Alvin Diec


Andrew Thomas Lee

PHOTOGRAPHY (Gallery photos 4, 11)
Emily Schultz

St. Cecilia, from Atlanta chef-owner Ford Fry, serves coastal European food—simple and thoughtful dishes inspired by the coastlines of Italy, Spain, and France—in Buckhead’s Pinnacle Building.

With an old-world, ingredient-driven approach, Executive Chef Craig Richards displays the Italian trademarks that have always stood the test of time, but with versatile and local Southern ingredients. Richards’ simplicity met with sophistication catapulted the position of St. Cecilia in Atlanta’s dining scene since opening in January 2014.

Richards’ food is rooted in tradition, with a sense of place: “I appreciate that Italians are so fervent about their culinary traditions – borderline prideful of it,” he says. “So once you know those traditions, you can make a riff off of it. You have leeway to modernize but pay respect to the ingredients.”

The menu has plenty of options, but seafood and pasta lovers will be especially delighted. Start with small plates like fresh crudo, cured meats, hearth roasted octopus, and burrata. Then move on to seasonal entrées, like Maine sea scallops and wood roasted branzino. Or choose from a rotating selection of handmade pasta dishes, from squid ink spaghetti with tomato-uni ragu, to rich gnudi with house ricotta and brown butter. And after dinner, sample a few of pastry chef Chrysta Poulos’ Italian-inspired desserts, like chocolate torta al tartufo and loukoumades with honey-cinnamon syrup.

Guests are invited to stop by after work or arrive before dinner for a drink at the spacious bar. Enjoy a specialty cocktail, or have a glass or bottle from the hand-picked beer and wine list.

Whether you’re planning a lunch meeting, a dinner date, or a private event, there’s a table for you at St. Cecilia.

Follow Ford Fry on Instagram and Twitter

Follow Executive Chef Craig Richards on Instagram