Omnivore - Not the burger! Please, I beg you!

A visit to Bocado


Friday evening, eight of us went to Bocado to celebrate a friend’s birthday. I’m very fond of chef Todd Ginsberg’s cooking. He has received a lot of critical raves, but seems to lack the hunger for media attention that has turned chefs into stars of reality TV.

I made a big mistake with my friends. I mentioned that Jon Watson of the AJC had declared Bocado’s burger stack the best in the city last week. So, instead of sampling Ginsberg’s more creative fare, all but three of us ordered the burger — two patties, American cheese and house-made pickles on a Holeman & Finch bun, served with fries. Everyone approved.

I ordered two small plates. First was an arugula salad with lots of fava beans (no Chianti), lentils, “preserved” tomatoes and pecorino shavings. These were my first fava beans of the season. I want a bushel of them.

My second plate was bruschetta topped with chunks of chicken liver with chopped bacon and strands of roasted ramps, also my first of the year. Admittedly, chicken liver on toasted bread has become a trendy dish, but Ginsberg’s use of ramps ramped the flavor up above average.

One burger-less dish on the the table was a pan-roasted chicken breast with local grits and collards. A white wine-tabasco sauce gave the chicken a Buffalo-style note. The birthday boy, Michael, ordered a sliced flat iron steak with pureed Yukon Golds, asparagus, fried Vidalia onions, baby turnips and a Bordelaise jus.

Go order the burger at lunch but do yourself a favor and diversify at dinner.