the side of the dumpling to slurp the soup into your mouth first, or just pop one whole in your mouth for a soup and culinary explosion! Just make sure you wait for them to cool down first!

Bismillah Cafe

Compact, low-key eatery serving a halal menu of Indian food, wings, burgers & more.

Gu's Kitchen

Gu’s Kitchen is the best of Szechuan cuisine. Chef Gu brings all the flavors from Chengdu and that spicy, numbing, and totally addciting Sichuan peppercorn to ATL in Gu’s Kitchen. Their Zhong style dumplings are always a go to and their cold noodles, served suspended in the air on a chopstick statue, are definitely a showstopper. Gu’s Kitchen is currently closed for dine-in service, but they are available for delivery and takeout at this time.

Pollos Asados Autentico Sinaloense

The smell of smoke is just heavenly at this totally underrated Buford Highway gem that’s also a favorite of local Atlanta celebrity chef Kevin Gillespie! Pollo asado, or roast chicken, is moist and msokey with a nice and citrusy marinade. Get the half chicken platter for a nice portion of bird with corn tortillas, salsa, rice, and beans.

Man Chun Hong

Comfortable option dishing up generous portions of Chinese favorites, plus Korean bites.

La Pastorcita

Compact, unassuming eatery serving traditional Mexican specialties, plus imported beers.

Yen Jing

Unpretentious Chinese restaurant featuring common & unusual options, like shredded-jellyfish salad.

Mamak

Vibrant, cozy cafe serving Malaysian curries, noodles & roti canai inspired by street-food stalls.

Miss Gogi

Traditional Korean barbecue cooked on tabletop grills & served with banchan accompaniments.

Snackboxe Bistro

Street food from Laos (noodles, sticky rice & savory soups) served in a casual, modern space.

Churreria Panaderia & Pasteleria
Roc South Cuisine

Honey-glazed fried chicken and some of the best mac and cheese in town are what’s on the menu at Buford Highway’s biggest craze right now. This Black-owned brunch, lunch, AND dinner spot is always packed, but the wait is well worth it. Expect elevated soul food, some bomb mimosas, sexy blue velvet seating AND blue velvet cake and a rockin’ playlist that brings on the good times.

Kochi Maru

Meat skewers Monday > meatless Monday. Sit down at their do-it-yourself grills and grill your meats to your liking, or sit at a grill-less table if you prefer they do this for you. The charcoal and Chinese spices add another dimension of flavor

BBQ Corner 2

It’s absolutely nothing special on the outside nor inside, but this little corner spot has been a go-to for Chinese food lovers in Atlanta for decades. They have a mix of everything, but it’s the hard-to-find Cantonese dishes that they excel in. Enjoy some savory congee with thousand year egg, a soupy comfort food that’s excellent for breakfast.

Mariscos El Veneno

If you’ve ever had the great fortune of spending time along Mexico’s coast, you’ll know their take on seafood is fabulous. And luckily, there are a handful of mariscos selling fresh Mexican style seafood up and down Buford Highway. Mariscos El Veneno has been a staple for years, with tasty fare like ceviche, stuffed fish, lobster, and more!

Food Terminal

Less of a hidden gem and more of a rip-roaring success, we nevertheless have to give a massive shout-out to Food Terminal for offering the best of Buford Highway. What we love about this Malaysian restaurant most of all is that it’s like a microcosm of BuHi all in one spot. There’s Chinese, Thai, Indonesian, Indian, and Malaysian staples on the menu that are all ridiculously tasty. You can’t go wrong with anything!

So Kong Dong Tofu House

Hello, comfort food. There’s not really much out there better than a savory bowl of Korean tofu soup, and luckily, they also offer delivery in case of a raging hangover. For some additional protein, try the always tasty Korean galbi short ribs for your appetizer.

Sabor Dominicano

We love the traditional breakfast options at this Dominican outpost, like mangu with cheese, eggs and salami. But we keep coming back for the arroz con pollo – one of the most accessible and delicious savory Caribbean dishes.

 

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