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  • The Spence

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The Spence
The Spence

The Spence Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://thespenceatl.com
  • Phone: (404) 892-9111
  • Hours of Operation: Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:30pm - 11:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary American
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, View, Wine
  • Special Events & Promotions: We have a private dining room with a 36 person capacity. We also have feasting menu options available at our chefs tables which can hold up to 22 people. Our feasting menus consist of selecting a whole animal for your main protein to be broken down alongside side dishes, appetizers and dessert for $65 a head. Must call the restaurant and book a contract for the feasting menu options.

Getting there

  • Public Transit: Complimentary valet drop off directly in front of the restaurant on Fifth Street.
  • Parking: Valet
A word from The Spence
Helmed by Chef Richard Blais, The Spence, a partnership with acclaimed restaurant group Concentrics Restaurants, is a classic eatery that serves accessible, ingredient driven food to its surrounding community and beyond. Backed by an all-star culinary team including Adrian Villarreal (Atlanta’s JOËL and TAP) and Pastry Chef Andrea Litvin (New York City’s ABC Kitchen, Atlanta’s The Livingston), Blais displays his culinary strengths throughout on an ever-changing “pantry list” alongside signature dishes. The wine list, curated by Advanced Sommelier Justin Amick, offers focused “Tried and True” and “Leap of Faith” selections from true artists across the globe listed in an increasing progression of acidity. The Spence proudly showcases the best in accessible atmosphere, food and beverage.Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
Diner Reviews
  • "First time for dinner - party of eight on a Saturday night - they sat us at the Chefs table which is right in front of the grill and prep station. We lucked out and Chef Blais was in town and he was very gracious in stopping by and chatting The menu is quite extensive and a bit eclectic (of course), but there is something for everyone. We had a number of small plates and salads to start, all of which were very good and were accompanied by bread We had two bottles of excellent wine which were reasonable priced. For dinner, we had short ribs, grilled porgy, the burger, mahi raviolo and more - everyone really enjoyed their meals We also tried the nitrogen sundae...what fun! Great evening with a great Chef!"
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "We gave the Spence another try after a poor first experience after it had just opened. Unfortunately we were disappointed again after waiting for several minutes to be seated (nobody was at the hostess stand when we arrived) and inattentive service after being seated. Although I enjoyed my meal (whole snapper), my husband's short rib was extremely fatty. I don't think we will be back anytime soon."
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "The food was fantastic and I love the ever-changing menu. The juicy lucy burger is awesome,"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "We were in Atlanta for 5 days and visited The Spence twice. The small plates were perfect for sharing and gave us the opportunity to try so many amazing things. The roasted beets were our favourite (we had these both nights). Our server (Sabrina) was very attentive and made our experience perfect - she even remembered our names when we returned. The 'canned' soup (playfully served from a can) was roasted parsnip and was fantastic! Sabrina suggested that we try the Bone Marrow Tuna Tartare and it was very tasty - as she put it "its like beef butter". The macaroni and headcheese was rich and satisfying. The blueberry cheesecake was perfectly dreamy. I would highly recommend The Spence. It was outstanding."
    Dined on 4/9/2014
  • "My third time eating here and it never disappointed me! The food was spectacular and the service was personal and enthusiastic. Just to watch the chefs work and create right in front of us was worth the trip. We will surely be back soon because this place is easily in the top 3 in Atlanta."
    Dined on 4/6/2014
  • "The food was uniquely delicious! Every element had a special twist - the kind that made Richard Blais famous. The horseradish pearls on the oysters, the coconut butter with the fluffy rolls, the bucatini with grapes and chicken - all excellent. The service was warm and knowledgeable. I will definitely recommend it to friends in Atlanta."
    Dined on 4/2/2014
  • "We ate here for our 33rd anniversary and the food was incredible as was the service and atmosphere. Appetizers of Roasted peppers with capers, and fried olives were full of surprising tastes. The cream brulee sweet potato and fried brussel sprouts caused my mouth to water. I had the Porgy fish which left me with the image of a colonial frontiersman pulling this perfect fish out of the crystal clear Chesapeake Bay and cooking it over an open fire on a starlit night. Our only complaint was my wife's strip steak was literally without taste. It is a testament to the rest of the meal that we would still highly recomment this restaurant."
    Dined on 3/31/2014
  • "This place rocks. The service is outstanding, the food is out of this world. The combinations put together by the chef are surprising but delicious. Our waiter Pete is highly recommended."
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "This chef and the staff know what they're doing. Food was excellent and wait staff had great recommendations."
