Food Issue - The Food Issue 2014

Legacy: Exploring Atlanta's food-filled past

Thursday October 16, 2014 04:00 am EDT

After I moved from Chicago to Georgia, I continued to call soda “pop” for about a week. Oh, how people snickered. My other, less offensive Yankee mannerisms — putting something “away” instead of putting something “up,” shopping carts versus buggies, a basketball hoop instead of a basketball goal — were less noticeable, I guess, because those others are still with me and still going strong.

True born-and-bred Atlantans are tough to find. It seems most people you run into these days have come from somewhere else. Rich, complex, and endlessly entertaining as the tapestry of Atlanta may be because of that diversity, transplant culture can lead to a lack of institutional memory — differing opinions on proper soft drink terminology notwithstanding. This year’s food issue explores legacies of all kinds within the Atlanta food world, people who came before us, and what they left behind.

We toured Atlanta’s swankiest throwback restaurants and illustrated the wide and wacky web of Atlanta restaurant connections to reveal who some of Atlanta’s most significant chef mentors are and have been. We traced the history of Atlanta’s recent farmers market boom and chatted with two old-school brewers about Atlanta’s craft beer beginnings. We even attempted to answer the question of whether Atlanta has a specific style of barbecue.

The goal was to share stories and snapshots of Atlanta’s food-filled past in hopes of turning over cultural touchstones food lovers in Atlanta can share today.

— Stephanie Dazey

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