Atlanta Orders In: Buttermilk Kitchen satisfies Atlanta’s appetite for brunch

The pimento cheese omelet, which comes with a biscuit and choice of side, is a popular menu item at Buttermilk Kitchen in Buckhead. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

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The pimento cheese omelet, which comes with a biscuit and choice of side, is a popular menu item at Buttermilk Kitchen in Buckhead. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Chef-owner Suzanne Vizethann pushes baking boundaries with launch of biscuit-themed pop-up

Atlanta has a longstanding appetite for brunch. And, judging by the parade of cars circling the parking lot at Buttermilk Kitchen on a recent Saturday, the pandemic has left us more hungry than ever for chicken biscuits, pimento cheese omelets and stacks of pancakes doused in rye whiskey syrup.

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Buttermilk Kitchen has built a reputation for its brunch delights, including the O.G. buttermilk pancakes. Courtesy of Angie Mosier

Buttermilk Kitchen has built a reputation for its brunch delights, including the O.G. buttermilk pancakes. Courtesy of Angie Mosier

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Buttermilk Kitchen has built a reputation for its brunch delights, including the O.G. buttermilk pancakes. Courtesy of Angie Mosier

Since its opening in 2012, folks have flocked to the cozy bungalow on Roswell Road, willing to wait an hour or longer for a table at the no-reservations Southern brunch destination.

The pandemic did put a damper on business, but, as milder weather has returned and more of the public has gotten vaccinated, the outlook for Buttermilk Kitchen has brightened.

“We feel really good,” chef-owner Suzanne Vizethann said. “We’re almost back, sales-wise, to where we were pre-pandemic.”

Partitions recently were installed between tables, enabling Vizethann to increase seating capacity to about 85% of normal.

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Buttermilk Kitchen Assistant General Manager Julian Guzman handles curbside pickup orders on a busy Saturday morning. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Buttermilk Kitchen Assistant General Manager Julian Guzman handles curbside pickup orders on a busy Saturday morning. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

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Buttermilk Kitchen Assistant General Manager Julian Guzman handles curbside pickup orders on a busy Saturday morning. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Buttermilk Kitchen reopened for on-premises dining late last summer, but it has been offering to-go since the start of the pandemic. On my Saturday visit, it was clear that the staff has gotten its takeout operation down to a science. A steady stream of cars rolled to a stop next to a blue tent, where Assistant General Manager Julian Guzman handed bags to outstretched hands. The biggest challenge for patrons: deciding whether to endure the tempting smells of Benton’s bacon and hot biscuits until they get home, or tear into their made-from-scratch goods on the spot.

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Milkdrop Biscuits' Golden Arches was inspired by McDonald's Egg McMuffin. Courtesy of Milkdrop Biscuits

Credit: handout

Milkdrop Biscuits' Golden Arches was inspired by McDonald's Egg McMuffin. Courtesy of Milkdrop Biscuits

Credit: handout

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Milkdrop Biscuits' Golden Arches was inspired by McDonald's Egg McMuffin. Courtesy of Milkdrop Biscuits

Credit: handout

Credit: handout

“I get asked a lot, ‘What’s the secret with your biscuits?’ Or, ‘How do you get the pancakes so fluffy?’” Vizethann told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in an interview last May, upon the release of her cookbook “Welcome to Buttermilk Kitchen.” But, she said, “the simple, straightforward answer is that it’s just good ingredients, we treat them really well, and we just take a lot of pride in the food that we produce.”

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Chef and restaurateur Suzanne Vizethann stands at the pickup window for her new pop-up, Milkdrop Biscuits, in the office next to her popular Buttermilk Kitchen. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Chef and restaurateur Suzanne Vizethann stands at the pickup window for her new pop-up, Milkdrop Biscuits, in the office next to her popular Buttermilk Kitchen. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

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Chef and restaurateur Suzanne Vizethann stands at the pickup window for her new pop-up, Milkdrop Biscuits, in the office next to her popular Buttermilk Kitchen. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Even with Vizethann’s recipe in hand, few home cooks could make a biscuit like hers. Recently, she has taken her craft to the next level, with a periodic pop-up called Milkdrop Biscuits. Dubbing it her “biscuit lab,” Vizethann experiments with drop biscuits, using milks beyond the usual buttermilk.

