The 10 Best Local Restaurants In Athens, Georgia

Photo of Chloe Hay
9 February 2017

Full of gastropubs and small local restaurants due to its university hub, Athens in Georgia is the destination of choice for high-quality, low-cost cuisine. We’ve updated our guide to The Ten Best Restaurants in Athens to include a few more favorites to get your taste buds tingling.

© L. D. Andrew/Wikimedia Commons


Restaurant, American, Contemporary, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, $$$
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Frogmore Stew
Frogmore Stew | © Rinne Allen
5&10 is a high-end restaurant specialising in fusion dishes inspired by Southern USA, French, Italian and Asian cuisines. Some nights have special themes, such as ramen night on a Tuesday and fried chicken dinners on a Sunday. The rest of the time there’s a diverse mix of tastes, flavors and dishes to choose between.

The Branded Butcher

Butcher, Charcuterie, American
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The Branded Butcher
The Branded Butcher | Courtesy The Branded Butcher
The Branded Butcher is renowned for its succulent seared fillets, so delicious that they will rival any other steak in the state. The charcuterie and cheese boards are also second to none and the butternut squash soup is the perfect winter warmer. Open for brunch as well as dinner, guests can treat themselves to something a little different for their mid-morning meal or keep it traditional, depending on their fancy.

Mama’s Boy

Restaurant, American, Vegetarian, $$$
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5 & 10
5 & 10 | Courtesy 5 & 10/Letters and Light
Mama’s Boy is always packed out with a loyal following of hungry clientele. This modern diner-style restaurant is open for breakfast, brunch and lunch every day, but unfortunately doesn’t serve dinner. Customers can choose a traditional breakfast of Georgia Peach French toast, biscuits and gravy, vegetable and egg scrambler, or salmon cakes Benedict, or they can opt for something more lunch-related such as a tofu stir fry, pork taco plate or ranch chicken sandwich.

Trappeze Pub

Bar, American, Pub Grub, $$$
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Trappeze Pub
Trappeze Pub | Courtesy of Trappeze Pub
The destination of choice for beer connoisseurs, the Trappeze Pub stocks over 200 bottled beers and has 30 on tap. Staff here can pour you a pint of some of the world’s rarest brews. The food on offer is classic pub grub, in keeping with Trappeze’s focus on beer culture.

Cali N Tito’s

Cali N Tito’s is a tiny ‘order-at-the-counter’ establishment with a few indoor tables and plenty of outdoor picnic space. Tasty appetizers include fried cassava and beef empanadas and for main course guests can choose between tacos, burritos, quesadillas, tamales and the lomo saltado. Wash it all down with a guanabana or a passionfruit juice for the real Latino dining experience.

Cali N Tito’s, 1427 S Lumpkin Street, Athens, GA, USA, +1 706 227 9979

Cinco y Diez

Using locally farmed ingredients to create tasty Southern-inspired dishes, Cinco y Diez excels in creating great-tasting family friendly food. Monday is fish taco night, and each weekday evening between 5.30pm and 6.30pm a prix fixe menu is served buffet-style on the table to share. Choose between the peel-and-eat shrimp or the pork Milanesa, both of which are accompanied by collard greens, hush puppies and a squash salad, then finish off the meal with delicious churros and chocolate. Aside from the prix fixe menu, there are several tasty dishes to choose from at all times of the day. The wild mushroom tamales, adobo roasted-pork chops and the homemade tortillas with midnight black beans are all especially good.

Cinco y Diez, 1653 S Lumpkin Street, Athens, GA, USA, +1 706 850 2020


Clocked! is a downtown Athens staple. Each burger is made fresh to order because Clocked! understands that nobody wants a limp, lukewarm patty with their fries. Even more importantly, only organic, natural ingredients are used in the recipes, and each of the burgers is made from 100 per cent, all-natural humanely raised beef that will never have been anywhere near a freezer.

Clocked!, 259 West Washington Street, Athens, GA, USA, +1 706 548 9175

The Grit

One of Athens’ most popular culinary institutions, The Grit serves solely vegetarian fare. It’s the black-bean chilli bowl, the falafel platter and the hot noodle tofu soup that take centre stage here. Meat-eaters shouldn’t be put off however, as The Grit is the master of flavour combinations. Each dish is so creatively prepared that no one will feel that they are missing out when they realize that there’s no steak or chicken on their plate.

The Grit, 199 Prince Avenue, Athens, GA, USA, +1 706 543 6592

Last Resort Grill

Restaurant, American, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, $$$
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The Last Resort Grill has reignited the spark in this nostalgic part of town. Opening for dinner service every night, the menu is full of freshly cooked, extremely tasty dishes, created using produce from select local vendors. The special of the day is always a winning choice, but there are many great options on the a la carte menu too.

Square One Fish Company

Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
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Athens’ answer to the much-loved Florida seafood restaurants, the Square One Fish Company offers a variety of delicious fish and seafood dishes alongside excellent steaks, chicken and vegetarian options. Absolutely everything is made from scratch in the kitchen, from the breads to the sauces and desserts, and diners can either choose to watch the chefs at work in the open kitchen or they can relax in the bar area or cosy dining room. The oyster sampler, spiced crawfish and cracked conch are just three of the exquisite appetizers on offer. For main course, it’s the whole lane snapper, snow crabs’ legs and seared Atlantic salmon that always has diners’ mouths watering.