Simply Buckhead March/April 2024

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HOW TO GO VEGAN HOTEL-INSPIRED DECOR EXPLORE CARTERSVILLE Tying the Knot PLAN A WEDDING THAT'S UNIQUELY YOU! Serving Buckhead, Brookhaven, Chamblee, Dunwoody, Sandy Springs and Upper Westside Your Guide to Living Well in Atlanta ISSUE 101 • FREE MARCH/APRIL 2024
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Editor's Letter UP FRONT 15 NEWS A Sweet Partnership Popular Atlanta bakery acquired by restaurant franchise
LOCAL SALUTE Heavenly Greenspace in Westside Creating beauty, growing healthy food
LIVING THE LIFE Richard Peterson There’s nothing cheesy about Ecco Buckhead’s general manager and his passion for fromage
APPROVED Tea Time Elegant essentials will elevate your afternoon tea and have your company in awe of your style and good taste
TRAVEL NEAR Unexpected Escape History and adventure await in Bowling Green 24 TRAVEL FAR Beyond the Honeymoon Families will find fun in Maui's tropical paradise 26 STAYCATION Charm in Cartersville A quick 45-minute trip from Atlanta has museums, shopping and more LIVING 28 HOME Better Together A Dunwoody couple fuses their styles in a renovated abode
BULLETIN BOARD The Art of Marrying Old and New Tips by Liz Williams for curating a home to suit your style
TRENDING Be Your Own Guest Replicate a hotel-like environment to turn your bedroom into a restful oasis
TASTEMAKER Table This Salted brings unique designs to your tabletop Contents SIMPLY BUCKHEAD ®  MARCH/APRIL 2024 88 26 28 74 22 18 ➥
Photos: 18, 74: Erik Meadows, 22: VisitBGKY, 28 Patrick Heagney, 88 Madelynne Grace




Style in Sandy Springs

Annie Boswell of The Blake brings fashion, gifting and more to Fountain Oaks


Youth Skincare Guide

5 esthetician tips for your pre-teen or teen


Healthy Vegan

The principles, myths and benefits of veganism


Pretty Athletic

SWAKE founder Vanessa Sachs on how she launched a sweat-proof makeup line



Understanding Addiction

From gaming to substances, a psychotherapist weighs in




Including your four-legged friends in your home design


Dare to Delegate

Outsource common tasks in your daily life



On the Scene

Actor Andrea Laing’s star is shining


Voices from the Past A grandson learns about his family’s harrowing history


Transforming Spaces through Art Consultant Amy Parry marks a decade on her own


Places to go and things to do


74 Saying I Do Wedding discoveries to make your nuptials uniquely you



Ciao Chow

Il Giallo Osteria & Bar brings Italy’s Piedmont to Sandy Springs


The 19th Hole

Spirits with a taste of the fairway


Rising Stars

Five Atlanta restaurants receive Michelin stars


Slam Dunk

Chef G. Garvin’s culinary expertise is a win for State Farm Arena

98 Featured Restaurants

A sampling of great eats in and around Buckhead


“It’s your big day!” takes on a different meaning during your wedding. To replicate that feeling of the bride— and her preferences—taking center stage, we worked with a gorgeous model and surrounded her with choices to make the event uniquely tailored to her personality. The result is fun and playful and perfectly illustrates Simply Buckhead’s cover theme of “Saying I Do!” for this wedding-focused issue.




101 Charitable

A spotlight on philanthropic and social gatherings

104 Scene

Photographer: Erik Meadows

Producer: Jennifer Bradley Franklin

Hair: Richie Arpino Makeup: Nikia Yancey

Model: Ryn K., courtesy Click Models of Atlanta

Wardrobe: Canaima gown by Nicole Milano ($2,875), rose gold earrings ($95), Suite Bridal

Ring: 4.03 ct oval cut diamond ring (price available by request), Highland Diamond

Champagne coupe: Aurelia coupe ($80 for two), Odd McLean

Invitation: Dear Eloise (price available by request)

Bouquet and macarons: Legendary Events (custom)

Special thanks to Tony Conway, Legendary Events and The Estate for hosting our team.

50 Lajoy Photography Erik Meadows
Erik Meadows 96 69

Editor's Letter

Earlier this year, I was on a beach on the west coast of Mexico, and I watched a bridal party prepping for the big day. That toes-in-the-sand beach wedding couldn’t have been more different from mine more than a dozen years ago at a little church in Brookhaven, its stained glass windows lit by candlelight on the night my husband and I made a lifelong commitment.

As I sipped my margarita and listened to the waves crashing, I thought about how weddings come in all shapes and sizes, as unique as the personalities of brides and grooms planning them. It’s that very ethos that inspired this issue’s cover theme of “Saying I Do: wedding discoveries to make your nuptials uniquely you.” To that end, our cover feature includes articles on how to customize your attire, find unique places to host your ceremony and reception, the advantages of opting for one-of-a-kind rings and navigating a destination wedding. Whether you’re currently planning or hoping to be sometime in the future, it’s packed with information.

Also in this issue, you’ll find Hope S. Philbrick’s feature on Italian gem Il Giallo in Sandy Springs, H.M. Cauley’s Tastemaker profile of art curator Amy Parry, a primer on teen skincare by Karina Antenucci and so much more. No matter if you’re looking for design inspiration, ideas for where to dine out or places to add to your travel bucket list, this issue of Simply Buckhead has you covered.

Happy reading!


Sara Hanna

Jennifer Bradley Franklin

Senior Contributing Editor

Serving Buckhead, Brookhaven, Chamblee, Dunwoody, Sandy Springs and Upper Westside

P.O. Box 11633, Atlanta, GA 30355

For advertising rates, call: 404.538.9895

Joanne Hayes

Publisher and Founder

Sonny Hayes

Chief Financial Officer


Giannina S. Bedford Managing Editor

Jennifer Bradley Franklin

Senior Contributing Editor

Karina Antenucci

Senior Contributing Editor

Alan Platten

Creative Director

H.M. Cauley Copy Editor


Chelsie Butler

H.M. Cauley

Carly Cooper

Emily L. Foley

Lauren Finney Harden

Mickey Goodman

Angela Hansberger

Nicole Letts

Amy Meadows

Hope Philbrick

Ashton Pike

Claire Ruhlin

Vanessa Rust


Madelynne Grace

Patrick Heagney

Erik Meadows

Joann Vitelli


Erin Haraway

Associate Publisher

Michelle Johnson

Senior Account Executive

Layal Akkad Graphic Designer


BHG Digital Website Development Management

Mike Jose Director of Audience Development


Scott I. Zucker Legal Counsel


Hope S. Philbrick

Hope S. Philbrick is a freelance writer because she believes that work and fun should not be mutually exclusive. She writes about travel, food, wine and spirits (as in booze, not ghosts). Her work has appeared in US Airways, San Francisco Chronicle, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and dozens of other titles.  An Atlanta business lunch in 1997 was all the persuasion she needed to move cross-country and adopt the city as her hometown. For over 20 years, she has reviewed restaurants for multiple metro area publications. When not writing, she’s usually on the road or savoring something tasty.


welcome all contributions, but we assume no responsibility for unsolicited material. No portion of this publication can be reproduced in whole or in part without prior written permission. Copyright © 2024 by Simply Buckhead ® All rights reserved. Printed by Walton Press, Inc. Distributed by Distributech and Distribution Services Group.
“I love the business I am in because I want to play a role in the best part of someone’s day.” — Richard Peterson
Maître d’ fromage Richard Peterson discovered a love for complex and delicious artisanal cheeses. PHOTO: Erik Meadows
Living The Life: Richard Peterson Page 18

Fashion aCure







Lynne Rankin, Jennifer Raulet, and Ashley Whitehurst

For more information, please contact 404-719-9626 or WINSHIPEVENTS@EMORY.EDU

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Popular Atlanta bakery acquired by restaurant franchise

Chicken Salad Chick, a fastcasual chicken salad chain, recently took ownership of one of Atlanta’s most iconic bakeries, Piece of Cake. Tom Carr, chief marketing officer at Chicken Salad Chick, says the merger was a natural fit, thanks to the bakery’s popularity and quality. Add that to the uncanny similarities in origin

stories, and it is, as Carr says, kismet. “It's not lost on us that, much like [Chicken Salad Chick Founder] Stacy Brown, Melissa Jernigan founded Piece of Cake out of her home kitchen in Atlanta,” he says. “It’s a woman-built business and [has grown] into a bigger business. People love the cakes, and people love our chicken salad.”

Brookhaven Announces City Centre Project

Just over a decade after becoming a municipality, Brookhaven broke ground on its new government offices and mixed-use space, Brookhaven City Centre. When completed, the new City Hall campus will sit on approximately 1 acre near the Brookhaven MARTA station at the corner of North Druid Hills and Peachtree roads. Master plans indicate the development will have

60% public-use space, including a rooftop park, green space, recreational trails, retail opportunities, a coffee shop and more. The project, funded via Brookhaven’s Special Services District, is expected to be finished by mid-2025 and will serve as a central gathering space for the community.

Carousel Fine Art Now Open

Carousel Fine Art celebrated its grand opening at Buckhead Village

Eventually, Piece of Cake slices and whole cakes will be available at all 255 Chicken Salad Chick locations across 18 states, but for now, the brand is focusing on its strong Atlanta market and ramping up from there. “It will come from Buckhead to the rest of the country, so Buckhead is going to conquer the cake world!” he says.

in late 2023. Hailed as a global art gallery representing emerging and established artists, it was founded by the husband-and-wife team Philippe and Laura Horowicz. The new Atlanta gallery joins sister locations in Miami, Chicago and Saint-Tropez. Carousel Fine Art is touted as a full-service spot offering artwork for sale as well as logistics management services such as framing, installation and shipping. Art seekers will enjoy works in both

The first flavor to appear on menus will be white chocolate, one of the bakery’s most popular. As for what will happen to everyone’s favorite Piece of Cake locations? Operations will continue as usual. n

classical and avant-garde styles and mediums at its Bolling Way location that is open seven days per week.

The Daily Expands to Buckhead Atlanta’s third location of the coffee shop and cafe is now open. Led by restaurateurs Melody and Michael Shemtov and chef-partner Jacob Hunter, it joins fellow outposts in Inman Park and West Midtown. The latest spot is located off of

Northside Drive in Buckhead, in the North Creek office complex, adding to a robust list of new neighbors such as fast-casual Tex-Mex restaurant Little Rey and fitness studio Pace Fitness. Like its other locations, The Daily will serve a variety of Southern-inspired menu items joined with Middle Eastern flavors. Favorites include avocado toast, breakfast burritos, veggie pitas, smoothies and seasonal lattes.

Above: The expansion of baked good offerings from Chicken Salad Chick will start with their stores in Metro-Atlanta. Right: Scott Deviney, president and CEO of Chicken Salad Chick, and Melissa Jernigan, founder and CEO of Piece of Cake,. CHICKEN SALAD CHICK • 678.732.3573 @chickensaladchick

Heavenly Greenspace in Westside

Creating beauty, growing healthy food

Women Power

Impacting little-known nonprofits

Growing up, Sarah Levitt was no stranger to Impact100, an organization that both her grandmother and mother embraced in Baldwin County. So when she was looking for ways to contribute more to the community during COVID-19, Levitt founded a chapter in Atlanta. The goal was to gather 100 women willing to donate $1,000 to significantly impact little known but worthy nonprofits. To date, its 70 chapters around the world have donated more than $140 million.

Levitt and co-chair Laurie Sheehan, another third-generation member, recruited 130 women during 2022 who granted The Study Hall, an after school and summer camp, with $130,000. The chapter more than doubled in size in 2023 and raised $273,000 that provided $91,000 grants to three nonprofits.

Winners were the Automotive Training Center that trains at-risk teens to become auto mechanics and has a 100% hiring rate; Atlanta Victim’s Assistance that helps victims of crime in Atlanta; and Fully Furnished Ministries that collects, refurbishes and donates furniture

to people in need.

All the donations go directly to the grant pool, and 26% of the members are from the Simply Buckhead coverage area, including 20 residents at Peachtree Hills Place retirement community.

“Women need no invitation and can apply online to select their level of involvement,” says Levitt. “Our application process for nonprofits will reopen this spring for 2024.”

Unlikely bedfellows Food Well Alliance and Tito’s Handmade Vodka frequently team up to work on projects that help build community gardens and urban farms. When they learned that Heaven’s Corner community garden on James P. Brawley Drive in Westside needed a little extra love, they staged an October event.

Food Well, whose mission is to provide resources and support to local growers to connect and build healthier communities, has worked with the philanthropic arm of the company, Love, Tito’s, for the last three years. “It supports urban gardens and even has a large garden for employees at the Austin, Texas, distillery,” says Kate Conner, executive director of Food Well Alliance.

Rosario Hernandez, executive director of the five greenspaces in the Historic Westside Gardens collection, has helped the gardens grow into gathering places. “At Heaven’s Corner, volunteers from Tito’s, Food Well, and residents rebuilt garden beds, created a pollinator garden, planted flowers and vegetables, raked and mulched, built picnic tables and replaced the ADA pathways,” she says.

Nearby, there's graffiti on an abandoned house. "(It) reads, 'Being poor is not a crime, says Pam Burton, division manager of Tito's Westside office. "It echoes the 'can-do' attitude of the residents who showed up to help us refurbish the garden.”

The Root of the Issue

Strength in numbers

During a dinner conversation, friends Butch Whitfield, a realtor at Harry Norman Realtors; Liz Lapidus, founder of Liz Lapidus Strategic Communications; and Johanna Ellis-Reisinger, former owner of Atlanta Classic Cars began discussing their favorite nonprofits and how to enhance their impact. “Our goal was to develop a shared vision to guide the region's conservation efforts,” says Whitfield.

The result was Root Local that began with polling 250 environmental groups to test their interest. “We got responses from all the six sectors we identified: food systems, air and water quality management, canopy and land management, green buildings and practices, sustainable fashion and products, and travel and transportation,” says Whitfield.

Using those replies, they developed a Network Map, a Collective Impact Plan and The Pollinator Network where online community members and organizations can come together to share ideas and learn how to become better stewards of the environment.

“Interested citizens can register

online and choose the sector that interests them most, whether its green buildings or sustainable fashion,” Whitfield says.

Root Local acts as a conduit for them to support one another’s events through cross promotion and participation, and networking to find ways to work together.

“Another Root Local goal is to create a template to share with other cities who want to increase their environmental impact by working together,” says Whitfield.

Sarah Levitt, founder of Atlanta chapter of Impact100, carries on a family tradition of giving. Johanna Ellis-Reisinger, Butch Whitfield and Liz Lapidus help bring nonprofits together to share information.
LOCAL SALUTE BY Mickey Goodman
Volunteer Julio Gonzalez joins Food Well Alliance staff member Emily Barton and executive director Kate Connor at Heaven's Corner.
ROOT LOCAL • @rootlocal404 IMPACT100 ATLANTA • @impact100atlanta
HANDMADE VODKA • @titosvodka
WELL ALLIANCE • @foodwellalliance
WESTSIDE GARDENS @historic_westside_gardens


There’s nothing cheesy about Ecco Buckhead’s general manager and his passion for fromage

As told to Amy Meadows PHOTOS: Erik Meadows

One of my favorite genres of cheese comes from the Pyrenees mountains. Many of these cheeses have been made for hundreds of years, mostly with sheep’s milk. The nomadic herders in the region take their sheep through the mountains in search of the freshest grasses. The milk produced helps to craft cheeses that have a subtlety and complexity—a savory umami quality—that is just amazing. When you can pair that kind of cheese

with just the right wine, it's like bells going off. You’ve created magic.

I discovered my love for artisanal cheeses around 2005 when I worked for Gaylord Resorts in Nashville. I’ve always been passionate about food and wine, and I was drawn to the romance of the origin stories of certain foods and beverages. I’ve worked in restaurants for my entire career, and I was actually working toward becoming a wine sommelier. However, a unique opportunity

arose when my food and beverage director crossed paths with famed NYC chef and restaurateur Terrance Brennan, who is responsible for bringing a lot of old school artisanal cheeses from Europe to America. Gaylord Resorts wanted to add something new to its restaurants: an authentic cheese experience. They needed someone to become a maître d’ fromage, and it sounded like something I would enjoy.

After landing the position, I was sent to study in New York where I learned from the masters at the Artisanal Premium Cheese Center, a 10,000-square-foot cheese importer and aging facility that sources cheeses from around the world. I also studied at restaurants such as Picholine, Artisanal Fromagerie & Bistro and Murray’s Cheese Bar. I immersed myself in that world and narrowed my focus to artisanal cheeses that are made in small batches. After a few months, I was tasked with taking my

newfound knowledge and transforming it into something that would work for the market in Tennessee. That included creating a program through which I could deliver a highly unique and memorable dining experience for our patrons; it involved placing 25 to 30 cheeses from around the world on a cart and pairing them with beer, wine and other beverages tableside. I even presented seminars to conferences of hundreds of people, showing them the best possible cheese and beverage pairings.

I was able to take that experience to a variety of establishments in Nashville, Washington, D.C. and other locales for several restaurant groups. In 2019, I decided to move to Atlanta. I initially worked with Brewed to Serve Restaurant Group; after the pandemic, I was given the opportunity to transition to Fifth Group Restaurants and become the general manager of Ecco Buckhead. Here, I once again will have the chance to tap into the unique skills I have cultivated, as we are working to focus on and further build our cheese and cured meat program. I can couple that with my experience as a wine sommelier, a designation I also received while on my cheese adventure.

