The Dish
In This Issue
J. Lohr Estates Wine Dinner at Alpine Bakery And Trattoria
Beer Dinner at Woodfire Grill
Sake Sushi Social at RA Sushi
Alon's Bakery and Market - 20th Anniversary
One-Day Sale on White Oak Pastures Chicken
Kingsford Grilling Cook-off with Atkins Park Tavern Chef
Cinco De Mayo
Derby Party at South City Kitchen Vinings
Spring Thyme Farm Dinner with Georgia Organics
Mother's Day
Atlanta Food & Wine Festival
Smashburger On Fast Casual's List
Southern Food Writing Conference
Tweep of the Week: @amyonfood
Appetizing Aperture: Spice Market Private Dining
Looking for the latest restaurant openings, weekly wine tastings and drink specials or other culinary happenings? Whatever makes your mouth water, Melissa Libby & Associates will point you in the right direction. 
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Have A "Veal" Good Time At Alpine Bakery And Trattoria's J. Lohr Estates Wine Dinner On May 1


The Dish 


Handmade veal ravioli is one of the five delectable courses that will be paired with selections from J. Lohr Estates Wines at Alpine Bakery and Trattoria's first wine dinner on Tuesday, May 1. The other four courses are equally yum:  anise and apple salad, a bruschetta sampler, bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin and scrumptious limoncello cheesecake from the bakery for dessert. Dinner starts at 6 p.m. at the Crabapple - Alpharetta Italian restaurant. Reservations required; please call the restaurant at 770-410-9883 and ask for Jamie or Anthony to reserve your place. More details on Facebook.

Tonight's Woodfire Grill Beer Dinner Introduces You To Some Cool World Beers Before Summer Sets In


The Dish 


It's going to be hot soon enough, and you'll want some new kinds of beer in your fridge to beat the heat. Tonight (May 1) is the night to meet some new brews at Woodfire Grill's four-course beer dinner. An Avery White Rascal Beer cocktail opens up the 6:30 p.m. reception. Four courses and dessert are then paired respectively with Schneider Weisse Mein Nelson Sauvin Weizenbock, limited edition from Germany; Dogfish Head Midas Touch from Rehoboth Beach; Saison DuPont Belgian Farmhouse Ale from Belgium; Ayinger Ur-Weisse Dunkelweizen from Germany; and Belgian Brasserie Caracole Nostradamus Belgian Brown. $120 per person, not including tax or gratuity. For reservations, call 404-347-9055.

RA Sushi Rolls Out Last Sake Sushi Social Until Fall This Week   

The Dish  

Cold feet? Sweaty palms? Rolling sushi, eating sushi and appetizers, and sipping sake at RA Sushi Bar Restaurant in Midtown is one fun way to douse dating anxiety. The last Sake Sushi Social until fall takes place on Tuesday, May 1 beginning at 7 p.m. $35 per person or $60 per couple includes sushi-rolling lesson and a four-course sampling menu paired with the ideal sake. Limited space so reserve a spot now by calling 404-267-0114.


What the Folk's Going On At Alon's Bakery And Market In Virginia Highland? A 20th Birthday Plus Food And Folk Music On WRFG



Twenty years ago, Alon Balshan charged up credit card loans, bought some used equipment and brought his dad Maurice and three bread recipes into a little shop in Virginia Highland. Alon's Bakery and Market is now an Atlanta staple for fine foods and beverages, artisan breads, decadent desserts, gourmet prepared foods, catering and so much more. Believe it or not, two decades will have flown by for Alon's as of this Thursday, May 3, and Alon Balshan has special celebratory promotions to offer patrons throughout the rest of the year. A birthday party needs songs, and next week Balshan will be on WRFG 89.3 FM's "What the Folk" discussing food and folk music. Pick up a little something at Alon's and listen in on Tuesday, May 8 from 8 -10 p.m. 


