You may already be thinking, so where the heck is Tunisia and why do I care about the food there? Well, let me answer that for you! 1) Tunisia is located on the northeast coast of Africa right across the Mediterranean Sea from Italy (I had to refer to Google Maps for this one). 2) Food from countries in the Mediterranean is the best period – I mean, we’re talking Turkey, Italy, Greece – it doesn’t get much better than that! Allow us to introduce you to our new favorite Mediterranean eatery here in Atlanta: Couscous (and we’re not talking about the stuff you can get in the box).
Meg, Brian and I initially stumbled across Couscous after having a few too many tastings with our friends at Orpheus Brewing (right across the parking lot). We were setting out to get a light snack to soak up some of the beer and saw the most adorable little patio that was just calling to us! They weren’t exactly open yet, but we sweet-talked the lovely hostess into letting us sit on the patio and have a drink and snack.
A couple cocktails and an order of the Kefteji later (you MUST try it when you go – so amazing!), we were sitting with Executive Chef Khaled Chebbi, and learning all about the Couscous story. Chef Chebbi was born in Tunisia where he developed a passion for food and cooking, especially with all the fresh spices and ingredients at his fingertips. In Atlanta, he used to work with Mid City Cuisine and Carpe Diem, and he has worked at restaurants in Florida, Bermuda, and on the Queen Elizabeth II ship – so he has lots of unique experience. He is also incredibly personable and we enjoyed hearing all about how he hand dries his spices just like in Tunisia, and has his go-to sources for the freshest ingredients in Atlanta, including a farmer’s market near the airport – who knew?!
The whole menu is full of fresh, simple and organic (and GF options) items that are influenced by the Mediterranean and Africa. Ask for the house-made harissa when you go – it was so flavorful! We were treated to a beautifully-presented selection of apps, including the grilled merguez (sausage) that Brian just devoured. They also offer a great happy hour deal from 5-7 Monday-Thursday with $5 drinks and apps. After happy hour, take a stroll on the Beltline into Piedmont Park right from their patio and then come back for dinner of the traditional couscous feast.
And we can’t forget to tell you about the drinks of course! We tried a couple cocktails, including a special with pear juice and champs, the Rosemary Runner (my personal fave) with gin, fresh squeezed lemon juice, rosemary simple syrup, the Pomegranate Splash with vodka, pomegranate juice, fresh squeezed lemon juice, limoncello, and finally the Hannibal with dark rum, fresh squeezed lime juice, simple syrup, peach liqueur. They also have a great wine list and solid craft beer list.
If you’re looking for a low key spot that offers pretty scenery and even better food, give Couscous a try for dinner, brunch or happy hour – they’ve got it all! Don’t forget to tell them Peachtree Roadies sent you 🙂