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Milkdrop Biscuits' Pop Drop is a biscuit inspired by a Pop-Tart. Courtesy of Milkdrop Biscuits

Credit: handout

Milkdrop Biscuits' Pop Drop is a biscuit inspired by a Pop-Tart. Courtesy of Milkdrop Biscuits

Credit: handout

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Milkdrop Biscuits' Pop Drop is a biscuit inspired by a Pop-Tart. Courtesy of Milkdrop Biscuits

Credit: handout

Credit: handout

Sweet creations have included a Pop Tart-inspired vegan biscuit made with coconut milk and stuffed with jam, and dreamy unicorn biscuits made from a batter studded with rainbow-colored sprinkles and decorated with cream cheese icing and a Beautiful Briny Sea sugar blend. On the savory side, there has been a riff on an Egg McMuffin; the Not Your Momma’s Sausage; and the Hot’lanta, which rivals a hot chicken sandwich from Nashville.

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Milkdrop Biscuits offers a changing menu of creative biscuits. Recent items have included (clockwise from left): the Not Your Mamma's Sausage, Hot'lanta sandwich and jam-filled Pop Drop. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Milkdrop Biscuits offers a changing menu of creative biscuits. Recent items have included (clockwise from left): the Not Your Mamma's Sausage, Hot'lanta sandwich and jam-filled Pop Drop. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

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Milkdrop Biscuits offers a changing menu of creative biscuits. Recent items have included (clockwise from left): the Not Your Mamma's Sausage, Hot'lanta sandwich and jam-filled Pop Drop. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Although each pop-up brings a different menu of about five items, offerings generally include a jam-filled Pop Drop, three to four savory biscuits and a dessert biscuit.

The biscuits are produced at Buttermilk Kitchen, with pickup at the rear of the restaurant’s office next door.

Available only through advance online ordering, Milkdrop Biscuits has been a wild success. When pre-ordering opened the Monday prior to the Feb. 6 pickup date, biscuits sold out in 5 minutes. For the next pop-up, Vizethann doubled the amount available, and still managed to sell out in just 15 minutes. (Pro tip: Sign up for the Milkdrop Biscuits newsletter via its website, to receive announcements about upcoming pop-ups.)

“We’re having fun with it and seeing where it goes,” she said.

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Orders for the Milkdrop Biscuits pop-up are picked up in the rear of the cottage next door to Buttermilk Kitchen in Buckhead. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Orders for the Milkdrop Biscuits pop-up are picked up in the rear of the cottage next door to Buttermilk Kitchen in Buckhead. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

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Orders for the Milkdrop Biscuits pop-up are picked up in the rear of the cottage next door to Buttermilk Kitchen in Buckhead. Ligaya Figueras/ligaya.figueras@ajc.com

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

Credit: Ligaya Figueras

BUTTERMILK KITCHEN

Menu: Southern breakfast and brunch staples

Alcohol: beer, wine and cocktails available on-site and to-go

What I ordered: pimento cheese omelet; folded egg frittata; short rib hash. The omelet was a savory-sweet delight, made all the more filling with a biscuit and side of hash-brown fritters. The frittata held plenty of feel-good veggies, and the fluffy egg dish stood up well to transit. The shredded strands of braised short rib were divinely tender, the potato wedges roasted to a golden crispness, and the yolk of the fried egg impressively runny, despite a 20-minute drive.

Price range: mains, $8-$17; sides, $4-$6

Service options: dine-in (no reservations) and carryout, including curbside; no delivery; order online (except Sundays) in person or via phone

Outdoor dining: covered porch (currently enclosed for winter, flaps removed during warm weather months)

Mask policy: required for all employees; mandated for customers when not seated

Address, phone: 4225 Roswell Road, Atlanta; 678-732-3274

Hours: 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesdays-Thursdays; 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Fridays-Sundays

Website: buttermilkkitchen.com

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