In my personal life, I’ve become known for giving artisanal cheeses as gifts, as well as tips and recommendations to friends and colleagues. You’ll often find me at my local Kroger picking up Murray’s Cheese, which brings back wonderful memories of studying at the Murray’s shop in Greenwich Village so many years ago. Of course, wherever I am, whether I’m in a professional or personal capacity, I find joy in sharing my love of artisanal cheeses with the people around me. We live our lives over a plate of food or a drink. For so many people, that’s the best part of the day. I love the business I am in because I want to play a role in the best part of someone’s day. I also want to introduce people to a diverse range of cheeses and the stories behind them. People become mesmerized when they realize how much work and love goes into making these products. You can have a whole flavor journey with cheese, and I really found my niche in this truly exciting world. n

LIVING THE LIFE ECCO BUCKHEAD • 404.347.9558 • @ecco.atl

Sale starts March 15th


Touro Luggage - Lenox Square: (678) 332-1078

Perimeter Mall: (404) 231-0074

Phipps Plaza: (404) 846-2039

Mori L&G - Town Center: (678) 797-1722


Monique Lhuillier Juliana Scalloped Three-tiered Stand ($99)

No tea party is complete without a three-tiered stand full of savory and sweet bites. This simple yet elegant stand features stoneware in a white glazed finish with a rose-gold center. There is space for tea sandwiches (reserved for the bottom), scones (middle) and sweets (top). Designed by world-renowned fashion designer Monique Lhuillier, the stand’s softly textured scalloprimmed plates are reminiscent of flower petals, making it the perfect complement to your next garden tea party.

Pottery Barn • • @potterybarn

MacKenzie-Childs Courtly Check 3-Quart Tea Kettle ($188)

Wedgwood Gio Gold Teapot ($310)

In 1995, Wedgwood was granted the Royal Warrant, a mark of recognition of those who have supplied goods or service to the Royal Household for at least five years, from her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Suited for royalty, this high-quality, timeless teapot boasts an oval shape, geometric pattern and 22-carat gold banding. Crafted from fine bone china, this piece easily pairs with Wedgwood’s other collections. Invest in the best and you will impress your guests for years to come.  Macy's • • @macys

Tea Time

Elegant essentials will elevate your afternoon tea and have your company in awe of your style and good taste. High-end pieces like these are worth investing in as they will last for years. STORY: Vanessa Pascale

MacKenzie-Childs’ beautiful tea kettle features the company’s famed hand-painted, courtly check pattern and is topped with a clear glass knob. Made from stainless steel, it holds 3 quarts, which is more than enough hot water for your assembly of tea drinkers. Known for traditional pieces with a twist as well as vibrant hues and patterns, the MacKenzie-Childs kettle adds character and charm to your stovetop, kitchen and teatime.  Neiman Marcus • • @neimanmarcus

Valse Bleue Tea Cup and Saucer in Bone China, Set of 2 ($500)

Does tea taste better when it’s sipped from highend Tiffany & Co. teacups? That is debatable; however, you will certainly look super posh doing it. This luxurious set of teacups and saucers is appointed with an alluring floral motif, handpainted gold edges and a pattern that is an ode to 1960s tableware from The Tiffany archives. This pair of teacups and saucers is crafted from the finest bone china and is just what your afternoon teatime needs.  Tiffany & Co. •• @tiffanyandco

Herbiflora Teaspoons, Set of 4 ($38)

Anthropologie’s set of four teaspoons is pretty, dainty and a must-have. Handcrafted from stainless steel and brass, these whimsical spoons will delight your fellow tea enthusiasts during teatime. Fun fact: The proper way to stir your tea is to place your spoon at the 12 o’clock position and softly move the spoon back and forth from 12 to 6 o’clock. Never leave your spoon in your teacup and never swirl in a circular motion. Anthropologie • @anthropologie

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Unexpected Escape

History and adventure await in Bowling Green

When you think of Kentucky, visions of rolling pastures filled with sleek thoroughbreds and stave rooms piled high with bourbon barrels might come to mind. Bowling Green, however, presents a different, more laid-back vibe. When my trip began at Chaney’s Dairy Barn, a fifth-generation working farm and handcrafted ice cream facility, I knew I was in for a few old-fashioned fun experiences.

I met owner and operator Carl Chaney at the ice cream counter where he instructed me to order a flight of several flavors. I opted for banana pudding, mango sorbet and classic chocolate. It was a blustery fall mid-week day, yet the space was packed with families. “You’re busy!” I exclaimed. Chaney grinned back at me, “We always are. We have become a destination, and I love it.”

Bowling Green is an under-theradar destination rife with unique attractions. Take, for example, the National Corvette Museum. The city’s plant has produced every Corvette since 1981, and the nearby museum celebrates the car in its glo ry. During my tour, I saw classics from the company’s 70-year history inter actively displayed, many on rotating platforms to give the best views of all of the cars’ curves. Pop culture arti-

facts and ephemera caught my eye, including Batman’s life size Batmobile, Barbie’s pink set of wheels and Prince’s hit record featuring his little red lover. More than 225,000 visitors meander through the museum annually, many of whom want to steal a peek down the glass-covered sinkhole where, on Feb. 12, 2014, eight vintage Corvettes dropped 30 feet underground. It’s an odd but enticing reason to visit, and for those invested in Corvette history, it’s a must-see.

While the disastrous sinkhole was a calamity, it wasn’t a complete surprise. The city sits atop 50 miles of caves, and the world’s largest contin-

ranger-led tours, and guests can easily spend all day beneath the ground. As my tour group descended into one of the caves, the temperatures dropped drastically. I shivered and wrapped my coat tighter. Our park ranger began telling Mammoth Cave’s story, the same one that has been recounted to visitors for 207 years. We walked just two of the 426 known miles of caves, during which we slunk between Fat Man’s Misery, an especially tight portion of the trail, and took in Butterscotch Falls, a flowstone formation. When we reemerged a few hours later, my eyes had to adjust to the light.

I stayed at the swanky Embassy Suites. The striking hotel welcomed me with an impressive water installation and a bustling bar at Tony's Steak & Seafood. I made a mental note to grab a cocktail before dinner at Hickory and Oak, an upscale restaurant in historic downtown.

Once at the eatery, I found myself immersed in an urban setting with a laidback Southern atmosphere. I kicked off the meal with country ham and pimento cheese fried wontons before digging into succulent steak frites and finishing with the towering brownie sundae topped with cocoa nibs and homemade cherry ice cream.

The next morning, after a sound sleep, I stopped at Spencer’s Coffee for provisions. The shop on Fountain Square has been a Bowling Green staple since 2001, and it provided a perky pick-me-up before I turned my car south for the easy five-hour drive back home. n

BOWLING GREEN • @visitbgky
Chaney's Dairy Barn is a destination for kids of all ages thanks to its robust ice cream menu. Above: Mammoth Cave National Park is t he world's longest known cave system. Bowling Green, Kentucky sits just an hour north of Nashville and is filled with both natural and man made wonders. The National Corvette Museum showcases America's sports car. Courtesy of MBPR Courtesy of MBPR Nicole Letts Courtesy of VisitBGKY
Peachtree Blvd., Atlanta, GA 30341 770.450.4805 |
Oaxaca is a casual, all-day eatery offering simple, yet inventive takes on traditional Mexican cuisine.


Families will find fun in Maui's tropical paradise STORY: H.M.

We admit it: My daughter and I are beach freaks.

For us, a great getaway has to include sand and saltwater. Maybe it’s because we’re both Pisces, but the lure of the ocean is inescapable and has taken us to many magnificent seasides.

One that hadn’t been on our radar was Maui. We were fortunate to visit just prior to the fires that ravaged more than 10 square miles. Now, seven months later, visitors are welcome once again. They’ll find that the lush island lives up to its allure and, at the same time, dispels a number of myths. Most notably: Maui isn’t just for honeymooners or bucket-list retirees. We found ourselves sunning and swimming alongside kids, parents, grandparents, girlfriend groups and bachelor parties. At a packed sunset performance of local music and dance, the emcee called for newlyweds to stand up, and only one couple took the applause.

The island’s popularity with visitors of all ages has caught the

attention of the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa. The hotel offers an Ultimate Maui Family Vacation package, a six-night stay that includes a range of age-appropriate adventures and activities. It starts at the Kahului airport where a rental car awaits, making it easy to load the gang and the luggage, and get underway. A 45-minute drive to the property winds along the coast between the Pacific’s deep blue waters and the cloud-shrouded mountains, and has several pull-offs ideal for photos and videos. Equally picturesque is the property’s location, perched on a 3-mile stretch of Kaanapali beach, considered one of the best on the island.

The package also comes with custom menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It includes a buffet at the three-hour Drums of the Pacific Luau, which might seem like a long time to be under the stars, but even the squirmiest kids around us were captivated by the dramatic dancing and fire-eating experts. Another activity not to miss is the Tour of

the Stars, offered after dark on the hotel’s roof where a former NASA expert sets up three high-powered telescopes and gives a everyone a chance to get up-close views of the night skies.

Along with two pools, the hotel has a splash area with slides for the kids and shaded daybeds overlooking the beach for grown-ups who can have food and drinks delivered to their nook. A recreation cabana is stocked with chairs and umbrellas for those who prefer getting sandy at the surfside. And that’s where our second surprise showed up: All those killer-wave YouTube videos weren’t taken on the island’s west side. The swells were so calm that bodysurfers had a hard time catching a curl, but that made it ideal for splashing and floating on our noodles alongside two giant sea turtles.

We weren’t disappointed by the pix we’d seen that showed off Maui’s vividly colored, lavishly lush landscape, home to equally colorful critters. Inside the hotel’s open atria are several cages and open perches

where exotic, and often vocal, birds are on display. Through the hotel’s grounds, swans, ducks and herons wander freely. But the most popular and surprising attraction was the abode of six African black-footed penguins who pose and preen for the cameras. Feeding time each morning was an Insta-worthy event. The wildlife staff gladly conducts tours to showcase the animal stars and leads a kids’ workshop to make bird feeders and toys.

Beyond the property, Maui has all the expected beach-related activities, from parasailing and paddleboarding to snorkeling and, if the tides cooperate, surfing. Visitors can tour a pineapple farm, hike to a waterfall, climb up a mountain in the clouds and picnic on the edge of a quiet cove. But for us beach-lovers, bouncing between the beach and the waves, with a few tropical beverages in between, was all the activity we needed to enjoy this Pacific gem. n

Left: The Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa sits along the Kaanapali beach. Above: The hotel is home to six HYATT REGENCY MAUI RESORT AND SPA 808.661.1234 • • @hyatt

Charm in Cartersville

A quick 45-minute trip from Atlanta has museums, shopping and more

I’ve been to Cartersville before; it’s a good halfway stop to stretch your legs and grab a cup of coffee when traveling from Atlanta to Nashville. I knew its downtown had appeal, but a recent day trip had me bowled over with just how much there is to do, only 45 minutes from Atlanta's city limits.

Founded in 1850, Cartersville is known as Georgia’s Museum City, so I started my adventure by crossing three of the them off my list. The Savoy Auto Museum, which

opened in 2021, was a delight, and gearheads will love pouring over its car exhibitions. The Tellus Science Museum kept me busy for quite a while, exploring minerals, fossils and space, among other displays. It’s a great way to spend a few hours, especially for anyone with kids ages 4 to 12. The grande dame of the three, Booth Western Art Museum, which along with Tellus is a Smithsonian Affiliate, took me by surprise. Over 120,000 square feet are dedicated to telling the stories of the Ameri-


Barnsley Resort in nearby Adairsville is the way to go for those looking to extend a day trip into a weekend excursion. History buffs will love that the property dates back almost 200 years and has historical ruins of the original house and meticulously kept gardens, plus a museum. (Ask about the 200-plus-yearold Chinese fir tree in the front yard, as well as the murders on property.) Outdoor enthusiasts will have endless options to pursue, including golf, horseback riding, air rifles, axe throwing and Beretta shooting grounds. The property consists of an English-inspired village lined with cottages and an inn, completed in 2018. Pet- and kid-friendly, it has everything you need to relax after a day of hitting the pavement in Cartersville.

BARNSLEY RESORT • 877.773.2447 • @barnsleyresort

can West through art, and I particularly enjoyed the interpretations on the contemporary floor.

The rest of the day was spent strolling Cartersville’s downtown, where I stopped for a coffee at Noble & Main Coffee Co. and for lunch at Table 20. Along my stroll, I passed the first outdoor painted-wall advertisement for Coca-Cola that dates to 1894. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, it sits on the east wall of Young Brothers Pharmacy on Main Street. Older buildings, such as The Grand Theatre, which dates to 1910, were visually interesting as I walked. I popped into shops like Olive Tree & Vine, an olive oil-focused retailer; ’Tis the Season, Cartersville’s only year-round Christmas store; and Canopy Home Decor. On

Saturday mornings, Canopy hosts Kennesaw-based Bonnin’s French Bakery. I didn’t have time to go into the Rose Lawn Museum, but the beautiful Victorian mansion is going on a future to-do list, as it is packed with memorabilia of Rebecca Latimer Felton, the first woman to serve in the U.S. Senate in 1922.

To end my day, I headed to Largos, a restaurant that opened in 2021 and offers New American cuisine. Helmed by Atlanta-based chef Matthew Jones (formerly of Bacchanalia and Boone’s), it was the perfect place to unwind with a cocktail and charcuterie board featuring Sweet Grass Dairy before heading back down I-75. n

CARTERSVILLE • @visitcartersvillega

Brian Little Above: The Rose Lawn Museum is housed in a Victorian mansion. Below: The Tellus Science Museum is a Smithsonian Affiliate. The first outdoor painted-wall advertisement is on Main Street and features Coca-Cola.




atie Gangell and Mike Dewald started dating in 2017. They each had their own individual homes, but after COVID hit in March 2020, Dewald, a finance director, sold his East Cobb residence and moved into Gangell’s three-bedroom, two-bath house in Dunwoody’s Georgetown neighborhood. With two dogs at the time,

and both Gangell and Dewald working from home, the couple soon started looking for a larger domicile. After bidding on seven houses unsuccessfully during a competitive real estate market, they were connected with Dunwoody homeowners who were considering selling their seven-bedroom, four-anda-half bath home, but who hadn’t officially put it on the market. ➥

The cozy sitting room off the foyer has Katie's furnishings from her previous home.
“Buying this house was about making a home together.”

“It’s more house than we needed or intended, but it met a lot of the things we were wanting, like an open floor plan. And we both have older, single parents; we wanted the ability for them to stay here, and there is a ground floor room,” says Gangell, a national account director for Mölnlycke health care. “Mike was also really happy there was a pool.”

Lucky for them, the 3,500square-foot house was renovated in 2020. Gangell and Dewald purchased the three-story home in 2021, moved in July and got married in September. “It was

While the brick facade abode was completely upgraded in a modern-leaning style, Dewald and Gangell wanted to personalize it to fit their more transitional aesthetic. Gangell enlisted interior designer Susie Prince of Susie Mae Design to infuse color and warmth into the

—Katie Gangell

“I love the open floor plan, but it made it very daunting to decorate, so I started looking for a designer and found her on Nextdoor. I liked her designs because they have a lot of color and personality,” Gangell says. “Buying this house was about making a home together, so most of the furniture is new.”

One of the main inspiration pieces for the overall design was a painting titled Let Light Shine Out of Darkness by artist Cheyenne Trunnell. Gangell and Dewald had admired Trunnell’s work since seeing it in a gallery in Asheville in 2018, shortly after they started dating. As a wedding gift to each other, they purchased the painting and hung it in the family room.

“I knew it was something they were both drawn to, so I could pull out colors and some patterns: natural botanicals, blues, greens and lemony yellows,” Prince says. “I had a really easy job, I must say, because

Above: Pieces from Crate & Barrel and Arhaus fill the living room, which showcases a painting by artist Cheyenne Trunnell. Below: Mike Dewald and Katie Gangell enlisted the help of interior designer Susie Prince to create a home that fit their lifestyle.

they had so many beautiful things already. They made the cake, and I just had to ice it.”

The home’s vibrant and preppy color palette pops in the main living spaces. In the kitchen, white cabinetry and shiny porcelain countertops offer a muted backdrop for gold

fixtures, blue and white window treatments, and dark blue Annie Selke runners. The nearby breakfast area features navy bench seating, matching window treatments and a circular wood Dovetail table below a globe light. A framed Spa Citron vintage-style poster brings together

the navy, green and lemon of the color palette in a fun print.

“The house was renovated more modern, and that’s not entirely their vibe, so we wanted a lot of textiles to soften it. Doing window treatments throughout really warmed it up,” Prince says.

In the dining room, the custom dining table by Canton-based Rustic Trades Furniture is surrounded by green Thibaut Mulberry Tree wallpaper; navy and white, floor-length window treatments; and white beadboard. Arhaus chairs, a Surya rug and Hinkley Lighting fixture

Right: A sunlit breakfast area brings together the interior palette of blue, green and yellow. Above: The living room built-in features mementos from the couple's travels.
Below: The dining space ups the color with botanically inspired wallpaper.

complete the playful aesthetic.

The dining space has a view into the living room where a Crate & Barrel sectional, custom coffee table by Rustic Trades and Arhaus chairs face a fireplace with stacked stone tile and glass doors leading to the outdoor deck and pool. The built-ins on one side of the room tell stories of the homeowners’ life together, from the framed, bronze metal olive tree sculpture they got in Greece and the vase from their wedding to books they purchased together at a Jacksonville shop.

