Mouthful - Cold-weather comfort food
JCT KITCHEN & BAR: JCT's vegetable plate is just what we crave when the spectrum of brown winter foods has grown tiresome. Chef Ford Fry uses seasonal vegetables from the local farmstand outside Star Provisions. He adds some heft to the dish with pillowy homemade gnocchi and finishes it off with a buttery sauce made with chicken stock. A vegetarian version using white wine is also available. 1198 Howell Mill Road, Suite 18. 404-355-2252. www.jctkitchen.com.
RIA'S BLUEBIRD: For her Brisket Breakfast, chef/owner Ria Pell slow cooks the brisket for 14 hours and uses the braising liquid to create a spicy tomato broth. The broth is topped with chunks of the fork-tender beef and two poached eggs. The combination of silky broth, rich egg yolks, buttery beef, and crunch of the accompanying toasted baguette creates an orgy of textures. 421 Memorial Drive. 404-521-3737. www.riasbluebird.com.
SOTTO SOTTO: Hearty pastas are a no-brainer when it's chilly out. One of our favorites is Sotto Sotto's Lasagnette alla Bolognese, a sort of free-form lasagna. Chef/owner Riccardo Ullio takes the long strands of homemade lasagnette pasta (a lasagna and pappardelle hybrid) and tops them with a slow-cooked traditional Bolognese sauce and a creamy bechamel sauce. The dish is flash baked in a wood-burning oven to marry the flavors. 313 N. Highland Ave. 404-523-6678. www.sottosottorestaurant.com.