Ahhh…Eclipse di Luna. The site of many sangria-soaked nights in my younger days. But besides having stiff cocktails, a sexy ambiance and live salsa music, the restaurant also happens to have really great food. Hence it popped into my mind the other day when I was trying to think of a good place to meet my gal pal that was equidistant from my abode in Lawrenceville and hers in Castleberry Hill.
Despite it still being one of my favorite restaurants in Atlanta, I am embarrassed to admit that I had to call and check if it was still open before making my reservation. I used to frequent the place when I lived in Sandy Springs, but haven’t been over that way in a long time.
I am happy to report that it is still open and totally jam packed as usual. When I went to make a reservation on Saturday afternoon for that evening, all that was left for two diners was 6:00, 6:30 or 10:00 p.m. We went with the 6:30, and were promptly seated. It didn’t get crowded until maybe an hour or so after we arrived.
Two hours later, it got so crowded that – just as I was about to bite into my tres leches to end the meal – my friend and I were asked to relocate to another table on the patio so that they could accommodate a large party inside. I was a little put off by that, but was mildly consoled when they took two of our drinks off the bill for the inconvenience.
Long story short, do not go to Eclipse di Luna if you want a nice, quiet family meal. But if you’re up for a slightly edgy but still affordable night out with friends or a date, definitely consider it. But check the web site and take note of what time the live music starts that night, because after that you won’t be able to do much chatting.
Now that I’ve cleared all of that up, on to the good stuff. The food, ohhh the food. Eclipse di Luna specializes in tapas, so plan to get a bunch of small plates to share. (For context, my friend and I got four total and it was plenty.) Menu items range from safe (think breads, potatoes, salads, vegetables and cheeses) to slightly more exotic – duck empanadas or wild boar tacos anyone? They also offer lots of seafood options.
A few of my favorites include: 1) the calamari, which comes with this delicious pico de gallo that makes the whole dish, 2) the grilled asparagus with lemon and manchego cheese, and 3) the ciabatta bread with Spanish olive oil. The absolute best thing on the menu, though, is the spiced potatoes with Romesco sauce. The dish is so simple, but so addictive. I would not recommend dining at Eclipse di Luna without ordering these zesty little bite-sized delights. They are a must! Also, definitely get the tres leches cake for dessert, even if you are too stuffed and have to get it to go!
With so many of my favorite Atlanta haunts long closed down, it’s nice to know that my beloved Eclipse di Luna is still around. While I will no longer be going there to chug alcohol and flirt with boys, the nosh will surely keep me coming back (hopefully more frequently).
Eclipse di Luna has two locations – one in Buckhead and one in Dunwoody.
* Unfortunately, I was so busy chatting it up with my friend and trying to look cool that I forgot to take any pictures of our little rendezvous. My bad! The cover photo is from the Eclipse di Luna web site.Tags: Atlanta nightlife, atlanta restaurant, buckhead, eclipse di luna, salsa music, tapas