Omnivore - Joining the thundering horde

Foodies storm Miller Union for lunch

Good grief. The city's foodies have turned into a thundering horde. I ran to Miller Union for lunch with five friends last Friday — a few days after Besha lunched there with a view of Bacchanalia's Anne Quatrano and Sotto Sotto's Riccardo Ullio. Then,  Bill Addison of Atlanta Magazine blogged about his lunch there Friday, too.

No wonder Chef Steven Satterfield looked a bit stunned when he paid a visit to our table.

Like Besha and Bill, we had a lunch full of  impressive, uncomplicated flavors that are the hallmark of Satterfield's cooking. The table started with an assortment of carrots and radishes for dipping in feta cheese whose sour edges were rounded, surprisingly, by buttermilk.

I couldn't resist the brazenly pink rhubarb soda the restaurant was offering as a special. Owner Neal McCarthy told me the soda was flavored with rhubarb syrup and lemon juice. My mouth has a love-hate relationship with sour rhubarb after living with someone years ago who was determined to produce the blue-ribbon strawberry-rhubarb pie at a county fair. Yes, after two dozen pies, I've seen the best and worst of rhubarb and Miller Union's soda is a sweet and simple take on sourness incarnate.

My entree was this pair of plump fennel sausages over white beans with a parsley pistou. The housemade sausages had a loose texture so that each forkful tended to crumble into the white beans. Just flawless. I ordered a smoky bowl of collards on the side that made me want to holler for my mama.

Others at the table ordered the egg-salad sandwich (for our ovo-lacto-vegetarian friend visiting from San Francisco), the hanger steak salad, the oyster po' boy and the roasted pork sandwich with butter, arugula and onion jam.  I didn't hear a single complaint — especially after consuming four-bite homemade ice cream sandwiches in strawberry, banana and (best of all) Mexican chocolate flavors.

I suggest you make a reservation to lunch here. It's bound to be a hit.

(Photos by Cliff Bostock)