The “New” Watershed Restaurant
Last weekend, David and I went on a date night to the new Watershed Restaurant. For those of you that don’t know about the first Watershed, this Atlanta favorite was located in Decatur and owned by Indigo Girls’, Emily Saliers. The restaurant was well known for its fancy southern fare and famous chef, Scott Peacock. Sadly, last year Watershed in Decatur closed, but there were promises that it would reopen in the future at a new location.
A couple of weeks ago, this promise became a reality and the new Watershed (still owned by Saliers) opened on Peachtree Road, between Uncle Julio’s and Mellow Mushroom. While both the décor and the clientele offer a different ambiance (think Buckhead prepster verses Decatur hipster), the restaurant still makes delicious food and celebrates southern cuisine.
I get a little nervous about going to a “southern” restaurant due to my fear that everything will be battered and deep fried. Last week their menu still wasn’t up online (now you can find it on their website), so I called and they assured me that I would be able to find gluten-free options at the new Watershed. We decided to give the revamped Watershed a try and we were not disappointed.
Once we arrived and valet parked (of course it’s valet, we’re in Atlanta), we were immediately seated. The bar was bumping with a well dressed stereotypical Buckhead crowd and the room with the bar was extremely loud. There are three rooms at Watershed and I would suggest asking to be in the room farthest from the bar if you want to converse with your date. Fortunately, we were put in the far room and while there was still good people watching, I wasn’t completely distracted by everyone else’s conversation.
The menu immediately looked intriguing and I felt reassured about my options the minute that I saw a gluten-free beer on the drinks list. I spoke with our server and he went through some of my options with me. I was particularly impressed when he told me that the pimento cheese cornbread, which comes with the veggie plate, is gluten-free. I had him double check with the chef multiple times since usually cornbread is not GF at restaurants. He assured me that it was in fact GF after talking to the chef. Even though I didn’t order the veggie plate, they let me enjoy the cornbread as a side. David and I shared this snack and it was one of the best items I’ve ever had at a restaurant, being that it combined two of my favorite things: cornbread and pimento cheese. The texture was perfect and the flavor combination was so yummy. The cornbread was not dry at all and the perfect balance of salty and sweet.
I decided to go a little healthier for my entrée, selecting the salmon a la plancha with zucchini ribbons. As I look at the menu online today, however, it says this dish comes with faro. It did not include faro on the menu last week so I’m guessing their menu changes. Always make sure to double check with your server or the manager. I’m sure they would be willing to take out the faro…they were extremely accommodating to me. My salmon was perfectly cooked and crispy on the outside. There were no batters or fancy sauces and the cold zucchini ribbons offered the perfect texture and flavor compliments. David enjoyed the deconstructed jambalaya for his entree, which was not gluten free, but he loved it and would recommend it to any gluten eaters.
Overall, we had a great experience at the new Watershed. The ambiance is quite different than the original in Decatur now that it’s located in an apartment building in the middle of Peachtree Road, but the quality of food will not disappoint. We had great service and I felt that my food needs were well accommodated.
Have any of you tried the new Watershed? What are your initial thoughts? Any other new restaurants in town worth checking out?
Watershed Restaurant – 1820 Peachtree Road NW – Atlanta, GA – 30309 – 404.809.3561 (Reservations Recommended)