Travel

The Hometown Guide: Atlanta

The Hometown Guide: Atlanta

Former Glamour editor Ann Mashburn’s eponymous shop in Atlanta is a love song to the kind of boutiques that existed before fast fashion and online shopping. “When Sid and I moved here a decade ago, we knew exactly one person and next to nothing about the city, but we fell in love with the real estate on the Westside,” says Mashburn. “It felt a bit like the Meatpacking District in NYC in the late ’80s…lots of opportunity, creativity, and empty warehouse space.” As time has gone on, the duo have built a small clothing empire from a single storefront in Atlanta—and now have five daughters, too. Their latest offering is Mashburn, a hybrid home/design/kids concept space under the same roof as both Ann and Sid’s neighboring boutiques. We caught up with her for a mini Atlanta tour, which includes their favorite date night spot (Kimball House) to her go-to’s at Le Fat.

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Ann's Picks

  • Ann Mashburn<br><em>West Midtown</em>

    Ann Mashburn
    West Midtown

    Ann’s eponymous storefront feels just like a dream walk-in closet. The store experience is designed for comfort: you can have a drink and listen to some seriously good music while you skim racks of Carven dresses, Jil Sander blouses, and Ann Mashburn’s own line, which is composed of well-made classics with a slight southern edge. And, of course, you’ll find the Sid Mashburn menswear counterpart right next door.

  • Bread & Butterfly <br><em>Inman Park</em>

    Bread & Butterfly
    Inman Park

    Right behind Beetlecat is the tiny, very Instagrammable, French-inspired bistro-café Bread & Butterfly, from the team behind the restaurant Cakes + Ale. Come for weekend brunch (Ann always orders the scrambled eggs and trout), or lunch during the week, and try the tomato soup, which comes with a fresh-baked, croissant-like pastry on top.

  • Bitsy Grant Tennis Center <br><em>Buckhead</em>

    Bitsy Grant Tennis Center
    Buckhead

    Named for tennis player Bryant Grant, who earned the named “Bitsy” because of his slight 5’4” frame, this public tennis center has 13 clay courts and 10 hard courts strong. They offer weekly tennis clinics, plus paddle tennis. Make reservations before you go since it stays steadily busy throughout the year.

  • Le Fat  <br><em>West Midtown</em>

    Le Fat
    West Midtown

    The appeal of Le Fat, announced by a hanging neon sign on its exterior, has a lot to do with atmosphere. Taking cues from French colonial design, Le Fat is divided into two elegantly cool rooms: one a soft green hue, with walls that are illustrated with delicate magnolia trees. The bar in here feels like it could have been transported from a more tropical destination, which makes sense in coordination with their signature, summery cocktail list. Run by chef and Atlanta restaurateur Guy Wong, the Vietnamese-billed menu leans on Cantonese flavors, too. Come for date night, like Ann and Sid do, and sit at the bar.

  • Mashburn <br><em>West Midtown</em>

    Mashburn
    West Midtown

    Husband-and-wife shopkeeping duo Sid and Ann Mashburn have had their finger on the pulse of how Atlantans want to dress for more than a decade. They recently opened a dedicated space for home goods, books, and a line for littles—affectionately dubbed Kid Mashburn. The light-filled 1,600-square foot space mimics the Mashburns others, in the sense that it feels personal and never overwhelming: in the kids section, for example, there’s a basket of toys on the floor meant to be played with and a table piled high with a rotating assortment of books.

  • Kimball House<br><em>Decatur</em>

    Kimball House
    Decatur

    Kimball House is the brainchild of four friends who originally worked together at Brick Store Pub and came across old menus from the historic (and, sadly, no longer standing) Kimball House Hotel featuring classic Manhattan cocktails and oysters. That menu—and the deep-dive into old-school dining traditions that ensued—became the inspiration for their own restaurant, which opened a few years ago. While the thorough oyster menu and its thoughtful tasting notes are an important part of the experience, it’s the specialty cocktail program run by local bartending celebrity Miles Macquarrie that put it on our radar. If you’re lucky enough to stop by when he’s behind the bar, he’ll give you the history behind everything on the menu, including the exhaustive list of absinthes and the subtle differences between them.

  • Sid Mashburn<br><em>West Midtown</em>

    Sid Mashburn
    West Midtown

    Sid Mashburn, the eponymous store from Ann’s husband, isn’t just one of the best men’s stores in Atlanta—it’s one of the best in the country. While the much-talked-about store experience is a comfortable hang (Miles Davis records and a complimentary drink of choice help), what’s even better is how much you can get done in just a short trip: with a wide selection of stylish but classic well-made basics, stylists on hand, and full-service tailoring, it’d be easy to overhaul a guy’s wardrobe in the span of one painless afternoon. In addition to Mashburn’s second Atlanta location, you can find stores in Dallas, Houston, DC, and the Brentwood Country Mart.

  • Storico Fresco Alimentari <br><em>Buckhead</em>

    Storico Fresco Alimentari
    Buckhead

    Come here for a cacio e pepe that rivals anything you’d get in Italian trattoria. It probably has something to do with the fact that chef Michael Patrick not only makes all his own pasta but he also sources his own meat from local farms and grows his own herbs. Those adept in the kitchen will be happy to know that many of the ingredients—the olive oil, the tuna, the dried pasta from a factory south of Naples, as well as meats and cheeses—are for sale in their adjacent storefront. Take note: Wooden tables and bare walls mean it gets noisy pretty fast.

  • Talat Market <br><em>Candler Park</em>

    Talat Market
    Candler Park

    Tucked into a barebones diner in Candler Park, Talat Market is not-so-quietly serving up some of the best Thai south of the Mason Dixon line. (A James Beard nomination doesn’t hurt, either.) Every Friday afternoon, Chef Parnass Lim Savang snaps an Instagram of the menu, and people line-up around the block to add their name to a list posted on the door just as the restaurant opens at 6. Regulars will grab a six-pack or bottle of wine next door at Candler Market and hang out on the sidewalk. Inside, chef serves up his take on “Georgian Thai”—recreating traditional dishes from his childhood using ingredients from local farms like Woodland Gardens or Review Farms. Dishes change regularly, but often include crispy seafood pancakes, a five spice tofu stew, or red curry beef. Everything is meant to be shared. For dessert, don’t pass up the vanilla ice cream sandwich made with sweet sticky rice, which is as crazy good as it sounds.

  • 8ARM <br><em>Poncey Highland</em>

    8ARM
    Poncey Highland

    This café is one of those places that you could happily while away the entire day, starting with your morning coffee and Egg McMuff sandwich (soft scramble, cheddar, cilantro-Tabasco mayo, avocado—the works), which can be ordered at the counter. Pastry chef Sarah Dodge is something of a local hero: her breads—including her famous biscuit—and cinnamon rolls fly out the door every morning. Come evening, the outdoor patio turns into a lively spot for cheap Nicaraguan beer and strong mixed drinks—and, starting at 10 p.m., a late night menu of burgers and oysters.

  • Your Needs Met <br><em>West Midtown</em>

    Your Needs Met
    West Midtown

    Tucked inside Mashburn, the Carrara marble-topped coffee bar serves up King State and Methodical Coffee. There’s loose leaf tea, too, and pastries from H&F Bread Co.

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