Saturday, June 13, 2015


How does Virginia Willis keep a spoon in so many pots with just two hands? Five cookbooks. Food Network. Cooking Channel. Mega-magazine contributing editor and food writer. Missionary to the word that Southern food can be healthy and easily prepared. Help yourself to a “square” meal from her buffet of Instagram pics ( Inevitably, you’ll hunger for more. Her blog awaits. Y’all come.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Appetizing Aperture

Glistening under a SweetWater Blue-honey barbecue glaze, HOBNOB baby back ribs are the ultimate finger food. Be gentle, the meat is fall-off-the-bone tender. Keep one hand on the fork to spear every morsel of rib mates jalapeño mac and cheese, garlic green beans and the onion ring, which is way too big for your finger ($16). Offered after 5 p.m. on the dinner menu.

Father’s Day is June 21. Atlanta Restaurants Do Dad Proud

Day in, day out, dads are do-gooders. Flip the tables and give them a day off from manning the grill, smoking pork butts and mowing the lawn by tying an Atlanta restaurant experience onto the Father’s Day tree.

Land or sea? Dad nets both at Aqua blue in Roswell. Choose the Aqua blue Surf & Turf featuring grilled N.Y. strip and tempura shrimp with potato au gratin, asparagus and natural glaze ($32) or the prix fixe menu of fresh lobster salad, Aqua blue Surf & Turf and house-made bread pudding ($38). Available only on June 21; no substitutions or combinations with other offers. 770-643-8886.

Paleo papas are ravenous for the Father’s Day Meat Lover’s Cook Out ($22.95 per person) at 
10th and Piedmont and G’s Midtown. A streetside grill turns out a churrascaria-style all-you-can-eat lineup with mouthwatering options such as bourbon-marinated flank steak with chimichurri; artisanal sausage; Sweetwater Blue barbecue chicken; Southern-style dry-rub pork tenderloin; and slow-roasted barbecue pulled pork. Includes sides. Regular à la carte brunch menu available. 404-602-5510.

“Herr” and now, 
Der Biergarten is offering its Konig Ludwig platter, which serves six, for $75 (normally $98). Feed the family with this hearty assortment of Jägerschnitzel, Wiener Schnitzel, Schweinshaxe, four sausages, sauerbraten, potato salad, sauerkraut, braised red cabbage and spätzle. No substitutions. 404-521-2728.

FLIP Burger boutique pulls dad off grill duty this Sunday, offering a FL-IPA and the manly rBQ burger of angus beef, pulled brisket, coleslaw, rBQ sauce and smoked mayo for $12 on Father’s Day. Available at all FLIP locations.

Would dad fix chicken-fried lobster at home? Why try when 
MAX's Wine Dive masters the dish, along with father-friendly specials like steak and eggs and innovative bar food. And then there’s MAX’s superior wine list. 404-249-0445.

Just north of the ATL in historic Crabapple, 
Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails’ chef Derek Dollar presents a Father’s Day brunch menu -- think chicken and waffles, blackened Atlantic salmon, shrimp and grits -- from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. $32 per person for adults and $16 per person for children 12 and younger. Cap dad’s day with a dinner celebration. Reserve a table and enjoy the regular menu plus "meat-tacular" features such as bone-in rib-eye and pork chops between 5-9 p.m. 770-817-0161.

Switch up the traditional Father’s Day grill out and experience authentic sushi and seafood; no passport required! RA Sushi has your Father’s Day all planned out. From open to close on Father’s Day Sunday celebrate dad with cocktails, great food, and good conversation!

Ray’s Restaurants fills dad’s love tank, morning, noon or night. Ray’s on the River offers a brunch buffet from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. ($39.95 for adults, $19.95 for kids ages 5 to 10), and its regular dinner menu from 5-9 p.m. 770-955-1187.Ray’s at Killer Creek sets out its signature brunch buffet from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. ($29.95 for adults, $15.95 for kids 5 to 10), along with its regular dinner menu (5-9 p.m.). 770-649-0064. Ray’s in the City offers special à la carte brunch, lunch and dinner menus from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. 404-524-9224.

Finally, let chef Kevin Gillespie’s 
Terminus City experts chop the pork butt this weekend and bag a signature Father’s Day barbecue package to go (feeds 4-6). Includes 2 pounds of barbecue pork, 1 pint of Revival potato salad, 1 pint of shaker-style coleslaw, 6 chocolate chip cookies, 6 sandwich rolls, barbecue sauce and pork cracklings. Pay $50 for food alone or $75 to include a personalized copy of Gillespie’s new cookbook, “Pure Pork Awesomeness.” Orders must be received by Tuesday, June 16, at midnight to ensure availability. Cookbook buyers, include name for personalization. Place order: 404-380-1886 or Pick up orders Sunday, June 21, from 10 a.m. to noon at Gunshow.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Catch Lobsters at the Creek: Maine Lobsters Move onto Ray’s at Killer Creek Summer Menu

Nab this summer special before it scoots away! Ray’s at Killer Creek plates a 1.25-pound whole Maine lobster with drawn butter and your choice of both a salad and a side dish for $24.95. Ray’s handles the hard part, catching and cooking. The luxuriously succulent meat is all yours. Lobsters claw their way south from Alpharetta to join the menus at Ray’s on the River and Ray’s in the City in July. (Subject to availability; tax and gratuity not included.)

