Fifth Group Pledges December Opening For Alma Cocina Buckhead

It will be the second location for the restaurant group's 'contemporary' Mexican eatery and will open adjacent sister concept Yum Chao.

Fifth Group Restaurants is targeting a December 2019 debut of its Alma Cocina Buckhead Restaurant.

It will be the second location of the “contemporary” Mexican eatery from the hospitality group whose portfolio is made up of South City Kitchen, Ecco, La Tavola Trattoria, The Original El Taco, Lure, as well as full-service events company Bold Catering & Design.

Alma Cocina Buckhead, first announced in early-2018, is situated at the corner of Peachtree and Piedmont in the Terminus development, joining its sister restaurant in downtown Atlanta.

Executive Chef Chad Clevenger will lead the kitchen having served in the same position for the restaurant’s downtown location since its opening in 2012.

As Clevenger takes the helm at Alma Cocina Buckhead, Robert Rambo, a former sous chef who has trained under Clevenger for nearly four years, will take over as executive chef for Alma Cocina Downtown.

“Chef Chad has always had a talent for incorporating traditional Latin American techniques and ingredients on the Alma Cocina menu while keeping things fresh, modern and approachable,” Robby Kukler, a Fifth Group partner, said in the release.

“He has a deep understanding of the evolution of Latin cuisine and we could not be more excited for him to carry the torch as we introduce Alma to the Buckhead neighborhood.”

Spanish for “soul kitchen,” Alma Cocina Buckhead’s menu will “combine local ingredients, traditional techniques, and Latin American flavors to create memorable dishes that simultaneously feel intriguing and familiar.”

Its menu will be similar in style to the downtown location which features first bites, small plates, large plates, signature, and street tacos and for-the-table options.

A few signature dishes include:

  • Fried Chihuahua Cheese, salsa verde, corn tortillas
  • Roasted Chicken Mole, mashed plantains, grilled chambray onions, mole negro
  • Huitlacoche Empanadas, ranchero sauce, epazote
  • Fried Avocado Tacos, crispy queso cotija, macha verde
  • Pork Lechoncito Tamale, bacon masa, pico de gallo, crema

Alma Cocina Buckhead’s beverage program will showcase Spanish spirits leveraging a network of relationships with small and large batch distillers throughout Latin America.

Beverage menu highlights include:

  • Cantaritos, a tequila cocktail with orange, grapefruit and lime juice, served in artisanal terra cotta vessel
  • Sangria, imported Spanish wine, served in a large pitcher in the center of the table, along with garnished glasses for all guests
  • Amatitán, Alma’s signature margarita made with hand-selected, custom-barreled Herradura “Double Reposado” tequila, orange curacao and fresh citrus juices

The space is designed by Atlanta’s ASD|SKY, with highlights like a large, low-ceiling bar serving as the restaurant’s “nucleus,” flanked by a floating rebar cage and industrial lights.

Details include lightly-distressed, driftwood-like millwork and greenery complemented by hand-formed brick, antiqued mirror, Mexican tile, stone, and concrete.

Alma Cocina Buckhead will be complete with patio seating.

An exact opening date has not yet been determined.

Fifth Group is planning an adjacent restaurant called Yum Chao, as first reported by What Now Atlanta earlier this year.

At the time, the spelling of the name was “Yum Chow.”

Featuring a “celebration of Chinese cuisine,” Yum Chao is anticipated to open sometime next year.

Caleb J. Spivak

Caleb J. Spivak (CJS) is the Founder of What Now Media Group, Inc., the publisher of What Now Atlanta and What Now Los Angeles.

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1 Comment

  1. Good luck to them. That location has been disastrous to many a successful restaurant groups.Parking being the main issue. Let’s hope they change that trend.

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