Thank God I decided to write the Better Breakfast series. Otherwise, I might have never found Noon Midtown.
Owner/Chef Katie Birmingham’s story is one that adds just a little bit more fuel to my fantasies that I will one day shed my corporate shackles and live out my life cooking food that makes people smile two days later. Birmingham spent over seven years working in some impressive Atlanta kitchens, Bacchanalia amongst them, before she decided to pursue a career in law. Thankfully, the life of a lawyer wasn’t for her. In April ’09, some five years after leaving the restaurant business, she opened Noon Midtown.
Noon is one of the best surprises that I’ve happened upon while writing this series. I’d heard rumblings of a great new spot serving exceptional sandwiches for the midtown crowd, but I worked too far away to make it down there during the week. It wasn’t until I began an active hunt for an exceptional breakfast that I really learned about Noon.
More specifically, I learned about The Stack.
Before I get into to the awesomeness of The Stack, I should give you a little background on myself that I don’t often discuss in while in my guise of sophisticated foodie.
I love Chik-Fil-A chicken biscuits.
Actually, let me be more specific: I really fucking love Chick-Fil-A chicken biscuits.
I know many of you reading this in Atlanta are thinking “Well, no shit man! Who DOESN’T love Chik-fil-A chicken biscuits?! I sure do!”
Not like I do, dude.
I won’t get into details, but I’ll just say that they dominate most of my weekday breakfasts. And some weekends. When I’m feeling a little extra fancy-free with my arteries, I’ll add egg and cheese. And then take it to the face.
So, taking into consideration my love for this mass produced fast food breakfast, I ask you, dear reader: Can you think of any food that, when made from scratch, isn’t going to be VASTLY superior to its fast food counterpart? I know that I can’t. Except for Krystal.
So, imagine my jubilation when I first bit into THIS:
That’s right. It’s the chicken biscuit that wet dreams are made of.
For those that aren’t busy counting the layers, this consists of a fried chicken breast, Benton’s bacon, cheddar cheese, sausage gravy, and a fried egg sandwiched between a homemade biscuit.
There really isn’t anything I should have to say about it. I could talk about the fact that the chicken is moist and perfectly fried. Or I could discuss how ingenious it was to add sausage gravy to this hearty breakfast sandwich. But come on! Just LOOK AT THAT THING:
Maybe I should have held up my hand for perspective, but The Stack (only served on Saturdays) is a beast. I didn’t even attempt to eat it without cutting it in half first, and I had to use a fork for the majority of the meal. That said, I have to acknowledge the fact that on my way out I spotted Savory Exposure taking down his Stack, whole, with his bare hands. Respect.
[Side Note!] Before I forget, I should mention that Noon Midtown also serves fresh Sublime Doughnuts every day. Bonus!
After leaving Noon that morning I knew that I had to come back again before I wrote a review, which is something I don’t always do. Not just because I ate only one dish and left with just two pictures, but also because my inclination towards chicken biscuits could have been affecting my judgment. So, a few weeks later I made the steadfast decision that, come hell or high water, I was going back to Noon for breakfast the next morning.
And then the ice came.
I awoke to icy streets, empty bread isles, and the morning to myself. At 10:45 AM, after the perilous trek through the frozen tundra of Buckhead to Midtown, I settled in at Noon with my laptop for the day. And I had the place all to my lonesome.
Beside myself for making it there alive, I started talking my way through the breakfast menu to the guy at the register, asking for suggestions and whatnot, only to learn that breakfast had stopped at 10 AM.
I grabbed a Sublime doughnut and a coffee, and sulked my way back to Twitter to bitch about it. Shockingly, Katie actually follows my Twitter account, something that I hadn’t considered before griping about my failed breakfast expedition on the internet. Some 5 minutes later, she comes over and tells me that she feels bad that I drove all the way down there and would be happy to cook me something off of the breakfast menu if that is what I wanted. I thought that was pretty cool.
And to make things even cooler, the Fried Egg sandwich that I ordered was outstanding. On paper, it looks pretty simple: Fried egg, capicola, and provolone on a baguette. That’s it.
The baguette is thick, soft, and buttery. But the capicola is the game changer: Subtly smokey and noticeably salty, almost at the level of country ham, yet sliced thin enough to still allow the egg and cheese to retain center stage. It complements without overpowering. I was so into this sandwich that I seriously had to force myself to slow down so that I could actually enjoy it.
If you work or live within walking distance of Noon Midtown, I kind of hate you. And if you ARE one of those lucky bastards and still have not eaten here, I feel sorry for you.
Some folks may joke that the world is always a better place when there is one less lawyer in it. I can’t really say one way or the other. But I do know that, in the case of Katie Birmingham, Atlanta sure as hell is.
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