Buckhead is known as a vibrant district of Atlanta with endless dining options. While you can find cuisine from all around the world in this affluent neighborhood, Buckhead is home to some of the best Chinese restaurants in the city.
From dim sum on weekends to late night Chinese takeout, you’ll find authentic dishes from across China’s diverse culinary landscape.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the top Chinese restaurants in Buckhead and what makes them stand out.
Whether you’re craving dumplings, Peking duck, or a steaming bowl of ramen, you’ll discover the places local foodies recommend for quality and authenticity. We’ll cover both upscale sit-down restaurants as well as more casual spots for takeout.
Popular Chinese Restaurants in Buckhead
With so many excellent options, deciding where to eat Chinese food in Buckhead can be tough. Some local favourites include:
SOUTH CITY KITCHEN: This contemporary Southern restaurant has an extensive Chinese menu inspired by the owners’ travels throughout Asia. Dishes like kung pao calamari and Singapore noodles with Georgia shrimp showcase the innovative fusion cuisine.
MASTERPIECE: Specializing in Hong Kong-style dishes, Masterpiece is known for its succulent Peking duck carved tableside. Other standouts include the pan-fried pork dumplings, steamed whole fish, and wok-seared lobster.
TIN LIZZY’S CANTINA: Tin Lizzy’s offers Mexican-Chinese fusion fare for a unique twist. Their menu features lumpia Shanghai egg rolls, Mongolian beef tacos, and chicken lettuce wraps made with tortillas. It’s an unexpected but tasty combination.
NAME: This upscale eatery serves contemporary interpretations of Southeast Asian cuisine, including many Chinese-inspired selections. The Peking duck bao buns, shrimp fried rice, and General Tso’s cauliflower are just a few examples.
CANTON COOKS: Known for its dim sum, Canton Cooks has an extensive menu with Cantonese favourites like shumai, har gow, and sui mai. They also serve wok-fried dishes, noodles, chef’s specials, and more.
Fusion and Contemporary Chinese Cuisine
While traditional Cantonese flavours still appeal, modern diners crave innovative takes on Chinese cuisine. Buckhead restaurants are meeting this demand with creative fusion concepts and new twists on familiar dishes.
At Lazy Betty, the menu spans the globe, blending Asian ingredients into Korean fried chicken bao buns and Mapo tofu lasagna. Sichuan flavours also accent dishes like duck confit fried rice. These unexpected combinations showcase the chef’s eclectic style.
MF Sushi applies a Japanese flair to Chinese classics. Their menu features sushi rolls stuffed with Peking duck; potstickers served with ponzu dipping sauce, wok-seared snapper in black bean sauce, and other East-meets-West specialities.
The dining experience at Peking House Bistro aims to be thoroughly modern while remaining faithful to tradition. Classic Beijing dishes get elegant contemporary plating without compromising flavour. The Peking duck, in particular, receives rave reviews.
No matter your preferred level of authenticity or fusion, Buckhead’s Chinese restaurants have an option to suit every palate.
Vegetarian and Vegan Options
Chinese food is known for being meat-centric, but many Buckhead eateries also cater to vegetarians and vegans. At Bhojanic, the menu spans various regions of India and China, including vegetarian map tofu, vegetable lo mein, and paneer tikka masala.
Harmony Vegetarian offers an extensive meatless menu featuring mock duck, chicken, and seafood dishes made from plant-based substitutes. Popular picks are the “fish” with ginger sauce, vegetarian orange “chicken,” and sweet and sour “pork.”
In addition to grass-fed beef patties at Farm Burger, you can sub in falafel, a black bean veggie burger, or portobello mushrooms in any burger. The tempura broccoli with sweet chili sauce and edamame hummus are good veggie choices for the sides.
Poke Perfect has build-your-own poke bowls with bases beyond rice, like kale or quinoa. For a hearty vegetarian meal, you can top them with crispy tofu, avocado, mango, and other fresh vegetables. Their vegan poke sauces bring the bowls to life.
You’ll have no problem finding meatless and vegan dishes that go far beyond steamed vegetables and tofu at Buckhead’s Chinese eateries. The options are diverse and innovative.
Beyond the Main Course: Dim Sum and Appetizers
While the wok-tossed entrees might be the show’s stars, don’t overlook the supporting cast of dim sum, soups, and appetizers at Buckhead’s Chinese restaurants.
Mary’s Food and Drink offers a refined tea service with delicate bites like har gow, turnip cake, and BBQ pork buns for dim sum devotees. Their flavorful stocks form the base for soups like wonton and hot and sour.
Masterpiece’s appetiser menu encompasses various techniques, from pan-frying to steaming. Standouts include the xiao long bao soup dumplings, crispy scallion pancakes, and lettuce cups with wok-seared mushrooms. They’re perfect for sharing.
Double Dragon’s more casual atmosphere is perfect for sampling a wide variety of classic dim sum like siu mai, pan-fried potstickers, and steamed barbecue pork buns. Their hot and sour soup perfectly balances spice, vinegar, and umami.
No matter where you dine, explore multiple courses for the full diversity of Chinese cuisine. The supporting dishes often steal the show.