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "I have dined here a dozen or so times since it opened and the last few have been spectacular - perhaps the kitchen is getting its' legs. Creative, fresh, unique approach to great ingredients. Great place to go to try things you just won't find anywhere else in town."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "The menu is limited but the dishes are presented beautifully and taste wonderful. The portions are very small and a little peicey, even for fine dining standards. In general the experience was very good and would recommend to others with a caveat saying the meal is going to be pricey."
    Dined on 3/19/2014
  • "Second visit: service on first visit was excellent. This time, not so much. With every dish, waiter failed to bring a serving spoon. We had to wave for a waiter , each time, for a spoon. Wave for water. Wave for another drink. We gave a 20% tip, but he did not earn it. We enjoyed every bite of our mea, however. Really good food in a very noisy place."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "Lighting was too low and the restaurant was too loud. Bathrooms were very dirty."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "The food was good, service was very good but the noise level was uncomfortable for a romantic dinner. I could hardly hear my wife speaking! I tried the fish dish which was very boney and had to carefully pick out the bones. The rolls served were like the Kroger dinner rolls. A fresh baked roll would have made a big difference. Nothing special. The coconut butter was excellent. my wife tried the burger and she said it was alright. Being a foodie I like to try new things but to be honest I left feeling like I would have done better going to some quieter spot to hear what my wife was saying instead of asking her to repeat herself every few words. The receptionist when I called in said parking was free, found that it was $3 plus to park."
    Dined on 3/13/2014
  • "This was a nice restaurant for a special occasion dinner. Please dont come here hungry. You'll leave just as you came!"
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "Very interesting menu that offered spin on traditional favorites such as macaroni and head cheese and baby kale caesar salad, which was fantastic. Variety of choices for those of us who are adventerous eaters along with choices that anyone would feel comfortable with. Our server, Peter, was great. Very helpful and attentive throughout the evening."
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "My husband and I love to eat out... A lot. And this is by FAR, our favorite restaurant in town."
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "The two starter plates, while very good, did not live up to the expectations I had based on the server's recommendations. That said, she steered me toward the duck breast entree, and that was pretty amazing...especially since I don't usually like the way most restaurants prepare theirs. The cheesecake was also oustanding."
    Dined on 3/13/2014
  • "Great ambience, decor and wonderful food. Love the seasonal changes!"
    Dined on 3/12/2014
  • "We've been striking out at The Spence - 3 times in a row. The menu du jour paled by comparison with what's posted on the website. The food was slightly above average. The pork belly was more fat back and less the desirable ratio of fat to pork meat. The Snapper entree that three of the four of us were interested in wasn't available at 9:30PM on a Saturday. The service, even though the wait-person was congenial, was off. Details like water, bread were overlooked and promises of "that cocktail or wine is on the way" were unfulfilled. The manager was sympathetic to our concerns and offered complimentary desert - both the attitude and gesture were appreciated. We tried to convey disappointment objectively but I think Richard Blais would be too."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "We ate with a group of five people and shared about 12 small plates. All were original and enjoyed by all. The group favorite was the oysters and pearls."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "The pimento cheese with ham and pepper jelly must be made by the hands of God's finest angels. Delicious!"
    Dined on 3/6/2014
  • "This is a restaurant that you will blow your mind with the food."
    Dined on 3/5/2014
  • "Highlights: blood sausage and risotto fritters and the oysters as well as the pappardelle with veal ragu. Disappointments: roasted beets and the kale caesar. Biggest disappointment was that they ran out of liquid nitrogen just as we ordered our ice cream sundae. They did comp other desserts, which were just ok. Service: Alex was great. She was well-educated on the menu/preparations and made some great wine pairing suggestions. Ambience: Fine, but the noise level was way too high. The music was cranking and truly overpowered the food. We had a hard time conversing at our table of 4."
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "The food was good, very heavy on pork and bacon and marrow (not a particularly good place for vegetarians, pork in one form or another added into much of the menu)--oysters and some of the small plates best. Service was good if a little precious. Noise level was very, very high (lean in hard to hear across your own table)--a definite negative. More expensive than some of the ATL competition for the same quality of food. Good, but not great. (The outdoor area might be nice, possibly less loud, in warmer weather.) $3 valet parking, again even this small thing more expensive than the competition."
