Chef EJ Hodgkinson on How to Eat Healthy at Buckhead’s King + Duke

Image: Emily Schultz

You’re not a foodie in this town unless you know Ford Fry, the chef and restauranteur responsible for Atlanta hot spots such as JCT Kitchen, No. 246, The Optimist, St. Cecilia, and King + Duke. Last November, Executive Chef EJ Hodgkinson moved from one Ford Fry restaurant to another, leaving JCT to take over the kitchen at literary-themed Buckhead favorite King + Duke. His new home kitchen features locally sourced ingredients and a 24-foot wood-burning, open-fire hearth. The not-yet-two-year-old restaurant has already been named one of the best restaurants of the year by Esquire and GQ, which called it “informal American dining, perfected.” Now that he’s settled into his new role, we asked Chef Hodgkinson to recommend one of the healthiest meals at King + Duke.

Chef Hodgkinson — a California native who  focuses on responsible butchering, accentuating natural flavors through wood fire cooking, and organic advocacy — recommends the swordfish with a side of Brussels sprouts for diners who are watching out for their health.

King + Duke Image: Andrew Thomas Lee

Image: Andrew Thomas Lee

His swordfish with roasted fennel is flavored with olives, oranges, pine nuts, basil, olive, oil, salt, and pepper and comes in at just over 650 calories. The dish has about 45 grams of protein, 51 grams of good fats (from nuts and oil), and 15 grams of carbs.

The chef’s Brussels sprouts with bacon vinaigrette are about 300 calories for a full serving, with 25 of those coming from the bacon and 70 coming from the vinaigrette.