Chinese Food Events and Festivals
Throughout the year, Buckhead hosts events that provide additional opportunities to savour Chinese food and culture.
Each February, the Taste of Hong Kong festival brings top culinary talent from China and Hong Kong to cook traditional Cantonese dishes. Guests sample bite-sized street eats like egg waffles and curry fish balls.
In September, the Mid-Autumn Festival celebrates with cultural performances, kids’ activities, and plenty of mooncakes. Flavours like lotus seed paste, red bean, and matcha give you a taste of this festive seasonal dessert.
Peking duck pop-up dinners appear around town, where you can witness the interactive tableside preparation of the crispy, succulent duck paired with handmade pancakes, vegetables, and dipping sauces.
On Chinese New Year, Buckhead restaurants like Masterpiece and Canton House feature special menus centred around ingredients symbolizing luck, prosperity, and good fortune for the coming year. Dishes like dumplings shaped like gold ingots and whole fish represent wealth.
These spirited gatherings are fun ways to immerse yourself in Chinese gastronomic culture beyond restaurant dining.
Chinese Food and Buckhead’s Culinary Landscape
Far from being limited to takeout fare and strip mall eateries, Buckhead’s Chinese restaurants stand shoulder to shoulder-with some of the city’s top dining establishments.
Chef Hui Li of Masterpiece and Chef Eddie Yeh of Peking House Bistro are helping shift mainstream perceptions of Chinese cuisine through elevated renditions of regional classics. Their efforts have earned Michelin Stars, James Beard nominations, and national acclaim.
Mary’s Food and Drink is the latest project from restaurateur Mary Chung, honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Atlanta Chinese Restaurant Association. Her elegant bar and lounge provide a sophisticated setting for enjoying high-end dim sum.
Tasting China offers culinary tours of Chinatown plus cooking classes exploring the diversity of Chinese cuisine. These in-depth experiences provide cultural enrichment and a hands-on introduction to preparing traditional dishes.
Thanks to chefs and owners like these, Chinese restaurants are gaining recognition as integral threads in Buckhead’s rich culinary tapestry. No longer pigeonholed, their contributions to Atlanta’s dynamic food scene continue garnering well-deserved prestige.
Tips for Ordering Chinese Food in Buckhead
Are you trying to decide what to order at a Chinese restaurant in Buckhead? Here are some helpful tips:
- Ask your server for recommendations – they know the menu inside and out. Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you’re unfamiliar with dishes.
- Look for seasonal ingredients – many restaurants design special menus around what’s freshest. You may discover new favourite recipes.
- Be adventurous and try lesser-known regional fare like Xi’an burgers or salted duck from Sichuan. It helps you better appreciate the diversity of Chinese food.
- Make selections across categories for balance – include some cooling dishes like salads, hot and numbing Sichuan specialities, and sweets for dessert.
- Opt for sharing-style dining with various dumplings, appetizers and mains to sample more items and flavours.
- Request adjustments if a dish sounds appealing but too spicy or salty – most kitchens will gladly alter it to suit your taste.
- Save room for desserts like green tea tiramisu, sesame balls, or chilled mango pudding to end your meal on a sweet note.
With many enticing options, ordering Chinese food in Buckhead is an exciting culinary adventure. Following these tips will ensure you make the most of the experience.
The Future of Chinese Cuisine in Buckhead
Buckhead diners have embraced the diversity of regional Chinese fare available in local restaurants. What’s on the horizon for Chinese food’s continued growth and evolution in Atlanta?
Chefs predict increased visibility for lesser-known ethnic minorities and their distinct ingredients and cooking methods, like the numbing peppercorn oils of Sichuan and Hunan. Dishes from Xi’an, Dongbei, and Yunnan provinces will also likely gain more exposure.
While traditions remain important, expect chefs to continue pushing boundaries with Chinese-inspired fusion concepts referencing global cuisines. Korean, Indian, Vietnamese and Latin flavours harmonize beautifully with Chinese elements. These crossover dishes spotlight culinary creativity.
As the Asian population, especially Chinese, continues growing in Atlanta, more authentic specialized restaurants catering to homesick expats will emerge. These eateries emphasize dishes and flavours from specific cities and towns unavailable elsewhere.
Food education through cooking classes, food tours, and language lessons will play a bigger role in generating interest and new fans. Knowledge is key to overcoming diners’ reluctance to try lesser-known dishes and ingredients.
Thanks to tireless immigrant chefs and restaurateurs’ passion, perseverance, and pride in sharing the depth and diversity of Chinese cuisine, its popularity will undoubtedly continue rising in Buckhead and beyond.
In Buckhead, Chinese restaurants have carved out a valued niche within the city’s premier dining destination. From casual Chinatown eateries to upscale establishments under celebrated chefs, these spots satisfy cravings while exposing locals to the richness of one of the world’s great cuisines.
Whether chasing dumplings on a quick lunch break or indulging in a leisurely 10-course Beijing duck feast, Chinese food adds an essential thread to the neighbourhood’s culinary tapestry.
Based on the talent and dedication of Atlanta’s Chinese restaurateurs, chefs, and food entrepreneurs, Chinese cuisine’s future looks brighter than ever in Buckhead.