Five years ago, chef Tyler Williams—formerly of Woodfire Grill, Bacchanalia, and Husk in Savannah—left fine dining and moved to Alpharetta “to be near my folks and focus on simple things,” he says. He got sober and rather than return to the industry where his mental health suffered, he began making gourmet health food for coffee shops in the area.
He partnered with places like Valor Coffee, Thrive Coworking, Warm Waves Coffee House, and Peach Coffee Roasters, making items like paleo seed loaf, homemade brioche, power bars with ancient grains, and roasted chanterelle toast over pecan miso pesto. He launched a farmers market booth called Plant-Based Provisions, where he sold gluten-free and vegan items, dips and spreads, breads, cookies, toasts, and more.
“I think the [fine dining] success came a little fast—I wasn’t quite mature enough or ready for it. It was nice to slow down,” he says. “[Now] I have a great community in Alpharetta with people rooting for me. Discovering yourself and being comfortable with that is a beautiful thing.”
Come March, he’s taking his knowledge one step further with the relaunch of the Cafe at Scottsdale Farms in Milton (15639 Birmingham Highway). He partnered with Joshua Read to bring an elevated, healthful approach to the 40-seat cafe and nearby pavilion. “I’ve been doing a lot of running around the past five years. This way I can put my feet down and have a home,” Williams says.
He’ll utilize seasonal produce from the 200-acre farm, as well as its from local purveyors, to create “healthy and interesting” coffee bar food. He’ll serve items like chia parfaits, overnight oats, fresh juice, gourmet toasts, housemade Stroopwafels, and nutrient-rich breakfast cookies, along with a seasonal lunch fare such as tomato soup, vegetable bowls, and salads. Children can enjoy Bento box-style meals, quesadillas, grilled cheese, gelato sundaes, and s’more hot chocolate. On Thursdays through Sundays, expanded offerings will include English and Japanese tea service, tea towers, and individual grazing boards featuring seven or eight seasonal tastes.
His hope is families will enjoy the space—the farm includes a playground and garden, and children can feed the animals. The large pavilion will be used for yoga, themed dinners, supper clubs, and more. A barn will feature a retail area where Williams can support local artisans by selling their coffee beans, pottery, and more.
The Cafe itself features split-tree tables made from natural wood, galvanized steel elements, Edison bulbs, wraparound windows, and plants everywhere. Giant boulders dot the space—yes, inside. “I’m down for some quirkiness,” Williams says.