Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pure Craft

Check out Saturday’s Chef Demo with

Adam Evans of Craftbar – 10:00 am on 10/2
Chef Demos are sponsored by Whole Foods Market

Chef Tom Colicchio. Oh, you’ve heard of him? Well, regardless of whether or not you’ve followed Chef Colicchio’s rise to fame, let’s just say that this internationally lauded chef doesn’t pick just anyone to lead his restaurants’ kitchens. We know for a fact that Adam Evans, Chef de Cuisine at Atlanta’s Craftbar, represents the best of Colicchio’s vision for American cuisine: fresh, simple, stunning.

It didn’t take Adam long to discover the beauty of carefully crafted food — he began at the source, as a boy growing up in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, picking Muscat grapes in the backyard with his brother, peeling potatoes with his mother and catching fish to fry during summers at the lake.

Evans went on to hone his culinary skills at the Grand Hotel in Point Clear, Alabama, and with The Ralph Brennan Restaurant Group in New Orleans. He widened his perspective and palate further through three months of travel in Europe, where he experienced the cuisines of London, Italy and France.

When Adam returned to the U.S., he moved to New York City and joined Colicchio’s Craft family. He worked his way through the line at Craft and was eventually promoted to sous chef in the New York location before he was selected to head up Atlanta’s outpost of Craftbar.

We’re glad to have Chef Evans back here in the South where he brings his dedication to quality ingredients and well-balance flavors to his role as Craftbar’s Chef de Cuisine. When he’s not in the kitchen, he enjoys fishing, golfing, watching college football and water skiing — And, lucky for us, he also enjoys leading delicious Chef Demos like the one coming up this Saturday — join us under the tent for a taste of Fall flavors!

- Jennifer Maley

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Market Media: Thanks, Y’all!

Time to raise a glass of freshly made juice and toast the Peachtree Road Farmers Market! This week, on the heels of being voted Georgia’s Favorite Farmer’s Market, we were also named Creative Loafing’s favorite! Here’s what the fine folks at CL had to say about us in their annual “Best of Atlanta” issue:

Best Outdoor Farmers' Market:
Peachtree Road Farmers Market

The Morningside Farmers Market used to be the only exciting produce spot in our city. That was until the PEACHTREE ROAD FARMERS MARKET pitched its tents in the Cathedral of St. Philip parking lot a few years ago. Ever since then, the market — which has garnered the support of über chefs like Linton Hopkins of Restaurant Eugene — has steadily grown into a massive operation full of popular vendors like the H&F Bread Company, the Spotted Trotter, Moto Bene: Wood Fire Oven Craft Street Pizza, and around 50 other stands selling everything from fresh eggs to heirloom tomatoes to Savannah-caught shrimp.

Hungry for more? You’ll want to check out the footage that CNN’s “Eatocracy” shot at this week’s Market. The piece will run nationwide all next week.

Thanks to all of the volunteers, vendors and shoppers who support Peachtree Road Farmers Market each Saturday — good food for all is made possible because of you!

- Jennifer Maley

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Laissez Les Bon ‘Tastes’ Rouler, Y’all

Join us for this week’s Chef Demo with
Scott Serpas of Serpas True Food – 10:00 am on 9/25

Chef Demos are sponsored by Whole Foods Market

You don’t have to go far from your front step in Atlanta to reach a world of cuisines. And though New Orleans isn’t too many miles away, we’re glad Chef Scott Serpas brings its flavors a little closer to home at his namesake restaurant a mere drive, bike-ride or walk away. His bold take on regional favorites, highlighted through classical technique and global influence wows not just the regulars at Serpas, in a space that was once a cotton storage facility in the Old Fourth Ward, but critics alike – since its opening in January 2009, Serpas True Food has received local and national acclaim and was named one of the 10 “Best New Restaurants in America” by GQ magazine.

Scott’s love for cooking began at an early age, but it was working as a busboy in his hometown of New Orleans when he knew he wanted a future for himself in the restaurant world. He later attended Delgado’s Culinary Institute in New Orleans and completed an externship at both Mr. B’s Bistro under executive chef Gerard Maras, and in Le Meridien Hotel’s pastry department.

After graduation, Scott’s career took him to Dallas to work with Chef Kevin Rathbun at the popular Baby Routh’s, which introduced him to Southwestern cooking techniques and flavors. After four years in Dallas, Rathbun asked Serpas to move to Atlanta to become sous chef at Nava. The rest, as they say, is history.

Now a proud expatriated Atlantan, Scott went on to lead the opening team of Sia’s, garnering praise for his fresh take on the Asian and Mediterranean flavors that continue to influence him today. He then lent his talents as executive chef at TWO Urban Licks, where his bold approach led to creative wood-fired meats, fish and barbecue.

