Nothing quite primes us for gaming like a healthy, hearty brunch. And with Bad Dog Taqueria’s Chef Tracy whipping up goodness in the kitchen, well, let’s just say they’re taking Atlanta’s brunch game to the next level.
You know what we love about Edgewood Ave.? Well, a lot of things. But at the root of all of the individually endearing things, there’s this: Edgewood Avenue is a bit of a petri dish as far as restaurants and businesses are concerned. It’s a magical couple of blocks where we can play ping-pong in Church, cut a rug and devour some Boniato Fries, or drink a killer cocktail whilst we play our video games. And beyond the restaurants, there are shops popping up left and right whose wares we just can’t get enough of. And in the center of it all, there’s our beloved Joystick. Owners Brandon and Johnny will be the first to tell you that they are very different people, but one thing they have in common – they want to give Atlanta access to experiences they won’t see elsewhere in the city. Which is precisely how we were gifted the chance to play our favorite games whilst imbibing on a expertly crafted cocktail came into being. (Au revoir grape soda and Hot Pockets.)
Not only are Johnny and Brandon advocates of experimentation and the avant garde – they’re also excellent neighbors. Such good neighbors, in fact, that they’re opening their doors (and their kitchen) to the new kid on the block – Bad Dog Taqueria – as they prepare to open up shop next-door (which will include an air hockey table, FYI). Well Atlanta, get ready to reap (and devour) the benefits of all their generosity, because what Chef Tracy is whipping up in the kitchen is really bringing brunch to the to the next level. And her internationally-inspired takes on breakfast classics, paired with the expertly concocted creations Joystick’s slingin’ up behind the bar? Let’s just say they’re on fire.
You and your brunching buddy of choice will start your meal off the best way brunching buddies can: with coffee and doughnuts. But not just any coffee and doughnuts, mind you. (This is Joystick and Chef Tracy we’re talking about, after all.) Nope, you’ll get a serving of Chef Tracy’s signature Lola Belle confections. Now, about those doughnuts: served up straight from Chef Tracy's great-grandmama's cookbook, Lola Belle doughnuts are the lightest, sweetest concoctions we've sunk our teeth into this side of the Mississippi – better yet, they're gluten free (made from potatoes, believe it or not). Skeptics, step aside. Once you sink your teeth into the airy goodness of her Cinnamon-sugar and Yellow Curry Sugared doughnuts, you’ll never be the same. These will be expertly paired with one of Joystick’s aptly named New Cup On the Block imbibes, which combines 18.21 Bitters’ cold brew coffee concentrate with a homemade walnut tincture and Genepy des Alps.
From there you’ll each have your choice of brunch entrees, sides, and imbibes to devour. There’s a little bit of everything on these menus. First off, there’s the Souixie, or what we like to refer to as, “the ultimate hangover quencher” – a wicked fierce combination of house-cured bacon, sausage, eggs, Tracy’s menage-a-trois potatoes, as wells as a biscuit and gravy served with chicken sausage. (Hungry yet?) But lest we forget Chef Tracy is a Master of the huevos, one bite into the unctuous and bubbling cauldron known as shakshuka – you’ll be reminded. And of course the “Jack Me Off Burger” and “Double Fister Burrito” only aim to please. The burrito combines steaming black beans, fluffy scrambled eggs, cheddar and jack cheese, and Panting Dog Hot Sauce in one locally-made burrito. And the burger? We’ll cut straight to the chase: its two patties (which are made with grass fed brisket and ground in-house) are bedecked with white American cheese, sautéed red onions, shredded iceberg roma tomatoes and – get ready for it – Jack and Coke (!) mayo. This legend is then served up with freshly fried Boniato fries and jabañero ketchup.
And of course, you’ll need something to wash all of this deliciousness down with – and Joystick’s got just the cocktails for the occasion. Trust us, at this arcade game bar, the libations are just as intense as the Mortal Kombat battles. It’s up to you to choose what will fuel your Galaga escapades: a Micheludo, which marries clamato, Tapatio hot sauce, MAGGI seasoning, lime juice and Sessions Black Lager with a beef boullion rim or a Kelly Bundy (see also: apple juice for adults) featuring 18.21 Bitters' Apple Cardamom Shrub
. What can we say? After a brunch this decadent, things will never be the same. Game on, ATL.