Saturday, May 7, 2016

Love Ya, Mom! Let’s Eat Out. Mother’s Day is May 8

Mom’s up before the sun and often the last one to turn out the light after a jam-packed day. So how are you going to serve her breakfast in bed? Instead, give her a hug, tell her you love her and take her out for a mimosa and brunch, leisurely lunch or family dinner on Mother’s Day, May 8. If you’re looking for advice on where to go (don’t want to ask mom this time), rely on our list of mama-approved Atlanta-area restaurants and remember to make reservations. We see more hugs in your future.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Find Seed, Marlow’s Tavern and Lots More at Taste of East Cobb May 7

East Cobbers look forward to the “Most Delicious Saturday of the Year” when they can sample foods from more than 30 popular restaurants at a Taste of East Cobb. This year’s sample-fest unfolds Saturday, May 7 from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. in the south parking lot of Johnson Ferry Baptist Church. Seed Restaurant & Bar and Marlow’s Tavern are among the eateries dishing out samples. Fun seekers of all ages will find lots to do: a “Best of East Cobb” competition, Kids’ Zone with big inflatables, sand art, face painting, live music and entertainment, plus a raffle and silent auction. Free admission. Buy tasting tickets at the event for $1 each or save by ordering tickets online in advance. Restaurant offerings cost one to five tickets. Proceeds benefit the band program at Walton High School.

And They’re Off – To The Southern Gentleman Kentucky Derby Party May 7

Jockey into prime position, mint julep in hand, to watch the Run for the Roses at The Southern Gentleman Kentucky Derby Party on Saturday, May 7 from 3:30-7 p.m. Multiple viewing screens amplify the sound of galloping hoof beats to further trackside excitement at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta’s own Churchill Downs gastropub-gone-grandstand. $30-per-person ticket includes a savory stable of buffet items including confit chicken Hot Brown, pickled shrimp toast, shrimp and grits, and cheddar cheese pimento pork rinds as well as two Derby drink classics. Genteel libation choices include mint julep, Brown Derby, bourbon punch and Woodford Reserve Rye sour. Derby caps and bonnets look spiffy and may send wearers trotting to the Winner’s Circle for a Derby Day hat contest prize.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Surf In for Salads as The Big Ketch Saltwater Grill Celebrates National Salad Month

National Salad Month sprouts in May, heralding salad days are officially here. To munch salads any time of year is perfectly acceptable, but hot days beg for salads by the bowlful in the same way sunshine screams “Beach!” The Big Ketch Saltwater Grill comes through on both accounts, tossing two especially special seaworthy entrée salads onto lunch and dinner menus this month at their beachy restaurants in Buckhead and Roswell. Through Sunday, May 15, sail in for a tropical salad featuring almond-crusted grouper atop crisp romaine, melon, papaya, torn basil and mint with a toasted coconut vinaigrette. May 16-29 spawns grilled salmon on a spinach and arugula mix with peaches, toasted walnuts, crispy shallots, crumbled blue cheese and an orange honey-balsamic vinaigrette.

Community Farmers Market Cookbooks Root for the Seasons

Anyone who has dined on farm-to-table fare can attest to the remarkable impact using local, seasonal ingredients makes versus eating a dish built on produce trucked in from afar. Vine-ripe tomato sandwich in January? We rest our case -- and turn to the new, seasonal cookbooks from Community Farmers Markets (CFM) dedicated to helping market devotees make the most of their sustainably farmed, weekly finds without having to weed through out-of-season recipes. CFM-area chefs, farmers, vendors and market supporters contribute narratives and recipes for each cookbook, painting a portrait of the local area’s short, delectable season. The spring issue, releasing this week, will be sold at CFM’s farmers markets (Grant Park, East Atlanta Village, Decatur, Westside Provisions District, Ponce City/BeltLine) and in independent bookstores in Atlanta, including COVER books, with proceeds benefitting CFM’s culinary outreach and education efforts. Toss in a copy or two along with the arugula and asparagus. Dinner is going to be out of this world and totally in season.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Beers, Buffett and Block Parties Mark Cinco de Mayo

On May 5, 1862, a valiant and comparably small Mexican army crushed French forces at the Battle of Puebla. Mexico’s Independence Day is actually celebrated September 16. But hey, when the chips are down and the ice-cold margaritas and beers are flowing, why wait? Join the fun and celebrate Cinco de Mayo in true gringo fashion at “cantinas” around town.

Authentic Mexican street food is on the chef’s mind and menu at Atkins Park Restaurant & Bar in Virginia-Highland. Open at 11:30 a.m. Cinco de Mayo until 3 a.m. seis de Mayo.

HOBNOB Neighborhood Tavern straddles the Tex-Mex border to fold a special Taco Gringo around smoked pulled pork doused with BeerBQ sauce and tequila-soaked limes. Buy uno (1) for $5, dos (2) for $9 or tres (3) for $12. Frosty margaritas priced at $5 each and live music signal fiesta time.

