Hamming It Up at Cochon555 Atlanta

Scenes from Sunday’s awesome Cochon555 event at the Ritz Carlton in Buckhead.

Cochon555 is “the epic culinary tasting and friendly competition for a cause featuring 5 top chefs (and their farm-raised pigs), 5 barkeeps, 5 sommeliers, and more!

Full disclosure, it was impossible to take good photos while trying to take in everything as there was SO much to take in so I apologize in advance. This is why I need my own personal cameraman!  Continue reading “Hamming It Up at Cochon555 Atlanta”

My Foodie Photo Featured on Cobb Travel and Tourism

My latest foodie photo of my “South of the Border” bowl at Taqueria Tsunami is featured on Cobb Travel and Tourism’s website.  Cobb County, Georgia (where I happen to live) is considered “Atlanta’s Sweet Spot” and CTT has a page devoted to showcasing their picks of the best resident and visitor photos of all of the awesomeness this area has to offer.  I was so surprised and honored to be featured.  And, of course, I told them “There’s more where that came from!”

Taqueria Tsunami is an Asian-Latin fusion restaurant in Marietta Square.  It’s not just the yummy hybrid morsels that keep me coming back… it’s the atmosphere.  Right at the center of the square, overlooking the main courtyard.  The food is light and fresh… perfect for sitting outside and taking in whatever live “happenings” that maybe carrying on around you while you eat.

The Cowfish Brings Burgers and Sushi Beautifully Together to Atlanta

The "Skinny Gonzales" margarita
The “Skinny Gonzales” margarita

On Mother’s Day weekend, I treated myself to lunch at The Cowfish Burger Sushi Bar. After months of salivating over their Instagram feed, I was over the moon when they announced they’re “NOW OPEN” in Atlanta. Burgers and sushi are two of my three favorite foods, so, of course, I HAD to find out if the food is as good as it looks. I am happy to report that is resoundingly… overwhelmingly… better!  Continue reading “The Cowfish Brings Burgers and Sushi Beautifully Together to Atlanta”

Why I Love Rev Coffee

“Brewin’ in the Burbs, Y’all”…

It’s Small Business Saturday, I’d like to give a shout out to my favorite local coffee shops, Rev Coffee Roasters!  Earlier this week, I did a live Periscope broadcast from Rev (below) and I also decided to pay extra tribute by re-sharing an oldie-but-goodie from blogs past about why I love it (below…below).

It will always be one of my favorite places to indulge in my most treasured pastimes… drinking coffee and writing…

Back in 2012…

It could just be today… the day I decided to come here to work…who knows the reason for the calm quiet of Rev Coffee Roasters. Truly one of the best kept secrets of Smyrna. We keep it to ourselves so that nobody will infiltrate our little bohemian anti-starbucks sanctuary. (well of course, until now that I’ve outed us…oh well).

A_cup_of_ambition_to_fuel_inspiration__Good_morning_from__revcoffee___coffee__writingI admit, sadly, that I don’t frequent this place nearly as often as I should. Seriously, this should be my permanent office every day. The times that I have hung out here, Rev seems to be a mecca for writers, readers, and students of all ages. It is a hub for the November NaNo-ers in our area every year.

Another confession, when Rev first got here, I didn’t think it would last. Along with the fact that (in my opinion) the location just effin’ blows (the position on the street, not location in the city) and the parking is equally annoying, I thought the saturation of Starbucks Snobs (and yes, I am one of them… admittance is the first step) would leave it lonely and abandoned. Alas, the citizens of our fair hamlet have rallied around this establishment and created a culture of Rev loyalists.

What’s Rev got that the chains’ don’t? While I know I will never completely abandon my beloved Starbucks, Rev has unique qualities that make it an ideal “Write Space:”

#1 – Coffee: Well, duh, it’s a coffee shop, right? They’ve got all the “usual suspects” but they’ve got some really great roasts that you just don’t get everywhere else. They also sell cold Coca-Colas in the glass bottles which is a whole other separate addiction of mine.

#2 – Space: Plenty of table seating for two on up to eight…without pushing tables together…as well as a couple of large groupings of lounge seating. Very rarely are you fighting or waiting for a chair to free up and you are not literally rubbing elbows with your neighbor when you do. Plenty of room between the ordering/pick up/retail area and main seating. My personal favorite perk…an abundance of outlets and extension cords.

#3 – Quiet: Like I said, could just be the days I have chosen to come here but aside from the hum of the coffee grinder and the soothing background music, this place is very very quiet…no doubt do to the fact that those who frequent it have their head deep in a book or laptop. Most of the conversations take place when someone is ordering. Even those who seemed to have arrived with a companion appear to use telekinetic methods of communication. People come to Rev for peace and/or to get shit done!

#4 – Food: Real food. You can get a real meal here and not just a muffin (albeit a pretty damn good muffin). I recommend the Cuban panini…it’s delightful 🙂

#5 – Community: Rev gives as good as it gets. It supports the city that keeps it’s doors open. Local artists have their work on display and are able to have concerts and signings here. Organizations have meetings here. I actually used to host a writer’s group here once upon a time. Hmmmm…I should revisit that idea.

If you ever venture out to the booming metropolis of Smyrna, GA, stop by Rev and tell them I told you to. I get nothing from that other than being further along in my quest to achieve Norm-like status in all of my #WriteSpaces

“Chef” Gets In Your Feels and Feeds Your Soul

851433-chef-movie-poster-Jon-Favreau

The little indie film called “Chef” is more than worth the price of admission!

Now, I’ve seen some really good movies lately…
But it’s been a very long time since I’ve seen a movie that made me feel really good.
Chef is that movie.

I’m a touchy-feely, emotional person by nature.
It’s nothing for me to cry in a movie especially when I can relate to the plot and/or characters.
Chef got me in my feels in a different way.
It more than touched my heart…
It literally made my soul smile from the inside out.
I’m still feeling it!

Chef stars Jon Favreau, who also wrote and directed it.
You may not know who he is by name, but I guarantee you’ve seen him before.
He’s one of those actors usually in small supporting roles that you see in a lot of stuff but never really pay that much attention to…
At least that’s who he was to me.
Now that I’ve seen what he’s capable of behind the scenes as well as in front of the camera in a starring role… I think I have a little crush.
He pulled together a spectacular star-studded cast to bring his brilliantly written characters to life.
I will be shocked (and slightly devastated) if the accolades for this film do not include (at the very least) SAG or Golden Globe nominations.

In addition to an amazing screenplay, stellar acting, and the mouthwatering food (which, quite honestly, is a character in itself)… what really made this film a masterpiece for me was the music.
OH
EM
GEE!
A little old-school Soul… Jazz… a dash of Hip-Hop… a hearty helping of Salsa…
Definitely a high-ranking contributing factor to why I continue to have the warm-fuzzies about this film.
I totally downloaded the soundtrack the instant I got home.

So what is Chef about?
Honestly, I don’t want to tell you.
In fact… DO NOT watch any trailers.
I don’t want you to be spoiled in any way.
Just search your local theater listings, find it, and go see it.
Seriously… It IS that movie!
Those of you who know me… either in person or have a pretty good idea what I’m about from what you see and read online… will know exactly why this movie had such a profound affect on me.
The tagline says it all… “Starting over never tasted so good!”

I will leave you with this…
Do not under any circumstances see this movie on an empty stomach unless you are certain you will be able to get a decent meal afterward. Just a heads up… you will probably crave meat.
Also, if you are a Father, I highly recommend you see this film.
If you are a Father with a son old enough for an “R” rating, I highly recommend you see it together.