City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
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City & State or ZIP

Manuel’s Tavern Happy New Year Smoke-Free


On New Year’s Day at Manuel’s Tavern there was ham, collard greens, black-eyed peas, and corn muffins — same as it ever was.

But there was one big difference. Among the regulars and Chick-fil-A Bowl leftovers chowing down, drinking beer and watching the Georgia game, not one person was lighting up.

No Smoking signs were posted on the doors, on tables and at the bar.

Owner Brian Maloof had kept his promise to make Manuel’s smoke-free on the first day of 2014.

Asked if anyone had complained, yet, a server, thought for a minute, smiled and said, “No. I’m kind of surprised.”

Of course, politicos and journalists have called it a home-away-from-home since Manuel Maloof first opened his eponymous place in 1956. Maloof passed away in August 2004. But his family has carried on, overseeing  the grungy traditions of the granddaddy of Atlanta bars, while slowly updating a few things, like the TVs and the beer menu.

And now there’s no smoking…

Is that a blow for health and happiness? Or the end of an era?

— By Bob Townsend, AJC Food and More blog.

17 comments Add your comment

Anton Chigurh

January 2nd, 2014
3:57 pm

Even Manuel’s has to change. I like this one, but please don’t ever change the old sports and political junk above the bar.


January 2nd, 2014
4:16 pm

Everybody loves Manuel’s and that is as it should be.

Old Timer

January 2nd, 2014
4:51 pm

Good news.
But I sure miss Manuel. If he were still the DeKalb County CEO, the grand jury in DeKalb would have very little to keep them busy.


January 2nd, 2014
5:16 pm

2nd hand smoke was a gift, it gave me my sexy raspy voice.

Ned Ludd

January 2nd, 2014
5:45 pm

First bar I ever had a beer and glad nothing has changed since the 70’s—last place I told a lie. Manuel asked me if I had voted for so and so who was a democrat, Scared as Hell of him. Had to say yes. Sure kept Dekalb County on the straight and narrow. Sure could use some of that now. Still tip my hat to him when I walk in. This will not affect too many. The percentage of smokers at the bar has greatly lessened in the last few years.


January 2nd, 2014
5:48 pm

Ahhhh…The Smell of Lung Cancer in the AIR, while You are Eating! Nothing Like it in the World!

most people nowadays

January 2nd, 2014
6:13 pm

great news!! will stop back by for a beer soon. had only been going to smoke-free places the last few years


January 2nd, 2014
7:29 pm

Govt alywas gettin R bussines. Tipical libtard reaction.

Ned Ludd

January 2nd, 2014
7:31 pm

How many remember Mike Klank (Taqueria Del Sol) when he tended bar here?


January 2nd, 2014
8:02 pm

I am glad to move a couple of meetings to Manuel’s now. Women hate getting that raunchy smell in their clothes and there are very few left who will tolerate a guy that smells and tastes like tobacco smoke. The main reason a woman would tolerate a guy with a habit is early inheritance.


January 2nd, 2014
8:21 pm

USC-69… can’t even buy smokes in So Cal can you USC?


January 2nd, 2014
9:30 pm

…And Atlanta enters the 20th century.

Tobiaz Johansen

January 2nd, 2014
9:36 pm

Soon Mr. Manuel will move his places OTP to be so politically correct!

Ned Ludd

January 2nd, 2014
9:53 pm

Mr Manuel tried that—twice!—failed both times—some things just defy duplication–

[...] Manuel’s Tavern Happy New Year Smoke-Free [...]


January 3rd, 2014
8:13 am

Tobiaz…… need some new material, pal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


January 5th, 2014
7:47 am

Manuel’s has managed to progress but still maintain the great qualities that defined the place and made it popular. Their food is good, comfortable and friendly environment, and now smoke-free. And a big new plus are the fresh eggs from the rooftop hen house. A true asset to the neighborhood and the city.