Monday, February 1, 2010

Cruisin' Cafes: Atlanta, GA

Though we may be incapable of putting our frippery-adorned fingers on the precise reason, there is something quite illustrious and enchanting about the city of Atlanta. A glamorous gleam enshrouding the entire metropolis which casts a subtle sparkle upon the magnificent skylines of Midtown, Downtown, and Buckhead, making one feel as if they have stepped directly into the pages of a fairytale location shaped, formed, and fashioned at the talented hands of a budding author.

Perhaps we can attribute such a sensation to the allure proffered by the thought of the Southern Belle, dripping with pearls and donning a hoop skirt and straits as she sips sweet tea in a Victorian parlor, perfectly coiffed curls framing her face. Or maybe it is the hopeful visualization of being swept off one’s feet by a dapperly-dressed Southern Gentleman rife with gracious manners and a mischievous twinkle lurking behind his charming smile. Darlings whatever the true reason, one has not experienced sophistication until they have sipped a stone’s throw away from SunTrust Plaza, or chatted over cups of café au lait while overlooking Centennial Olympic Park. For a heaping dose of Southern Hospitality there is no more pleasing place to toast than the ambrosial Atlanta.

Gathering Grounds Historic Kirkwood’s Gathering Grounds is synonymous with a lullaby used to hum an infant to sleep; both envelop one in a calming hush that invokes all of the comforts of home, yet the former possesses the ability to instantly awaken one’s senses with the added hint of fresh-brewed coffee lingering in the air.

From the moment you step off the quiet, tree-lined Kirkwood pavement and enter Gathering Grounds you are welcomed into a second family of sorts; oftentimes greeted by an employee upon arrival with the intention of inviting you into an illustrious little world speckled with slightly moody lighting, a handful of overstuffed loveseats, cognac-colored walls, and a gritty aesthetic which proffers the sort of well-bred warehouse vibe experienced only within the fictitious pages of a volume of F. Scott Fitzgerald. A sentiment only made stronger with the addition of the smooth jazz soundtrack burbling in the background.

Stacks of reading material and games litter the tiny tables scattered throughout; yet it is the honest sincerity of both the establishment and those behind it which stands out upon each and every visit. The silent proposal to linger for as long, or as little, as you’d like clinches Gathering Grounds as a neighborhood hot spot you’ll find it hard to tear yourself away from. Mellow Marsh, Celestial Charm, Peppermint Preacher…be prepared for a selection of beverages that will make your mouth water by title alone! 1994 Hosea L Williams Dr., Atlanta, GA 30317.

SIP The Experience Dolls it’s nearly impossible not to hear Billy Joel’s Uptown Girl buzzing through your brain as you sashay into SIP The Experience. Externally it’s quite easy to mistake SIP for a bank harboring countless years of history; but, unexpectedly, as you toss open the front doors, an undeniable blend of urbanity, cosmopolitanism, and sassy savoir faire encompasses you without delay, making one believe that, at any given moment, an incognito celebrity sporting oversized dark sunglasses, a Southern drawl, and pounds of dazzling baubles beaming from around her neck will step inside and take your place in line.

Nestled behind a multitude of chain restaurants in the Lindbergh City Center Plaza, SIP is one of those trendy little cafes that dreams are made of; a dissociative dining experience which bridges the gap between hipster hangout and classy coffee shop, ideal for making goo-goo eyes at a new paramour over Skinny Vanilla Lattes or clinching a business deal with a Soy Iced Chai Tea in hand.

Modernistic white metal chairs juxtapose with wooden tables covered in a haphazard jumble of fashion magazines; while vaulted ceilings and large windows allowing sunlight to stream in toss a blissful warmth upon each seating area – from the simple table and chairs to the cozy lounge, quite reminiscent of a luxurious living room, awash in cushy sofas. If people-watching is your thing, however, or you merely want to feel the cool breeze upon your face there’s no better place to take up residence than the outside patio which overlooks the MARTA Station. Savor the Lavender Pistachio Hot Chocolate, which is just as delicious as the name is pretty. 528 Main St., Atlanta, GA 30324.

Which of these Atlanta cafes would you like to cruise?

Fashionably yours!

Thanks to Tumblr and We ♥ It for the pictures.

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