“There are lots of colors in the book cases. We wanted to highlight pieces they’d gotten in their travels because they travel a lot,” Prince says. “I like to do bookcases that don’t just have new accessories; that have pieces that are personal and true to the people that live there.”

The entry foyer gives more of a glimpse into the homeowners’ travels with framed photos of Venice, St. Thomas, and Breckenridge, Colorado, on a wall of dark blue, faux grasscloth wallpaper. The foyer also features rugs from Chamblee’s Parviz Oriental Rugs and a black mango wood console table from Bassett Mirror.

A sitting room off the entry is one of the few rooms with furniture from the homeowners’ previous

residences, including an old secretary desk that now serves as a bar. Along with the sitting room, the couple also self-decorated their primary bedroom upstairs, where a Room & Board bed and Bassett furnishings sit below a tray ceiling. An accent wall in dark blue adds a sophisticated moodiness to the couples’ resting place.

Although it took some patience to find and creativity to personalize, Gangell and Dewald feel they’ve created a space that truly showcases their life together, even if some of

the color infusion took some getting used to for the man of the house.

“Traditionally, my style has been conservative, and my idea of color was varying shades of gray,” Dewald

says. “Katie encouraged me to consider colors and patterns outside of my comfort level, and Susie was able to find something that worked for both of us.” n

Left: Undercounter and under-island lighting helps the sleek kitchen shine day and
Above: The powder room off the kitchen doesn't skimp on style.



Katie Gangell shares some of her home’s favorite touches

1. Blue grasscloth wallpaper in the foyer “It helped create a warm, welcoming entry and really makes our gallery wall of travel photos stand out. Plus, since Mike was so open to color and pattern in the rest of the space, this was a way to incorporate more of his style.”

2. Cheyenne Trunnell’s art “We separately had the idea to buy

2 3 1 The homeowners decorated the primary bedroom on their own with a vibrant accent wall and hanging light fixtures.


Top tips for keeping your decor contemporary and classic


SCAD Atlanta Midtown’s expansion is finally in business. FORTY FIVE, the university's new 14-story tower on Spring Street, clocks in at more than 556,000 square feet, including an amenity-rich residence hall for 400-plus students, a fitness facility, rooftop pool and more. The building is also now home to SCADshow, a new entertainment and performance venue featuring two theater spaces, a 700-seat

Liz Williams, founder of Buckhead-based Liz Williams Interiors, divulges her best-kept secret for curating a home that’s equal parts classic and contemporary. From “coastal grandma” to “hipstoric,” the many design trends that have surfaced in the last year have one thing in common: They’re a perfect balance of old and new.

With this trend following us well into 2024, we tapped Williams, whose full-service interiors firm has become known as a go-to around Atlanta for churning out contemporary spaces that still offer a homey feel. “Most of my clients seem to be drawn to a more classic, modern-meets-traditional aesthetic for their homes,” says the Atlanta native and graduate of The Lovett School. “While they want their interiors to be fresh and current, classic traditional elements will stand the test of time. This type of design evokes a unique, collected feel that is specific to the homeowner.”

Here, the designer shares top tips for marrying old and new for a timeless interior that’s tailored to your taste.

With larger pieces, such as sofas, stick to the classics. You can always easily change out pillows to freshen the look or make it more edgy, but the lines of the sofa should be timeless. Choose great quality, ageless upholstery pieces that will be worth recovering in the future.

Invest in original art you love. For example, hang a large abstract piece over an antique French commode. There’s nothing better than a great piece of contemporary art over an antique!


Atlantans understand the obsession with Waffle House. And so does local gifting company Match South. After launching in 2020 with art prints of Atlanta-inspired matchbooks, the biz recently unveiled a new candle collection paying homage to local staples including—you guessed it—Waffle House. “We knew we could create something unique aside from prints to encapsulate the nostalgia of what Atlanta has to offer,” says founder Megan Lore, who also helms By Social Club, an Atlanta-based creative studio and marketing agency formerly known as Milk and Butter Social. “We were delighted to work alongside the Waffle House team to create one of our best-selling products to date. Now you can wake up to your home smelling like waffles and syrup every morning." The candle is available online for $49. · @matchsouth

If you like contemporary lighting, pair it with a more traditional rug, or vice versa. I love an Oushak rug with a contemporary brass or white plaster fixture. Think of unexpected elements to elevate the style of the room but that blend nicely with your traditional base pieces. n

LIZ WILLIAMS INTERIORS • 404.816.9868 • @lizwilliamsinteriors

mainstage and a 150-seat theater. • @scaddotedu

n European Kitchen & BathWorks pulled back the red curtain on its newest collection. In a partnership with Dornbracht, renowned for its luxurious bath, spa and kitchen fixtures, the new Individuality Collection offers Atlantans a fresh line of modern faucets. Don’t miss out on the

22-karat gold champagne finish. • @eurokbw

n Move over, NYC: A new design destination is on the scene. According to the latest report by the Atlanta Design Festival, in partnership with Ortus Economic Research, Atlanta staked its claim as a premier hub in the U.S. design economy, notably overshadowing the likes of New York.

Erica Dines

A short family ballet for ages 2+ March 16–17, 2024

March 22–24, 2024



A world premiere by Garrett Smith


A world premiere by Sergio Masero

Sandpaper Ballet by Mark Morris with music by Leroy Anderson

Performances at 1pm & 5pm | Cobb Energy Center

Tickets & Details at

Special Add-on Event: ROYAL TEA PARTY on Sunday, March 17

Supported by

The shifting horizons between innovation and nostalgia.

The new shapes, colors and rhythms of dance.

May 10–12, 2024


A world premiere by Brazilian choreographer Juliano Nuñes


June–July 2024 | Ages 2–17

A world premiere by Claudia Schreier with music by Wynton Marsalis

Register now for a summer filled with dance! The Centre for Dance Education offers a variety of day programs for all ages and levels: Creative Movement, Dance for Joy, Young Dancer Summer Experience, and Junior Intensive. No audition required.

Buckhead Centre at Chastain Square | 404-303-1501

Virginia-Highland Centre at Amsterdam Walk | 404-883-2178

Learn more at summer-programs

Photo by Kim Kenney
Illustration by Jade Orlando
Tickets at
Thomas Davidoff, Benjamin Kuefl er and Fuki Takahashi. Photos by Rachel Neville. Photo collage by Alane Marco. Brooke Gilliam. Photo by Rachel Neville. Supported by:

Matte Velvet Curtain (from $238)

Simms Long Arm 2-Light Wall Sconce ($449)

Whether looking for a dash of seductiveness or simply task lighting so as not to disturb a partner, this two-light wall sconce from Arhaus is a minimalist’s dream. Handcrafted by artisans in India, it's made from polished and oxidized brass to give it antique yet modern finish.

Arhaus • 404.869.0003 • @arhaus

Algora Hand-Knotted Rug (from $998)

While what you sleep on is important, what’s underfoot is equally so. Tactile, lush and pretty with the colors of the earth, this hand-knotted rug will please your feet before you fall into bed. Available in sizes from 4-by-6 feet up to 11-by-14 feet and made of 100% New Zealand wool, it makes padding around your room a pleasure.

Serena & Lily • 404.491.7577 • @serenaandlily

Available in four lengths and 14 dazzling colors such as hydrangea, teal and lilac, these matte velvet curtains offer next-level luxury by creating a fully blacked-out environment for optimal snoozing. Each panel is made from a cotton and velvet combination with a fully light-blocking liner, providing a touch of color and texture during the day and a restful sleep experience at night. Anthropologie • 404.355.4889 • • @anthropologie

Be Your Own Guest

There’s nothing like getting a good night’s sleep at a hotel. It’s usually a combination of things, such as sumptuous draperies, a signature scent and a luxurious bed to leave you refreshed and recharged. If you’re looking to replicate the feeling at home, here are a few pieces to consider when turning your

The Dux 8008 (from $9,935)

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Duxiana • 404.869.1075 • @duxianausa

Hotel Lobby Paris Nuit Candle ($56)

Make your bedroom smell like a romantic evening in Paris. Notes of black musk, wood, rum and mahogany depict a rendezvous in the City of Lights. Made from 100% soy wax with a burn time of 65 hours, this candle can keep the vibe going all season long. Neiman Marcus • 404.266.8200 • • @neimanmarcusatlanta


Table This

Amy Eberhardt began her career in interior design, working for many years in South Carolina. The Roswell native, who now lives in Brookhaven, decided to make a life change by moving back to Atlanta and rebranding her existing textile business in 2020. Salted, inspired by fresh neutral colors and designs, is exclusively carried at Lucy’s Market in Buckhead, where Eberhardt serves as a buyer. Here, she discusses her background and her business.

Why did you decide to start a tabletop textile business?

When I was an interior designer, I couldn’t find what I wanted for my clients. The colors and style just didn’t seem to match what I was looking for. There also just didn’t seem to be a lot of options for

Salted brings unique designs to your tabletop

affordable, vibrant fabric or even a neutral that I wanted to use. I would consider my style to be timeless. By nature, I have a relaxed, classic style, and I like to bring that out in my designs. I founded Salted because it allowed me to create products for someone who appreciates the beauty in color and functionality.

Salted covers pretty much anything for the dining table, from linens and runners to napkins, placemats and coasters, all of which are produced in the U.S. I also have my own custom rug line and work closely with a family in India as frequently as I can. Salted is now producing paper products such as stationery, note cards and paper placemats.

How do you get inspired?

I get inspired from anywhere, from my travels to India to where

I go in northern Michigan for the summer. There’s a lot of family history out there, and just being in the woods of northern Michigan is inspiring. I have three kids, and they inspire me in different ways, something they’ve said or done. I’ll put it all down on sketch paper then transform it to the computer and work my magic from there to tweak color. I try to do a couple of collections a year, but I have a lot of designs [from over the years]. I’ll swap out colors or tweak older designs.

What inspired your most recent collection, Haven? Haven was my first collection since moving to Atlanta. I wanted to convey a sense of peace and tranquility in my customers’ homes through my product. I was facing

some challenges during a difficult time, so I wanted to be sure this collection was going to be serene.

How did you come up with the name Salted?

It’s simple and kind of silly, but all my friends make fun of me because I salt every bite of food I have. I couldn’t call it Salt because it was taken, so I called it Salted.

What are your favorite products and why?

The table runners because you can use them on your table, an island in your kitchen, a console table or a coffee table, a bench, etc. You can even hang them as artwork for your walls to add some color. You can use them in so many versatile ways! n

• • @saltedllc

Pretty Athletic Page 46

PHOTO: Erik Meadows


“I realized there wasn’t really sweat-proof makeup.I thought if I don't do it, someone else will.”
— Vanessa Sachs
SWAKE Cosmetics founder Vanessa Sachs discovered a business idea she had to pursue.

Annie Boswell wore a uniform in her adolescent years and laments how it restricted her creativity and self-expression. “It wasn’t until high school that I had an outlet, dressing freely each day, which led me to be able to dive into fashion and my style,” she says. “The best part of my day was picking out my outfit each night before I went to sleep for the next school day.”

Bitten by the fashion bug, Boswell pursued a major in apparel merchandising and a minor in business from Auburn University. She went on to manage a boutique in Buckhead, and then the pandemic hit. It made sense to open an online retailer. While she had success selling fashion and accessories online, she missed interacting with customers.. “I believe in-person shopping can help my customers reach their full potential and maximize their confidence through dressing,” she says. So in 2021, she opened The Blake in the Fountain Oaks shopping center in Sandy Springs, where she grew up. The name is an homage to her father. “His unwavering support and teachings have shaped my entrepreneurial spirit,” Boswell says.

The location was intentional.

“Atlanta is a major city, but we don’t have that many boutiques in Sandy Springs,” Boswell, now a Buckhead resident, says. “As an avid shopper, I noticed there were not many boutiques that offered various price points and styles for different age groups.” She loves being in a center that caters to women with a wide range of businesses in one place, such as Lush nail salon, Pure Barre, Dermani Medspa and Raw Bronzing Studio, to name a few.

When rethinking her concept for The Blake and catering to an upscale Sandy Springs crowd, Boswell knew she wanted to expand upon what she had offered online. In addition to selling contemporary women’s clothing from brands like Stateside, Lilla P, Marc Fisher and Pistola Denim, she has shoes, accessories, giftable products and even a baby room. She also supports local brands such as the best-selling CB Grey’s scarves, Cary Calhoun’s vintage jewelry and Sketchy Betch’s illustrations.

“There isn't anywhere else in the city that offers the variety of lines, prices and product assortment that


Annie Boswell of The Blake brings fashion, gifting and more to Fountain Oaks

The Blake carries,” she says.

Boswell savors connecting with clients, whatever they’re looking for.

“I love the relationships I have gained with my customers. It’s not about the sale for me; it’s about making a connection. I go out to dinner with

my customers; I attend their weddings; I keep up with their personal lives. I think that is really what makes The Blake stand out in our customers' minds, that we are family- and friend-oriented,” she says. Monthly “sip and shops” allow her to further

connect with her regulars, and trunk shows spotlight smaller businesses.

As for spring fashion trends, Boswell’s seeing the color red, platform slip-ons, denim on denim and more structured pieces. “I think we’re slowing down with how flowy everything has been, and we’re going back to having shape,” she says. n

FASHION THE BLAKE • 404.996.6639 • @theblakeatl

Youth Skincare Guide


Puberty may be the first time your child has given much thought to their skin, and it can feel overwhelming. By 11 or 12 years old, hormonal changes can cause annoying irregularities like acne or dry skin on the face, neck, chest and back during a time of life that’s already tough on self-esteem. If your pre-teen or teenager is trying to figure out what’s best for a skincare routine, Lil Dyer Cobbs, esthetician and owner of Seraphim Skin Care in Buckhead, offers some tips.

But first, assure your kid that “the type of skin they have and what happens to it when puberty hits are inherited. It’s pure DNA,” she says. The good news is that a little product and a little technique can help fix any concerns.

1. Cleanse.

Wash your face and neck once per day in the morning or the evening with a drugstore brand alpha-hydroxy acid face wash. “‘Acid’ sounds scary, but these are fruit acids and

enzymes that will dissolve dead skin cells that clog pores and lead to acne,” says Cobbs. The other time of day, just use a warm, wet washcloth to wipe the face and neck. When buying the AHA face wash product, look on the back of the packaging for “active ingredients” and either salicylic acid or glycolic acid on the active ingredient list to ensure that it will work.

2. Moisturize.

In the morning, after the AHA cleanser or washcloth, apply a small amount of Aquaphor to the face and neck, and massage it in for three to four minutes. “This is your moisturizer and will keep skin from drying out and flaking. The more you massage, the less it will look or feel greasy,” says Cobbs.

3. Exfoliate.

At night, after washing your skin,  apply Differin Gel, an FDA-approved, over-the-counter retinoid that contains a very mild 0.025% of tretinoin. Use a quarter-size amount and rub it

all over your face and neck three to four times per week if you have mild acne, recommends Cobbs. For big breakouts, use it for 14 days straight, then taper back to three to four times per week. “This is, especially at first, going to slough off dead skin and cause flaking. That's what it's supposed to do. Make sure to wash and use the moisturizer to counteract this,” she says. “You can spot treat dry spots with the Aquaphor as needed during the day.”

If major acne is a concern, see a dermatologist or a prescribing medspa to switch to a prescription retinoid. And even though it’s hard not to, don’t pick those zits, which can lead to scarring!

4. Sunscreen.

For days when you're in the sun longer than 30 minutes, protect skin by applying a sunscreen every hour. Keep it in your backpack and apply when you need it, not first thing in the morning, advises Cobbs. Mineral sunscreens (titanium and

zinc oxide) are technically the only ones the Food and Drug Administration recognizes as safe and effective based on currently available information; other sunscreen active ingredients are still under review. If you choose a chemical sunscreen, make sure to avoid oxybenzone, as it has been found to be a hormone disruptor (and banned in some states for detrimental effects on marine ecosystems).

5. More advice.

Cobbs encourages pre-teens and teens to stay away from the selfcritique-inducing magnifying mirrors, unless used for precision makeup application. She also suggests avoiding skincare videos on social media because of products and devices that may not work and that kids just don’t need. Instead, a simple professional facial can be a great way to learn. n

SERAPHIM SKIN CARE • 404.266.0531 • @seraphim_skincare
5 tips for your pre-teen or teen Tassii


The principles, myths and benefits of veganism

Eating a vegan diet can help reduce the risk of or reverse some of the top diseases afflicting Americans, including obesity, heart disease and diabetes. “Even if you don’t go 100% vegan, your health can significantly change. I was born and raised in Wisconsin, a large consumer of milk and cheese, and when I took dairy out of my system, I realized how lethargic and sluggish it made me feel. I’ve never gone back,” says Michael Elsen, executive chef of the casual vegan eatery Full Taste Vegan in Chamblee, who has been eating and cooking animal-free fare for 30 years.

The most challenging part about going vegan can be psychological, Elsen says. “Many people in the U.S. were brought up eating three meals per day that often have meat and dairy in them. Because that’s so ingrained in the American food system, it can be hard to reprogram your brain to go vegan.”

But where there’s a will, there’s a way. Whether you want to go all in or simply incorporate some of the principles of veganism into your diet, Elsen offers some tips for making healthy vegan choices.

