Creative Loafing gets some new owners

When Creative Loafing Inc. first declared bankruptcy almost a year ago, I blogged about it a lot, leading some to wonder why I was so obsessed. Easy. I had spent five years as a reporter and editor there, and my affection for and admiration of alternative weeklies, which combine an irreverent attitude with hard-nose reporting of issues the dailies shy away from, remains strong, even if I've moved on. But I haven't said much in the past few months as the case wended i

Top Chef Season 6 Begins!

Three Atlanta chefs (one of whom won the first elimination challenge). Two brothers. One raging sexist. Welcome to Top Chef: Las Vegas, y’all. Warning: Nothing but spoilers ahead. Well, at last. Here we are in Vegas. The first episode is always a tad overwhelming—a lot of personalities to absorb. And there are 17 chefs this year! Of course, our ATL boys stood out. Kevin Gillespie of Woodfire Grill was the firs

Top Chef kickoff: interview with Kevin Gillespie of Woodfire Grill

Three years ago, Atlanta native Kevin Gillespie returned home from a stint in Oregon to work under Michael Tuohy at Woodfire Grill. Then last year, his mentor took off for California and Gillespie was tapped to take over the kitchen. Now he’s on every Atlanta foodie’s radar as a young chef to watch. Beginning tomorrow night, viewers nationwide will be watching him compete as one

Top Chef kickoff: interview with Eli Kirshtein of Eno

At 25, Eli Kirshtein of Midtown’s Eno restaurant is the youngest cheftestant in Top Chef’s accomplished lineup this season. An Atlanta native, Kirshtein’s first cooking job was at Buckhead Diner at age 16. From there he attended the Culinary Institute of America and spent time in a number of top-notch k

Top Chef kickoff: interview with Hector Santiago of Pura Vida

For Atlantans, this season of Bravo’s Top Chef will be the most exciting yet. Not one, but three chefs from our city are among the 17 cheftestants competing in the upcoming Las Vegas edition. Tied with foodie mecca San Francisco for the most chef representation, Atlanta will have Hector Santiago of Pura V

Decatur Farmers Market

On our visit to this market, organic fruit pies were a hit.

Behind the scenes at an ATL mag photo shoot

Color me green, but I went to my first magazine photo shoot a week or so ago and was riveted by the whole process. I’ve previously worked at newspapers in my food writing career, and while I’ve known some extraordinary photographers, I never spent much time closely observing how they worked. (Also, as a critic, I try to keep a low profile in restaurants and would never hang out while a photographer is shooting in one.) A story in the upcoming September issue gave me a

The Case Against Matt Ryan

You are not about to read a meditation on the virtues of Saint Matthew Ryan, savior of the Atlanta Falcons.

La Pietra Cucina

For the first nine months of its existence, La Pietra Cucina was a literal boîte—a box of a restaurant—squashed into a back room of the deserted space in the Pershing Point office building where MidCity Cuisine played out its few coquettish years. The setup, in one of MidCity’s old dining rooms, was meant to be a short-term starting point for La Pietra Cucina while the entire space underwent renovation. At first, the taped-up signs that announced the Italian newcomer were vague, leading customers to walk through the graveyard of MidCity’s dining room, past once-jolly striped banquettes and an abandoned bar, toward a beckoning light at the far end of the expanse. It felt both disorienting and juicily clandestine.

Hot Shop: Room & Board

On the wall inside the front door, painted in bold letters, is the slogan “Made by families, not factories.” It’s an apt description of Room & Board’s business model, which embraces the fine craftsmanship of furniture making. Eighty-five percent of its exclusive designs are manufactured in America, and price tags proudly note where each piece was made—whether it’s a leather sectional sofa from North Carolina or a steel-legged dining table from Minnesota.

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