Catch The One-Day Sale On White Oak Pastures Chicken At Whole Foods Markets


Photo by Angie Mosier

Stock-up on chicken from White Oak Pastures at the one-day sale at Whole Foods Markets on Friday, May 4. White Oak Pastures' free-range, pastured, step 5-rated chickens are offered at just $2.99 per pound - that's a savings of $2 per pound. What a deal!


Who's Your Grill Friend? Atkins Park Chef Vies For Spot In Kingsford Grilling Cook-off May 5 In Dunwoody




On Saturday, May 5, Chef Andrew Smith of Atkins Park Tavern in Virginia Highland will grill-off against Chef David Larkworthy of 5 Seasons Brewing Company to determine which chef grills the best steak in town. The meat goes down at the Walmart Choice Steak Challenge presented by Kingsford Charcoal and Coca-Cola. Atlanta is one of the eight markets chosen for the Walmart parking lot steak showdown. The Atlanta griller takes place on Saturday, May 5 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Walmart Supercenter at 4725 Ashford Dunwoody Road in Dunwoody. Who's to judge? Shoppers, who will get to try the steaks and wash them down with a refreshing Coca-Cola Zero for free. The eight chef finalists move on to the final showdown in New York City on May 22. And while we may prefer our steaks medium rare, we are pulling for Chef Andrew so we can say "well done." 

When The Chips Are Down, Cinco De Mayo Must Be Coming Up




Chips, guac, queso, margaritas and cerveza - set 'em down. And those are just for starters. With Cinco de Mayo (May 5) falling on a Saturday this year, Mexi-specials start early and end late. Kaleidoscope Bistro & Pub in Brookhaven, known by friends as Kpub, knows how to throw a food and drink fiesta. Starting at noon and continuing on until 3 a.m. on May 6, Kaleidoscope will serve up Mexican favorites such as pulled pork, salsa verde, queso fresco; posole rojo with chicharrones, pork shanks, hominy, radishes and queso Oaxaca; boleos stuffed with carnitas, red onions, pickled jalapenos and carrots; and homemade enchiladas. Appropriate beverages? Si, si, senor and senorita. The Original El Taco, Fifth Group Restaurant's fun-loving cantina in Virginia Highland, pours on bar bargains, including $12 22-ounce El Jimador margaritas and $4 pineapple-infused tequila shots. Taking the heat out of dishes like the smoked trout taco with sweet lime mayo, red habanero cabbage and yellow pico de gallo are $9 22-ounce Dos Equis Lager drafts in a souvenir cup and $12 buckets of Dos Equis Amber. Reservations accepted for parties of seven or more at 404-873-4656, otherwise call on your way to El Taco to get on the list. Not to be out cinco-ed, Atkins Park Tavern in Virginia Highland is embracing the day with plenty of cerveza (beer), tequila, pozole rojo, taquitos, chile rellenos, palomas and margaritas. With so many fiestas on Saturday, a Sunday siesta is a request-a.  All three Ray's Restaurants - Ray's on the River, Ray's at Killer Creek and Ray's in the City - are celebrating with $5 margaritas.  Wet your whistle with a passion fruit margarita made with tequila, passion fruit purée and lime juice, a pomegranate margarita or a skinny margarita served on the rocks with tequila, orange liqueur and agave nectar. And of course, Uncle Julio's Fine Mexican Food has two Atlanta locations that are always a great place to celebrate with their signature Swirl or your favorite margarita!



Make A Run For The Roses At South City Kitchen Vinings On May 5




Throw on your best seersucker and biggest derby hat and head to South City Kitchen Vinings for a Kentucky Derby viewing party on Saturday, May 5. The restaurant is planning an exclusive party in the bar area from 4 - 7 p.m. Watch the most exciting two minutes in sports on flat-screen TVs and enjoy Breckenridge Bourbon cocktails including authentic mint juleps for only $6 each. Snack on Southern-style passed hors d'oeuvre including shrimp salad with Benedictine slaw and profiteroles, bourbon caramel corn, pigs-in-a-blanket, hot brown fritters, and butterbean hummus and pimento cheese with pickles, celery and herb pita chips. There will be a contest and reward for the most handsomely dressed. Cost is $20 per person (including tax and gratuity). Guests who stay on for dinner will get 10 percent off their checks. Purchase tickets online.


