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These Atlanta Restaurants Are Total Social Media Phenomena – AND Worth the Hype

Editor’s Note: This article was originally written July 29th, 2020 and last updated August 5, 2022.

These Atlanta restaurants are huge success stories, and for great reason. They’ve got outstanding food and chefs with big personalities that know how to hustle and built their success from the ground up. Here’s a list of Atlanta restaurants who are killing it on social media, listed below in no particular order!

A burger from The Slutty Vegan

1. Slutty Vegan

When you think of Atlanta restaurant success stories, Pinky Cole’s uber popular Slutty Vegan has to be one of the first ones that comes to mind. Pinky Cole first started selling her vegan burgers through delivery apps and food trucks, but soon she started to receive and court the endorsements of major celebrities, first from Atlanta vegan chef Dymetra Pernell and later further expanding to the likes of Taraji P. Henson, Snoop Dogg, and Tyler Perry. Get “sluttified” when you try her Impossible burgers for the first time. And while Black and female-owned Slutty Vegan in some ways feels like an overnight phenomena, it’s definitely the result of years of hard work from Cole. They’ve also recently opened up a new location in Jonesboro for you Southside folks!


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2. B&L Wings

The wing king! Brad Malone and his wife Lawonda are the duo behind B&L’s pick-up only wing spot, which have gained a cult following primarily through Instagram. Brad Malone set out to make the best wings in the world, working endlessly at the recipe for his signature and ultra addicting breaded hot honey lemon pepper wet wings in his home kitchen. Take one look at his Instagram–full of customer testimonials, sold-out announcements, droolworthy wing pics and videos–and it’s really hard not to feel like you’re not missing out on something special. And  well, if you haven’t tried his wings yet, you really are. Definitely order the signature hot honey lemon pepper wings, but also the ranch fried okra bites and homemade sweet blue cheese sauce.

NFA Burger | Photo: TOUR Championship
NFA Burger | Photo: TOUR Championship

3. NFA Burger 

NFA Burger has enraptured foodies all over Atlanta for their burgers. Billy Kramer is the man behind these crazy popular burgers which first were only available via various pop-ups around town, but now you can find them in the Chevron gas station in Dunwoody. Billy Kramer, a burger fanatic, started a popular Instagram account, @billysburgers, documenting great burgers all over Atlanta before eventually feeling inspired to get behind the grill himself and try to create his own perfect burger. And he’s achieved that with the NFA Burger. The perfectly melty cheese, the crisp edges of the patty, the special NFA sauce that adds just the amount of seasoning, all on a fluffy potato roll bun just make this burger simple perfection. Try them today and you’ll see why he gets all the hype!

The Bando's Butter Ranch Wings | Photo: Instagram/thebando_atl
The Bando’s Butter Ranch Wings | Photo: Instagram/thebando_atl

4. The Bando

This controversial restaurant is made to look like an abandoned house. Yup, you read that right. It’s one part museum and cultural experience and one part chicken spot–and people can’t stop talking about them or posting about them on social media. They’re serving up “crack wings” dusted in powdered sugar and other innovative concoctions.  

Big Dave's Cheesesteaks - Philly Cheesesteak | Photo: Facebook/bigdavesphilly
Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks – Philly Cheesesteak | Photo: Facebook/bigdavesphilly

5. Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks

Another Atlanta success story, Derrick Hayes of Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks has worked tirelessly to generate a fervent following around Atlanta for his over-the-top cheesesteaks. Hayes is a Philadelphia native who is serious when it comes to his cheesesteaks having made the drive all the way up to Philadelphia before when he just had to have the most authentic sandwich. But now thanks to him, you can just make the drive right over to Forsyth St. in Downtown for an authentic cheesesteak sandwich! The lines are often long, but always worth it! Get the philly cheesesteak eggrolls from this delicious Black-owned spot, too!


