NFT Atlanta Hapeville

Hapeville

This is the only city in metro-Atlanta where folks from all walks of life converge after 10 pm, thanks to the late-night post office on Central Avenue, where the last pick-up is midnight! Unfortunately, many other Hapeville businesses cater to the thriving lunch scene and close up shop around 5 pm, much to the chagrin of neighborhood dwellers. Proximity to the airport draws a few large hotel chains, as well as bars and dining options convenient for travelers.




         



On Our Radar:

Posted By:  Phil Lambert
Photo:  Phil Lambert

Chapman Drug
Chapman Drug is conveniently located in the middle of Hapeville. You can park on the street in front or find a spot trackside. The Chapman Drug & Soda Fountain opened in 1921. It remains a full service pharmacy today and they still make home pharmacy deliveries. In the 1920s & '30s the fountain had curb-side service, but unfortunately that ended in the 1930s. Lunch is the busiest time for the fountain. With Delta Airlines and Wachovia so close, their employees make up a large percentage of the fountain's lunchtime crowd. Lime sours and milkshakes are the top sellers with Blue Bell ice cream in the shakes. My vanilla shake was very good. Truett Cathy (founder of Chick-fil-A) said that he comes to Chapman's to get a "real" milkshake. Not much of a lime sour person, I opted for the fresh hand-squeezed lemonade. My large lemonade, made with two lemons, was outstanding. Since 1921 Coca-Cola has always been offered at the fountain and Chapman's remains one of Coke's oldest customers. Experience this living piece of American culinary history.



Posted By:  Katherine Dean
Photo:  J.E. Kemp

Thai Heaven
When I fork over 4 or 5 extra bucks to have my bowl of curry spiked with shrimp instead of the run-of-the mill chicken, beef or tofu, I expect more than three of the little critters. But at most Thai joints, three or four is all I ever get. Enter Thai Heaven, an awesome spot on the main drag in Hapeville. As far as I'm concerned, they are the only Thai restaurant that "gets" it, as is evidenced by the whopping eight pieces of sea meat that adorned my Masaman dinner bowl three nights ago. Too bad they're located in Hapeville; most Atlantans never make that far south and wouldn't dream of choosing it over a night out in Midtown. But if you live nearby and don't mind having the entire dining room to yourself during the dinner hour, head out to Thai Heaven for curry that doesn't skimp on the good stuff.



Posted By:  Katherine Dean
Photo:  J.E. Kemp

Chick-fil-A Dwarf House
In some ways the Dwarf House in Hapeville is just like any other Chick-fil-A. Same chicken. Same weird Southern Baptist principles that keep it closed the one day of the week you truly crave a chicken biscuit. But it's the wonderful differences that set this Dwarf House apart from the rest of the chain and earn it a spot in our chicken sandwich hall of fame. For starters, this location is the original—the spot where the first ever Chick-fil-A found it's way (along with two pickles) onto a buttery bun. Furthermore, the full-service diner is open 24 hours (except the Lord’s day, of course, upon which one must honor said Lord by abstaining from juicy breasts of succulent chicken). While it does sport that stupid hobbit-hole facade and entrance adorning other Dwarf Houses; the rest of the decor is decidedly less contrived. And unlike the rest of the city's plain old Chick-fil-A's, you can order a hamburger or even a ribeye, which flies in the face of corporate Holstein-centric advertising. We love marketing inconsistencies. The chicken is phenomenal, the waitresses call you "honey," and you can get a gravy-slathered, hangover-hindering Hot Brown at 4 in the morning. We're not sure what heaven looks like, but the Dwarf House is pretty damn close.



