Tuesday, October 6, 2009


590 Mimosa Blvd, Roswell, GA http://relishgoodfood.com/

On Friday night Kyle and I ate dinner at Relish. I have eaten at Relish about half a dozen times - once for the Sunday brunch, once for lunch and the remaining meals were dinners - so my review is based on my impression of all of these experiences.

Relish is located in historic Roswell, GA. It's housed in a large stone building that used to be a funeral home at the corner of Mimosa and Marietta Hwy. There is a large parking lot behind the restaurant.

Don't let the building's morbid history scare you away from Relish. It's a very good restaurant. The service is consistently attentive and the atmosphere is casual. The interior is decorated in tans and sage green, and there are black and white photos of foods on the walls. It's smartly decorated without being uncomfortable or pretentious.

Relish's greatest strength is their entrees. The shrimp and grits is nice and filling, and the tasso gravy only mildly spicy. The pan roasted scallops with Southern succotash and corn jus is tasty and the shellfish is tender. I wasn't a huge fan of the bacon wrapped mountain trout - it's better in theory than in reality, when your bacon is completely stuck to the fish's scales and seems to have the flavor cooked out of it - but the green beans on top were slightly garlicky and perfectly crisp. Kyle really liked his wood grilled angus hamburger ($8.95), which was two steps up in quality but only one step up in price from fast food burgers.

The best deal I've found is the Tuesday night special of fried catfish I enjoyed a few months ago. I usually don't like catfish, but I took a chance and was pleasantly surprised to find this particular dish not typically "fishy", and the batter wasn't greasy. It came with cornbread and spicy coleslaw (the jalapenos give it a good kick) and a slice of red velvet cake. The cake was a little disappointing (as are all of the desserts I've tried at Relish), but the fish was generously portioned and the whole meal only costs $13.95. That's an awesome value.

The drink menu is also interesting. Our current favorite is the cucumber lemonade with Jack Daniels. Relish's signature drink is the non-alcoholic version, which I thought sounded a little strange at first but ended up relishing (hee, hee) the very refreshing, unusual flavor.

Although Relish claims to have the best brunch in town, I'm not as big a fan of it as I am the lunch and dinner menu. The brunch does include some of the same items as offered otherwise, along with a carving station with prime rib and omelette's cooked to order, but I was just expecting something more than what I found. Also, on the one occasion when I brunched at Relish the omelette service was slow and many of the serving dishes emptied and remained that way, leaving my party with fewer choices than we'd hoped.

Verdict: A sunny spot with a good menu in historic Roswell. Grab a drink, enjoy your upsized entree and skip dessert.

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