Discover the best of Alpharetta: History, dining and more

People walking in shopping area in Avalon on November 20, 2022.
Brandon McKeown

Nestled in the heart of North Fulton County, just 22 miles north of the city of Atlanta, lies the charming city of Alpharetta. Founded in the 1850s, Alpharetta was once a small rural farming community but has since grown into a bustling city that is home to over 67,000 people.

Despite its growth, Alpharetta has managed to maintain its small-town charm and has become a popular destination for visitors looking to experience the perfect blend of modern amenities and historic charm.

As the one-time county seat of Milton County - which was merged into Fulton County in 1931, Alpharetta’s old town center has a number of historic sites, which are easily explored on a self-guided tour about the city’s past.

Woman walking her dog in downtown Alpharetta on November 20, 2022
Brandon McKeown, Access Atlanta

For those interested in history, the Alpharetta and Old Milton County History Museum is a must-visit destination. The museum is located in the heart of downtown Alpharetta and features a collection of artifacts and exhibits that showcase the city’s unique history.

But Alpharetta isn’t just about history. The city is also known for its thriving culinary scene, which has garnered attention from foodies across the country. One of the most popular spots in town is the Avalon, a mixed-use development that features a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment options.

Performers on stage in Avalon on November 20, 2022.
Brandon McKeown, Access Atlanta

Avalon is home to some of the best restaurants in the city, including Colletta, an Italian restaurant that serves up delicious pasta dishes, and Oak Steakhouse, a classic steakhouse with a modern twist. For more options – from casual to fine dining – check out Avalon’s dining directory.

In addition to the Avalon, downtown Alpharetta is also home to a variety of restaurants and cafes. One of the most popular spots is the Butcher & Brew, a gastropub that serves up craft beer and delicious pub fare. Another popular spot is South Main Kitchen, which offers up farm-to-table cuisine made with locally sourced ingredients.

For those looking for a bit of retail therapy, Alpharetta has plenty of options. In addition to the shops at the Avalon, the city is also home to the North Point Mall, which features over 100 stores and restaurants. The mall is the perfect place to spend a day shopping, and visitors can take a break from browsing to catch a movie at the mall’s movie theater.

But Alpharetta isn’t just about shopping and dining. The city is also home to a variety of outdoor spaces that offer plenty of opportunities for recreation and relaxation. One of the most popular spots is the Big Creek Greenway, a 12-foot-wide concrete path that winds through the city and is perfect for walking, jogging, or biking.

Pitbull and Iggy Azalea energized sold out Ameris Bank Amphitheatre on Thursday, October 13, 2022 on the Can't Stop Us Now Tour. Robb Cohen for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Robb Cohen for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, AJC Freelancer

Ameris Bank Amphitheatre is one of Alpharetta’s top music venues, known for its outdoor setting and stunning acoustics. The amphitheater hosts a wide variety of concerts and events, ranging from pop and rock to country and hip-hop. With a seating capacity of over 12,000, Ameris Bank Amphitheatre offers both covered and lawn seating options, making it the perfect venue for both intimate shows and large-scale productions. In addition to its top-notch sound system and high-quality performances, the venue also boasts a variety of food and beverage options, ensuring that concert-goers have everything they need for a memorable evening.

But perhaps the most unique outdoor destination in Alpharetta is the Alpharetta Arboretum at Wills Park. The arboretum is home to a variety of plant species that are native to the area. Visitors can take a self-guided tour of the arboretum, and learn more about the plants and trees that call Alpharetta home.

Alpharetta is a city that offers something for everyone. From its rich history to its thriving culinary scene and abundance of outdoor spaces, it’s easy to see why so many people have flocked to this suburb.

Our picks


Colletta is an Italian restaurant that serves up mouthwatering pasta dishes in the heart of Alpharetta. Their menu features fresh, seasonal ingredients and classic Italian flavors that are sure to satisfy any palate.

Location: 900 3rd Street; Hours: 5-10 p.m. on weekdays, noon-11 p.m. on Saturdays and 5-9 p.m. on Sundays; Website:

Oak Steakhouse

Oak Steakhouse is a classic steakhouse with a modern twist, located in the heart of Avalon in Alpharetta. Their menu features high-quality cuts of meat, fresh seafood, and seasonal sides that are expertly prepared and presented.

Location: 950 3rd Street; Hours: 5-10 p.m. on weekdays; 5-11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday; and 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. and 5-9 p.m. Sunday; Website:

Butcher & Brew

Butcher & Brew is a lively gastropub that serves up craft beer and elevated pub fare in a relaxed atmosphere. Their menu features creative sandwiches and shareable plates.

Location: 3 South Main Street; Hours: 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. on weekdays, 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, noon-9 p.m. on Sunday; Website:

South Main Kitchen

South Main Kitchen is a farm-to-table restaurant located in the heart of Alpharetta’s historic downtown district. Their menu features locally sourced ingredients and innovative flavor combinations, as well as a carefully curated wine and cocktail list.

Location: 9 South Main Street; Hours: 5-9 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, 5-10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, 11 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. on Sundays; Website:

Note: This article was written by an Access Atlanta editor with the assistance of OpenAI’s ChatGPT, as a part of an experiment to test the use of AI to assist writers, not replace them. While ChatGPT began the article and provided much of the background, an editor went through and adjusted the recommended locations and activities, and corrected factual errors that the AI included. Please share any feedback on the article with us at

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