Today, when he’s not in the kitchen at Serpas True Food, Scott spends much of his time volunteering with organizations like Share Our Strength, the American Liver Foundation, Camp Twin Lakes, the March of Dimes, Dining Out for Life and the James Beard Foundation.

In addition, Scott participates in community demos like ours, coming up this Saturday! Join us under the tent for his recipes, tips and tastes. Oh, and did we mention that Serpas also offers Sunday brunch? After this demo, you might just be making plans.

- Jennifer Maley

Thursday, September 16, 2010

She’s Souper, Thanks for Asking

Don’t miss Saturday’s Chef Demo with
Jenny Levison of
Souper Jenny – 10:00 am on 9/18
Chef Demos are sponsored by Whole Foods Market

Fall’s so close you can almost taste it. Actually, you can taste it this Saturday when Souper Jenny takes over the Chef Demo tents to show you how she makes her soulful soups. Jenny Levison’s mission at Souper Jenny is to treat customers like guests in her home and, if you’ve ever stopped by her Buckhead café or picked up soup, sandwiches, salads or spreads from her bright red Farmers Market truck, then you know what it feels like to be a member of the family — warm and delicious!

Levison has owned Souper Jenny for 12 years and makes a consistent effort to support local farmers and artisans, even maintaining a small community garden in her own front yard. Everything is made fresh daily, with new menus posted online, via phone and through Souper Jenny’s handy email newsletter.

Jenny and her team don’t just sling soup, either. They’re all members of Atlanta’s acting community, too. When they’re not serving you yummy soups, sandwiches and salads, they’re serving up entertainment whether in the café or on the stage. And we’ve heard that if you sing and dance with the staff, there might just be a fresh-baked cookie in it for you!

When Jenny’s not behind the soup stove, she’s acting, taking care of her son Jonah, and creating more ways for Atlantans to come together over a common bowl. This fall, look for the return of her popular Underground Supper Club, and don’t miss weekly favorites like Tuesday Taco and Tamale Night, and Thursday Grilled Cheese Night.

Learn more about Jenny and her team on Souper Jenny’s website by watching “Jenny TV” and also check out a clip from her spring demo on the Today show. And don’t forget to stop by this Saturday for her live demo with us!

Remember, Fall hours have begun! The Market is now open 9 am -12:30 pm, every Saturday through December 18.

- Jennifer Maley

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sun upon our face and wind at our back

Last Friday’s “Don't hang up your canvas shopping bag just yet” post from Atlanta Magazine’s blog “Covered Dish” reminded us of the joys of late summer/early fall. Now’s the time to savor peppers, okra, tomatoes and eggplants, and to welcome figs, green beans, muscadine grapes, pears, Swiss chard, tomatoes, turnip greens and winter squash. Check out our summer post on okra or Chef Gerry Klaskala’s recipe for Skillet Roasted Okra with Eastern Spices and Lime (featured on the Chef Demo Recipes page of our website) for some great ways to celebrate late summer’s bounty. And stop by this week, with a cool breeze at your back, to peruse the beautiful beginnings of fall produce.

PLEASE NOTE: Fall hours have begun! The Market is now open 9 am -12:30 pm, every Saturday through December 18.

- Jennifer Maley

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Grapes to Gravy

Saturday’s Chef Demo features Steven Hartman

of Le Vigne at Montaluce – 10:00 am on 9/11

Chef Demos are sponsored by Whole Foods Market

Looking for a mountain respite complete with gorgeous scenery, local food and house-made wines? Well, look no further than Dahlonega, Georgia, home to Montaluce Winery and Estates. And look to Chef Steven Hartman to bring your favorite flavors of the south, expressed using the best local products on offer, straight to your plate at Montaluce’s Le Vigne Restaurant.

Chef Hartman understands that fresh is better and local is best, not just because of the unparalleled taste, but also for the chance to foster true community. The food and wine shared at Le Vigne is deeply rooted in that community, including wine produced from grapes grown at Montaluce and many vegetables grown directly on the property. Chef Hartman also sources from local artisans and farmers to complete his regularly changing menu.

Though Hartman received his Culinary Arts Degree from Western Culinary Institute in Portland, Oregon, his heart’s always been in the south. Shortly after completing his training he returned to Tennessee where, prior to coming to Le Vigne, he worked as the Chef de Cuisine at the five star, five diamond Hermitage Hotel in Nashville. He brought with him to Montaluce over a decade of experience spent honing his skills in southern kitchens. At Le Vigne, his focus is on using local produce and seasonal ingredients from area artisans in an effort to give back to the community and to help promote a more sustainable lifestyle.

During a time when cool breezes are beckoning us Atlantans to hop in the car and head to the hills, you’ll want to check out Le Vigne at Montaluce for their vineyard views and local, seasonal fare. You don’t just have to take our word for it – take a look at this recent review from Creative Loafing. And don’t miss this week’s demo with Chef Steven Hartman!

- Jennifer Maley