At the center of the newly thriving Old Forth Ward (and only steps from what will undoubtedly be the hottest stop on the much anticipated Atlanta Belt Line) this one part neighborhood pub, one part lounge is sure to become a fixture of the Atlanta dining and nightlife scene for years to come.
Having arrived a little early for dinner, I decided to enjoy a pint of Palm (a fantastic Belgium white ale – one of the well curated selection of drafts they offer). The room was alive with a good mix of neighborhood locals enjoying cocktails at the obviously popular bar, as well as destination diners enjoying a quiet meal.
My dinner companion ran a little late trying to find a place to park, only due to the fact that she wasn’t aware that there is complementary valet parking available for P’cheen patrons. As soon as she arrived, we where immediately sat at a cozy table just across from the open kitchen. The dining room is an unexpected mix of rustic charm and modern sensibility. Across the room on the other side of the bar, there is a lounge area with a grouping of comfy chairs and sofas for enjoying a more relaxed atmosphere, if you prefer. It also has a gallery wall that offers a rotating selection of art from local artists.
To begin our meal, we felt obligated to try one of the restaurant’s namesakes, house-made “P’cheen” cocktails (the original name for moonshine). I ordered the Cancun Cletus with strawberry shine, coconut rum, and pineapple, which I must admit I did not enjoy (it tasted like my memories of Panama City Beach, a sour mix of suntan oil and shame). My pink-haired dinner companion ordered the Mountain Man; which much to her dismay, was actually a delicious blend of apple pie moonshine and Irish whiskey and, not an actual bearded man from somewhere in the mountains of North Georgia.
Our meal began with the “Just Trust Us”. This is a unique built to order, one of kind appetizer chosen FOR you BY the chef (that is if you are so bold as to take the chance). We were pleasantly surprised with a baby lamb chop, gilled medium rare over a bed of fresh asparagus, shaved Parmesan, EVOO, and an aged balsamic emulsion. It was a great surprise and totally worth the risk.
For a second course, we enjoyed a selection of house-cured charcuterie and cheeses. You can choose three for eight dollars, four for ten, or five for twelve. All the meats are cured in-house and the cheeses are paired deliciously, as well.
For my entrée, I enjoyed the Ancho rubbed Pork Shank, served with sweet corn, poblano grits, crispy tobacco onions and ancho jus. The Pork was so tender it literally fell clean off the bone, and while I found it needed a touch of salt and pepper, it was totally delightful. My friend had the Risotto Du Jour, yet another chef’s daily creation. Tonight’s section was a tomato risotto with fresh, hand pulled mozzarella curd (surprisingly the star of the dish) topped with veal flank steak.
When it came time for dessert, we chose the Grand Mainer Crème Brule, which was enjoyable…but was completely over shadowed by a surprise from the chef; a Figgie pudding. It was so delicious that we (even though it was July) spontaneously broke into the popular Christmas carol “so bring us some Figgie pudding!”
The evening finished, as it began, with a few more ice-cold drafts at the bar while enjoying the company of the Forth Ward locals who make this their place to unwind and commune. I found the staff to be very accommodating and well informed, and the space to be welcoming and hip. Overall, P’cheen is a fantastic destination whether you are looking to dine, drink, or just decompress.
701-5 Highland Ave Atlanta, GA 30312
Neighborhood: Old Fourth Ward