The Optimist

Name: The Optimist
Location: Atlanta, GA
The Optimist is bringing quality and fresh seafood seafood to landlocked Atlantans with their space continuing their story.

Working with the original, industrial structure, The Optimist manages to transport diners into a seaside destination through nautical touches, rustic wood, and blue & white color scheme.

What i enjoy most about the space is their thorough execution of a concept without going overboard or too picky. The same remains relaxed, casual and rustic and pays homage to it's nautical menu.

All photos © The Optimist

Sight Glass

Name: Sight Glass
Location: San Francisco

My love for coffee and well designed coffee shops can easily be traced back to San Francisco. With new shops and roasters opening up daily, the coffee scene there is exciting and second to none. The coffee scene in Chicago could use a little work. With everyone brewing Metropolis or Intelligentisia, it's been refreshing to see Stumptown, Bow & Truss, and La Colombe enter the mix but it still lacks the local, small batch roasting you see everywhere out West. Sight Glass is just one of the many well designed roasters opening up all around SF and the interior is just as beautiful as their art. With a double story space outfitted with exposed wood beams, metal stools, and curved coffee bar, the space is industrial, warm and exciting.

Large tables, exposed beams and even light from skylights make the second floor a comfortable place for a cup of coffee. Sightglass Coffee company took the interior of a nondescript warehouse on 7th Street in San Francisco, Calif. and reinvented it with interlocking levels and renovations.

Photo 3 © Inside Scoop SF
Photos 1,2,4 © The Cabinet Shop
Photos 5-6 © Brewly Noted

Girl & the Goat

Name: Girl & the Goat
Location: Chicago, IL
Designer: Karen Herold- 555

I have been saving this post for quite a while. This is mostly because it was a great local location, run by Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard and I knew I couldn't do the space justice without visiting first. I finally got that chance a couple weeks back when I decided to buckle down and get my bum over there for my wedding anniversary!

The space did not disappoint.

It took me a while to even look at the menu (which was beyond excellent, again no surprise there!) I was so engrossed in the details surrounding me. We were sat in an intimate booth next to the surprisingly beautiful, burnt wood partition wall in the center of the space. With a great view of both the bar and the kitchen, it was easy to see why Girl & the Goat was so successful. The attention to detail and division of space are what brought the design home for me. There were many zones for seating which allowed diners to enjoy a relaxed and intimate meal despite how large the space actually is. Detail such as the metal grates on the bar and the intricate inlayed tile under the community table also brought warmth and character into the space.

Here are a few of my favorite moments:

Overall, the space felt layered, warm and inviting. The use of natural colors, wood tones and texture really brought the space to life and enhanced the beautiful open kitchen where Stephanie worked her magic.

Photo 1 © Metromix
Photos 2-4 © Anthony Tahlier via
Photo 5 © Anna Wolfson

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