The Basics

A strictly vegan diet does not include anything that has an animal or an animal byproduct, such as lard. “There is a slight divide in people who refer to themselves as vegan, and that is around honey. A lot of vegans will eat bee honey. Those who don’t call themselves ‘plant-based,’” Elsen says.

Hidden Ingredients

“There are many products that have hidden animal products in them, and people don’t realize it,” Elsen says. He provides examples of certain beers and wines that contain an animal-based clarifying agent, as well as some pastas, candies and

ramen seasoning packets made with animal fat. If you want to avoid these items, do your research. Read ingredient lists and get educated on what things are and how products are made, Elsen suggests. “These days, some brands are labeling products 100% vegan or 100% plantbased because people are looking out for those words,” he says.

Unhealthy Foods

Remember: A cookie is still a cookie. “Healthy is when you eat things in moderation, which is a principle across every diet,” Elsen says. In addition to sugar, the chef says to look out for prepackaged foods loaded with dyes and genetically modified ingredients (“look for non-GMO to avoid ingesting pesticides”). “Also, a lot of people who go vegan augment their meat-based diet with loads of [empty] carbs like pastas, which are easy and quick.” Instead, consider plant proteins,

vegetables, fruits and whole grains as the bulk of your meals.

Enough Protein

It is a myth that you can’t get enough protein from a vegan diet. Vegan sources of protein include tofu, beans, veggie burgers, nuts, chia seeds, soy, quinoa, peas and lentils. Here, too, Elsen advises to look for quality, non-GMO items. Concerned about not getting enough protein? Work with a nutritionist to create an individualized plan for how much your body needs based on your activity level.

B Vitamins

Some of the richest sources of B vitamins are fish, meat, poultry, eggs and dairy, as well as leafy greens, legumes and seeds. So when removing the animal products from your diet, it isn’t uncommon to need a vitamin B supplement. Low B vitamins in the body can impact concentration, create fatigue and potentially lead to memory loss. Make sure you’re getting enough, which your annual physical’s blood panel can tell you. n

FULL TASTE VEGAN • 770.696.4741 • @fulltastevegan

say “i do” to great skin

Tips for Glowing Skin this Wedding Season

with wedding season approaching, many brides or mothers of the bride

or groom are turning to their dermatologist to for treatments to boost their skin quality and give them a “glow up” for the big day.

When considering these treatments and procedures, it is important to keep the wedding date in mind and build in a recovery period. Planning ahead and

knowing which treatments to do first and which to perform closer to the wedding day will help ensure the desired results.

If a patient presents with problem areas such as prominent nasolabial folds (the parentheses lines around the mouth), undesirably thin lips or areas that could use subtle smoothing and volume, I will treat those areas first. Improving these areas three to six months before the wedding allows the filler time to settle in and allows for touch-ups or adjustments.

With crow’s feet or pesky forehead lines, Botox® or other neuromodulators will successfully smooth these lines, and this treatment lasts up to three months. As a precaution, I prefer to treat patients who are new to Botox® well in advance of the wedding day. This gives the treatment time to reveal full results and allows the bride-to-be to be sure she is thrilled with its effects.

For treatments that must be administered in a series, I recommend getting started on these 3-6 months ahead of the wedding. Lasers like the EVO for redness or rosacea, microneedling treatments for scarring and enlarged pores or chemical peels for melasma can take three to five sessions for best results. The Coolpeel® laser, a superficial CO2 treatment, is a great way to remove sun damage and reduce fine lines and wrinkles before any big event. Coolpeel® can be done in a series for moderate sun damage or as a stand-alone treatment for mild wrinkling and discoloration to even skin tone within 2 weeks of the celebration.

Finally, it is preferable to perform some treatments much closer to the big day. For example, an Aquagold® fine touch™ treatment delivers microdroplets of hyaluronic acid and neuromodulators into the dermis to give the skin a “glass like” appearance, tighten pores and even reduce facial sweating. HydraFacial and dermaplaning to hydrate and subtly plump the skin are a wonderful “glow-up” that can be performed just a few days before your wedding as well.

You’ll feel most confident tackling these skin problems with treatments like these little by little, so you are your most beautiful self on your wedding day. Work together with your dermatologist before your special day to plan and execute treatments for a natural and beautiful you.

SIMPLY BUCKHEAD •  MARCH/APRIL 2024  45 755 Mt Vernon Hwy NE, Suite 305 Atlanta, GA 30328 | (404) 446-4840

Pretty Athletic

SWAKE founder Vanessa Sachs on how she launched a sweat-proof makeup line

Brookhaven resident Vanessa Sachs didn’t plan to be a makeup entrepreneur. But after coming up with the idea for an innovative sweat-proof foundation while completing her master’s in consumer analytics at the University of Georgia, she launched SWAKE Cosmetics in 2022. Since then, she’s received endorsements from the Atlanta Falcons cheerleaders, UGA athletes and a crowd of loyal fans she calls “lifeletes,” people who want to look great while leading an active lifestyle. The cruelty-free and vegan line now includes the original foundation in 12 shades, concealer, brow gel and mascara— all designed to weather an intense workout or athletic event.

How did you come up with the idea for SWAKE?

In December 2021, I visited my parents in Florida for Christmas. At the time, I was doing intern work at the Delta Innovation Hub at the University of Georgia. I was surrounded by entrepreneurs all the time, but I didn't ever think about starting a business. One day, I was going from the gym to my parents’ house to then go to brunch, and my dad was rushing me. And I was like, “Dad, you gotta calm down, I'm swaking my makeup off.” It was kind of a lightbulb moment because it was a slip of the tongue. I meant to say that I was “sweating my makeup off.” I thought, “Why isn't there makeup for women who go to the gym?” I started doing market research and realized there wasn’t really sweatproof makeup. I thought, “If I don't do it, someone else will.”

Prior to becoming an entrepreneur, what was your career plan?

I was already interviewing for some jobs, including a company called Qualtrics. I thought that was my dream job because it was in Utah, and it was a software that I'd been using in college. They offered me a job with low starting pay, and I thought, “Wow. This must be how you start.” But when I founded SWAKE, everything changed.

Did you play sports?

I stopped competitively swimming when I finished high school, but I was part of the Hoop Girls [basketball promotional] team at UGA. I also tutored student athletes. They’re so driven, and the motivation was always there. I identified with that same mindset of just having a passion and really wanting to improve.

What was the process of developing the formula like?

I was very naive. I thought, “I'm just going to build this makeup in my kitchen and send it to a lab, and they're going to produce it.” That didn't happen. I went on Upwork, a freelancing website where you can hire consultants, and put up an ad for a cosmetic chemist. One gentleman who used to work for L'Oréal applied. I told him I was looking for something between a deodorant and a foundation because I wanted it to last on my skin. But I also don't want to be worried about it clogging any pores or blocking sweat from happening.

What does the SWAKE foundation feel like when you’re wearing it?

It has a satin feel. Everyone's surprised when I do a swatch on their hands. They’ll say, “Oh, it doesn't even feel like I'm wearing anything, and it looks really good.” It has buildable coverage, and it’s super-breathable, almost like a moisturizer. n

SWAKE COSMETICS • @swakecosmetics
Paw-Friendly Dwellings
“In my project questionnaire, I try to keep the pets in mind…”
— Amber Guyton
Page 50 Lajoy Photography Consider your pets during an interior design or construction project.


From gaming to substances, a psychotherapist weighs in

Addiction can be both hereditary and a product of environmental causes that may include a trauma, such as domestic violence or bullying. “This may lead to depression or anxiety that goes unresolved in teens and young adults. Individuals may cope in different ways,” says Sharnell Myles, psychotherapist and senior vice president of operations at Embark Behavioral Health, a nationwide mental health network of outpatient centers and residential programs for preteens, teens and young adults with locations in Buckhead and Alpharetta. “What’s fascinating is that, biologically, gaming, using substances, watching porn or gambling are activating the same reward area of the brain,” Myles says.

But when is it just typical teen experimentation or fun versus a real issue? What damage can it really cause long-term, and how can parents help their kids navigate addiction? Here, Myles offers some tips.

Concerning Behaviors

It’s cause for concern when any habit or unwanted behavior starts to impact more of the day for your child. “So if they feel the intense urge to game or use a substance often, or if you see them begin to isolate themselves, lose relationships or have intense anger when they can’t do the thing, it’s time to step in,” Myles says. She adds to also look out for a physiological response to not being able to vape marijuana, for instance, which might cross the line from use into abuse and addiction.

Inherent Dangers

With substances, Myles says there is a mental health threat in utilizing them to cope with underlying depression or anxiety, as well as educational risks, such as dropping out of school. There are also family-related risks, such as increased discord within the home.

Gaming is one of the top gateways to exploitation, advises Myles, who

as a trauma specialist has worked in the area of child sex trafficking for more than 20 years. The other risky piece of gaming addiction is developmental. “If you have a kid constantly sitting in front of the TV/computer/gaming screen, it does have a significant impact on brain development, including ADD and ADHD, as well as education.”

Porn addiction can also be a gateway to exploitation by adults, and it may cause teens to start engaging in or escalating risky behaviors and to act out, she notes.

How Parents Can Help

In general, communication is key. “If parents and their children are

able to communicate about good things and tough things, then the kids will come to them when they are having issues with depression or feel like gaming is becoming too much or someone approaches them in the wrong way,” says Myles, who encourages parents to talk to kids in a nonjudgmental way.

What’s more, she suggests getting youths involved in extracurricular activities and family time, which can be as simple as cooking or doing puzzles together. “Don’t allow your kids to isolate or spend many hours in front of a screen,” Myles says. “At the same time, get to know your kid as a kid. Don’t expect them to be a mini-adult or beyond their years.”

Lastly, normalize mental health. For some parents, that can mean sharing their own stories.

Seeking Professional Help

“Don’t wait until the last minute when things are at their worst to reach out for professional help,” Myles says. She recommends parents check in with a professional at the first sign of seeing some type of addiction or unwanted or unusual behavior. Embark can set up a no-cost appointment within 24 hours to do an assessment to see if it’s just normal behavior or if there’s a diagnosis. n

EMBARK BEHAVIORAL HEALTH 770.230.7345 • • @embark_bh
Sharnell Myles, psychotherapist and senior vice president of operations at Embark Behavioral Health. reklamlar

Join us at the

Bow Wow Brunch

Presented by

Sunday, April 28, 2024

11:30 a.m. at Flourish Atlanta

Honoring Kathleen Rollins

Anne Cox Chambers

Humane Heroine

Tony Conway, Sandra Baldwin, and Helen S. Carlos Chairs

For tickets, visit

Paw-Friendly Dwellings

design around the wants and needs of my clients,” says Atlanta-based designer Amber Guyton of Blessed Little Bungalow. “I do not want them to think of having [cats and dogs] as a restriction, so we have the conversation [about them].”

Durable Selections

home with an animal because of scratching, options that offer the look but are more durable include a patterned weave or wipeable faux leather. In lieu of hardwood flooring, vinyl planks and tile are not as easily damaged by wear and tear.

Design Ideas

Guyton created a “dog room” under her stairs with a gate for ventilation for her 15-year-old dachshund, Ralph. She says although he is free to sleep on her furniture, this solution is a great way to tuck away his toys and to crate him when she is not at home.

An option to hide the cat litter box: Put it inside a vanity with an opening in a secondary bath or on a “catio,” a cat patio that gives kitties a taste of the great outdoors safely.

Custom kitchen cabinets also can provide seamless places to store pet food. “I have seen lower cabinet pullouts for food and water bowls, as opposed to having them on the floor, which is easier for cleanup and less hazardous to foot traffic,” Guyton says. “Depending on a client’s budget and how many square feet they can spare, they can also include bathing stations and/or sleeping quarters in a new home or renovation.”

Realistic Expectations

Today, homeowners’ fur-buddies’ needs have garnered a top spot on renovation or new-build project wish lists. Despite owners wanting to make pets comfortable in their

STORY: Chelsie Butler
Including your four-legged friends in your home design

abodes, a priority remains to keep homes odor and hair free, and without the clutter that comes with a surplus of toys or pet items.

“In my project questionnaire, I try to keep the pets in mind and

When selecting flooring, countertops and upholstery or rug fabrics, Guyton considers sturdy, lowmaintenance and performance materials. Some fabric examples include wool, velvet, canvas, leather and microfiber that can do better with potential stains, nails and hair. While some people may be wary of choosing a leather sofa in a

The designer says clients need to be realistic about what will work with a pet at home and what will not. You’re better off with materials and furniture that do not have to be replaced every few years.

For a truly pet-friendly space, there may be some things you have to go without, but you can still have a home that is comfortable, livable and perfect for the whole family. n

BLESSED LITTLE BUNGALOW @blessedlittlebungalow

Amber Guyton created for Atlanta clients. Left: Guyton poses in her own home with her beloved dachshund, Ralph. Lajoy Photography

Dare to Delegate

Outsource common tasks in your daily life

There are 24 hours in a day, but you have 30 hours’ worth of things to do. Sometimes, you just need a helping hand to get everything on the to-do list done. Fortunately, a myriad of tasks can be outsourced, allowing you more time to feel productive while also having the chance to focus on other activities. If you’re ready to delegate certain chores and duties of daily life, check out the following tips and insights from professional organizer and time management expert Diane Quintana, owner of DNQ Solutions, who serves metro Atlanta and beyond, including Buckhead, Sandy Springs and Brookhaven.

How do I know which tasks I should outsource in my life?

If you are feeling overwhelmed, ask yourself what is bothering you the most. Look at the list of everything you want and need to do, and then be proactive instead of reactive. You can ease your schedule by thinking about which tasks are really im-

portant for you to do yourself. For others, find ways to delegate.

What are some of most popular tasks to outsource that can save me time?

We all know about grocery delivery services like Instacart. If you want fresh food prepared, there are chefs who will come to your home and assemble a couple of days’ worth of meals that can be left in the refrigerator. You can have someone pick up your dry cleaning. A professional organizer can help declutter your home. You can outsource dog walking. Someone else can plan your vacations or prepare your taxes. Think about your vision for the day, the week or the month, and pay attention to what your goals are. Then you can decide what to outsource.

How do I choose the right people or companies to help me with important tasks?

Start by researching online, but I also recommend talking to your neighbors. If you notice that they have

someone coming to their home regularly, like a [cleaning] service, ask how long they’ve been working with them or if they recommend them. It’s important to get a reference from a trusted source, and who better than a neighbor you know well? Of course, you should always get more than one reference if you are bringing someone into your home to help you out; be sure to get two, three or even four references to make sure you are comfortable with the person or company you choose.

How should I approach budgeting if I’m considering outsourcing tasks? Be careful about how many things you outsource and how you go about it. For instance, if you are using a food delivery service, recognize that some of them are subscription-based; if you are only planning to use them for a short time, be mindful about canceling it. Whatever the task, anything you can do to make the job easier for the other person is great. If someone is preparing your taxes, have

everything organized up front to save time and money.

What is your top tip for outsourcing errands or tasks?

Think about what you want to spend your valuable time on. Time is our most valuable resource. Be proactive. When you address your to-do list reactively, then you’re just going to be putting out fires rather than making good progress towards a goal and accomplishing the things you want to accomplish. n

Diane Quintana reveals that delegating tasks can help you accomplish your overall goals.
DNQ SOLUTIONS • 678.537.1160 • @dnq_solutions










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wax & sugaring studio Sweet Peach

wax & sugaring studio Sweet Peach

Sweet Peach celebrates its 12th year in business this year

Sweet Peach has 6 locations: Va-Highlands, Buckhead, Sandy Springs, Johns Creek, Vinings and Chamblee/Brookhaven, with more on the way

#1 service: Brazilian wax

Sweet Peach has won more than 36 Best of Atlanta awards

Sweet Peach owner Raquel Souza has waxed or sugared more than 750,000 areas of the body

Raquel brought the ancient art of sugaring to Atlanta in 2012, offering clients all natural hair removal (the paste is just sugar, lemon, and water)

When Sweet Peach first opened, the staff saw 400 people per month. Today, the staff and Raquel see more than 3,600 clients per month

She and her team use 39.6 pounds of wax per day, times 6 locations

Sweet Peach offers a line of all natural private label soaps, lotions, scrubs and balms, and the 1-and-only Vagina Care Kit.

Clients want to look good on the outside, and Raquel also wants them to be healthy on the inside, so she partnered with the Georgia Ovarian Cancer Alliance on the 1st grassroots early detection/prevention program within a business.

770.748.1846 @SweetPeachWax
Peachtree Battle Shopping Center 2339-A Peachtree Rd., Atlanta, GA 30305 404.477.5000 Paces Ferry Shopping Center 3509 Northside Pkwy., Atlanta, GA 30327 404.869.0300 @wooskincarecosmetics Call to schedule a consultation today or to reserve the best makeup artists in Atlanta for your wedding day. We are booking spring and fall dates now! Experienced makeup artists that have been in the beauty industry for decades and are intimately familiar with the needs of a bride to look and feel her best on her big day. Personalized, perfected bridal makeup.



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“The Atlanta Science Festival takes science out of the confines of the classroom and brings it into activities that families do together.” — Meisa Salaita
The Atlanta Science Festival returns this March.
Quantum Leap


If you were on a Delta flight anytime during 2022 and early 2023, you might have spotted Andrea Laing starring in the airline promotional video that comes on after the safety message. The parttime Buckhead resident spent two months in Argentina shooting the non-speaking spot that features Viola Davis as the voiceover. This unique opportunity is just one of many that this rising star has earned recently.

scent, grew up in High Point, North Carolina, where she studied broadcast journalism with a double minor in criminal justice and sociology at High Point University. Her goal had always been to work at CNN, so she moved to Atlanta in 2014 after graduation and began networking. She scored a temp position at TBS, then a full-time job at Turner. Her parents were thrilled about the 9-5 gig, but she wasn’t satisfied.

