Take a tour of the Southern United States with this week’s feature restaurants

02 May 2019
Little Tart Bakeshop (Atlanta, Georgia, USA)

From Georgia to Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma and the Carolinas, we take a trip around the United States’ spectacular South with our seven features restaurants this week.

Little Tart Bakeshop

  • WHO: Sarah O'Brien, baker/owner
  • WHAT: French-inspired, seasonal pastry, delicious coffee & light, vegetable-driven lunch & brunch
  • WHERE: 437 Memorial Drive Southest, Atlanta, Georgia 30312, USA

“Our croissant is the culmination of seven years of work. We have constantly tweaked our recipe and process since our inception to create our ideal version of our favourite pastry. Our dream croissant (the one that Sarah ate on a park bench in Paris twenty years ago and can't get out of her head) is crisp on the outside, soft in the middle, buttery without being heavy, sweet without being sugary, just a tiny bit malty, somehow light and satisfying all at once. The layers are defined and tall and the flake is incredible, which can only be achieved with a deft touch and a lot of skill and practice. We are constantly striving for this ideal, and we're closer than ever. We are so proud of our croissant (clearly)!"

Little Tart Bakeshop opened their third store in early 2019 in a historic strip of buildings on Georgia Avenue. In the next month or so they will be opening Big Softie, a soft serve ice cream shop, right next door to the new café. The local, seasonal, and sustainable ethic will be the common thread between the two businesses with both stores sourcing local Georgia dairy and fruit to make soft serve from scratch that is both delicious and true to their principles. They are working hard on a vegan flavour too!


  • WHO: Michael Gulotta, chef/partner
  • WHAT: A true neighbourhood restaurant mixing Southeast Asia & Southeast Louisiana
  • WHERE: 514 City Park Avenue, Suite F, New Orleans, Louisiana 70119, USA

“Since our opening we have tried hard to move away from a large meat section on our menu. The items we do feature are typically off-cuts, such as tendon and tripe. We always have four completely vegetarian options on the menu and the majority of our dishes are mostly vegetables with a smaller percentage of meat. You will always see a large amount of hearty greens on the menu because they are easy for our farmer friends to grow. Thursday nights are our vegetarian nights, called ‘The Night of the Vegetables’."

MOPHO (New Orleans, Louisiana, USA)MOPHO (New Orleans, Louisiana, USA)

Saint Leo

  • WHO: Emily Blount, owner
  • WHAT: Wood-fired Italian cooking in Oxford, Mississippi
  • WHERE: 1101 East Jackson Ave, Oxford, Mississippi 38655, USA

“Prioritizing environmentally-friendly practices is still a novelty in the Deep South. We recycle, compost and use earth-friendly/biodegradable paper products. The cleaning products we use are environmentally-friendly (and because these products were virtually unknown here, I had to seek special approval from the Mississippi Department of Health to use them)! Additionally, we recently went straw-free and are the first restaurant in Oxford to implement that practice.”

Saint Leo (Oxford, Mississippi, USA)Saint Leo (Oxford, Mississippi, USA)


  • WHO: Russ Johnson, chef/owner
  • WHAT: Oklahoma City farm-to-table fine dining with an artsy, lively bar scene
  • WHERE: 805 North Hudson Avenue, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73102, USA

“I am a regular participant in Turning the Table on Hunger, a local initiative that brings chefs into a local day shelter to cook lunch for hundreds of homeless people. I also participate in Turkey Tango, which provides Thanksgiving meals to thousands of homeless people across the metro area. I joined forces with Danny Bowien, Rick Bayless and many other Oklahoman Chefs to create OK Chefs Relief, where we conducted a series of pop-ups to raise money for the victims of the 10 May 2013 tornadoes, which were among the most deadly and devastating on record.”

