Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About The Optimist
The Optimist and Oyster Bar at The Optimist is simply "The Hamptons meets The South." We are passionate about sourcing sustainable seafood and preparing it in classic ways. We're not reinventing the wheel -- just perfectly roasting "farm," fish and shellfish over Georgia hickory. Menu items range from the most authentic seafood gumbo with "pot luck" garlic bread to Maine lobster rolls, Gulf grouper with smoky spring Vidalias, and an ever changing selection of super fresh East and West coast oysters. The cool irony is that we have adapted a historic country ham aging "house" into an amazing space of comfort and escape through inspirations of coastal surf culture.
Oh... and if you are not a seafood person, we LOVE meat too! No worries, be optimistic! :) ...Ford Fry
Atlanta, GA 30318
Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm; Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
The Oyster Bar opens at 3pm Saturday & Sundays
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
$3 Valet service is offered through the Brady parking garage, located on property . Additional surface street parking is available through the neighborhood, as well as additional lots in the area.
Private Party Facilities:
The Optimist has a variety of event spaces that include bar events, restaurant buy outs, private dining up to 20 guests, semi-private dining for up to 50 guests.
Private Party Contact:
Abigail Pietrobon: (404) 355-5311 ext. 212
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Wine
Special Events & Promotions:
Please contact Abigail Pietrobon at email@example.com for special event information.
The Optimist Ratings and Reviews
Service was awful. It took forever to be waiting on. They screwed up my drink order. Mixed up the orders when they served us our apoetizers. Tried to make things right by serving an awful kale salad that was too spicy to eat. Then a very long delay before the main course was served. Too loud.
Food was average. Won't go back.
We thoroughly enjoyed our dinner at The Optimist. The Octopus appetizer was so good we asked for the recipe/technique and the chef actually gave us a written recipe for this dish. Our main course of Halibut and Scallops were also delicious. Service was attentive without being too in-your-face. We will definitely return.
When you are patronizing a restaurant, part of the experience is ambiance. The host on this trip decided to seat everyone within elbow, rubbing distance of each other. The restaurant was more than 3/4 empty at the time. I pointed out to the to the host that there were empty tables around and questioned the seating, he did end up moving us to a new table. The other patrons seated nearby heard my comments and also expressed their displeasure to the host about the closeness. The Optimist is one of many fine dining establishments in the neighborhood, its prices are high, and the service is lacking.
The Optimist was great I was entertaining some clients who are also friends! This was their first time and they thoroughly enjoyed the food and ambiance. We were celebrating two very special occasions. I love the casual atmosphere and the great food. Always a pleasurable dining experience at the Optimist!
The chef is fantastic. This is primarily a seafood restaurant. The oysters were wonderful and a wide assortment. They are served with the most delightfully crunchy home made crackers. It is the only place I plan to eat at while in Atlanta. So far had dinner there two nights in a row. Aside from oysters which are de rigeur, I had the peach burrata, something between an appetizer and a desert that is slightly sweet but also tangy with complex flavors--almond butter, Georgia peaches naked with mozzarella over some crunchy bread: quite different and tasty, scallops so tender and so beautifully dressed that you will feel cheated by any other version. Last night I had the lobster roll served with the crunchiest home made chips in a delicious bun. Great wine list...and did I mention the hush puppies? I look forward to one more meal there before I return to New York. Waiters are friendly and the atmosphere is comfortable, satisfying a solitary culinary adventure (like my own, as I am here on business), to family dining, or anything in between.
We came into town for a concert, and we were early for our reservation. The staff was quick to seat us anyway, and help us navigate the menu. Cocktails were incredible as were the appetizers and main dishes. We could have chosen many more items on the menu - everything looked excellent and delicious.
From the warm reception at the host stand to the wonderful service from our waiter, Emily, we enjoyed a delicious meal and wonderful evening at The Optimist.
The standouts were the perfectly cooked Octopus and and the Warm Shrimp, that looked more like Prawns. Everyone in our group enjoyed their dinner orders and the cocktails and wine recommendations from the bar and our server.
Thank you Optimist for helping us make our daughter's birthday dinner and first time meeting her boyfriend's folks a terrific evening of food, fun and family!
Wonderful food and service. While all the food is top notch it is priced too high, especially as it is served ala-cart. Our server was outstanding (Lew) and did an awesome job accommodating a vegetarian request with a chef's creation that reveled the main courses. Definitely recommend for a pricy but memorable suave de bonar experience. No matter what you do, hit the oyster bar at happy hour.
Great place, atmosphere and food. One issue is they made me change my reservation from 8 to later at 9pm when I added an additional person. Then we waited until 9:15 and they simply added a chair at the end of a table of 4, which they could have done and kept my 8pm reservation. If you are going to delay reservation until 9pm at least give us a table that seats 5 people. Not cool.
Reservation at 8:30. Seated pretty quickly but at a table for 2 with other tables literally at breathing distance. Terribly understaffed - our waitress was really trying her best but even then it took 45 minutes just for the oysters to arrive. Extremely noisy on top of everything- hardly the place for a romantic occasion or even one where you were just hoping for some conversation. The crudo was a joke as far as the portion was concerned, but otherwise food was good - but couldn't make up for the overall experience. All they need to do is to invest in some staff, and not try to emulate airlines in squeezing more and more tables in. The food would be worth the premium then.
As usual, we enjoyed our meal and experience at Optimist. We are a bit disappointed in the burrata with peaches. We split two orders between four people and each only received one tiny sliver of peach. We had ordered a similar dish at Local Three, days before, and were amazed at all of the peach slices. Optimist should not skimp on the fruit (!)
Our second visit here was a little underwhelming. The service and atmosphere are great. Some of our food choices (soup, octopus appetizer) were exceptional. Our entrees left us feeling underwhelmed and a tad disappointed. If this had been our first experience we probably would not be back. But averaging the two we will give it another go.
Another great dinner and evening at The Optimist. We have been coming as a group of friend for special occasions and were overdue for a visit when the new head chef was announced. Everything we ate was amazing, but I've got the mention the oven-roasted oysters). The food here literally never disappoints. Would highly recommend the scallops, the halibut, and even the steak!
We called the restaurant and told them we had an out of town guest arriving and could we change the reservation to a party of 3. She implicitly said no. That we would have to come it an 10:15 pm as they were booked solid, so of course we declined. Explained it was my 65th birthday, yada, yada, and she said 'sorry'.
But then on Friday we received the reminder from Open Table and called again hoping that something may have changed. She answered the second time and said No and I asked her why we were receiving the reminder from OT again. She said she had no control over OT - very rude young lady. But would she not have cancelled after the second call from us and the second 'turn-down'??
We ended up going to the Optimist anyway (with our guest) and went in time for Happy Hour and sat in their outside patio which is first come first serve. Stayed until 6:20 but went thru the main dining room to the bathroom before we left. The restaurant was maybe 1/4 occupied at 6:20 ( our initial reservations were 6:00) So what was her point in not letting us keep our reservations? Anyway, not a real pleasurable experience with this staff member.
Food was wonderful as always and service was good on the patio.
We went to The Optimist to celebrate our anniversary. Having spent time in Portland, the restaurant reminded me of that scene. It was a great atmosphere. The food was excellent (don't skip the Fried Octopus) and the service was fantastic.
We did run into an issue where we ordered a 1/2 dozen oysters and they only gave us 5. But the server promptly fixed the error and gave us an extra one for the mistake.
Definitely make it one of the restaurants to experience if you live in Atlanta.
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