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Outdoor dinner tips from the author of Picture Perfect Parties

Southerners love to entertain outdoors. Chef-owner Billy Allin of Cakes & Ale and his wife, Kristin, have the perfect garden for a soiree, set on two acres in Decatur. For an intimate party, Allin crafted a menu of fresh-picked ingredients. Annett Joseph, stylist and author of Picture Perfect Parties, created a sophisticated but relaxed table, where family and friends clinked glasses and dined in the fading sun.

A menu, recipes, and tips for an awesome backyard dinner party

Chef-owner Billy Allin of Cakes & Ale and his wife, Kristin, have the perfect Decatur garden for a soiree. For an intimate party, Allin crafted a menu of fresh-picked ingredients.

Check, please: Bill Addison’s final list of favorite Atlanta restaurants

Forks up, y’all: We’ll soon witness an unprecedented surge of restaurant openings in Atlanta. It’s about time.

High on the Vine: The Chardonnay you want now

“What wine do you like to drink?”

What did Atlanta chefs cook at home during Snowpocalypse?

Much like our intrepid political leaders, I spent the better half of Tuesday refusing to accept the reports of meteorologists that a snowstorm was coming to cripple the city. Even when images of overturned vehicles popped up on Facebook, I remained optimistic that I was making my 7 p.m. dinner plans. Obviously, they didn’t happen.

David Sweeney pops up at the Sound Table

Starting next week, former Bakery at Cakes & Ale chef David Sweeney will prepare a special bar menu downstairs at the Sound Table every Wednesday. The five-item menu focuses on Mediterranean, Eastern, and Arabic influences. With items such as Turkey Doner Yurum and Lamb Toasted Millet Kibbeh, it’s no wonder Sweeney is providing an abbreviated dictionary to explain his dishes.

Looking back, a review of 2013

As the saying goes, you win some, and you lose some. This year we saw famed mixologists leave their longtime outposts, award-winning chefs open new “it” spots, and the restaurant community band together to help one of their own. As we welcome in the new year, we pause to take a look back at what happened in 2013.

Fried Chicken Livers with Poached Peaches on Arugula

David Sweeney is best known for the stunning salads and vegan creations he served at his still-missed Old Fourth Ward restaurant, Dynamic Dish, which closed in 2010. He was born in Fort Gordon, Georgia, but his military family moved to Europe when he was young, and he lived there for nearly three decades.

Cardamom Hill, Bacchanalia, and Ford Fry Among James Beard Foundation Awards Semifinalists

The semifinalists for the James Beard Foundation Awards were announced today, and 12 Georgia chefs and restaurants made the cut! Perhaps the most prestigious honor in the culinary industry, the James Beard Awards celebrate restaurateurs, chefs, pastry chefs, bars, and restaurants around the country for outstanding service, food, and beverage programs. Local semifinalists include Cardamom Hill—which was named one of Bon Appetit's 2012 Best New Restaurants in America—for Best New Restaurant, and Bacchanalia's Anne Quatrano for Outstanding Chef.

Cakes & Ale’s Jordan Smelt talks (re)building a beverage program

After almost four years of working at Holeman & Finch mostly as a general manager, Jordan Smelt left Buckhead to come to Cakes & Ale in Decatur, where he took over the beverage program last June. Since his arrival, Cakes’ offerings have both expanded and become more focused, giving visitors the option of simple old world wines, craft cocktails, or specialty beers to accompany their meal.

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