Posted By:  Katherine Dean
Photo:  J.E. Kemp

Grecian Gyro
“Once a week, go Greek.” Or so owner Nick encourages his patrons. But I guarantee you, after one bite of Nick’s delicious and heavily sauced gyros, you’ll start to crave them daily. Just like every other Greek-style restaurant, the gyros at Nick’s start out as a spinning slab-o-meat perched inside an Auto Donner. Then the real magic begins. Hunks of mouthwatering lamby goodness hang out for a few minutes on a flat top grill sizzling in a hefty dose of olive oil. These succulent morsels then get wrapped in some warm pillowy pita bread along with tomatoes, onions and a loving heap of Nick’s sauce. Which is special. And a secret. Get it on absolutely everything you order. The best part about Nick’s is this: The Gyro is only $3.99, which, if I’m not mistaken, is even less than the faux-Greek crap a certain chain (I won’t name names) is passing off in mall food courts across the country. Insider Tip: Avoid Nick’s at high noon when the line stretches out the door. Opt instead for an earlier or later lunch if possible.



Posted By:  Katherine Dean
Photo:  J.E. Kemp

Hapeville Recyclable Center
Since when did recycling become an activity reserved exclusively for the wealthy or the bored? I mean, I want to save the planet just like everybody else; I really do, but when I'm expected to pay three bucks extra for toilet paper made entirely from recycled materials (read: ass sandpaper), I'm just not sure I can hop on the green bandwagon. Same thing when it comes to separating my garbage. Most of the recycling centers in town expect you to spend hours patiently separating and washing your trash. Then, once you've done all that, you have to haul it all over the city, to no less than three different locations. One doesn't take plastic, the other doesn't take glass. Oy vey! That's why I'm in love with the Hapeville Recyclable Center. No weird bans on certain materials (they accept all aluminum, plastic, glass, paper and cardboard) or rules about separating your shit. Just toss it all in any one of the big white hoppers. Really, it's OK to mix. Now that you know the best kept recycling secret in the city, don't go spoiling the free lunch for everyone. Please, for the love of god, refrain from dumping that old couch your roommate ruined after a long night of Jagerbombs.



Posted By:  Katherine Dean
Photo:  J.E. Kemp

Which Wich?
There’s no sandwich place like it. Seriously. Yeah, tons of sub-par franchises boast fresh toasted subs, but none delivers the goods quite like Which Wich? For starters, when you enter the restaurant, the first thing you do is pick a brown paper bag numbered 1-10 (corresponding with the category of sandwich you’re in the mood for—don’t worry, there are no unnecessary soups, salads or wraps to break your concentration). Despite this dummy-proof system, Which Wich? virgins tend to stare, open-mouthed at the menu, waiting for something to happen. Try to cut in front of them. Next, take one of the provided red Sharpie Markers and indicate how you want your Wich dressed. Choose wisely here, young grasshopper, as your selections can make or break the Wich (e.g. you can get a glob of Cheese Whiz splattered on your meal). I can’t decide if the whole bag mark-up process is utilized to streamline the factory-like production of these little bundles of goodness or to prevent annoying customers from hovering over the sneeze guard and micromanaging the sandwich artist. No matter. Once you’ve handed over your instructions and your $4.75 (they all cost the same), you’re free to hang out creating bag doodles until your Wich has been assembled. What’s a bag doodle you say? Go to find out.



Posted By:  Katherine Dean
Photo:  J.E. Kemp

Spondivits
She seduces you with her siren song of warm, glowing neon and sweet, sweet crab legs. She lures you in with her teeming throng of faithful worshipers overflowing out onto the sidewalks, all the while singing her praises. But, tread lightly with this wanton temptress. Because here, there be monsters. Yes, this femme fatal conceals daggers and will toss you on the rocks quick as Lager turns to piss. Okay, okay, I’ve never officially “done the deed” with this vile enchantress. I’ve only born witness to her packed-to-the-gills status. But unless you were adrift at sea the latter portion of ‘07, you’ve no doubt heard the stories: tepid shellfish, sanitation grades in the F minus range, etc. Now, I’m never one to throw the baby out with the bathwater. I generally avoid those pesky placards emblazoned with big, bold numbers at some of the dives I find myself frequenting. If it looks and smells good, it generally goes down the hatch. So if you, too, are apt to throw caution to the wind and fancy embarking on a seafood adventure that may or may not include the appropriate hygiene, then I say “Anchors away!”




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