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "We chose to dine here before our show at The Fox Theater -- great decision! We were blessed with a wonderfully attentive and knowledgeable server, Jessica. She helped us choose a superb wine and just made us feel so welcome and comfortable. Highly recommend the oysters and pearls "snack"--divine! Bone marrow w/ tuna tartare was a hit as well as the braised short ribs and the Porchetta. Our two fish dishes (swordfish and Branzina dishes were mot as great, quite dry. We tried all desserts , except table side liquids. Couldn't choose a favorite as they were all so good. Highly recommend for a special evening, cause the cost is high."
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Creative, scrumptious, seasonally focused dishes. Attentive and knowledgeable service. A delightful experience!"
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Awesome food! Awesome service! A bit too noisy but the food and service made up for it!"
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "The Spence was our choice, as an out of town visitor, because of chef/owner Richard Blais. The service was excellent. The food was very good, they have really good small plate options so we tried a wide range of items. They have very fresh fish, that was a highlight for a Midwesterner in winter."
    Dined on 2/25/2014
  • "My husband and I were blown away by the menu...so unique and imaginative! Things we would never think to put together tasted amazing! Our server paired wines perfectly with each course. Can't wait to go back!"
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "I am a big fan of Richard Blais so when I had the opportunity to travel to the ATL I jumped at the chance to go to this restaurant. It is in a busy area of the city and parking is not easy to find so it is worth the $3 charge for valet. If you stay more than an hour (and if you have all 4 courses, you probably will) you end up hearing the same music play again. Can you say - get some XM satellite radio or an ipod with more than 10 songs in there... The wait staff was friendly, but a little aloof and talked about how good things were, but not about what they were. I ordered the short ribs and the flavor was muddy and unappetizing. My friend had the pork belly which was delicious. Dessert is a must! I love the consept, but it needs work."
    Dined on 2/21/2014
  • "Very unique from the bar offerings to the small plates to the main course. All very well presented. Our waitress had a very knowledgable. Ok and of the bar, wine and food offerings and maxes excellent suggestions. I would take any guest, even the. Most discerning "foodie" for a meal here. I can't wait to go back. It will be interesting to see how and if they will rotate the menu with the seasons."
    Dined on 2/21/2014
  • "Saturday night outing to The Spence was everything we expected. Lively patrons, attentive and knowledgeable wait staff, and imaginative, precisely prepared food. Bravo Mr Blais."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "3 of us on a Thurs nite. Not many people but already noisy; could use some noise reduction decor. We ordered 3 small plates to start: beet salad, mussels and carrot pasta. Nothing special about the beet salad. Mussels and pasta were good. Both my companions ordered short ribs which were fatty and small portioned. I ordered the whole grilled red snapper. They brought me striped bass. Very nice mgr came to apologize that it would take a few minutes. When it came it smelled fishy and was small. When I removed head and bones there definitely wasn't $34 of fish to eat. It wasn't good. Should've kept the bass! Desserts were tiny; not easy to share. Suggest going for drinks and small plates and finding another place if you're still hungry!"
    Dined on 2/20/2014
  • "The Spence is in walking distance of the GA Tech Conference Center in a highly trafficked area of students, but it felt like a neighborhood eatery. The dining room looks onto a courtyard and has outside dining and bar service. The decor appeared metro-industrial, but with soft touches. The service, and plating of food was impeccable. It was fun to see each dish and how it was presented on an eclectic variety of plates and utensils. Then there was the food; oh my! Every bite was wonderful. Flavors blended amazingly where each individual flavor was there, but the match was perfect. Great value because of small plates, enough for one; starters, enough to share, and entrees, more expensive yet good value. Portions of food were just right."
    Dined on 2/19/2014
  • "I had a perfect meal and drinks, but my companions all got the burgers, which were all overdone. We are all old friends, unable to catch up, or enjoy our dinners, because we couldn't hear each other, and we were all yelling. We were all horse the next day. It was so loud that it was no fun."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "My husband and I celebrated Valentine's Day at The Spence and I must say that it didn't disappoint. My husband watched the top Chef of America show and is a huge fan of Blais. We are looking to visit again very soon. We enjoyed the roasted marrow bone topped with tuna tartare and quail eggs, pork belly with macaroni and head and duck with brussel sprouts."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "Loud. Crowded. Food ok but a bit of a snooze and expensive to boot."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "I waited a long time to go to The Spence because of financial reasons. Was really disappointed in the food & my husband and I left hungry after having three courses. Steak tartar was really bland, toast points for the foie gras weren't toasted, and the duck was chewy. Again, very disappointing."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "Lots of unique items on the menu. Food was prepared and presented very well."
    Dined on 2/14/2014