5 Places to Celebrate the Year of the Dog in Atlanta

Happy Chinese New Year, y'all!

According to the Chinese zodiac calendar, the Year of the Dog began Feb. 16, 2018. The dog is one of the 12-year cycle of animals which appear in the Chinese zodiac, and unlike Western astrology, each sign lasts 12 months. Curious to learn more? Here are four ways to join the cultural celebrations in Atlanta, regardless of your zodiac.

Year of the Earth Dog Spa Experience at Mandarin Oriental, Atlanta

Year of the Earth Dog Spa Experience at Mandarin Oriental, Atlanta

The city is lucky to have the world-renowned Spa at Mandarin Oriental, Atlanta located in the heart of Buckhead with a luxurious menu of rejuvenating treatments, meditation classes and much more. In honor of the calendar change, the recently add Year of the Earth Dog Spa Experience inspired by the year ahead.

The 1 hour and 20 minute experience was inspired by the stretching, grounding yoga pose of the downward facing dog and is designed to bring about a feeling of contentment, restoration and happiness. The treatment uses traditional Chinese ingredients of Mandarin orange, tangerine oil and the spa’s own custom Flourish essential oil (a blend of a blend of lemongrass, cardamom and coriander) together with hot, healing stones, and a soothing abdominal massage to stimulate the senses and restore the body. The treatment is offered until the end of the Chinese calendar year, Feb. 4, 2019.

Meanwhile in the hotel’s lobby, guests will find a Chinese New Year Afternoon Tea complete with a selection of fragrant Chinese teas and New Year delicacies, as well as a symbolic prix fixe dinner menu including Szechuan Pork Belly and Steamed Whole Fish with Ginger and Scallions. Both are available through March 2. 

Pimento cheese wontons at Sweet Auburn Barbecue

Chinese New Year Party at Sweet Auburn Barbecue

Ring in the year this local favorite Poncey-Highland restaurant on Feb. 20 from 6 to 11 pm. While Sweet Auburn Barbecue has earned a reputation for putting an eclectic spin on classic Southern staples all year long (pimento cheese wontons, anyone?), this special one-night-only event serves up family-style starters like sesame pancakes and those crave-worthy wontons as well as plates like coconut lemongrass ribs and fried rice made with Vidalia onion, burnt ends and Chinese sausage. 

Don't miss the lion dancers from Chien Hong School of Kung Fu (performances at 7:30 pm and 8:30 pm). Reservations are encouraged, but walk-ins are welcome. Enjoy the menu Dim Sum-style, or opt to dine family-style at each table for $45 per person. 

HomeGrown Restaurant Concepts is hosting its 13th annual Chinese New Year celebration at Doc Chey’s Noodle House and Dragon Bowl (Courtesy HomeGrown Restaurant Concepts)

13th annual Chinese New Year Celebrations at Doc Chey's and Dragon Bowl

HomeGrown Restaurant Concepts' Doc Chey’s Noodle House (both Morningside and Grant Park locations) and Dragon Bowl in Emory Village are continuing their of tradition of festivities with food specials and contests through March 2.

First, place an order of the Lucky Foods trio—peanut noodles for longevity, shrimp rolls for happiness and pork dumplings for health. For every sampler ordered, $4 will be donated to Furkids, Atlanta's largest animal rescue and no-kill shelter.

If you opt to dine-in for lunch or dinner on Feb. 24 at Doc Chey's Morningside or March 2 at Doc Chey's Grant Park, you may crack open a fortune cookie that reveals a prize. One lucky dog will win an iPhone X, and there's also 18 Amazon Dots up for grabs. Chinese lion dance performance will take place at 7 p.m. on these dates.