Andrea Laing’s star is shining STORY: Karina Antenucci

wasn’t serving me. So, I decided to leave after two years, much to my parents’ disappointment,” Laing says.

At a professional meetup, she made friends with a production assistant who was working on film and TV sets. Laing was given the opportunity to help out on set and fell in love with being behind the scenes. “I was alive! I loved being a part of the action,” she says.

In 2015, she won a hosting com-

ed to be a red-carpet host for the American Black Film Festival, where she interviewed celebrities such as filmmaker Spike Lee.

With more experiences under her belt, Laing began to itch for being in front of the camera. So she joined a talent agency and took the necessary classes to get started.

“I’m always putting myself in positions where there’s a good chance I’m going to fail. I’m foolishly optimistic that it just works out,” Laing says.

Her IMDb page displays that it has, with credits that include episodes of big-name shows such as “Dopesick” and “The Underground Railroad.”

In 2022, Laing starred in the feature film Adult Swim Yule Log, a comedy horror flick that aired on HBO Max. Last year, Laing was the lead in a musical parody of Grease called Vape: The Musical at the Aurora Theatre that was voted “Atlanta’s Best New Work” by BroadwayWorld. She also had a recurring role as the assistant to the lead character on comedy-drama TV show The Game on Paramount+ that she landed from a table read (an organized reading of a script). She also appeared in Pain Hustlers, a film directed by David Yates (of seven Harry Potter movies and prequels) and starring Emily Blunt and Chris Evans.

Laing has also dabbled as an audiobook narrator and has worked on eight books. She was nominated for an Audie Award by the Audio Publishers Association for her reading of A Song Below Water, a young adult fantasy novel.

Of her professional journey, she says, “I have come a long way, made a lot of mistakes, but have always followed my soul and remembered my humanity. ‘Once you climb the ladder, it’s your duty to pass it back down,’ filmmaker Barry Jenkins once told me on set, and so if anyone needs advice, I gladly help them.”

As for what the future holds, Laing would love to do more international work. In the meantime, offscreen, you might see her in a Fast-Twitch class at The Forum Athletic Club or grabbing a healthy bite at True Food Kitchen in Buckhead. n @yourfavoriteandrea


March 23 & 24, 2024

Artist Market | Kidz Zone | Pet World Saturday Morning Classic Car Show Food Trucks | FREE Live Performances

5K Benefiting Children's Healthcare of Atlanta on Saturday, March 16th

Get updates @BrookCherryFest on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter/X or online at

April 13th 3-6pm from Oglethorpe University at Boutique Wines Craft Cocktails Local Beer & Light Bites Scan for tickets!

Find more great events at:

Ted Blum’s pile of family documents, passports, visas, photographs and more had been growing for years, and it wasn’t until COVID came that he had time to sort through them.

“I kept saying, ‘Someday, I’m going to do something with all this,’” Blum says. “Then when so much of the civic and charitable work I do was put on hold, I had a lot of extra time. I got bored streaming every Netflix and Amazon show, so I holed up in my study and started digging into the past.”

What the Sandy Springs attorney uncovered in the scattered collection of papers, pictures and recordings was a story so gripping, Blum was moved to write it down in a book called Calculated Risks

“I had never written or intended to write a book,” says the managing shareholder of Greenberg Traurig’s Atlanta office in Buckhead. “This book found me.”

The story centers around the harrowing experiences of his Jewish grandparents as they escaped Nazi-occupied Europe. In 1941, his mother’s family left Budapest and traveled through Austria, Switzerland, France, Spain and Portugal before arriving in the U.S. and finally settling in Champaign, Illinois. His father’s family had a similar tale.

“These were people who had to make impossible life-and-death decisions for their families, and that drove the trajectory in the story,” Blum says. “Their circumstances were dire, but by taking risks they made those circumstances more promising. And the more I dug into their story, the more impressed I was with how steadily they overcame the obstacles.”

Learning about his family’s past brought him closer to relatives he never knew.

“My father’s father died before I was born, so I got to know him from stories my dad shared,” Blum says. “I felt close to him but didn’t know why, then I realized it was because of the power of those stories. That’s what made me want to bring them to the next generation and the greater world.”

The project also provided an


A grandson learns about his family’s harrowing history

escape while the world was shut down. “I felt as if I was also traveling. I was cooped up in Atlanta, but I was researching Hungary, Italy, Paris, Madrid—all these places it turns out my ancestors traveled through. I was traveling the world while getting to know my family and the sacrifices they made.”

Over the last few years, Blum has made the trip in person to walk in his family’s footsteps across Europe. In Budapest, he visited his grandparents’ home and the town in Croatia where his mother was born.

“I found an intergenerational connectivity between people who lived 100 years ago and my life,” he says. “There’s an attachment to their experiences and mine. Knowing where they were and the roots of their experiences gives me a foundation that grounds me. And it makes me think about how to pay it forward for the next generation.”

Part of paying it forward is the book that debuted last fall. “I need to be a transmitter of stories so, one day, my future grandchildren can know them. And those stories will

have the same positive impact on their lives.” n • @ted_blum


A Place Where You Belong

Spend the day or evening on the Town!

Discover over 50 shops, services and restaurants.

Town Brookhaven is truly your one stop shopping, dining and entertainment destination with a blend of interesting boutiques, delicious restaurants and useful services.


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Conveniently located on Peachtree Road adjacent to Oglethorpe University.

Amy Parry says her life experiences as far back as childhood have led to her job as an art consultant. Though in some challenging moments she asked herself, “Why didn’t I go to nursing school?” the 48-year-old mom of two has hit her stride, working on major renovations, redos and new projects, including State Farm Arena, the westside’s Bellyard hotel and more. Here, she traces the journey that brought her to this point.

How did your upbringing influence your career choice?

My dad’s a philosopher who taught at Agnes Scott College, and we did a lot of academic traveling, nothing fancy. He was always dragging us into cathedrals and museums, and I grew up seeing a lot. I went to Guilford College in North Carolina and studied abroad in Munich and Paris, which is the best way to learn art history. I graduated thinking I’d be an academic, but I found school wasn’t my passion. So I managed an art gallery, worked at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia and met a lot of Atlanta and Georgia artists. It wasn’t long before I realized the commercial realm made more sense for me.

How did you get started in that field?

I curated some of my own art shows in the early 2000s and ended up working for Julia-Carr Bayler at Belvedere [a high-end furnishings store]. I learned my design skill from her. We brought in a lot of designers from New York as the westside was emerging. It was a fun, creative, highend market, but I was still an art person. When [chef and entrepreneur] Roger Kaplan hired me in 2007, I learned the ropes about hospitality art consulting. I knew nothing, but I had an eye. Our biggest client was the Dubai Ritz. I was really lucky to jump into these amazing projects— until I got laid off a year later.

And then the economy slowed…

Then few people had money for art. But by 2013, the economy had picked back up. It wasn’t until my mother died that I had a moment and went off on my own. I started calling design firms asking them to give me a stab at it. My first job was placing a $1,350 piece of art; the next was $7,500, and then it was $15,000. And then it was doing a whole hotel.

Transforming Spaces through Art

Consultant Amy Parry marks a decade on her own

That was the most exciting thing ever. And now it’s been 10 years!

What are some of the major projects you’ve selected art for?

State Farm Arena in 2018 was a big break for me. I chose most of the art in the suites and a couple of large public areas. The Bellyard was completed in 2021 with a lot of cool, urban items; it’s not just framed art but lots of accessories, like little sculptures on shelves. My niche is

boutique hotels, a trend that took off as I was starting my business. I love staying in hotels myself, and it’s really fun creating a feel and look for a new space.

Who are some of the local artists you like to work with?

Some of my favorites are Peter Ferrari, Hannah Ehrlich, Sonya Yong James, Lillian Blades and Lela Brunet. Some artists I’m dying to place are Eric Mack, Kim Ouellette,

What do you do outside of work?

I love to travel; I’m a big fan of the south of France and all the little villages there. I love sitting in a cafe over a glass of wine and chatting with other people while all that art, culture and beauty is all around you. n

PARRY PROJECTS • 404.312.6557 • @amyparryprojects



Now in its 21st year, the Atlanta Preservation Center presents Phoenix Flies March 2-24, a tradition that has evolved into a three-week celebration. This annual spring extravaganza spans the Atlanta metro area and consists of nearly 200 events. History buffs and architectural enthusiasts can immerse themselves in the city's rich past through historic neighborhood walks, exclusive access to closed-to-the-public archives and engaging lectures with notable guest speakers.

The genesis of Phoenix Flies can be traced back to 2003 when it was conceived to honor Atlantans' heroic efforts in rescuing the Fox Theatre from the brink of demolition and restoring it to its former glory. The festival has now matured into a two-decades-old tradition. Today, its overarching mission is to illuminate the significance of Atlanta's historic buildings and environments, underscoring the city's commitment to preserving its cultural heritage. APC Executive Director David Mitchell says, “We are using Phoenix Flies to expand the importance of historic preservation. Phoenix Flies provides a better way to appreciate the value of Atlanta's historic places as definers of our national character.”

While the festival encompasses the entire city, previous years have captivated attendees with tours of renowned areas and landmarks from the stately Oglethorpe University in Brookhaven to the elegant Peachtree Heights East in Buckhead, as well as an immersive experience of the Cyclorama at the Atlanta History Center. With a bevy of other tours to take and

explore, each event promises a unique journey through time. This year, guests can expect events at the May Patterson Goodrum House, Paces Ferry United Methodist Church, Northside Drive Baptist Church and more. A cornerstone of Phoenix Flies is its promise of accessibility. As such, the majority of the events are free and open to the public. APC encourages participants to register online to manage capacity and disseminate crucial updates related to inclement weather and location or time changes. n • @preserveatl

Tours of the May Patterson Goodrum House will be availble for this year's event. The home was designed by Atlanta architect Philip T. Shutze.

Phoenix Flies invites Atlantans to explore our city, one historical landmark at a time.

Quantum Leap

The Atlanta Science Festival is back in 2024 for two weeks of all things science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM). More than 100 engaging interactive and educational events for kids of all ages are held at locations throughout metro Atlanta. Topics and themes include robotics, computer coding, astronomy, AI,

environment exploration and even the science of meditation. According to Meisa Salaita, executive co-director of Science ATL, the engineers of the Atlanta Science Festival, the multiday event celebrates Atlanta’s role as a leading science city. Programming begins March 9 and continues through March 23. Many events are free, but

Soulful Sounds

The ATL Blues Festival is set to come to the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center for its 18th consecutive year. The star-studded concert promises an enchanting night of musical storytelling. Scheduled for April 7, this one-night-only event presented by Heritage Entertainment showcases the rich tradition of the blues genre, renowned for its expressive narratives and deep-South heritage. The lineup features an array of talents, including the charismatic "king of swing" Tucka, blues veteran King George, the soulful J-Wonn, Valdosta-native West Love, Lebrado and Wardell "Pokey Bear" Brown. With six exceptional artists set to take the stage, attendees are in for a diverse and soul-stirring musical experience. Tickets start at $59 and can be secured at The Synovus Box Office at Cobb Energy Centre or online via n

some have a small ticket fee. The festival concludes with the Exploration Expo March 23 at Piedmont Park where families can experience even more hands-on activities and performances. Search for events by neighborhood on the event’s website. n



Mondays (ongoing)


Those involved in Atlanta’s hospitality and film industries are welcome at Monday Industry Nights at The Works. Participating venues such as Scofflaw Brewing, Fetch Dog Park and Your 3rd Spot offer new weekly deals and features that range from discounted gaming to food specials.


March 24 • @brushatl

Learn how to roll and prepare sushi alongside Jason Liang, chef and owner of Brush Sushi. The hands-on experience includes a guide to making sushi rice, nigiri techniques, maki rolling and plating. Participants can also opt to add a sake pairing as they work. Tickets are $125.


April 17-21

The Blues Festival returns lemonade-days • @dunwoodypt The Dunwoody Preservation Trust 24th annual Lemonade Days Festival is back at Brook Run Park. The largest annual fundraiser has full-scale carnival rides, live music and performances, food and drink, and the popular Dunwoody Idol competition. Admission is free, and ride tickets are available individually or as an unlimited day pass.


April 30


All canine companions are invited to the Atlanta Humane Society’s largest annual fundraising gala, Bow Wow Brunch, presented by Neiman Marcus. This year’s event will be held at Flourish Atlanta in Buckhead and includes a champagne brunch, silent and live auctions, and a puppy playground. Tickets are $350.

Celebrate science around Atlanta • @cobbenergypac • @atlscifest

Revitalizing Legacy


Pharr Road Dentistry

Cosmetic & General Dentists

Pharr Road Dentistry is a legacy dental practice located in the heart of Buckhead. Originally established by Dr. Paul McDonald in 1982, the practice grew to accommodate Dr. Frank Millians’s patients in 1992 and Dr. George Neal’s patients in 2002. Under the exceptional leadership of Dr. McDonald, the practice has provided compassionate care to patients for over 40 years. In January 2021, Dr. Keya Patel joined the practice and has dedicated herself to providing unparalleled dental care through the use of cutting-edge dental technology and techniques in order to personalize treatment options for patients of all ages. Together, Drs. McDonald and Patel and their wonderful team strive to create a comfortable and welcoming environment where patients can feel at ease and confident in their tailored dental care.

In today's fast-paced world, technological advancements have revolutionized various industries, and healthcare is no exception. However, innovation is not just about fancy new tools and virtual appointments – it's about skillfully balancing benefits of modern technology with a genuine commitment to patient relationships. Pharr Road Dentistry stands as a shining example of cuttingedge technology seamlessly integrating into personalized dental care while retaining the warm and comforting atmosphere of a familyoriented practice. Drs. McDonald and Patel utilize a range of advanced technologies that enhance precision, efficiency and overall patient experience. One standout feature is their use of digital imaging and 3D scanning which allows for

more accurate diagnoses and treatment planning.

Combined with the ability to 3D print, the practice is revolutionizing patient care from digitally designing smile makeovers to cleaning appointments that deliver a full snapshot of your oral health. As Dr. Keya Patel says, “I empower patients to be a part of their oral health journey by offering a platform that allows for easy visualization to discuss goals. A cornerstone of our practice’s success is our commitment to build strong patient-dentist relationships.”

As the world continues to evolve, Pharr Road Dentistry remains a beacon of exceptional care where patients are not just treated as clients, but as valued members of the practice’s extended dental family.




Products provided courtesy of Made Goods, Habachy Designs + Atelier, and Stark

@adacatlanta | #ADACSAMPLESALE

Peachtree Hills Ave, Atlanta
– Friday | Open to the Trade & Public
info at @adacatlanta | #adacatlanta
Ruban Chair by Pierre Frey Moroccan Rug by Moattar

I Do Saying


Weddings are a time for joining two people (and two families!), each with their own unique styles, preferences, habits and goals. If there ever were a time to make a strong statement that showcases the essence of one’s personality, a wedding is it. From the all-important engagement ring and the attire the wedding party will wear to a special location in which to say “I do” and making guests feel included in the festivities, a myriad of decisions goes into planning memorable nuptials. Good news: A host of expert resources exist right in our backyard to make every element reflect the couple at the heart of the celebration.

Model is wearing the Aimee gown by House of St. Patrick ($1,499) and a choker ($125), available at Suite Bridal. Emerald cut diamond ring by Highland Diamond (price available by request).


How to pull off the out-of-town wedding of your dreams

There’s something romantic about hosting a destination wedding. Perhaps it’s the intrigue of experiencing something new with your future partner, the thought of vacationing with friends and loved ones, or the appeal of picturesque photos. Regardless of the reason, destination weddings are rising in popularity. A 2023 survey by The Knot revealed that 18% of couples hosted a destination wedding in the prior year.

What is a destination wedding?

Brookhaven resident and event planner Becca Brooks of Becca Brooks Events and Design defines a destination wedding as “a wedding in any location where the bride and groom aren’t living or where the majority of their friends and family aren’t necessarily living.” That could be anywhere from exotic overseas locations to drivable small-town nuptials. Regardless of distance, if you or your guests are traveling to the host location, you are planning a destination wedding.

What is it like to plan a destination wedding?

According to Brooks, planning a destination wedding is similar to planning a hometown one. The initial steps such as choosing a date and a location are on par with what local brides and grooms might be organizing. This is especially true if your event falls under the “micro wedding” category—a wedding with fewer than 20 guests. However, if you’re planning a larger, more lavish affair, destination weddings can be logistically complex. “Oftentimes, you're planning a wedding weekend [or week]. Most of my clients typically want to make an extended several days out of it,” says Brooks. The result can involve many moving parts.

What are the first steps?

Above all, the most important step to take is selecting a location. Brooks recommends reflecting on your relationship and history when making that decision. “Think about what places are important to you or maybe a vacation you have taken,” she says.

Next, consider the number of unique spaces a location can provide. “I love working destination weddings with venues that have everything within an arm's reach. You want a place that is easy for everyone and keeps them in the same place,” says Brooks.

If it’s in the budget, consider hiring a wedding planner. An expert can help take care of every detail and execute the more abstract logistics, especially since you might not be familiar with the ins and outs of hosting an event away from home. Allow this to be their expertise, so you can enjoy the engagement season.