Matthew Ridgway Returns to Atlanta as Executive Chef at Gypsy Kitchen and The Southern Gentleman

A nationwide search to fill the dual role of executive chef for Southern Proper Hospitality restaurants Gypsy Kitchen and The Southern Gentleman turned up someone who is already familiar with Atlanta -- chef Matthew Ridgway. Having cheffed in New York City, Philadelphia and France, Ridgway is ecstatic to return to Atlanta where he has already unpacked his own simple style, diverse techniques, passion for teamwork and immense desire to create memorable dining experiences for guests. Backstory, Ridgway worked under chef Joel Antunes at JOËL and served as sous chef of Pricci and Veni Vidi Vici before moving to NYC to re-open New York’s Oak Room as chef de cuisine. He later made his own mark on the culinary map, creating his own restaurant The Pass as well as Porcsalt, a charcuterie. Trained at Johnson & Wales in Providence, Rhode Island, Ridgway counts as a mentor chef Jean-Marie Lacroix, whom he worked with at The Fountain Room in Philadelphia’s Four Seasons Hotel and Lacroix at the Rittenhouse in Philadelphia. Ridgway credits Chef Lacroix with sending him to France to hone his skills at George V, a Michelin three-star restaurant in Paris, and Le Relais Sainte Victoire in Aix-en Provence. Long story short, Ridgway is home and he welcomes Atlantans to join him soon at the Buckhead Atlanta restaurants.

Top Toques Tell All at ATL industree Heart of the House June 29

Trials. Tribulations. Even though life behind the kitchen doors is no Easy Bake Oven, local chefs and restaurateurs are fired up about their field. Six of Atlanta’s #bestinthebusiness will convene at the ATL industree Heart of the House on Monday, June 29, to chew the fat about their F & B treks. Gerry Klaskala, owner and chef of Aria, moderates a panel discussion for these culinary veterans to share “war” stories about persevering, overcoming obstacles, building their brands and striving to be the best. Panelists include Todd Rushing (Concentrics), Robby Kukler (Fifth Group), Nick Leahy (Saltyard), Zeb Stevenson (Watershed), Terry Koval (Wrecking Bar), and Imani Greer (Seven Lamps). The event squeezes in between lunch and dinner hours, from 2-5 p.m., at The Marianna in Little Five Points. Buy tickets online, priced at $10 for current culinary and hospitality students, $20 for F & B industry “insiders,” and $40 for the general public. A portion of the ticket sales goes to The Giving Kitchen to assist those in Atlanta’s restaurant and hospitality industries who are struggling under the weight of health or life crises. 

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Are They Tough Enough to Go Raw? Ward and Walk are A-Team for Monday Night Raw June 15

Executive chefs Layla Walk of Last Word and Joey Ward of Gunshow prove their mettle on the mat during “Monday Night Raw” at Last Word on June 15 from 6-8:30 p.m. Employing knives and a cutting mat, instead of punches over a wrestling mat, the two will knock out a selection of raw items -- from crudos to ceviches to tartares -- and offer them Gunshow-style in the dining room. Guests will stay on the edge of their seats, crooning to see what’s next from the two pros. On the B-Team (“B” for behind-the-bar), Gunshow cocktail cart conductor Mercedes O’Brien and Last Word beverage director Cole Younger Just churn out craft cocktail hits. WWE may corner RAW on TV, but these are some  raw and real live action crowd pleasers, right here, in the ATL. Reservations suggested; call 404-343-1274 for more information.

Crowing about a Good Cause: Bantam + Biddy Avalon Give Back Night Aids North Fulton Community Charities June 15

“Together we can help” is the North Fulton Community Charities (NFCC) motto. Bantam + Biddy Avalon is reaching out to its North Fulton neighbors, asking them to come together to dine out to benefit the restaurant’s give back night partner on Monday, June 15. The charitable organization will receive 10 percent of restaurant proceeds after 5 p.m. NFCC assists over 5,000 families, providing food, clothing vouchers, financial aid and classes designed to help these North Fulton residents move forward to financial stability and self-sufficiency. 

