The Do-Gooder’s Guide to Dining Out in Atlanta

My! What a big heart you have!

Have you ever left a restaurant feeling guilty for splurging on the expensive, aged bourbon, or ordering that decadent dessert, or finishing your entire porterhouse (and some of your dining companion’s too)? Well, fear not. Atlanta has several restaurants where you can eat and drink until your indulgent little heart is content and feel no guilt about it. Read on to see how to dine out for the good of us all…

Café 458

Located in the Sweet Auburn District, Café 458 is the only restaurant in the city that serves weekday breakfast to the homeless community, and every Sunday, the cafe opens its doors to the general public, with Le Cordon Bleu alum, Tony Sharpe, serving up a delicious brunch. Feel no guilt about all that sweet, gooey French toast you’ll be eating. Just remember all proceeds from your meal, even tips, go to support the Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency, an organization dedicated to the homeless community. Feeling extra saintly? Café 458 is always looking for volunteers.

Café 458 | 404.446.4699 | 458 Edgewood Ave | Atlanta, GA 30312
Cafe 458 on Urbanspoon

Dining Out For Life

Open Hand is a wonderful organization that prepares and delivers meals to members of the community whose health complications keep them from doing so themselves, and, once a year, generous restaurants all over our city pitch in to help Open Hand with their annual fundraiser. This year the annual Dining Out for Life benefit will be April 27th, 2011. On that day, make sure you dine (breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner) at one of the many participating restaurants, and at least 20% of your bill will go to Open Hand. And that’s all the more reason to splurge on a nice meal, right? We certainly think so. To see the ever-growing list of participating restaurants, check out Dining Out For Life’s website.

Dining Out For Life |


Ecco is the first restaurant in the state of Georgia to be honored with the hard-to-obtain Green Foodservice Certification. One look at some of the requirements for this certification, and you’ll see that Ecco is serious about being environmentally conscious.  They recycle, they compost food scraps, and their spent grease helps produce biofuel. And as a delicious added bonus, the food, cocktails, and atmosphere at Ecco are out of this world. So, go ahead and order those tantalizing fried goat cheese balls. Hey, more biofuel. You do-gooder, you.

Ecco | 404.347.9555 | 40 7th Street NE | Atlanta, GA 30308
Ecco on Urbanspoon

World Peace Café

World Peace Café is a friendly little bistro in Sandy Springs that is owned by the Rameshori Kadampa Buddhist center and is run mostly by volunteers, with all profits supporting meditation classes and special events at the center. As often as possible, the café uses organic, local, and/or fair trade products and biodegradable to-go containers. They love to support other local business as well, getting their coffee from Java Vino in Poncey-Highlands and their desserts from Southern Sweets in Decatur. Mmm, inner peace never tasted so good.

World Peace Café | 404.256.2100 | 220 Hammond Drive | Sandy Springs, GA 30328

World Peace Cafe on Urbanspoon

Milltown Arms Tavern

Located in the heart of the eclectic Cabbagetown community, Milltown Arms Tavern is the go-to pub for dinner, drinks, or sports watching for Cabbagetown residents. And Milltown owner Barb Keeney quite possibly has a heart of gold. She constantly strives to “green” her restaurant bar by recycling, encouraging the surrounding community to recycle, and using compostable to-go containers. Barb and everyone at Milltown is also always willing to lend a hand to help the community by encouraging local artists to showcase and sell their artwork at the tavern, and allowing charitable organization to hold fundraisers at the bar.

Milltown Arms Tavern | 404.827.0434 | 180 Carroll St SE | Atlanta, GA 30312
Milltown Arms Tavern on Urbanspoon

If you know of other worthy restaurants to add to this list, please send us the details at

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