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6. Poke Burri

Poke Burri’s sushi donuts, sushi corndogs, and sushi burritos are as instagrammable as they are delicious. Started in the We Suki Suki Foodcourt in East Atlanta Village, founder Seven Chan found practically overnight sushi success when he started to serve poke and sushi in these fun and unusual shapes. But Poke Burri doesn’t rest just on the novelty of their out-of-the-box creations; they find continued success due to fresh and great quality fish and ingredients that keep customers coming back again and again. You can now find Poke Burri at the Battery in the PH’EAST food court, as well as locations across the country!


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7. Budi’s Sushi

Thrillist first catapulted Budi’s Sushi and their over-the-top sushi pyramid to Instagram fame. And while their Ocean’s Pyramid, stacked with sushi rice and three different types of fresh fish and flavored roe, is their most famous dish, everything at this neighborhood spot is great! Let the chef surprise you with their omakase sushi, or order up some fried rice or items from their Indonesian menu for the perfect takeout meal at home.


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8. Cafe Bourbon St

If you’ve ever pulled up to Triton Yards food truck park, you’ll probably have noticed a loooooong line that often stretches on and out onto the sidewalk for Cafe Bourbon St. They’re a New Orleans style food truck serving up beignets, jambalaya eggrolls, cajun style shrimp, and more. And we are obsessed! Open only on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays follow them on Instagram for more up-to-date info. they can be found these days at 787 Windsor St. Atlanta, GA. 

Birria El Gordo - Tacos And Consome | Photo: Facebook/birriaelgordoatl
Birria El Gordo – Tacos And Consome | Photo: Facebook/birriaelgordoatl

9. Birria El Gordo

The birria craze is in full force around the nation, and spots are popping up all over ATL but no one is getting more hype than Birria El Gordo in Marietta. Get the quesatacos and the goat or beef birria consome, dip your tacos, and taste a bite of heaven. Open only on Tuesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Come early as they do run out sometimes. 

Photo: Instagram/thegardenroom
Photo: Instagram/thegardenroom

10. The Garden Room

If you haven’t been to the Garden Room yet, what are you doing? It seems like everyone and their mama has been to this garden oasis with a serious wow factor, thanks to social media. Get dressed up for a date night or make this place a first stop for a night out on the town with your girls. Sip on their cocktails and soak in the ambiance of the flora & fauna in this Buckhead wonderland. 


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11. Scoville Hot Chicken

There’s a lot of fried chicken spots in ATL, but it’s Scoville Hot Chicken that keeps coming up again and again and again. And it’s for great reason. It’s a massive, perfectly fried sandwich with a chicken breast that dwarfs the bun size. The dollop of coleslaw on top is the perfect cool to the heat of the chicken, and the fries hit, too.

The Yard's Milkshakes | Photo:
The Yard’s Milkshakes | Photo:

12. The Yard Milkshake Bar

The key to social media success is taking an already delicious item, like a milkshake. and making it just OVER the top. Oh, and appearing on Shark Tank doesn’t hurt either. The Yard Milkshake Bar’s sugary concoctions are a feast for both your eyes and your stomach, and you get to keep the specialty glass it comes in. At about $16 a pop, it’s more than your Cookout shake, but it’s all about the experience and the ‘gram. Try the Unicorn for a drink that’s especially colorful and cute! 


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13. Butter.ATL’s Krystal 

You haven’t been to a Krystal like this! Wildly popular Atlanta focused Instagram account Butter.ATL has partnered up with Krystal to revamp the Northside Drive Krystal into a super fun, over-the-top Atlanta themed Krystal. With colorful murals, art installations, a juke box and more, this place is a must visit! And hey, those Krystal sackfuls hit, too! 


14. Sugar Shane’s

This bakery that ships nationwide was made with social media in mind, but all of Shane’s over-the-top cookie creations are a feast for both your eyes and your taste buds! Bite into his sugar snacks filled with flavor and choose from his best sellers such as a s’mores cookie, cookies and cream flavored cookie, and fruit pebbles cookie. It’s all wow inducing! 

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