Dine Al Fresco in Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails Garden Dinner June 14

Put this event on your “Honey, be there” list -- the monthly Garden Dinner at Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails on Sunday, June 14. Only butterflies alight closer to the veggies at this true seed-to-table dining experience in historic Crabapple. Chef Derek Dollar and his crew plant tablescapes amid the peas and beans of Milton’s Acre -- a source of garden-fresh produce and herbs for Dollar’s four-course dinner with wine pairings. Arrive at 5 p.m. for a reception with hors d’oeuvre, libations and a garden tour led by resident grower Peter Kohm then settle in for a communal meal as the sun sets and stars rise. If this month’s off the table, zero in on future dates: July 19, August 23, September 20 or October 11. $125 per person (includes tax and gratuity). Purchase tickets online. More information? Call 770-817-0161. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Meet Nature’s Harmony Farms Owners and Head Cheesemaker at Article 14 Monthly Cheese Dinner June 10

Nature’s Harmony Farm owners Mark and Julie Schoen roll their handmade artisanal cheeses into Article 14 for the Midtown restaurant’s monthly cheese dinner on Wednesday, June 10. The two are leaving their Elberton, Ga. farm that afternoon to open the evening at 6:30 p.m. and present an overview of their Old World-style craft. Head cheesemaker Turner Reynolds knows the “whey” and he’ll be there to answer questions and discuss the various cheeses featured in the night’s four-course dinner with wine pairings. You’ll want to be there to savor appetizers of bacon-wrapped dates with Elberton Blue, pimento cheese fritters with Clothbound Cheddar, cheddar cheese straws and ditalini macaroni and cheese bites with Cherokee Rose and Clothbound Cheddar. A seasonal salad transitions into roasted Fatback Pig Project pork tenderloin with Elberton Blue, figs and port wine served with wilted Bloomsdale spinach and cheese biscuits. Apricot tart, Elberton Blue and local honey deliver sweet closure. Reservations: 404-443-8432.

Creative Juices Flow during Canvas by U Art Wednesday Night at 10th & Piedmont June 10

You’ve bottled up your inner artist far too long. Let loose and PYOB (Paint Your Own Bottles) at 10th & PiedmontCanvas by U will lead an Art Wednesday class on June 10 from 7-9 p.m., guiding potential Rembrandts and van Goghs, brush stroke by stroke, through the completion of a wine bottle still life on canvas. $25 per person covers art supplies and class. We suggest dispelling any palette anxiety by priming with a specialty cocktail or glass of wine. Order dips, dabs, drinks and anything else that floats your fancy from the 10th & Piedmont menu at an additional charge. This is not a BYOB painting venue. Because creating a masterpiece requires a little prep work, you’ll need to reserve your seat before 4 p.m. on June 10 and arrive by 6:45 p.m. to gather paints. Class begins promptly at 7 p.m. 

Follow FIFA Women’s World Cup Action at Der Biergarten and STATS through July 5

Follow FIFA Women’s World Cup action like the Germans do -- congregating around outdoor screens in plazas or beer gardens. Der Biergarten, a block off Centennial Park in Atlanta’s Luckie Marietta District, broadcasts FIFA action through July 5 on multiple flat screens strategically placed throughout its indoor/outdoor beer garden. When the action becomes heated, cool off with Konig Ludwig Hefeweizen, specially priced at $9 a liter. Those following every kick, dive and goal will work up an appetite that only Zigeuner schnitzel, the schnitzel of the month, will defray. The lightly breaded pork is served with a red sauce made with mushrooms, onions, and bell peppers. With views, food and beer, flag Der Biergarten as your Atlanta FIFA fortification station.

Seventy high definition viewing screens capture every play and replay at nearby STATS. Buckets loaded with five Budweiser longneck bottled beers are $14 -- great teammates for a field of American food favorites. 

Monday, June 8, 2015

What’s New on Pinterest

It’s not summer in the South without a platter of Deliciously Deviled Eggs beaming up from the buffet spread at outdoor barbecues and potluck picnics. Hardboiling, chilling and filling the eggs ahead of time frees the cook to socialize rather than slave away last minute in a hot kitchen. Egg-strapolating some easy new fillings from our board -- spicy Sriracha-style, beet and avocado dollops, Buffalo blue cheese, dill and goat cheese, curry, shrimp, crabmeat and bacon. Want more? Cutesy deviled eggs decked out as owls or hatching chicks will walk off the table in an instant.

Sunday, June 7, 2015


EOO Jimmy S. is the sole provider for the Jwsobeck Instagram page as well as for Eat It, Atlanta. EOO stands in for Eats Out Often, which Jimmy accomplishes with aplomb, capturing the moments through the wonders of phone photography. Follow his adventures and vents as well as some darn cute pics of his little guy.