What is it about a steaming bowl of soup that sends us into full-on cozy mode? There’s nostalgia with every spoonful—a little taste of home in a hearty chili or velvety bisque. With winter weather taking hold of Alpharetta, we encourage you to bundle up and brave the chill for these five delicious soup selections at a few of our favorite local spots:
1) Honey Miso Ramen at Ramen Bar by Hajme – 4180 Old Milton Parkway
Forget the Cup o’ Noodles from college. The ramen on offer at Alpharetta’s premier authentic destination for the slurpable, sippable Japanese classic boasts complex, awe-inspiring flavors in a chic dining environment. Named for the honey-hue of the miso broth used, the Honey Miso Ramen sings with a rich tonkatsu broth and umami for days.
2) Roasted Red Pepper Crab Bisque at Secreto Kitchen – 6195 Windward Parkway
The aroma alone of Secreto’s signature soup is enough to transport you to a lighthouse along the Northeastern seaboard. Silky bisque is complemented by the smoky sweetness of roasted red pepper. Additions of basil oil and a golden sherry drizzle elevate the wintertime staple to a savory must-try that’s so much more than your average starter.
3) Chicken Soup at Rio Balsas Taqueria – 235 S. Main Street
Chicken soup is synonymous with being good for the soul, so it’s no surprise that when punched up with pico de gallo, chipotle, and lime that this classic transforms into a mealtime fiesta for the senses! Housemade fresh each day, the chicken soup at Rio Balsas Taqueria features rice instead of noodles and offers up a better-than-crackers crunch thanks to a sprinkling of crisp tortilla strips. And, as a bonus, zesty Mexican spices serve as a next-level way to warm you up from the inside out!
4) Tom Kha at M Thai Street Food – 875 N. Main Street
M Thai Street Food’s Tom Kha, better known as Thai coconut soup, has a near magical quality thanks to a creamy, herb-forward broth featuring fresh cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, and cilantro. The real star, however? Galangal! A cousin of ginger, the galangal stem plant delivers a punch of sharp, citrusy flavor with a bite of pine that makes this soup one worthy of abandoning all Emily Post’s rules. (Ahem, we’re talking picking up the bowl with both hands to sip up every delicious drop!) Complex and unique, the Tom Kha at this Main Street Thai eatery is a taste bud trip you’ll want to take again and again!
5) Gumbo at Flatlands Bourbon & Bayou – 52B N. Main Street
Ok, so if it’s served hot and requires a spoon, we’re going to classify it as a soup (and definitely as a soul-warmer!). The gumbo at Flatlands rounds out the list for its deep, rich roux and Cajun blackened shrimp. Served up in a mini cast iron pan, you’ll find a harmonious blend of cayenne, garlic, paprika, and plenty of black pepper sizzling with succulent shrimp and fresh okra. And, if you fall head-over-heels for this palate pleaser and simply can’t get enough of that Louisiana love, you can add a heapin’ scoop of gumbo to any dish on the menu for just $5—just ask ‘em to “make it dirty.”