Finally, a big part of any wedding, but especially a destination wedding, is budgeting appropriately. The venue for destination weddings is such a large component of the budget that you want to make sure it will encompass all of the other details that are important to you. “With a planner, we can figure out what we're going to cut back on so you can have all the elements that you really want,” Brooks says.

How far in advance should you communicate your wedding plans with guests?

According to etiquette guru Emily Post, the sweet spot for mailing invitations is six to eight weeks before the wedding date. For a destination wedding, however, you will want to give guests even more time to plan. Brooks recommends that guests receive at least nine months’ notice. Belinda Crews, co-founder of Elevations Travel agency in Sandy Springs, advocates for an even larger window. “A year or even two is ideal,” she says. With domestic and international travel picking up speed in a post-global pandemic world, flights and hotels book even further in advance than before. “Planning in advance is our number one piece of advice,” says Crews. Not only will the married coupleto-be have more options for event

venues, but their guests will have more options for room types and travel days to popular destinations such as the Caribbean and Europe.

How do you set expectations with guests?

Communication is key. Brooks recommends having a wedding website where guests can find answers to their questions. Include things such as extra events or activities upon arrival, attire recommendations and ceremony and reception details. To avoid uncomfortable conversations about who is or isn’t invited, Brooks says to rely on your invitations to do the talking. “Like Emily Post, I recommend addressing the invitation to the guests who are invited. So for example, if I'm not inviting children, their children's names will not be on the invitation,” she says. When in doubt, add those additional, more specific details to your wedding website.

How can you ease travel concerns and logistics?

In addition to giving guests plenty of notice about your destination nuptials, consider putting them in touch with a reputable travel agent. “We can arrange flights, rooms, transfers and even pre- or post-wedding trips,” says Crews. Since a travel agent has relationships with resorts and destinations worldwide, they are able to serve as your go-to expert. For couples in the thick of planning, a travel agent can work with the wedding coordinator and the resort to make sure everything is low stress. “One of the best parts [about having an agent] is if you do run into a problem, you have somebody to go to bat for you,” says Crews. “We handle all the potential nightmares.” n

Left: Darby and Jack Winne share a newlywed kiss outside of Christ Church Frederica in St. Simons.
Above: Nobu Hotel Marrakesh hosts elegant destination weddings. BECCA BROOKS • @beccabrooksevents ELEVATIONS TRAVEL • 470.355.4274 • @elevationstvl
Camilla Akerberg Photography


A truly unique wedding day includes custom attire

For some brides- and groomsto-be, it’s not enough to have a unique wedding venue; that personal touch needs to be woven throughout, including wedding attire. The word “custom” gets thrown around a lot, but what does it actually mean in terms of wedding attire? We spoke to experts to shed light on the true meaning of custom and how it can add some serious sparkle to your big day.

Customized vs. custom

According to Shawne Jacobs, creative director and president of Atlanta-based wedding dress atelier Anne Barge, there’s often confusion around what custom apparel really means. “A bride can customize a wedding dress,” she says, referring to the typical process seen in a bridal salon. A bride will try on a sample

available in a showroom and can personalize the dress as she sees fit, changing necklines, buttons, sleeves and more, for an additional cost.

“In this sense, a bride has had a dress customized to her aesthetic or personality,” says Jacobs.

The process for custom is different. ‘If a bride comes to us and says she has been shopping and can’t find anything she loves and has something in her head, then she can build one from scratch,” Jacobs says.

Get inspired

It’s prudent for brides to seek out other options before commissioning a fully custom garment. “I recommend going shopping for dresses because many times brides think they know what they want, and they end up in a dress that looks better than what they originally thought,”

says Suite Bridal owner Melissa Barraza, who has done custom bridal gowns, party dresses and mother-of-the-bride dresses.

“So many will come in and say they want a ball gown, but they realize a fitted gown looks better.

If you go custom right away [without trying dresses on], you might end up with a dress you don’t like.”

Jacobs says that this step is crucial and is part of good communication with a designer, stylist or tailor when considering custom. “Most people don’t understand that it’s different from dress shopping in general. We put so much emphasis on the wedding day on this dress, and we pay more attention to the specifics, such as what silhouettes are best for our body type,” she says. By coming prepared, you’ll only make the appointments and communication easier.

Considerations for custom

For a truly custom gown or dress, the process can take about eight to 10 months, much longer than ordering a ready-made item, depending on the intricacies of the dress, with at least five or six fitting appointments. It starts with a sketch then moves to a muslin mock-up to get the shape right. “Muslin is a cheap cotton fabric that we can make changes to before we actually cut the dress,” says Jacobs. This allows a designer to convey changes before cutting the fabric.

While not all custom gowns need to be tens of thousands of dollars, Jacobs says it’s important brides be realistic about how much fabrics, embellishments and other special features can cost, especially in the age of social

miodrag ignjatovic


Custom clothiers for your big day

Bridal Couture by Ruby V

This bridal tailor outfit on East Andrews Drive has been run by expert seamstress Ruby Velasquez since 1995 and offers custom-made wedding, mother-of-thebride, party and cocktail dresses, as well as debutante gowns. Additional services include reworking vintage gowns and veils, creating headpieces and traditional alterations. 404.261.8866

Commonwealth Proper

Commonwealth Proper’s Atlanta showroom is tucked away on Bennett Street and provides custom suiting and wedding suits for those looking to turn up the fashion volume. The brand has endless options for luxury fabrics with each custom suit tailored to perfection.

HKT Custom Clothiers

Gentlemen looking to splash out on wedding attire should head to Neil Balani’s HKT Custom Clothiers. The tailor provides custom

suits and bespoke clothing using textiles from storied brands such as Dormeuil and Holland & Sherry.

TK Bridal & Alterations

The staff at TK Bridal & Alterations has decades of experience in creating and perfectly tailoring wedding attire and has been serving Sandy Springs since 2000. For a customized option, the shop has dresses from brands such as Eddy K, Enzoani and more.

If the suiting options available don’t fit your style, Octavius Marsion should be your final stop. Led by Georgia Tech graduate Octavius Terry, its custom suits go beyond the confines of traditional suiting. Terry couldn’t find a tuxedo to wear while getting married in front of 30 million viewers at the 2014 Grammy Awards, which featured a live Macklemore and Madonna performance of “Same Love” by Queen Latifah, so he created custom tailcoat tuxedos that ended up launching his company.

He jokingly calls himself the Olivia Pope [character on 2018 TV show “Scandal”] of suiting: He’s a fixer. He makes custom pieces for those looking to celebrate without limitations: Think brocades, soft-shouldered suits with obi belts and more for clients and celebrities including Ray J, former Lakers player Derek Fisher and Mary J. Blige. His process for designing is more akin to a custom wedding dress than traditional suiting as it starts with a muslin frame. Customers are in on the design from the beginning. “They’re selecting fabrics alongside me,” he says. He’s working on a suit for a “Game of Thrones”-inspired wedding this summer where the edict is to make it authentic without being costume-y. “I love to push the envelope,” he says.

OCTAVIUS MARSION • 470.316.0552 • @octaviusterry

media where it can seem like every other person is throwing an extravagant wedding with a custom-designed dress.

“The price can vary depending on the fabrics used. At Anne Barge, we only use fabrics that are 100% silk or a silk blend, and the lace we use comes from French mills,” she says. French lace and beading are the most expensive embellishments to consider. For example, “a custom dress with beading most likely has it hand-done, not done by a machine. We have our patternmakers make a pattern for the dress and send it directly to India, where they put it on a loom and hand-bead the fabric.”

Simple reigns supreme What’s trending in custom often follows the current bridal trends.

“Timeless, clean and classic are really what’s in,” says Jacobs, who says there are differences in trends based on the region of the bride and the wedding. “Southern brides love to change up their look,” she says, noting that they often prefer to convert their dresses with lace and bead toppers rather than create entire second looks for their receptions. Also trending are bows and sleeves. n

Jacobs made a custom gown for Audra Mari, who wed Josh Duhamel in 2022. It turned out so well they put it on the line. A custom dress designed by Melissa Barraza of Suite Bridal. A sample of suiting by Octavius Marsion.
ANNE BARGE BRIDAL ATELIER 404.873.8070 • • @annebarge SUITE BRIDAL • 470.225.7500 • @suitebridal
Eliza Morrill
Bryan Tyler Johnson

When it came to planning my wedding in Atlanta, I knew I wanted somewhere unique that embodied what was important to my husband and me, not what was de rigueur in 2019. We were wholly unconventional and went against the grain. We not only got married within five months of being engaged but also chose non-traditional venues to hold our events: Bacchanalia for the intimate 14-person ceremony and dinner, and a cocktail lounge for a disco-inspired reception. We still have people tell us that it was the most fun and creative wedding they’ve attended.

If you’re looking to highlight your personalities, pay homage to a shared interest or just shake things up for your wedding venue, here are some spots to consider.

Sweetwater Brewery

An Atlanta institution for more than 25 years, Sweetwater Brewery offers several options for the beer obsessed. The newly renovated taproom and outdoor patio make for a casual, more intimate option for smaller parties. Woodlands, the brewery’s barrel-aging facility, can accommodate 120 seated guests or

1. When Chastain offers an elegant backdrop for a food-focused wedding.

2. PATH Art Museum is a new Buckhead gallery with an intimate venue space that you can customize to your liking.

3. Sandy Springs Performing Arts Center Studio Theatre will have theater lovers living for its drama.


Unconventional wedding venues set the backdrop for personality-filled nuptials

300 reception-style. The Reel Room is the crown jewel of the three, overlooking the facility’s packaging line. It can seat 250 or hold up to 450 for a reception. It also boasts on-site parking, a rarity in the area.

PATH Museum

Newcomer PATH Museum (Presenting Art That Heals) offers a contemporary venue for an intimate event in the heart of Buckhead. The 1,300-square-foot gallery space and a two-story atrium lobby can be transformed into a ceremony and reception area, in addition to an outdoor space with seating. While it’s only been open since June 2023, it's hosted artists such as Charly Palmer and highlights from Gwen and Larry Walker’s private collec-

tion, providing the perfect colorful backdrop for your nuptials. Owner Mark Karelson also owns sister gallery and venue Mason Fine Art.

Citizens Market Atlanta and Phipps Plaza’s The Green

For the ultimate foodie experience, Citizens Market Atlanta in Buckhead is available for a full buyout. A whopping 25,000 square feet can be converted into whatever a couple can dream up for a seated or cocktail reception. The expert culinary team can create a menu fit for food lovers, pulling inspiration from existing vendors like Soom Soom or Krispy Rice. An indoor-outdoor bar seats 35 overlooking Phipps Plaza’s The Green, which is also available to rent

5. Citizens Market

for ceremonies and receptions, and holds 250 people seated or 500 for a cocktail-style event.

The Chastain

The Chastain has been generating steady buzz since its opening in 2020 and is an ideal location for those who take food seriously. The restaurant garnered a few Michelin nods late last year with a Green Star for sustainable gastronomy and a Michelin Guide Recommended Restaurant. Juan Fernando Cortés received a personal distinction as the Michelin Guide Atlanta 2023 Sommelier Award Winner. The space, originally a country store, is available for a full buyout of up to 200 guests for a cocktail-style event or 100 total seated using the main

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RM Photography
4. The Gothic architecture of Oglethorpe University spans across its campus, creating prime photo opportunities. Atlanta and Phipps Plaza's The Green give a one-two punch for an indooroutdoor event. Michelle Scott Creators + Finders

dining room and Old Oak Terrace. Additionally, for more intimate events, there’s the private option of the 1946 Room and the South Terrace, both of which can hold 30 guests seated. Food is the focus here under Executive Chef Christopher Grossman’s direction, and custom menus cater to a couple’s desires, with some ingredients harvested from the restaurant’s on-site garden.


Betrothed couples can choose from two options at this popular Chamblee restaurant: The Peabody and a full buyout. The Peabody, the restaurant’s second floor, is named after the Peabody Hotel in Memphis, the original home of the bar that now lines one side of the space. It can accommodate 70 guests seated or 100 for a cocktail-style reception, and has a second-story porch. The 130-year-old building used to serve as a Masonic lodge, train depot and general store, and now offers rustic charm as a backdrop for an event. Up to 250 guests can enjoy both levels of Southbound with a full buyout.

Oglethorpe University

Whether you have ties to the school or just admire its Gothic revival

charm, Oglethorpe University in Brookhaven is a dream for those looking to add history and a dramatic flair to their event.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the school has several event venues within the 100-acre campus. For an outdoor wedding, photos on The Quad will capture the beautifully imposing gray granite buildings. Inside, the Philip Weltner Atrium offers a majestic backdrop with grand windows, while Hearst Hall provides an intimate space enveloped in carved wood, both of which make lovely ceremony spaces. For a more modern touch, the Museum of Art has two galleries, the Skylight and Rubin. Both offer a more traditional blank space set up which can be customized to your taste.

Sandy Springs Performing Arts Center Studio Theatre

Theater nerds, music lovers and more will want to consider City Springs Studio Theatre in the heart of Sandy Springs. The complex was completed in 2018, including the Performing Arts Center, where 5,000 square feet of flexible space in the Studio Theatre are up for grabs. An included in-house catering team and

6. All of Bacchanalia is available to rent out for a wedding, or you can choose to use one of its smaller private rooms to seat up to 20 guests.


7. Chamblee's Southbound venue is over 130 years old and adds rustic charm to a wedding.

day-of event manager make the process smooth. Additional prefunction space can be found in the lobby, which serves as a perfect segue for cocktails or a small ceremony. Outside, photo opps abound on City Green, the popular greenspace in front of the theater, and at the wall of windows of the Byers Lobby.

Donaldson-Bannister Farm

While the concept of a farm wedding is not new, an intown farm is almost impossible to find. The property dates to the 1870s and in 2018 began hosting events, for which it has garnered awards. Located on almost 3 acres in the heart of Dunwoody, it’s on the Georgia and National Register of Historic Places and offers several options for events. The Main House can seat 50 to 60 guests, while five outdoor spaces can accommodate closer to 300. Choose from the arbor, an open meadow, the historic barn and more, with several on-site, full catering prep kitchens available.


Michelin-starred restaurant Bacchanalia has several options for nuptials for those who want to experience Anne Quatrano’s vision. Two cur-

tained private rooms can hold up to 10 and 20 guests respectively, either at two round five-tops or a rectangular 20-seat table. For a fully bespoke option, the entire dining room is up for grabs should you want to rent the space; note that it requires at least five months' notice. A smaller, more casual reception can be held in the adjoining Star Provisions space. n

BACCHANALIA • 404.365.0410 @starprovisions

THE CHASTAIN • 404.257.6416 • @thechastainatl

CITIZENS MARKET ATLANTA AND PHIPPS PLAZA’S THE GREEN • 470.826.3770 • @citizensmarketatl

DONALDSON-BANNISTER FARM 770.668.0401 • donaldson-bannister-farm

OGLETHORPE UNIVERSITY • 404.364.8440 @oglethorpeuniv

PATH MUSEUM • 404.879.1500 • @pathartmuseum


SOUTHBOUND • 678.580.5579 • @southboundatlanta

SWEETWATER BREWERY • 404.691.2537 • @sweetwaterbrew

Andrew Thomas Lee Michelle Scott


Your room block questions answered

As George Banks so eloquently put it in the 1991 film Father of the Bride, “I used to think a wedding was a simple affair. Boy and girl meet; they fall in love. He buys a ring. She buys a dress. They say I do. I was wrong. That’s getting married. A wedding is an entirely different proposition.”

All dad jokes aside, most weddings are massive undertakings. It takes months to meticulously plan the details of the big day. There’s selecting the ideal flowers that are both seasonally available and Pantone-perfect. There’s creating a menu that feels both filling and downright delicious. There’s deciding between a string quartet, a DJ and a band—or perhaps all three. Those few items don’t even begin to cover venues, photographers, videographers, invitations or attire. As the list of things to do gets longer, one item you should consider prior-

itizing is booking your hotel block. This is a designated collection of rooms at a particular hotel, often reserved for weddings or other large events, and offered at a discounted rate. Besides the obvious cost savings, blocks provide a central location and allow guests to mingle and get to know each other between festivities.

When planning where to host guests, think about some of the amenities offered at the accommodations as well as beyond them.

Tara Warshaw, the director of sales and marketing at the Bellyard Hotel, says the best hotels for wedding guests are those that offer a prime location, particularly for walking. Since many out-of-towners likely won’t have vehicles, give your guests a great experience by choosing a centrally located hotel.

“If you don't have every moment of your guests' weekend scheduled, it's

important to have a location where it's walkable, and there's lots for them to do in that area [immediately around the property].”

A few hours of free time between wedding-related activities can allow visitors to experience the city as well as have some fun. Mixed-use developments, such as The Interlock where the Bellyard Hotel is, are ideal for hosting, thanks to their immediate access to places like indoor mini-golf gaming center Puttshack and various bars and restaurants such as Michelin-recognized Miller Union, Bacchanalia, Hayakawa, Mujō and Marcel. Similar hotels in Buckhead that offer prime proximity to neighborhood attractions are Thompson Atlanta and The St. Regis, both within walking distance of Buckhead Village, and Nobu Atlanta that neighbors Phipps Plaza. Onsite amenities are important to consider as well, and we’re not

talking just pools, spas and gyms. Ask your preferred hotel about their shuttle service options. Smaller, boutique hotels, especially in a large city, do not have an on-site shuttle, so a rental might be required, “Be sure to ask what standing times are allowed. We, for example, only allow a shuttle to stand for 20 minutes at a time because of blocking traffic,” says Warshaw. Knowing not only how long a shuttle can park to pick up guests but also where guests can get on and off is important for smooth transitions and limited confusion. Some hotels may also offer individual or on-demand service.

