Jimmy has a dream. Jimmy’s dream is that his neighborhood restaurant, Toast, will flourish and fly and be there always for him to nosh at. Jimmy invited me out last night because–understandably–my companionship is much sought after and, secondly, he wants me to promote Toast.
“Jimmy!” I said, scandalized. “I am not a food-blogging whore! I do not push restaurants just because my friends really want them to do well! What kind of a person do you think I am? And while we’re on the subject, are you offering me money? Because I accept cash.”
We made our way over to the inviting entrance:
Already I liked it. I could feel the quirky vibe seeping out the door, jolly people on the patio chewing food with smiles. A waitress recognized Jimmy and ushered us inside. She pointed us to a banquette and Jimmy gave me the outward facing table. I like the outward facing table because you can see who’s coming in. Jimmy was buttering me up. It was working.
Behind Jimmy was a giant sign that said TOAST:
This kind of place is right up my alley. Jimmy must have known that. Jimmy is a clever plotter.
And then the waitress was just adorable. Her name was Jeanie (“With one N,” she said, “Like ‘I Dreamed of Jeannie’ except for the one N.”) She was wildly enthusiastic about the food. She even agreed to a picture:
And talk about kismet: Jimmy and I had already selected our food but we asked her, anyway, what was good. “The scallops are amazing,” she said, referring to the scallops appetizer. “That’s what I picked!” I said. “And the gnocchi,” she said, “is to die for.” “That’s also what I picked!” I responded. “Oh my God!” she said.
Then quicker than you can say “Yes Master!” and blink your eyes, Jeanie was back with my scallops:
They were wonderful. Perhaps it compromises my credibility to call these scallops iconic, but they were truly among the best I’ve ever had. Perfectly caramelized and accompanied by lovely pillowy ravioli with–I’m sorry to say–a filling that I forget. But no matter. The scallops were divine.
(“You’re doing great,” whispers Jimmy, “here’s a $20.”)
And then there was gnocchi.
Sorry Jimmy, but this wasn’t as good as the scallops. But it was good. I enjoyed the pesto and the artichokes. Maybe I’m just not a big gnocchi fan? In fact, when I was a waiter I constantly mispronounced it. “Gggg notch ey,” I would say.
For dessert, we shared a strawberry shortcake type thing with marscapone ice cream:
The strawberries were glazed with balsamic vinegar and that was fantastic. The shortcake had a salty quality that I loved. It was a great dessert.
OK, Amateur Gourmeters, time to throw your weight. Let’s see you all stampede over to Toast and make it a new Atlanta powerhouse. If not that, then when you’re in town maybe you should check it out? It really is cute.
That will be $49.74, Jimmy.
[Just kidding. I really DID like it.]