Malika Bowling

Malika Bowling describes herself as a foodie with a passion for travel. Especially fond of exotic locales, Malika believes that food is one of the best ways to get to know a culture. When not jet-setting, she writes about the food scene for her Atlanta Restaurant Blog. She frequently presents on business blogging and has been interviewed for, among others, Inc. Magazine and Huffington Post. A published author and online marketing consultant, Malika resides in Atlanta, where she seeks out hidden restaurant gems throughout the city.

recent posts

Build Your Own Manhattan

At Article 14, a Midtown Atlanta bar, you choose the bourbon or whiskey, vermouth, and bitters to customize your Manhattan. It’s a great concept for Manhattan aficionados, but a bit too intimidating for me. I prefer the A-14 Martini, in my opinion, the best apple martini you’ll ever have. If you’ve sworn off apple martinis based on the overly sweet ones you’ve had in the past, put your prejudices aside and try this one. You won’t regret it. Need something to nibble on? Get the lobster pasta—it’s [... more]

The Heart of Savannah

With quaint B&Bs and intimate inns, Savannah has long been a romantic getaway for couples. But once you’ve chosen a hotel, where do you dine? Locals know that Maxwell’s in Savannah is the place to go for a romantic evening. Besides an upscale atmosphere, there’s a talented pianist/vocalist on site that ups that love-is-in-the-air atmosphere. Maxwell’s keeps the menu choices limited because it offers nightly specials according to what’s in season. Be sure to end your evening on a sweet note…I recommend the key lime cheesecake or [... more]

Fusion Confusion?

Don’t call Cardamom Hill chef Asha Gomez’s cooking “fusion” as she has a disdain for the word. She’ll quickly tell you it isn’t fusion at all, but simply the food she grew up eating in her native Kerala, India. Unlike in other parts of India, Kerala cuisine doesn’t use heavy sauces. Also absent are the extremely hot peppers used in most Indian cooking, The result? The true flavors and aromas of the food come through. Favorite dishes at Cardamom Hill in Atlanta include the Goat Biryani, Kerala [... more]

A Bistro in the ‘Burbs

Some people say that the northern ’burbs of Atlanta don’t have good spots to eat. Well, I say they’re sorely mistaken. Case in point: Bistro VG in Roswell, Georgia. A proven standby for locals, the restaurant has enjoyed success for decades—an eternity by Atlanta standards. White tablecloths and linen chair-back covers impart a more sophisticated feel than many of the surrounding restaurants. The mostly “modern French cuisine” elevates it as well. Recently, we chose the spot to celebrate my hubby’s birthday. We dined on tried-and-true favorites—the Calamari [... more]

These Nachos Are a Notch Above

Zeta in Jacksonville, Florida, uses mahi mahi in their tacos…that’s no surprise. But the restaurant also offers it on the nachos for a fabulously delicious surprise. If you’ve got a large group, this is the perfect appetizer to begin your meal—but you may want to order more than one. They go quickly! Kudos to Zeta, also, for having a good selection of craft beers and terrific cocktails. The place fills up quickly on Thursday for trivia night, but the spacious place can handle it. The more the [... more]

High Praise for High Cotton

The dining scene in Greenville, South Carolina, has quietly been heating up over the past few years. I’ve attended the town’s Euphoria Food and Wine Festival three years in a row and sampled cuisines from some of its best restaurants. Count High Cotton among those. Overlooking the River Walk, High Cotton takes advantage of its beautiful setting with floor-to-ceiling windows. The food—I would best describe as “modern Southern—is artfully presented. Menu highlights include the duck breast with a honey-thyme sauce and the pork chop with bourbon jus. [... more]

Shine On!

The South is experiencing a moonshine resurgence. No longer a backwoods brew, ’shine now shows up on cocktail menus at trendy establishments. One such place, Stillhouse in Atlanta’s Buckhead neighborhood, has designed its entire cocktail menu around it. Dressed in low light and dark woods, the bar/restaurant features booths and high top tables made from Troy & Sons whiskey barrels. But, as we found out, the best seats are at the bar. Bartenders artfully craft cocktails using any of the 45 varieties of moonshine on hand. If [... more]

A Refined Whiskey Bar

What goes with top-shelf whiskey? Upscale comfort food, of course. Those two draws are precisely what Dram Whiskey Bar in Birmingham has built its reputation on. While you munch on such offerings as Bacon Mac ‘n’ Cheese, Bison Chili, or Country Ham Sliders (shown above), try one of the bar’s featured cocktails such as Frankfort Fizz or Sassafras Sazerac. Not enough whiskey for you? No problem. Select one of their whiskey flights, which include tastings of five distinct whiskeys. Photo Source: Dram Whiskey Bar