Ludivine (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA)Ludivine (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA)

Fullsteam Tavern

  • WHO: Sean Lilly Wilson, owner
  • WHAT: A plow-to-pint brewery & tavern brewing & cooking with Southern ingredients
  • WHERE: 726 Rigsbee Avenue, Durham, North Carolina 27701, USA

“We love writing checks to local farmers. Last year, our local ingredient spend was over $80,000. From sweet potatoes to local grain and foraged persimmons, we believe that truly local beer and food creates wealth and economic opportunity for farmers and agricultural entrepreneurs in a post-tobacco South. While our beers are at least ten per cent local, we've brewed a number of all, or nearly all, local beers, and our goal is to push our minimum threshold from ten per cent to at least thirty per cent within five years. We're also one of the few breweries of our size to publish a sustainability report.”

Fullsteam Tavern (Durham, North Carolina, USA)Fullsteam Tavern (Durham, North Carolina, USA)

Pure Pizza

  • WHO: Juli Ghazi, owner
  • WHAT: Farm-to-plate pizzeria
  • WHERE: 1911 Central Avenue, Charlotte, Mecklenburg, North Carolina 28205, USA

“We are all about community – it is why we exist. Food is community. We do not have any TVs in our dining room (which only seats about forty guests) because we want you to enjoy what you are eating and with whom you are dining. Each week, we host a farmers’ market on Saturday and Sunday, with Sunday having an all-vegan focus. This gives our customers a chance to know, learn and shop through our relationships within the restaurant, as well as learn more about our local food system and impactful ways they can get involved.”

Pure Pizza (Charlotte, North Carolina, USA)Pure Pizza (Charlotte, North Carolina, USA)


  • WHO: Brandon, chef/co-owner & Jeanne Velie, co-owner
  • WHAT: An unexpectedly unique restaurant in the South Carolina Midlands
  • WHERE: 640 East Main Street, Ridge Spring, Saluda, South Carolina 29129, USA

“Our midlands BBQ quail with rice and flash-fried collards uses quail from Manchester Farms, rice from Anson Mills Carolina Gold Rice, and collards from Watsonia Farm. They are cooked quickly in hot butter with salt, pepper and vinegar. Our Juniper house salad is made in-house with local salad greens, red onion, local tomatoes, Clemson Bleu Cheese Dressing, and to top it all off, chopped bacon! Our food philosophy is to take Southern favourites and put our own fun and creative spin on them while also utilizing local and seasonal products. And to keep it simple.”

Juniper (Ridge Spring, South Carolina, USA)Juniper (Ridge Spring, South Carolina, USA)

For this week's noteworthy news, we head even further south...

Ed & Laura Verner, Pasture (Auckland, New Zealand) © Aaron McleanEd & Laura Verner, Pasture (Auckland, New Zealand) © Aaron Mclean

Huge congratulations to TL&CC member restaurant Pasture (Auckland, New Zealand), who has been announced as the restaurant winner of the Metro Peugeot Restaurant of the Year 2019 Supreme Award, not to mention winners of Best Fine Dining and Best Dish. In addition, head chef and owner Ed Verner has also won Best Chef. An incredible achievement!

Other TL&CC member restaurants included amongst the winners and runners-up were; Amano, winner Best All-day Restaurant; and runners-up for Best Chef, and Best Wine. Auckland's Orphans Kitchen were runners-up for Best all-day restaurant.

To read the full story, please click here. Congratulations to you all!

Previous posts

02 May 2019

New Scenic Café (Minnesota, USA) shares their must-try taco recipe with a twist.

25 April 2019

In commemoration of New Zealand and Australia's national day of remembrance for fallen soldiers, *Truth, Love & Clean Cutlery*'s New Zealand editor, Lauraine Jacobs (with help from grandson Teddy) shares her mother's recipe for Anzac biscuits.

25 April 2019

In recognition of Anzac Day, this week we feature a selection of true-blue Australian and New Zealand restaurants who talk about their sustainability and environmental practices.

18 April 2019

Liam Fox, co-owner of [Fort Greene](https://truthloveandcleancutlery.com/profiles/new-zealand/auckland/fort-greene) (Auckland, New Zealand), shares his delicious sourdough hot cross bun recipe.