Lot’s of people pass through the heart of the ATL daily on the Downtown Connector (I-75/I-85). Some are on I-75 headed to points north- or southward. Others are headed to points east- or westward on I-85. Then there is all the locals and tourists visiting the city. When on the Downtown Connector in Midtown you can not help but see the following sign on the east side of the interstate.
The Varsity opened in 1928 and is the restaurant that immediately comes to mind when people think of Atlanta. It got its name way back when due to the traffic from nearby Georgia Tech students and the desire to set-up restaurants around other college campuses. Today they get 30,000 visitors on Georgia Tech football game days.
It’s known as the world’s largest drive-in restaurant. They are well-known for their fast delivery of orders and for making their world-famous burgers and other items with only the freshest of ingredients. Food and supply trucks stop there several times a day. There also six locations throughout the Atlanta area and one in Athens, Georgia home to The University of Georgia.
Walking inside you’ll immediately encounter a long menu counter with at least a dozen people it seems ready to take your order. You might hear “What’ll ya have?” It’s the companies unofficial slogan, originally used by workers to keep the lines and traffic moving, with as short a phrase as possible.
After getting your order you’ll have the choice of several rooms and two floors of seating in which to eat. I decided to eat in classroom, old-school style seating.
The choice on this visit, a bacon cheeseburger yum.
I washed it down with a Coca-Cola, what else?! (Coca-Cola is headquartered in Atlanta.) In fact, more Coca-Cola is sold here then at any other retailer in the world.
On a previous visit, I went with two cheeseburgers, again yum. You can also get various kinds of hot dogs and burgers many chili based, various chicken sandwiches and salads, fried pies, Frosted Oranges, onion rings and more.
After the deliciousness I walked outside onto the second level of the parking deck. Yes it get’s that much traffic! People come here from all over the world.
On the parking deck you can get amazing 360 degree views of the city. First up looking south towards the drive-in you see the downtown skyline.
Turning around and facing north you can see northbound interstate traffic as well as the Midtown skyline and the Olympic Flame Sculpture. Atlanta hosted the 1996 Summer Olympics.
Looking northwest right down the street from The Varsity is more of the Midtown skyline including the tallest building in the western hemisphere outside of Chicago and New York, the Bank of America Plaza.
More great eats on this day at The Varsity. For foodie and burger lovers, history buffs and those looking to capture great views of the city, The Varsity is a must stop. Don’t forget to stop for souvenirs at the gift shop on the way out.
When people think of Atlanta, The Varsity immediately comes to mind. What dining places are most identifiable in your neck of the woods? What other dining places do you suggest in the ATL?