Atlanta’s Best Takeout: Biggerstaff Brewing Co.
I haven’t stopped for a cup of joe yet, but I’ve had two good experiences at Biggerstaff, including meeting a Thursday night friend who was expecting a sit-down meal. (Since this is a take-out column, I’m disclosing this for the sake of transparency.) Not only did we dine safely at a distance from other guests, but we also got to enjoy the $2 oysters and $4 pints (the latter a January special).
The bivalves, both on the half shell and roasted with Calabrian chili butter and breadcrumbs, paired well with Leehester’s American IPA, and, although the chef whipped up a nice mignonette for the oysters raw, I couldn’t help but wish I had a classic cocktail sauce and a pile of saltines. This is a matter of personal taste – not a criticism – but I do have a minor gripe: in more than one instance I had to stop sucking to get small pieces of oyster shell out of my mouth.
Biggerstaff claims to be a farm-to-table restaurant. To be sure, great care is taken in preserving everything from beef to Brussels sprouts. I’m crazy about homemade fries. There is a nice little gem salad to balance out the richer options. And I’m sorry I didn’t try the seasonal pickle plate.
That said, the coconut sap splattered over the crispy brussels sprouts was a bit too coconut for me. And, the thought of roast chicken with fries and salsa verde wowed Jonathan Waxman-style, but the airline chicken breast was a bit dry, though the skin was suitably crispy.
The chef’s forte may be the sandwiches. The 8 oz dry aged burger, quite topped with chilli cheese and crispy bacon, was excellent. The loaded po’boy – with fried shrimp, oysters and calamari – wasn’t too shabby either. I delivered one of the luxurious handhelds to a guest from Mississippi, a person who has enjoyed the Gulf Coast grazing all her life, and she oohed and aahed. (I got myself one on my second visit, and I agree.)
The menu also includes banh mi (homemade spicy sausage), Cuban, meatball sub, fried egg sandwich and brisket sammie. The brisket, with roasted peppers, arugula and soft cow’s milk cheese from Sweet Grass Dairy, Green Hill, looked a bit like a raised cheesesteak.
In a city full of craft breweries that have strong culinary programs, Biggerstaff sets a fine example. He’s already made his way through the neighborhood. Assuming the omicron peak subsides in the spring, I would expect it to be standing room only.
BIGGERSTAFF BREWING CO.
Food: farm to table, with lots of sandwiches
A service: dine in and take away; delivery via DoorDash and GrubHub coming this week. On Saturday I stopped in with a fairly large takeout order, ended up with two brisket sandwiches, rather than a brisket sandwich and an order of Brussels sprouts. The chef stopped by as I left, and when I mentioned I hadn’t seen the Brussels sprouts in my bag, he was quick to bring me an order, even though they weren’t not on the bill. It wasn’t until I got home and checked the receipt that I realized I had purchased two brisket sandwiches. Moral of the story: Speak clearly and check your bag before you go.
Security protocol : staff wear masks and are 75% vaccinated; guests are asked to wear masks; masks available on request
Best Dishes: raw and roasted oysters, gem salad, fries, loaded po’boy, burger, brisket sandwich
Alcohol: beer, wine, classic cocktails on tap
Credit card: all major credit cards accepted
Hours: Coffee service, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Saturday; kitchen service, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday
Address, phone: 537 Edgewood Ave. SE, Atlanta. 404-796-9919
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