It has been two years since Piedmont Brewery & Kitchen opened its doors in downtown Macon.
And it didn’t take long for the southern fusion fare to become a local favorite. In addition to serving up barbecue and daily specials, there’s an arcade and brewery inside the restaurant.
Jenna Eason and I decided to grab a meal there for our first restaurant review for #FoodieFriday, a new series from The Telegraph and Positively 478.
We started with grit fritters ($9), a trio of lightly fried grit patties topped with pulled pork and drizzled in barbecue sauce. This shouldn’t work. Yet the flavors combine to form a unique taste that is one of the best bites in the Middle Georgia area.
“Those just seemed like a unnatural natural combination if that makes sense,” co-founder Brian Whitley said. “Nothing is more southern than barbecue and grits.”
Other popular appetizer options include andouille sausage corn dogs, chili cheese fries and a large baked pretzel.
We bought 10 wings and a PBK platter with smoked chicken and brisket with a side of fries and macaroni and cheese.
The wings orders come in multiple sizes and prices, but we picked the $12 option. We had half tossed in “yum yum,” a sauce inspired by the orange condiment made popular at hibachi restaurants, and the other half tossed in sweet and smoky barbecue. The “yum yum” wings didn’t make sense to us, but they were amazing.
Wing Wednesday features an off-the-menu wing flavor, like salt and vinegar.
If you are a fan of smoked meats, the PBK platter is a must when you come here. One meat costs $14, or two for $18. The pulled pork, brisket, and smoked chicken are three options and each leave your mouth watering.
The brisket was delicious, and the chicken leg quarters were well seasoned with a dry rub that formed a crispy crust on the outside of the chicken. The smoke flavor isn’t overpowering so if this is your baptism into smoked barbecue, it’s a nice way to wade into the water.
The PBK platter comes with three of Piedmont’s sauces, Carolina gold, sweet and smokey and white barbecue sauce. All of them are tasty but the white barbecue is probably my favorite. It is a mayonnaise-based sauce that has its roots in Alabama. It has a bit of a twang and is a standout at Piedmont. The “bad” part is it is hard to find a better white bbq sauce in the area.
We finished off our experience with a piece of nutter butter ice cream pie, and it was a great and much bigger than we expected. The dessert menu is small but packs a big punch.
More on Piedmont, concept
Brian Whitley and Richie Jones started Piedmont in 2017. It is a fusion of Whitley’s love for brewing beer and Jones’ experience in the restaurant business. Jones also owns Downtown Grill and Brasserie Circa. Whitley says they set out with a goal to make it a family friendly restaurant.
“One thing we knew right off the bat that there was no truly kid friendly place in downtown,” Whitley said. “That’s how the arcade aspect came about.”
The restaurant also offers house-brewed craft beer. Some of the beers are collaborations with other local spots in Middle Georgia area, like the Leroy Brown, a brown porter brewed with ZBeans coffee beans.
Piedmont also offers a monthly food special where they collaborate with local businesses for featured menu items on back-to-back days at each restaurant.
They started in January with a soul food bowl with Grow. They have partnered with Ingleside Village Pizza for a meatball sub and Brasserie Circa for a brisket sushi dish.
“We are doing one every month,” Whitley said. “What is really cool about that is we give the people what we are really good at and they give us what they are really good at and we run it on back-to-back days. It is really cool.”
Piedmont Brewery and Kitchen:
Location: 450 Third Street, Macon, Ga.
Hours: Sunday & Monday: 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. Tuesday - Thursday: 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. Friday & Saturday: 11 a.m. - 10:30 p.m.
Price range: $6 - $18