JCT Kitchen & Bar in trendy West Midtown’s Westside Urban Market gets its name from a nearby sign for the junction of railroad lines that once carried livestock into the city of Atlanta. Emphasizing traditional foods and European techniques, Chef Ford Fry’s restaurant couldn’t be more appropriately named. As homey as it is upscale, this is Southern farmstead cooking in an elegantly casual atmosphere you wish grandma’s house had.
The light-filled restaurant feels like a Southerner’s answer to the French bistro, with a menu that’s reminiscent of family favorites tweaked by ingredients from regional fields and farms. “Farmstead is a culinary term currently used in artisan cheese making, where the dairy comes from the same farm where the cheese is made. I like the word because it indicates hand-crafted food and the use of local farms; it speaks of seasonal, fresh ingredients,” explains Chef Fry. “It describes a philosophy of food. We want to use local products and make all the goods ourselves.”
Signature Southern dishes include fried chicken, shrimp and grits, braised short ribs with “pot roast” vegetables, and chicken & dumplings that’s actually red wine-braised chicken with gnocchi sautéed in brown butter – just don’t call it coq au vin. Sunday nights play host to an old-fashioned Sunday Supper, with a “meat and three” menu that is ridiculously priced at only $24. It begins with warm biscuits and deviled eggs. Then choose from five meats like sweetwater catfish and hickory roasted pork loin and nine home-style vegetables for the table. Also included is JCT’s farm stand salad plus the luscious pie or cake of the moment.
Sorry, I just can’t resist: this is one junction where it all comes together.