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Christiane Chronicles

The Christiane Chronicles: Atlanta’s best baklava, and are all the good restaurant names taken?

The best baklava comes from a shop famous around Atlanta for its pita, Leon International Foods. And a restaurant's food may be highly complex, but that doesn't mean its name needs to be.

In season: white Albas and local pecan truffles land on fall menus

Costing as much as $200 an ounce, white truffles are the diamond of fall produce. Hailing from select parts of Europe—primarily France and Italy—the small round bulbs are prized for their pungent fragrance and subtle earthy notes. When restaurants can’t afford them, many turn to pecan groves, which yield pecan truffles year-round in the Southeast region of the United States.

Check out the menu for Ford Fry’s the El Felix, opening November 3 at Avalon

Rocket Farms Restaurants proprietor Ford Fry—the man behind the Optimist and King + Duke, as well as St. Cecilia, No. 246, JCT Kitchen and the soon-to-open Superica—will unveil his first OTP restaurant, the El Felix, November 3. A Mex-Tex spot, the El Felix is located at 1130 Avalon Boulevard in the new Avalon complex in Alpharetta.

Top chefs help feed the hungry through cooking classes

For the last fifteen years, top chefs around Atlanta have been donating their time and money (in the form of ingredients) to help feed the hungry. See, the Atlanta Community Food Bank (ACFB) has a partnership with the Cook’s Warehouse, and every month—sometimes multiple times a month—a chef is invited to lead a cooking demonstration, workshop, and/or tasting at one of the four Cook’s Warehouse locations around the city. Everyone is invited, and all proceeds benefit the ACFB.

Ford Fry signs on as Justin Bieber’s personal chef

In a rather strange turn of events, executive chef and restaurateur Ford Fry—the man behind St. Cecilia, King Duke, the Optimist, No. 246, and JCT Kitchen—has signed on as Justin Bieber’s personal chef for the next three months.

Comeback Carb: Pasta finally wins over Atlanta chefs

It’s been a long road to glory for pasta in Atlanta. Without the large Italian population that blessed other American cities, we never had a community to teach us how to revere fragrant bowls of noodles.

What we know about Ford Fry’s Tex-Mex restaurant

With King Duke now operating smoothly and his next Buckhead project, St. Cecilia (in the former Bluepointe space) on track to open by year's end, chef and restaurateur Ford Fry (No. 246, JCT Kitchen, and the Optimist) begins to turn his focus to his next project: an Austin-style Tex-Mex restaurant in the Krog Street Market. Details are still in the works, but Fry relayed a handful worth sharing.

Preserving the Art of Pickling

“We can pickle that!” exclaim a duo during a skit on IFC’s trend-skewering hit Portlandia (which you can easily find on YouTube). The pair grab increasingly bizarre items—ordinary cucumbers and eggs, then a dropped ice cream cone, unwanted CD jewel cases, a broken high heel—and seal them all in jars, dunked in a vinegary bath.

Website connects restaurateurs with service industry pros

A couple of years ago, if you had asked Fred Castellucci (the Iberian Pig, Double Zero Napoletana and Sugo) what his biggest problem was, he’d have said finding reliable staff for his restaurants. Like many restaurateurs, Castellucci relied on Craigslist to fill his openings.

Fry Talks

In the last two years, restaurateur Ford Fry—who opened JCT Kitchen & Bar in 2007—has tripled his footprint, opening No. 246 in Decatur and the Optimist on the Westside. This year he’s at it again, with King and Duke set to open in Buckhead in March and a yet-to-be-named restaurant opening in the former Bluepointe space in the fall. (For more on the chef, check out Candice Dyer's profile, "Have You Dined At Ford's Lately?") Rumor has it Fry has his heart set on an Austin-style Tex-Mex restaurant, too, and has been eying both Alpharetta and Krog Street for the location. Says Fry, “Nothing’s signed yet.” Yet being the operative word.

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