While the list below features only outdoor, socially-distanced dining, the risk of contracting COVID-19 remains. Going out to eat at any restaurant places yourself and others at risk. 

If you’re back in Atlanta this spring, you’ll be glad to know there are plenty of delicious and safe alternatives to the dining hall. From Taiwanese desserts to flavorful pasta dishes, Atlanta’s food scene features plenty of new cuisines and the pandemic hasn’t ruined the chance to try them. Below is a list of some local eateries that are safe and open for business. Make sure to mask up, wash your hands and social distance when stepping out — the virus is still very much around.

Miss Gogi

Playing with your food takes on a new meaning at this Doraville Korean barbeque restaurant. Adjacent to the Korean-American supermarket chain, H Mart, Miss Gogi features socially-distanced indoor seating, hand sanitizer pumps and staff equipped with both masks and gloves. Once seated, you’ll find that your table is decked out with a flat-top grill, ready for you to cook to your heart’s content. Choose from the all-you-can-eat menu priced at $32 per person, or select individual meats, veggies and seafood to suit your taste buds priced at around $19 to $30 per plate.  

Despite being a bit more pricey, one of our favorites was the Premium Galbi. Marinated in a traditional soy sauce mixture, these Korean short-ribs are melt-in-your-mouth delicious and are easily a crowd favorite. If you’re unsure about cooking, just wave down a staff member and they’ll happily show you exactly how to grill each item. Regardless of your experience, grill away — with the amount of free sides you receive, you’ll certainly walk away with a full stomach.

4/5

Pork belly, kimchi, a side of vegetables and a corn cheese appetizer at Miss Gogi in Doraville. (The Emory Wheel/Kaitlin Mottley)

Tea Leaf and Creamery

After your weekly Publix run, stop by this brand new bubble tea shop in the nearby North Decatur Center plaza for a unique twist on the classic Taiwanese drink. With most of the drinks priced under $7, you can enjoy a deliciously inexpensive treat. Tea Leaf has over 50 flavors of tea, including classic hits such as green milk tea and more daring combinations like the fresh avocado smoothie tea. You’ll definitely taste the freshness in your drink — they use real ingredients for every beverage. Don’t be surprised if you find fresh mango bits in your ice cream mango fusion tea. 

With a sleek, modern interior and wooden accents, the freshness of the drinks beautifully compliments the ambiance. 

5/5

A Mano

For a heavenly Italian feast, A Mano is the place to be. With amazing pasta dishes to sweet  desserts, A Mano offers an expansive menu and fair price points. The $13 burrata appetizer is the perfect way to begin your dining experience. If you’re looking for a simple yet delicious pasta entree, the cacio e pepe is the way to go. Priced at $10, the sauce is cheesy and creamy with little bit of spice from the black pepper, making it an easy option for picky eaters especially. For dessert, while a little pricey at $12, the bread pudding with chocolate and apple compotes is crunchy on top and gooey in the middle. Besides the mouth-watering food, the outdoor area is beautifully decorated with an abundance of lights and greenery and filled with wooden picnic tables. To keep the restaurant COVID-friendly, disposable silverware is given to customers to prevent contamination. 

5/5

Cacio e pepe, Bucatini alla Bolognese and burrata, all fan favorites at A Mano in Atlanta. (The Emory Wheel/Lauren Blaustein)

Boruboru

For all lovers of raw fish and build-your-own restaurants, Boruboru is the perfect option. Just a few blocks from Emory’s Atlanta campus in Emory Point, Boruboru has outdoor seating . Their most popular dishes are poke bowls ($12), sushi burritos ($16) and salad bowls ($15 or less). For drinks, they offer a wide variety, including a basic black milk bubble tea and a matcha iced latte, typically priced around $7 or less, depending on the drink. 

The restaurant’s fast-food style setup belies its quality. Their salmon and tuna are rich in flavor and the option to pair them with ingredients like toasted coconut, for example, allows for a unique culinary experience. Stop by for a convenient, fairly priced and flavorful meal. 

4/5

Boruboru’s popular Shoyu-style Poke bowl with cucumber, avocado, crispy onions, edamame and your choice of dressing. (The Emory Wheel/Lauren Blaustein)

Conclusion

Despite COVID-19’s strain on the dining industry, many Atlanta restaurants have implemented safety measures to keep customers safe, including outdoor, socially-distanced seating arrangements and disposable silverware. If you’re looking to visit any of these places, be sure to stay safe by social distancing, masking up, washing your hands before eating and frequently using hand sanitizer.