Spend an evening at The Optimist on Atlanta’s foodie-happy west side, and you can feel it in the air: everything here tells a story. The tale: summer camp via a Venice Beach surf shack circa 1972; fresh, fun and worn-in comfortable. The storytellers: Skylar Morgan Furniture + Design commissioned by Design Consultant Smith Hanes —co conspirators in perhaps the most refreshing dining room and gathering space in the city.
The Optimist is a practiced assemblage of interior refinement drawn from a sun-washed memory, a summer’s dream punctuated by a gently curving surfboard-shaped bar, adorned with weathered wood wall-hangings made of repurposed lumber drying slats, and grounded by solid, long and low banquettes plus servers’ stations in Skylar Morgan’s signature oiled walnut. Chef Ford Fry (JCT, No. 246) helms the kitchen, completing the holiday getaway scene with sustainable seafood prepared in a visible, Hades-hot wood burning oven.
In addition, last year The Optimist was named Restaurant of the Year by Esquire magazine, and this past month Conde Nast Traveler named The Optimist one of The Best New Restaurants in the American South. So kickback and visit The Optimist and sample some of the wonderful seafood at the raw oyster bar and enjoy a cocktail or two, you deserve it!