Georgia Organics Hosts Spring Thyme Farm Dinner At Planted Rock Farm May 6




Those photos that show folks chowing down at tables out on a farm, passing heaping bowls, laughing, smiling, clinking wine glasses - can be you. Georgia Organics is planning a big family style farm supper spread at Planted Rock Farm in Chattahoochee Hill Country, on Sunday, May 6 at 3 p.m.  E. J. Hodgkinson of Woodfire Grill, Shaun Doty of soon-to-open Bantam & Biddy and Craig Richards of Ecco, along with a dozen other top Atlanta chefs, will provide the fixings at the Spring Thyme Farm Dinner. Bread for breaking comes from Alon's Bakery and Market. Mixologists will make sure there are plenty of beer, wine and cocktails to quench farm thirsts. Doria Roberts and the Blackeyed Susans bring folk and soul tunes to the table. $200 per person/$185 for Georgia Organics members. To save a seat at the table, click here.


Show Mom You Care, Make Restaurant Reservations For Mother's Day 


The Dish 


We've no reservations about crowning mom queen on Mother's Day, Sunday, May 13. She raised us right though, and we know that without reservations, we might not get a table at the queen's choice of restaurants for a relaxing Mom's Day brunch or dinner.


Aqua blue in Roswell will be starting Mother's Day out with a brunch buffet featuring a carving station, made-to-order omelets, blue ribbon sushi, a chocolate fountain, $15 bottomless mimosas and their famous Bloody Mary bar from 10:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Cost will be $29.95 for adults, and children aged 4 to 12 will be $9.95. Children under 4 are free. For dinner, Mom can enjoy the à la carte menu from 5 - 10 p.m. For reservations, call 770-643-8886.


The brunch buffet at Alon's Bakery and Market in Dunwoody gifts mom with a take-home treat and features an omelet station. Available from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. $29.99 per person, $12.99 for kids 12 and under and free for children 5 and under. Reservations required for hourly seating, 678-397-1782.


Chef's specials and those daily favorites are on the menu at Double Zero Napoletana in Sandy Springs from noon - 9 p.m. on Mother's Day. Reservations, 404-991-3666.


Moms who dine at Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar on May 13 will receive a $25 gift card. A three-course brunch menu will be offered from 11:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. $34.95 for adults, $16.95 for children ages 12 and under (plus tax and gratuity). Toast mom with the day's Blood Orange Fizz cocktail for $6.95. Reservations are a must, 770-698-8112.


Kaleidoscope Bistro & Pub in Brookhaven is offering free bottomless mimosas to any mom who dines at brunch, and a free dessert or drink for mothers celebrating at dinner. For reservations, call 404-474-9600.


Moms dreamy over Virginia Highland will especially like strolling into La Tavola Trattoria for a brunch of ricotta gnocchi, panini and poached egg bruschetta from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Regular dinner service will be available starting at 5:30 p.m. Reservations, 404-873-5430.


In Decatur, No. 246 is cooking up delicious brunch offerings including Kumamoto oysters with prosecco horseradish mignonette; French toast with wood oven-roasted peaches, pecans, local honey and cinnamon cream; and a breakfast pie with poached eggs, bacon, cheddar, potatoes and mozzarella. Reservations, 678-399-8246.    


Moms sweet on sushi will thrill over sushi and appetizers starting at $2 at RA Sushi Bar Restaurant where the Flying Fish Lounge will be open from 11 a.m. until close on Mom's Day. More info:  404-267-0114.   


