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Hal’s on Old Ivy

Hal’s on Old Ivy in Buckhead is the James Bond of steak houses. Sean Connery as Bond, not Roger Moore. It’s exclusive without being snobbish, classy without being aloof. It’s the kind of place that Don Draper would have taken late-night meetings before not going home to Betsy. Diners should know that the downstairs bar area at Hal’s allows smoking — there’s an upstairs bar that’s smoke-free, and the dining areas are smoke-free, too.

A wonderful mixture of Gatsby style and southern charm, Hals is one of the most welcoming restaurants you’ll find in Atlanta. If you come for the atmosphere, you’ll stick around for the food: from award-winning steak, to soups, salads, and classic pasta dishes. Kevin Rathbun has second mortgage dishes, Hal’s has dishes you’ll give up your children for.

What you’ll hear from just about everyone who’s been to Hal’s is that the service is exactly where you want it to be. Not too much, not too little. Your water glass won’t get empty, but you’ll never feel like your server is looming over you.

Highlights

Prime 22oz Bone-In Ribeye in Butter Sauce

Big, seared, served just the way you like it. If you want a side with it (and just remember that 22oz is about the same as six 1/4lb burgers) get the mashed potatoes or the supremely decadent white truffle mac n cheese.

Sauteed mushrooms

While some steak houses use canned mushrooms, Hal’s cuts no corners. Fresh button mushrooms cooked to order, are a house favorite, and are a great accompaniment to steaks, veal, or speckled trout.