Q&A with Marvin Woods

ATL Food Chatter: November 15, 2010
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Marvin Woods hosts a new television show, Georgia Cooks: Secret Family Recipes, premiering December 10 on Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB). Woods, who teaches a wellness program nationally called Droppin’ Knowledge with Marvin Woods, shared what motivated him to become an advocate for addressing obesity in children, and also talks about his appearance at the White House and his take on Atlanta’s dining scene:

Q: What inspired you to develop programs to teach children (and adults) about healthier foods?
MW: It’s simple: There is a problem throughout America with obesity but also with children going hungry. The problem crosses communities—this isn’t just a challenge in the black community. It’s in all of our communities.

Q:What was it like to cook at the White House?
MW: It was surreal. We have to remember that the house was built 200 years ago, so it’s big—but there are homes in Atlanta that are bigger. So the kitchen we worked in would equate to a large home kitchen. We did the actual dinner in a massive tent.

Q:What is the difference between the restaurant scene in DC, where you operate a restaurant called Funxion, and Atlanta ?
MW:The DC market has more of a metropolitan feel going on—things aren’t as spread out as they are in Atlanta. I’m not saying that’s good or bad, that’s just one of the more noticeable differences.

Q: Any Atlanta projects planned for 2011?
MW: There is always a project planned for Atlanta. If the stars align in 2011, then maybe we will see it come to pass—and believe me, it won’t be a secret when it happens.


Bacchanalia, Park 75 at the Four Seasons Atlanta, and Quinones at Bacchanalia were awarded 4 stars by Forbes Travel Guide,(formerly Mobil Travel Guide) for 2011.

ATL burger baron Richard Blais was featured in a Wall Street Journal article on the trend of celebrity chefs opening burger joints.

Speaking of Blais, he is quoted on the Zagat blog regarding his new project: “It will be a restaurant focusing more on plated fare, including ‘gastro’ hot dogs and charcuterie. But it won’t be a hot-dog version of Flip,” he says.

The AJC is reporting that Lisa Hanson, former owner of the defunct Cabbagetown Market, is a finalist in Aetna’s Healthy Food Fight, a cooking competition focused on developing healthy recipes.
Brookhaven. Tomorrow’s News Today is reporting that an Olive Bistro is slated to open in Brookhaven this spring.

Buckhead. ToNeTo also notes that Pinkberry is slated to open a store in the former Marble Slab site by mid January.

Buford Highway. The Blissful Glutton visits the new El Senor Taco, featuring Baja style fish tacos, at 4005 Buford Highway.

Decatur. As Bill Addison tweeted earlier, Ford Fry has decided on the concept for his new place in the former Eurasia space : “Local driven, Italian inspired.” Fry mentioned A16 in San Francisco as a good comparison.

Downtown. Creative Loafing is reporting that peripatetic pizzaiolo Enrico Liberato is now practicing his craft at Max’s Coal Oven Pizza.

The Atlanta Business Journal reports that Georgia Dome has several new restos, including Bolt Burger and High Steaks, a Philly Cheesesteak concept.

. Joey D’s Oak Room celebrated its twentieth anniversary last week.

Midtown. What Now Atlanta first reported that Nickiemoto’s will close December 12.

Southwest Atlanta. What Now Atlanta is reporting that Cream Bar and Bistro, a sports bar, is slated to open at 1919 Metropolitan Parkway soon.

[This week’s Question of the Week has been removed due to recent developments.]

PS. The answer to last week’s QOTW—What is the name of the restaurant that opened in the former Shipfeifer space this week?—is Sufi’s, featuring Persian cuisine.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!