Think about perks such as hospitality suites or private gathering spaces, too. While large, 500-room hotels might have plenty of spots for guests to linger, smaller, trendy boutique hotels might not. Warshaw recommends planning for a private event space. While it might be a larger expense, it guarantees the best experience for you and your guests.

Warshaw’s number one piece of advice is to secure your hotel block as far as a year in advance. That timing can make a huge difference in planning, especially when





When choosing your room block, look for hotels with ample gathering spaces such as this terrace at The Bellyard.

it comes to getting the best rates. Boutique hotels, says Warshaw, rely on last-minute travelers, so fares tend to increase about four months before the intended date. Additionally, Warshaw warns that some hotels put a cap on their wedding availability. “Weddings can be taxing on a hotel because there can be a

lot of requests and moving parts, so while a hotel may have some rooms still available, they're not taking any more groups or weddings.”

As far as early check-ins, it’s best not to count on them. Checking in early isn’t always a guarantee, especially in the boutique hotel space, so if getting into a room ahead of time

is a priority, Warshaw recommends booking an additional night. “Even if you have to pay for [an extra night], you won't have that headache of sitting in the lobby waiting and potentially not being able to get into your room until check-in time, which is three o'clock.” Eliminate those extra stresses by strategically

At 2,138 square feet, this impressive suite has ample room for entertaining close friends and family or getting ready for your big debut. While the space is beautifully appointed throughout, the custom-painted piano is the main attraction.


Recently debuted after a grand redesign, the 2,340-square-foot room features a fireside lounge, deco millwork and bespoke, custom-designed furnishings for plenty of room to relax after the big day. atlwawa-waldorf-astoria-atlanta-buckhead


While the room itself is a stunning example of luxury, the crown jewel of this suite is the incredible bathroom, complete with a soaking tub and views of the neighborhood below. hotels/atlxr-the-st-regis-atlanta/overview

planning your arrival days. Get the most out of your hotel block by planning. Doing so will give you and your guests peace of mind and set the right tone for wedding festivities. n

BELLYARD HOTEL • 404.806.8333 • @bellyardhotel
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How and why to choose custom designs for your wedding rings

Whether dog-earring bridal magazines, pinning inspiration shots to a Pinterest board or saving images on Instagram, brides and grooms-to-be give extensive consideration to their future engagement and wedding rings. According to Today’s Wedding Jewelry Consumer, an interactive research platform for jewelry retailers, the U.S. engagement ring market in 2022 was a $7.6 billion industry. An engagement ring symbolizes devotion to a partner and a lifelong commitment to a piece of jewelry. It’s an important decision and one that can be representative of not only your relationship but also your personality. That’s why a custom-designed piece might be the best bet for making your wedding set stand out.

Hays Pickens is a graduate gemologist and the vice president of Pickens Jewelers in Buckhead. His

company was founded in 1946 and has since helped three generations of brides and grooms select their wedding rings. Pickens says the bulk of their daily jewelry work is in the custom category.

Design Inspo

When designing a custom ring, Pickens says step one is drawing inspiration. “If somebody comes in with an idea, we can recreate it, or we can work together on designing something.” That idea can be as simple as a few photos to as abstract as wanting to incorporate heirloom stones but not knowing a creative direction. That’s where the experts come in. “For those more complex jobs that require a lot more custom design, we use CAD (computeraided design) and then have that cast [into a mold],” he explains.

One place to seek inspiration, besides typical spots like internet

searches and magazines, is through family photos. Let’s say a particular piece of family jewelry is promised to someone else or is not yet ready to leave the finger of the current owner. Custom designs allow for those pieces to be recreated from scratch. “They can have something that they've always admired and will be long-lasting,” says Pickens.

Patience is a Virtue

Whether it’s perfecting the design or gathering the materials, custom rings do take a bit more planning and require extra time. Some straightforward creations can be finished in as few as three weeks, but Pickens warns it’s best to allow a few months to complete the process. “If something is being done by hand [such as engraving or other intricate designs], there are only so many jewelers that have that level of skill, so that takes longer, too,” he says.

Budget Wise

A custom ring might make you dream of dollar signs, and while bespoke jewelry can be more valuable, Pickens says there are ways to offset costs such as supplying your stones or trading in unused precious metal to be weighed, melted and recast. As with materials across all industries, fine metals have increased in price, so having an idea of the type of metal you want to use and level-setting budget expectations can make for a smoother process.

So is it worth it? Pickens says yes. “A custom piece has more personal, sentimental value because you are a part of making it,” he says. “It’s no different than somebody who builds their own house. It's that more unique and special to the individual.” n

PICKENS JEWELERS • 404.237.7885 • @pickensjewelrs COVER STORY
STORY: Nicole Letts PHOTOS: Joann Vitelli

Join our 19th Annual Brave women, tireless champions, who redefine strength, resilience, and grace.

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Quiet Heroes is a very special luncheon that honors mothers of children with cancer. But it’s also for any and all of us wanting an afternoon of inspiration. So grab your friends and join us on March 23rd for laughter and fun.

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Passionate, expressive, generous and eager to serve an abundance of handmade dishes: Traits commonly associated with Italian grandmothers can also be found at il Giallo Osteria & Bar in Sandy Springs. Two things are certain here: You can experience the love-through-food feeling. And you won’t leave hungry.

The popular chicken parmigiana

is so big it fills the plate. Chicken breast is pounded, lightly breaded, pan-fried with butter, garlic and rosemary, then topped with marinara sauce, roasted tomatoes and mozzarella. The bubbly hot cheese pulls into strings with each forkful. Juicy, crispy, tender, gooey and tangy, it hits all the right buttons. For a perfect pairing, add a side of al dente spaghetti marinara that packs fresh tomato tartness into each twirly bite. ➥

PHOTOS: Madelynne Grace
Extraordinary pizza was added to the menu during the pandemic.
wines from around the world, including Italy.

“People can’t seem to get enough of the chicken parm,” says chef Jamie Adams. When he presents it to dinner guests, he likes to joke, “Sorry we didn’t have a big one.” The decadent serving could easily be enough for two or even three diners, though a solo eater might indulge or take a portion to-go to satisfy inevitable next-day cravings.

Italian cuisine has driven Adams’ career, from his first job at a pizza eatery to a five-year stint working in kitchens in Italy to the Buckhead Life Restaurant Group’s Veni Vidi Vici where he helmed the kitchen for 21 years. Among his many accolades, he’s been a featured chef at The James Beard House in New York, competed in Food Network’s “Chopped” as well as “The Best Thing I Ever Ate,” participated in TBS-TV’s “Super Chef Cook-Off,” and appeared on “Great Chefs of the South.” On Halloween 2015, he launched il Giallo with business partner and general manager Leonardo Moura.

The menu showcases classic, seasonal and regional Italian dishes. “It’s influenced by an amalgam of the various places I worked while I lived in Italy,” says Adams, who

spent the majority of his time in the North Piedmont region but traveled around the country and continues to revisit the boot-shaped nation.

Spaghetti and meatballs is a bestseller. It’s available as a hearty entree or as a “secret” side: Though not on the menu, order the spaghetti marinara side, and the server will ask if you want it topped with meatballs. Meatballs without pasta are featured as an appetizer; the spheres comprised of ground duck, turkey and beef are braised with mixed mushrooms and sweet onions. Fork-tender and savory with subtle sweet notes, they rank among Atlanta’s to-diefor bites. Grilled octopus, another noteworthy app, impresses with cooked-to-perfection tenderness and sweet-tart flavors.

Fresh pasta is made in an open kitchen overlooking the dining room during service: “That has always been the core of our place,” says Adams. Options include agnolotti, a flattened pasta folded over a filling that’s typical of the Piedmont region. Here it encases roasted duck and fontina cheese topped with a brown butter sage sauce plus a smattering of pecans that adds

Above: Colorful presentation enhances the octopus appetizer. Right: You can make three meals out of one eyepopping serving of the chicken parm. Below: The "crazy lasagna" would be crazy to miss.

Left: Cheesy gnocchi is a decadent potato-y alternative and upgrade from mac-n-cheese.

crunch to the savory dish. “Crazy lasagna” layers braised beef short ribs with sheets of pasta, drizzled with garlic and rosemary juice for yummy umami. Gnocchi, soft potato dumplings, are coated with bits of salty speck (dry-cured ham) with an earthy gorgonzola cream sauce. It’s hard to name a favorite. Fortunately, pastas are available in two serving sizes, so if ordering just one proves too difficult, simply get the smaller portions of whatever number of them piques your interest knowing you’ll never regret leftovers.

Pizza is now on the menu. “Our business model obviously got kicked sideways during the pandemic,” says Adams. “In the midst of figuring out how to deal with it, we added pizza to our repertoire. It’s extraordinary pizza—I don’t have anything to do with it. It’s made by pizzaiolo Brendan Keenan. We have such a large amount of space and during the pandemic didn’t have enough servers to cover our square footage, so we carved out a back corner of the dining room that has its own entrance on the side of the restaurant. That became the pizza area, a casual corner where people can come in and pick

up food to go or sit in a little ‘speakeasy’ back there.” Pizzas are also available in the main dining room. One bite of perfectly charred, thincrust margherita is all that’s needed to be thoroughly impressed.

The wine list showcases varietals and blends from around the world, including several Italian picks, across a broad range of prices by the glass and bottle. Beer and classic cocktails are also available, along with some new creative drinks. Crimsonite is a bourbonbased sipper on the spectrum somewhere between an old fashioned and Manhattan with sweet, bitter and boozy notes.

Dessert is a must. Traditional tiramisu is one popular pick, but don’t overlook the crostata di nocciole, crunchy bottomed hazelnut chocolate bars. Proof that even familiar flavors can rise to new levels of sophistication, the dish is a personal favorite, and I’m not alone: “We believe we would be put up against a firing squad if we stopped making them,” says Adams. I wouldn’t go that far, but I might shed a few tears.

Hungry? Book a table at il Giallo. As Nonna would say, “Eat, eat!” n

il Giallo Osteria & Bar 404.709.2148 • • @gialloatl

Prices: appetizers, $4-20; salads, $14-16; pizza, $16-24; pasta, $18-39; entrees, $29-51; sides $12-13; desserts, $10-12.

Above: As an appetizer or atop al dente pasta, the meatballs melt in the mouth.

Left: Crunchybottomed hazelnut chocolate bars prove that even familiar flavors can exceed expectations.

Recommended: Margherita pizza, “crazy lasagna,” gnocchi, chicken parmigiana, crostata di nocciole

Bottom line: Welcoming Italian restaurant that serves high-quality traditional and seasonal Italian fare in a warm setting with contemporary style.

Above: All the fresh pasta is made within view of the dining room.

Above: Sweetens Cove Kennessee is a blend of whiskies from Tennessee and Kentucky.

Left: Eden Mill Golf Gin was created in homage to the course where golf first began.

Right: Berckmans vodka bears the name of the man whose home and orchards are now Augusta National.


Spirits with a taste of the fairway

As the season changes and blooms begin to dot the landscape, spring is officially golf season. If you are looking for the perfect tipple to toast a game well played (or even attempted), here are three spirits apropos for the occasion, all available at Atlanta area liquor shops.

Vodka to the Fore

Hole #3 at Augusta National is said to be virtually perfect in design. While this is probably due to slopes, bunkers and a full shot to the green, the designation is apropos. Number three is nicknamed “Flowering Peach.” Each hole is named for a type of flower within the golf course, and these blooms trace back to Fruitland Nurseries, the fundamental reason Georgia peaches are as famous as they are. One vodka continues to tell the story.

Berckmans American Vodka is named for Prosper J. Berckman who owned the largest Georgia peach farm in the 19th century. He’s known as the “Father of Georgia Peaches” for planting more than 3 million

trees and introducing more than 300 varieties of the sweet fruit. He started the Georgia Horticultural Society, hoping to help others succeed in growing and farming. After his death, Fruitland Nurseries was purchased to create Augusta National, preserving his residence as the clubhouse and many of the trees and shrubs he planted, including those famous azaleas. It's a bottled legacy woven into the area’s golf history.

Raise a Glass with Bourbon

Just an hour and a half drive from Atlanta, Sweetens Cove is a ninehole public course west of Chattanooga. A group of friends bought it in 2019. It has no clubhouse, but there is a tradition of a celebratory shot of booze at a golfer’s first hole. A place where the game of golf is distilled to its purest form deserves its own whiskey. Partners, including Peyton Manning and Andy Roddick, enlisted the help of Master Blender Marianne Eaves, Kentucky’s first female to hold that title since Prohibition, to create a namesake bourbon, and it has garnered awards

of greatness ever since.

Sweetens Cove is a cask-strength Tennessee bourbon, aged 13 years with a chocolatey/caramel nose, baking spices on the palate and a lingering finish. Eaves also blends the historic rivalry of Kentucky and Tennessee bourbon together in bottling Kennessee Bourbon Whiskey. Aged five years and finished with sugar maple wood, it has the balance, sweetness and warmth of the homey course that draws golfers to make a pilgrimage.

Gin Up Enthusiasm for the Game

The story of golf begins at St. Andrews, known as “The Home of Golf,” on Scotland’s east coast. The Old Course is the birthplace of the game as we know it. Lore says the 18 holes come from the notion that a bottle of Scotch has18 shots. You can see the Old Course Hotel and St. Andrews cathedral from Eden Mill distillery, and you can taste the spirit of the course where the sport started.

It’s not Scotch, but there is a taste of place in Eden Mill Golf Gin. The classic London dry style is infused

with ingredients you could spot while playing the course, all organically sourced from along the storied coastline. The waters inspire the organically farmed kombu seaweed base of the gin. The fresh pine is reminiscent of the scent carried across the windswept fairways. Gorse, tiny yellow flowers that grow on prickly bushes around the course, add hints of coconut flavor to the mix. Scottish heather lends floral undertones along with locally sourced lavender.

Until you can make the trek to visit St. Andrews, or perhaps to reminisce about a journey once taken to Scotland, a gin and tonic with Eden Mill captures a bit of the storied course. Golf Gin began as a limited run for the 2015 Open Championship at St. Andrews, but it is here to stay and widely available in Atlanta. n

BERCKMANS VODKA • @berckmansusa

EDEN MILL GOLF GIN • @edenmill

SWEETENS COVE SPIRITS • @sweetenscovespirits

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Macias, Owner


Five Atlanta restaurants receive Michelin stars

Atlanta’s first Michelin Guide was officially announced in October. Out of the 45 local restaurants that were recognized, Atlas, Bacchanalia, Hayakawa, Lazy Betty and Mujō each earned Michelin’s one-star designation.

“It is extremely impressive to earn a Michelin distinction, and people around the world are now starting to learn about Atlanta’s restaurant scene through this guide,” says Andrew Wilson, executive vice pres-

ident and chief marketing officer of the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau, who was instrumental in bringing the guide to town.

Bacchanalia and The Chastain (whose sommelier, Juan Fernando Cortés, also earned the Atlanta Sommelier Award) also took home Michelin Green Stars that “demonstrates our commitment to sustainable gastronomy,” Wilson says.

“To be awarded One Michelin Star alongside a Green Star is more


Hopdoddy Burger Bar, with locations in Sandy Springs and beyond, has forgone plantbased meat substitutes in favor of five burgers made with meats raised with regenerative agricultural practices. “Regenerative agriculture is the future and the best path forward to saving our planet,” says Hopdoddy CEO Jeff Chandler, who gives more details about the practice here.

What is regenerative agriculture?

It works in partnership with nature to make great-tasting, nutrient-rich food while also healing the planet. The main focus is on building soil

and healing ecosystems. When this happens, farmers are increasing resilience, boosting yields, capturing carbon and increasing nutrient density. With planned grazing methods, grass-fed beef and bison are credited for sequestering atmospheric carbon, improving soil health and restoring native grasslands on the beautiful plains of North America.

In short, farmers are producing nutritionally dense food, helping to balance the climate and bringing entire ecosystems back to life.

What are the nutritional benefits of regenerative meat?

The food grown under regenerative

special than I could have imagined,”

n New York-style bagels are now available in Chamblee at The Bronx Bagel Buggy, which opened in January. In addition to bagels, stop by for bagel bombs, bialys, stuffed cakes, take-and-bake pizzas and bagel dogs.

n Ponce City Market brunch restaurant Pancake Social is now open at Westside Paper, an open-air development in West Midtown.

Bruxie is now open in Chamblee with a casual menu of waffle sandwiches, chicken tenders, milkshakes and frozen custards.

scene as a whole, says J. Trent Harris,

more magnesium, calcium, potassium and zinc; more vitamins, including B1, B12, C, E and K; and more phytochemicals, compounds that have been shown to reduce inflammation and boost human health.

How does Hopdoddy’s adoption of regenerative agriculture help? Hopdoddy’s bison and beef

agement of 14,000-plus acres of land in 2022, benefiting an entire ecosystem by supporting a biodynamic assortment of plants and animal species. These acres were not tilled under and sprayed to produce feed for these animals n


770.628.0669 • • @hopdoddy

Photos: Andrew Thomas Lee
Culinary News & Notes
Hopdoddy Burger Bar uses real meat from regenerative agriculture Artfully presented dishes from Mujō and Bacchanalia garnered attention from Michelin's reviewers.

