I love everything about the Swan House, from the restaurant and boutique to the books and cookbooks. If you’re not already, let yourself be captivated by all things Swan…
The Swan Coach House
Ask any Atlanta gal to name one so-Southern ladies lunching, brunching, showering and sip-and-seeing spot and I’d bet my bottom dollar that she replies “Swan Coach House.” Once an old garage near the 1920’s Swan House mansion, this quintessential locale is renowned for delicate dining, splendid shopping and expositions of fine art from Southern hands.
With Mother in town for a spell, Sister and I treated her to a belated Mother’s Day lunch at the Swan Coach House. While we favor the downstairs dining room where Sister hosted Cookie’s sip-and-see a few years back (it’s less crowded and much airier than the others), we jumped at the chance to dine alfresco on this gorgeous May day.
As always, we dined on the requisite “Swan’s Favorite”, a cold plate featuring the restaurant’s signature chicken salad served in hand-made heart shaped timbales, creamy frozen fruit salad and cheese straws, we drank the Swan Coach House Punch, and we finished with the French Silk Swan, a confection comprised of meringue, chocolate mousse and Chantilly cream. And, as always, we swooned over each and every bite and savored each and every minute of our ladies only luncheon.
The Swan House Mansion
Located in the heart of Buckhead, the elegant Swan House mansion was built in 1928 and is known as one of Atlanta’s most recognized landmarks. Now part of the Atlanta History Center, tours of the house and grounds allow visitors to explore parts of the restored historic mansion. I can only imagine living in such a place. Nothing gets me all aflutter like an old home, hinting of the stories and history of those that came before me.
The Swan House Novel
This powerful, coming of age historical fiction novel was inspired by the Swan House and tells the story of a girl in 1960s Atlanta, struggling with personal grief and faith in the midst of the South’s racial discord. The author, Elizabeth Musser, tells a nostalgically raw and utterly captivating story, teeming with believable characters and signs of the times, in a way that only native Atlantan could master. Southerner or not, this is a can’t put it down read. In fact, after writing this I trotted straight to my guest room to retrieve the book as my first (re)read of the summer!
The Swan’s Palette
Mother ran across this gem of a cookbook in a Vinings antique store eleven years ago while chatting with a member of the Forward Arts Foundation and she quickly snapped up three copies for her and her girls. Not only is the cover just gorg, but the cookbook is resplendent with delectable Southern bites and perfectly poised menu suggestions for occasions ranging from Dinner at Chastain Park to a Summer Luau. My favorites include Cranberry Glazed Brie for a Christmas Eve appetizer, Stuffed Red Peppers for a light summer supper and Cornucopia Salad for an impressive first course to any meal.
I think our next Sunday Supper will be coming from straight from the glossy pages of you know where!