Ray’s Rio Bravo commemorates Cinco de Mayo Margaritaville-style with free outdoor concerts (rain or shine) and cash bars from 4 p.m.-midnight. Jimmy Buffett’s favorite tribute band A1A performs Buffett and Trop Rock hits from 7:30-10:30 p.m. after a 6 p.m. opener by reggae and calypso duo Caribbean Steel. Canned and draft beers, margaritas on the rocks and street tacos will be available at cash-only satellite bars in the concert area. The restaurant will be open from 11 a.m.-11 p.m. serving Tex-Mex favorites, and the inside bar will remain open until midnight. Uber or taxi travel recommended.

The FlexMex gang at Tin Lizzy’s Cantina supersizes Cinco de Mayo spirit all over town. The Midtown location is closing 13th Street to host the mother lode of block parties. Tin Lizzy’s Buckhead, Perimeter, Downtown, Kennesaw, Emory Point and Grant Park locations put a DJ spin on outdoor “fiestavals” fenced off in their parking lots, and Cinco-celebrators can duck inside to fill up on tacos, nachos and other Tin Lizzy’s eats. Through May 7, party prices prevail on 16-ounce Corona and Modelo Especial beers ($5), Grand Marnier floats ($3) and Herradura Tequila shots ($5). Feel doubly good enjoying a 23-ounce Cinco Grande margarita ($12) knowing $1 per margarita is on a mission, floating off to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Willy’s Mexicana Grill in Brookhaven celebrates Cinco de Mayo, rain or shine, on the covered open-air patio. Revelers will enjoy live music from Tom Hart from 5-8 p.m., handcrafted frosty margaritas and made-from-scratch, freshly grilled tortillas. Celebrating on your home turf? Willy’s Catering has you covered.

What’s New on Pinterest

Get out of that chips and salsa rut and Fiesta Like There’s No Mañana with easy Cinco de Mayo-themed bites and bevs. Walking tacos made in Fritos bags, slow cooker barbacoa, mini pepper nachos and turkey taco lettuce wraps are handy for cul–de-sac-de-Mayo celebrations – and put a paloma cocktail, skinny coconut margarita or watermelon margarita in the other hand. For sweet treats from cool kitchens, craft chocolate-dipped ice cream tacos, margarita cupcakes or baked (not fried) churros. Olé! And then some.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Party with Atlanta Magazine’s Best Restaurants and Johnnie Walker May 4

Indulge your palate at Atlanta Magazine’s “50 Best Restaurants” Party on Wednesday, May 4 from 6-9 p.m. in the new Mason Fine Arts gallery space. Live music and noteworthy artwork set the backdrop for guests enjoying the open bar and samplings from Atlanta’s premier restaurants, including Le Fat and others from the “50 Best” list. Whiskey sippers will want to hobnob at the Johnnie Walker Trunk Show. By the way, AriaGunshow, Le Fat, Revival and Seed Kitchen & Bar are all on the list. Buy tickets online for $100 each, including parking, unlimited food tasting, drinks and entertainment. At the door, ticket price will be $120 each. Ages 21 and older only. The evening benefits The Giving Kitchen and its quest to aid hospitality industry workers facing unforeseen hardships and medical needs.

Help Bellina Alimentari Make the Pasta Ribbon for Ponce City Farmers Market Opening Day Ribbon Cutting May 3

Hold the spaghetti sauce! Only pasta ribbon is needed for a pasta ribbon cutting commemorating the official opening of Ponce City Farmers Market (PCFM) on Tuesday, May 3 at 3:15 p.m. Help Bellina Alimentari make the longest pasta sheet the Atlanta BeltLine has ever seen. Sign up for the BeltLine Pasta Making class, a quick 45 minutes of hands-on mixing and rolling fresh pasta at the BeltLine entrance to Ponce City Market, culminating with the pasta ribbon cutting to open PCFM. Tickets are $5 per person. PCFM at The Shed will be open every Tuesday from 4-8 p.m. beginning May 3.

Monday, May 2, 2016

What’s New on Pinterest

Everybody, Twist and Shout with us because National Pretzel Day is Tuesday, April 26. Rather than get tied up in knots about it, twist up matcha green tea soft pretzels, ham and cheese pretzel bites, jalapeño popper cheesy pretzel bombs or warm chocolate chip cookie-stuffed soft pretzels. Snap the store-bought kind into strawberry pecan salad, salted caramel brownies, no-churn salted caramel toffee ice cream or a snack mix. Watch out for addicting crack pretzels, whiskey pretzels and those famed Rolo pretzel sandwiches that show up at family reunions. 

Sunday, May 1, 2016


Taking it to the streets, Behind Food Carts chases food trucks, food carts and street eats in the good old USA and abroad. Rev up and read the stories behind the wheels on their website. Park a cart on the coffee table by way of award-winning “Food Truck Road Trip: A Cookbook,” and you’ll never run out of gas.

Appetizing Aperture

To duck or smile when asking for a Sucker Punch at Smokebelly BBQ in Buckhead? Sit back, relax and smile because this “Swig & Sip” hit of a cocktail packs potent American Born moonshine tempered by berry syrup, lemon and Sprite ($6). Wipe off that grin and be careful. This sucker can sneak up on you.