Slam Dunk

Chef G. Garvin’s culinary expertise is a win for State Farm Arena

If you’ve visited State Farm Arena recently, you may have noticed new food options for concertgoers and basketball fans. Chef Gerry “G.” Garvin came onboard as chief culinary officer in late fall 2023 and hasn’t looked back. “Food is my life,” he says.

A James Beard Award nominee, cookbook author, TV personality, and founder of LowCountry Steak in Midtown, Garvin started his career as the youngest cook at the Ritz-Carlton, Atlanta and worked his way through fine dining restaurants including Morton’s, Pricci and Veni Vidi Vici. At his now-defunct eponymous spot in Los Angeles, he hosted celebrities such as Halle Berry and President Bill Clinton. Today, he creates culinary shows such as “City Eats” on Aspire TV and judges “Grocery Games” on

the Food Network with Guy Fieri.

At State Farm Arena, Garvin oversees the food from concessions to club level to suites—and even prepares meals for the Hawks players at times. We spoke to him to learn more.

What attracted you to this role?

The ability to work with the iconic brands—State Farm, the Hawks and Levy Restaurants—traditionally known for an elite level of excellence in hospitality.

I did an activation last year with State Farm and BMW and met some folks looking for something new. They wanted to take a good existing program and partner with someone who could make it great.

Everything I’ve done in my career has been around hospitality and food. Being a Georgia boy through and through, it made a lot of sense.

What changes have you made to the culinary program?

I’ve been getting in there and listening to the fans and the internal team, trying to understand the scope of what it takes to feed so many folks successfully, working with leadership to incorporate enough vegan options and traditional Atlanta options, and speaking with local chefs to identify signature Georgia dishes we can implement.

What new dishes can people expect?

Quinoa jambalaya, tabouleh, couscous, vegan pastas, rosemary lime chicken breast, brick chicken, warm clay pot chicken. I’m working to make sure we have an elite culinary program throughout the arena.

Tell me about your philanthropies. I grew up with a single mother with five kids in Buckhead. Trouble was easily accessible. Food didn’t change my life, it saved it. Now I enjoy giving back to the culinary community. I highlight minority- and black-owned businesses by selling their products in my steakhouse. I consult for startups and do culinary mentorships. Every July, I host a weeklong culinary boot camp where we teach food and

labor costs, recipe development, and how to use a knife and fork— everything around what it means to be a real chef. Every Thanksgiving, we give away 300 turkeys and bags of groceries for families in need. It’s about supporting people who don’t have the means.

How do you balance it all?

I’m very selective. I start my day at 5:45 a.m. and don’t allow anything that’s not positive, productive and forward moving. Nothing functions without my family. I’m at every soccer game for my son (age 10), and train him one-on-one. I talk to my daughter (who is at college) twice a week. When I’m not working, I have dinner with my wife and son.

What do you do for fun?

I enjoy quiet time, do a lot of meditation, take drives and love classic movies. I’m a closet writer. I’ve written seven books [five have been published]. I’m a motorcycle rider. I was a speed demon in my 20s and want to get a Harley soon. Motorcycles are my free space. n STATE

FARM ARENA • 404.878.3000
• @statefarmarena


A sampling of great eats in and around Buckhead

Aziza's meaty wood-charred octopus sits atop couscous and peppers, dressed with bright romesco. The Woodall's hearty favorites keep guests coming back. The Chastain's chocolate and hazelnut bar comes accented with mandarin-yuzu sorbet.


Meaning “happiness” in Arabic, Aziza is tucked into the lower level of Westside Provisions District, with a dimly lit dining room and diminutive bar. The open kitchen, with its large wood-burning oven that factors heavily into most dishes, is a welcoming focal point. Have a cocktail such as the herbaceous Shug Shake to whet your appetite for the simple, elegant and intensely flavorful dishes to come. Sharing is the best way to maximize your tour of the menu. Don’t miss Hummus No. 1, a silky chickpea mixture topped with braised duck, pecans, pomegranate and nutty tahini served with laffa bread. You can’t go wrong with tender-crisp octopus with coriander, tuna tartare with preserved lemon labneh, short rib tagine or grilled lamb shoulder with fava beans and herbed rice. Blending Israeli cuisine with seasonal ingredients available in the American South, Aziza strikes just the right balance between adventurous and comforting.

Small plates: $10-$21 • Mains: $29-$43

Desserts: $13 •


Chef Christopher Grossman and his team find the best in-season ingredients, some of which come from an on-site garden, and use their culinary wizardry to turn them into something even greater than the sum of their parts. Aside from some mainstays, the menu changes so frequently, there’s always something new to discover. A recent visit yielded an appetizer of fluke, battered with locally brewed Steady Hand IPA and served with sauce gribiche, akin to remoulade. Beef tallow-fried tater tots were adorned with tangy creme fraiche and Osetra caviar, while Faroe Island salmon came with almondinfused brown butter, new potatoes and tender-crisp French green beans. Châtel Farms ribeye, a beautifully marbled and wetaged cut, was cooked perfectly medium-rare, sliced and served in a just-right puddle of rich jus. The Chastain walks the line between comforting and supremely elegant, and thanks to the eatery’s bucolic, park-adjacent setting, it feels like a discovery every time.

First courses: $7-$24 • Greens: $16-$17

Mains: $29-$49 • A la carte: $50-$125

Pasta: $16-$44 • Sides: $10-$15

Desserts: $10-$15 •


Many of the best meals are an escape, a getaway. Fortunately for Atlanta residents, it’s simple enough to find bites that both awaken our wanderlust and satisfy our desire for something beyond the ordinary. Case in point: Fia, the restaurant tucked inside The Burgess Hotel. A glance at the menu will tell you that, while you’ll likely be able to pick out

influences—Greek, Indian, Thai, Italian—you can’t put this menu in a box. That fact makes it so much fun to order what you like and explore dishes such as tender-crisp charred octopus, shrimp saganaki, pan-seared potato gnocchi, whole grilled branzino and bone-in short rib served over spiced lentils and basmati rice. A meal here is like a global getaway close to home.

Appetizers, soups and salads: $8-19

Entrees: $24-$38 • From the grill: $28-$98

Sides: $13 • Desserts: $12-$15 •


Looking on the outside like a high-end strip joint topped with a Bourbon Street balcony, Hal’s has built its cachet around its loyal clientele, old-school style, impeccable service and terrific food. Owner Hal Nowak is a New Orleans native, and in his eponymous enterprise—with its shrimp remoulade, oysters bordelaise and booze-soaked bread pudding—he has created Atlanta’s answer to Galatoire’s. This may be your grandparents’ favorite restaurant, but in an age where everything old is new again, it also boasts a youthful clientele that appreciates its straightforward food, strong drinks and speakeasy atmosphere.

Appetizers and salads: $9-$24

Entrées and steaks: $24-$50 •


Houston’s probably won’t make the list of any highfalutin, big-city critic. And yet the Beverly Hills-based chain, which has had an Atlanta presence since 1978, has a devoted following, thanks to its consistently good, all-American food; its commitment to customer comforts; and its flagrant disregard for culinary razzle-dazzle. While the gooey spinach-andartichoke dip and the Famous French Dip are the stuff of legend, we are crazy about the Thai steak and noodle salad, the crispyskinned rotisserie chicken and the warm, five-nut brownie with vanilla ice cream. At Houston’s, every table is bolted to the floor so it won’t wobble, servers bring chilled glasses so your drink never gets tired and the napkins have buttonholes so the white-shirt crowd can save its ties. We can only hope this classic sticks around for a few more decades.

Starters and salads: $4-$20

Burgers and sandwiches: $18-$20

Entrees: $25-$45 •


Le Bilboquet brings a taste of France to Buckhead Village with a relaxed yet sophisticated vibe. Tables adorned with white tablecloths are attended by friendly servers. The menu is managed by Executive Chef Cyrille Holota, who has cooked at Michelin-starred and award-winning restaurants across the globe.

Classic escargot balances earthy umami with garlic and butter. Tender duck confit with lentils and red wine sauce is divinely rich and savory. Salmon is simple elegance, cooked to order and served atop beurre blanc sauce alongside a mix of sauteed greens and shitake mushrooms. Lamb curry is tender with a pleasing mild spicy kick. French fries are long, slender, crisp, salty perfection. Vanilla crème brûlée tops dreamy, creamy custard with hard caramel for a delightful contrast of textures. The bar offers wines by the glass and bottles that are handpicked by the sommelier, plus classic cocktails and featured spritzers.

Brunch specialties: $6-36 • Lunch sandwiches: $18-26 • Dinner: Appetizers: $13-29 • Caviar: $125-278 • Sides: $12 Entrees: $23-62 • Desserts: $12-16


Postino WineCafe Buckhead embraces its quirkiness with endearing charm. Located in a former Blockbuster, the space has one wall plastered with VHS tapes. Even to-go containers burst with personality, including a reminder that “drinking wine at lunch is not a crime.” The wink-wink fun doesn’t detract from the fact that Postino takes food and drink seriously. All roles are well played. Balance is a consistent theme. Kitchen techniques are solid. Menus present fresh combinations. Whether you want a snack, meal or feast, you’ll find it here. The OMG grilled cheese with creamy tomato soup is a classic that exceeds expectations. Meatballs and goat cheese offer melt-in-your-mouth comfort. Bruschetta boasts 12 sophisticated combinations. Weekend brunch presents a range of savory and sweet options.

Snacks: $8-17 • Bruschetta and boards: $17-19 • Paninis: $14.50-15 • Soups and salads: $7-13.50 • Sweets: $8 • Brunch: $9.75-15.50 •


Treat your tastebuds to as many dishes as possible at Rumi’s Kitchen Sandy Springs, whether you sit in the spacious dining room with its bubbling water feature or order to-go. The menu is packed with powerful culinary rhythms and rhymes. Falafel stuns with crisp-tender chickpea balls, pickled veggies, tangy tabbouleh and savory tahini sauce. Mirza ghasemi (smoked eggplant with tomato and garlic) presents strong notes without hiding the scrumptious plant flavors. Chicken barg infuses a juicy wedge with exotic flavors thanks to the saffron marinade. Pair it with Shirin polo, fluffy rice dotted with orange zest, red barberry, pistachio, almond and rosewater—a divine mix of flavors and textures. Lamb hummusiya tops hummus with lamb sausage for a pleasing contrast of spicy heat

and cool umami. Dukkah roasted carrots play nutty-spicy notes against tangy-sweet yogurt cheese. Good luck choosing a favorite.

Starters: $8-15 • Salads: $8-12

Mains: $18-45 • Sides: $4-10

Desserts: $10 •


Both Southern food newbies and aficionados will take to this sexy gastropub, as smooth and easy as the finish of one of its primo bourbons. (If you’re old school, go for the gloriously icy Resurgens mint julep; if not, there’s no shortage of cocktail possibilities.) When your whistle’s wet, dig in to favorite starters of spicy charred okra and PEI mussels in a whiskey cream sauce. Both will leave you smitten. Classics such as the shrimp boil, Springer Mountain half fried chicken and shrimp and grits with New Orleans barbecue sauce are all mouthwatering. And it wouldn’t be Southern if there weren’t sweets to make your toes curl in delight. Leave room for a nibble or two of brown butter cake or the favorite at our table—almond nougat semifreddo. Small plates: $6-$12 • Salads and sandwiches: $6-$13 • Large plates (including brunch entrées): $13-$28


With its friendly, relaxed vibe, it’s easy to feel among friends at The Woodall in Westside Village, whether you prefer the comfortable dining room or outdoor patio. Whitewashed brick, shiny metal, warm woods, brown leather and modern light fixtures cozy up the converted warehouse while a mural of eagle talons clasping a silver spoon adds personality. The dinner and brunch menus present globally inspired dishes and drinks featuring local ingredients. The menu changes seasonally, with options such as lump crab beignets, openfaced tenderloin sandwich, Sicilian calamari and rock shrimp and fried chicken tucked into a feather-light biscuit. The restaurant’s website confidently asserts, “You’ll be back!” There are plenty of reasons to do just that.

Small plates: $9-$15 • Salads: $9-12

Sandwiches: $11.5-17 • Mains: $13-$43

Sides: $5-$6 • Desserts: $9-$10

Note: Prices and menu items may have changed since original publication.


Visit to read all of our restaurant reviews!



STORY: H.M. Cauley

PHOTOS: Kimberly Evans

For the 18th year, the Starfish Ball drew supporters of The nsoro Educational Foundation to celebrate the organization’s work with youth aging out of foster care. Nearly 600 guests gathered at The St. Regis Atlanta in late January to benefit nsoro’s scholarship program that helps those youth earn college degrees while supporting them with coaches and mentors. The evening featured silent and live auctions, corporate sponsorships, Simply Buckhead’s media sponsorship and generous donations that garnered just over $1.3 million. The event also honored Chanel H. Frazier of the Portfolio Management Group and BlackRock Atlanta, and the executive team from TransImpact: Berkley Stafford, John Howard and Keith Byrd. The 2024 Legacy Award went to Shimaine Holley, who, with nsoro’s support, graduated from Albany State and is now working on a master’s in social work.

Terri Ewing, Steve Ewing nsoro's Class of 2023-24 Derek Bottoms, Keisha Lance-Bottoms Mayor Andre Dickens Chanel H. Frazier, Darrell Mays, Kim Mays, Tara Mays David Travis, Lynne Travis, Jack Sawyer, Rhonda Matheison, Louise Sams Derrick Hayes, Pinky Cole Sonny Hayes, Joanne Hayes
102 MARCH/APRIL 2024  • SIMPLY BUCKHEAD Let yourself be transported to the timeless elegance of France in the heart of the Buckhead Village. Make your reservation 3027 BOLLING WAY, NE LEBILBOQUETATLANTA.COM • 404-869-9944


STORY: H.M. Cauley

PHOTOS: Kimberly Evans

The 90 guests who attended the Terminus Ballet School’s fundraiser in late January at the TULA Art Center found themselves part of a moveable feast, all in the cause of supporting the Buckhead organization’s goal of reimagining traditional ballet. The evening opened in the school's white box theater where the company and its students displayed their talents. The action then shifted to the atrium for cocktails and a silent auction starring a $3,300 diamond necklace by Buckhead designer Cindy Ensor. Next, the crowd was seated in the Museum of Contemporary Art space for a three-course dinner catered by Chez Montier. The evening wrapped back in the white box where the party went on in the late hours. Co-chairs Celeste Pendarvis and Amy Nelson oversaw the gala that gathered $100,000 for the company and honored Terminus board chair Pamela Wakefield and founding donor James Weis.

Tara Lee Wanda Hopkins, Joe Massey Jeff Siegelman, Melissa Siegelman, Nora Partin, Cody Partin, Sara Partin Danny Watson, Iymaani Aytes, David Posluszny Simon Davidoff, Amy Nelson, Doug Weiss, Kristina Robinson Celeste Pendarvis, John Welker, Judith Montier, Juan Montier Judith Montier, Terry Herron, Bonnie Herron, John Welker, James Weis, Lynn Cochran-Schroder, Tara Lee, Christine Welker


The Crimsonite cocktail at Sandy Springs' il Giallo Osteria & Bar is an elegant combination of locally made Old Fourth Bourbon, black cherry syrup, sweet vermouth and orange bitters. It's a tasty reason to raise a glass! .

PHOTO: Madelynne Grace


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Presented by ©2023 Engel & Völkers. All rights reserved. Each brokerage independently owned and operated. All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed and should be independently verified. Engel & Völkers and its independent License Partners are Equal Opportunity Employers and fully support the principles of the Fair Housing Act. Own your getaway in a gated, private neighborhood in the heart of the Highlands-Cashiers plateau with breathtaking views of Whiteside and Black Rock Mountains. The Preserve at Whiteside Cliffs provides the ultimate escape to the outdoors with the immersive experience of owning a brand new designer cottage situated on the face of North Carolina’s most adored mountaintops. YOUR MOUNTAIN ESCAPE AWAITS LUXURIOUS BUT SIMPLE LIVING OFFERED AT $999,000 IN THE HEART OF THE HIGHLANDS-CASHIERS PLATEAU Jonathan Hough Grace Battle THEPRESERVEATWHITESIDECLIFFS.COM Scan for more information or to schedule a private showing OWN YOUR GETAWAY 828-888-9153 For more details, please contact:
NOW OPEN ASSEMBLY STUDIOS State-of-the art studio lot creating thousands of jobs and putting Georgia’s booming television and film industry center stage.
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JAN. 25–JUNE 2, 2024 MASTER OF TAILORING 1600 Peachtree St. NW, Atlanta | @scadfash | #SCADFASH BALENCIAGA CRISTÓBAL
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©2024 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently owned and operated franchisee of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of Columbia Insurance Company, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate. Equal Housing Opportunity. 828.526.1717 | MEADOWSMOUNTAINREALTY.COM 488 MAIN STREET, HIGHLANDS NC | 2334 CASHIERS ROAD, HIGHLANDS NC | 196 BURNS STREET, CASHIERS NC LUXURY. It’s in the palm of your hand. THE ENTIRE HIGHLANDS-CASHIERS MLS IS IN ONE CONVENIENT PLACE: YOUR PHONE. SCAN FOR LUXURY LISTINGS AND MORE IN THE MOUNTAINS OF NORTH CAROLINA.
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