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Eat like a local at these 5 Virginia-Highland restaurants

On Atlanta Eats, we love  exploring neighborhoods, including my very own. You can explore along with Steak Shapiro and me as we eat our way through the city every Saturday and Sunday at 10:30 a.m. on Peacthree TV. 

It's easy to mix Morningside and Poncey-Highland in with Virginia Highland, so for these picks I'll to stick to the general area. We call it "Virginia Highland" because it's where Virginia Avenue and North Highland intersect.  The true locals don't add an "s" to the Highland. But instead of being technical about how to say it right, let's focus on what's important: where to eat!  Here are a few of my favorites.

1. La Tavola Hands down, one of the best Italian restaurants in the city.  I love the city vibe, open kitchen and sexy bar. The stand out item for me is always the spaghetti with veal meatballs.  From grilled calamari to roasted chicken, everything at La Tavola is fresh, rustic and delicious. I'm also a huge fan of their brunch.

2. Yeah Burger!  Atlanta is filled with burger joints, and yeah, their burger is super - but I am all about the Brussels sprouts.  They're sweet, salty and crispy with scoop of creamy goat cheese.  They also have an outstanding spicy kale salad.  Pretty much everything here is locally sourced and organic.  

3. Highland Tap Martinis have gotten fancy and flavored over the years, but you can't beat the classic at the Tap.  I especially love the side car presentation; it's old school fabulous. The food is consistently good steakhouse fare but for me the bar is where it's at.  They also have a great jukebox in case you planning on staying for a while.  

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4. George's  George’s has one of the most talked about burgers in the area, with its perfect mix of gourmet ground and backyard char.  Grab one of these, sit on the patio and watch the people walk by.  The rest of the menu has good bar food but the burger is everything.  Don't miss it.

5. Cacao  If you want to feel like you're in Paris, head to this gorgeous confection shop. The minute you see the chocolate fountain you’re hooked.  Everything is amazing - macarons, cakes, gelato, specialty chocolate and more.  It's like a boutique Willy Wonka paradise.

RELATED: Cacao named one of the "Best Chocolates in the Country" 

There are so many other great spots in the area so grab a gelato at Paulo's, a Pabst Blue Ribbon at Moe's & Joe's or the legendary brunch at Murphy's and stay a while.  Hope to see you in the neighborhood soon!

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