All three locations of Ray's Restaurants are open on Mother's Day. Ray's at Killer Creek in Alpharetta (770-649-0064) is offering a special brunch buffet from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. priced at $29.95 for adults, $14.95 for children ages 5 to 10 and free for children ages 4 and under. The regular dinner menu will be available from 5 - 9 p.m. From 9 a.m. - 9 p.m., Ray's on the River in Sandy Springs (770-955-1187) is offering a special brunch buffet priced at $39.95 for adults, $19.95 for children ages 5 to 10 and free for children ages 4 and under. Ray's in the City (404-524-9224) is offering a special brunch buffet priced at $29.95 for adults, $14.95 for children ages 5 to 10 and free for children ages 4 and under from 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. A bottomless mimosa bar sports freshly squeezed juices for $15 per person. Reservations are recommended at all locations.   


Both locations of South City Kitchen are celebrating Mother's Day with a brunch and dinner menu full of Southern favorites. The three-course brunch is priced at $29 per person (plus tax and gratuity) and is available from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. From 5 - 9 p.m., guests can enjoy the three-course prix fixe dinner for $39 per person (plus tax and gratuity). Reservations:  South City Kitchen Vinings, 770-435-0700; South City Kitchen Midtown, 404-873-7358.


A four-course tasting menu is a Mother's Day option at Woodfire Grill, priced at $62 per person. The regular à la carte menu also will be available for diners. Reservations are recommended, 404-347-9055. 



Aria And The Optimist Host Dinners During Atlanta Food & Wine Festival


The Dish 


Sure signs of spring are here. Foodies are filling Midtown Atlanta streets during the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival taking place May 10 - 13. On Thursday night, May 10, Aria and The Optimist host dinners centering around Southern food and chef talent. Aria Executive Chef Gerry Klaskala and his guests James Boyce (AL) and Frank Lee (SC) are honing in on a Georgia Grown Cream of the Crop theme using Vidalia onions, pecans, blueberries, peaches and more in the night's menu. The Optimist, which opens in Atlanta's Westside this month, swims with an Oceans 6 theme as chefs Ford Fry (GA), Bryan Caswell (TX), Mike Lata (SC), Dean Max (FL), Brandon McGlamery (FL) and Norman Van Aken (FL) with Master Sommelier Kathy Morgan (DC) gather to delight diners with fish dishes from the Gulf and South Carolina coasts. Both dinners begin at 7 p.m. and are priced at $150 per person, including beverages, tax and gratuity. Click here to order tickets.


Smashburger Is A Smash On Fast Casual's List Of 2012 Movers & Shakers    

The Dish 


Topping national lists like toppings on one of their own Smashburger hits, the fast casual burger eatery sits at #1 on Fast Casual's 2012 list of Movers & Shakers. Bite into one of their juicy burgers or chicken sandwiches at any of the five Atlanta Smashburger locations.


With Pencil In One Hand And Fork In The Other, Sign Up For The Southern Food Writing Conference May 17-18 in Knoxville


The Dish 


Like honey on a hot biscuit, the Southern Food Writing Conference just goes with the International Biscuit Festival. The two roll out together in Knoxville, Tenn. on May 17 and 18. Biscuit Boss John Craig extends a "y'all come" to food enthusiasts, professional food writers, food bloggers and lovers of all things Southern for a mix of educational, artistic and vocational topics relating to Southern culture. Some of the South's most noted food and culture editors, chefs, authors, cookbook authors, columnists and bloggers will be there. Alton Brown headlines the pre-conference entertainment on May 16. Conference registration is $325. Read more online or contact John Craig, (865) 384-7290 or


Eat It And Tweep:  Amy On Food Eats Out, A Lot


The Dish 


Amy Wallas Fox, aka @AmyonFood, tweets on Atlanta and Charlotte eats and goes longhand online with her Amy On Food blog.  Look her up for tasty photos and tips on where to eat if you're looking for someplace new to try.


Sample TweetThis place is awesome! New blog post on Heirloom Market BBQ 

Appetizing Aperture  
The Dish  

Graduation celebrations are a class act at Spice Market in the W Atlanta-Midtown. The details for Spice Market's private dining celebrations for six guests or more are on Facebook, providing parental food for thought and fuel food for graduates before entering "the real world."