Photo Gallery | Cafe at Pharr in $20
ATLANTA – Arguably, the best chicken salad in town can be purchased at a lunch nook located off Peachtree Road in Buckhead.
Family-owned Café at Pharr started out as a wedding bakery and has become one of the most popular lunch spots for the inTown crowd. Mike and Shirley Liu started the café as Mikan Bakery on Pharr Road in 1993 and after a couple of months of not breaking even, decided to integrate sandwiches.
“Dad made one of his faithful customers a turkey sandwich with one of our yeast rolls and the same customer came back the next day,” says Johnny, Mike and Shirley’s son and the company’s acting chief. And he describes that as the beginning of the Café at Pharr franchise.
Johnny Liu worked at the restaurant before school and every summer starting when he was thirteen years old; he even says he had to learn how to bake bread, in order to get his first car.
“In high school, I would go to school with flour on my elbows and on my clothes and my friends would make jokes but I had to help out --- if I wanted a car,” jokes Johnny about his earlier years in the restaurant.
The restaurant has worked to preserve some of their bakery roots by baking fresh bread, daily.
According to Johnny, “A lot of the family was in the Chinese restaurant business and dad [Mike Liu] wanted to cook chicken salad because it was a southern favorite. And we wanted something basic; we didnt want to kill it with other flavors.”
The restaurant prides itself on cooking its chicken breast, daily, for the chicken salad and uses reduced fat mayo and, about, two or three other ingredients. They, also, bottle their popular ginger dressing for guests to use on their own salads.
The restaurant is opens, daily, from 10:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Every Tuesday, the Where U Live team chooses a Metro Atlanta restaurant and with the restaurant's help, shows you how you can sample the menu without spending too much.
The restaurant chose the spotlight their Curry Chicken Salad Sandwich, which they describe as “not too spicy and not bring but just right.” The chicken salad is crafted with chicken breast, carrots, onion, celery and curry paste and the right amount of mayonnaise. The sandwich comes served with a cluster of grapes and their signature yogurt rolls. The sandwich can be purchased for $7.50
Johnny, also, decided the spotlight their Walnut Chicken Salad, which is “an all white meat chicken blended with crushed walnuts and golden raisins.” The salad is a leafy romaine salad with carrots and tomato slices and served with the restaurant’s signature Ginger dressing, a cluster of grapes and a yogurt roll. The salad costs $9