Saturday, June 24, 2017

Atlanta Movie Tours' "Best of Atlanta" Tour

What was I thinking?! 

I've been on the majority of Atlanta Movie Tours tours, some of them multiple times, but I had shied away from their "Best of Atlanta" tour thinking that it would be about a lot of movies that I knew nothing of. 

I was sooooooo wrong! Best tour EVER!


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

I had the awesome pleasure of having actor friend Jonathan Horne join me. Jonathan is accomplished in stage, television and film, so this was totally in his bailiwick. It was a great way to catch up, too! 

The photo above is perhaps the most photographed view of the Atlanta skyline! It's from the Jackson Street Bridge, made super-famous by a scene in Season 1 of The Walking Dead, which is filmed in Atlanta and surrounding areas. 


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

If you remember Merle being handcuffed on the roof of a building, you'll get to see that film site before you even get on the bus! 


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

The film location for a number of movies, Miller's Rexall Drugs didn't add the "Run Devil Run" to its awning until after it appeared on Paul McCartney's Run Devil Run album cover. Someone made a photo years ago and did the equivalent of PhotoShopping "Run Devil Run" onto the awning. The store sells a line of "Run Devil Run" products, and so much more!

We were handed over to the store owner for a guided tour of much more than meets the eye! He's highly entertaining and super nice and you're going to learn so very much about a little store that you probably didn't even know existed. Prepare to be fascinated! 


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

"Help me!"

If you like a good horror flick, you're going to love this film site! This is in the basement of Miller's Rexall Drugs—creepy already, isn't it?—and it's one of the film sites for Rings. Creepy, creepy, creepy...yet, totally exciting at the same time!


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

I had no idea that Atlanta even had a store like this...it's like something right out of the movies! Literally. 

In addition to being a film site for a number of movies, the store is also a movie-making destination for movie props of the voodoo, hoodoo and mystic arts variety.


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

You might learn something about Captain America while you're traveling the world...I mean while you're on your Atlanta Movie Tours tour.


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

I once saw Captain America in front of this building...and, of course, in the movie Captain America: Civil War

We didn't see Captain America on our Best of Atlanta tour, but I do know that you may be able to book him for a custom tour! There are several "celebrity guests" you can book for a custom tour...just ask your Atlanta Movie Tours sales rep for details.


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

I love, love, love the Pitch Perfect movies! Pitch Perfect 3, slated to open in December 2017, was partially filmed in Atlanta! Looking forward to seeing some familiar sites in that one! 

Most of the Atlanta Movie Tours tours have a stop along the way, to heed calls of nature, to grab a coffee and/or a snack, check your messages, respond to texts, get to know your fellow tourees, etc. On this tour our stop was at Drip, an awesome coffee shop in lovely Glenwood Park.


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

The "alien rib cage" elevators at Atlanta Marriott Marquis have been used in a number of movies, for obvious reason...they're spectacular! 


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta Tour | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

One of the things that I love about going on Atlanta Move Tours tours is that you discover that you've been in or by film sites of famous movie scenes a bazillion times, but didn't realize the significance of where you were. I find those discoveries fascinating!

I don't recommend being under this glass dome during take-off. You'll have to go on the tour to find out what that means, of course, and it's totally worth it!


Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta tour | At Jackson Street Bridge
Atlanta Movie Tours | Best of Atlanta tour | At Jackson Street Bridge

Included in the price of your tour is a souvenir group photo at one of the sites along your tour. You may make all the photos you like, unless otherwise noted by your tour guide, but I can't recall a time when we couldn't, so definitely bring your camera!

I think we covered every movie ever filmed in Atlanta—it certainly felt like it—a lot of them that you've seen, but didn't realize were filmed here. This is a super-fun tour and I highly recommend it!

Our tour guide Clyde was totally awesome! He's been the tour guide on other Atlanta Movie Tours tours that I've been on and he's always fantastic. "Thank you, Clyde!

I'd also like to give a huge "Thank you!" to my Atlanta Movie Tours friends Patti, Anna, and Carrie for hosting us...it was a totally awesome and fantastic day!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

"How to Use a Knife" is Top Notch!

Any way you slice it, "How to Use a Knife" is top notch entertainment! Okay, okay...but you have to admit, the title begs for cleaver, I mean clever, wordplay.

This brilliant, timely play is absolutely hilarious! It's also an exploration of the human condition. In the beginning—and for a great while—it pokes fun at some of the hilarity that happens in a typical restaurant kitchen (I know, I've been there.), then it moves on to explore mentoring, friendship, compassion, disaster and more laughs, leaving you with "Wow! That was powerful...and funny!"  

This is the final week to see "How to Use a Knife" at Horizon Theatre, the closing night performance being Sunday, June 25!


How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else
How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else

Executive Chef George (Brian Kurlander) comes in blazing! A recovering alcoholic/drug addict, this is his first job after sobering up. On the way to discovering what tragic circumstance sent him to such depths, you'll see George's influence on others' careers, his understanding and compassion, as well as his remorseless dislike of bull*hit. 

Steve (LaParee Young) transitions from a hardworking and mysterious dishwasher to a heartbroken and resolute patriot he's been for most of his life. You don't see it coming, because he hides the atrocities of his past so well, but you're going to feel it when it hits. 

Brian and LaParee are superb, accomplished actors. With an amazing supporting cast, they're the stars of this dark-comedy political-thriller that gifts bushels of laughs and so much more.

The set design and props are amazing! I was convinced that the dishwasher was a working dishwasher, but later learned that there's a "smoke" machine inside. It's one of the most convincing prop effects I've seen in ages...absolutely brilliant!


How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else
How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else

The line cooks will keep you laughing throughout your time in the kitchen, leaving your funny bone fully satisfied. 

Carlos (Tony Gurrero) is the character that had me laughing the most. Not only from what he was saying, but—and this takes great talent—from his expressions...you can read his face like a book and it's reading one joke after another and another and another. Listen to his lines as closely as you watch his expressions and give in to laughter. 

I had the pleasure of talking with Tony during the Opening Night reception after the show. He's super nice and incredibly busy! His acting experience is extensive and he has several projects coming to stage/screens very soon, including Atlanta-filmed Pitch Perfect 3. I was already impressed—and mesmerized—by his acting...and then I found out that he was in X-Men: First Class. I totally geeked-out! 

Miguel (Orlando Carbajal Rebollar) has some of the funniest lines in the show, but I didn't understand any of them! Nearly 100% of his lines are spoken in Spanish. I speak some Greek and know a little American Sign Language, but zero Spanish. Orlando's acting is so brilliant that you don't have to know the words to understand the hilarity he's spewing! 

Orlando also has, in addition to wonderful acting talent, a most remarkable operatic singing voice! This is not a musical, but the audience is treated to Orlando's singing on multiple occasions...delicious dessert for your ears! 

Restaurant Owner Michael (Brad Brinkley) is cocky, arrogant, sexist...he's one of those characters that you just hate. Of course, that tells you that Brad's acting is fantastic! 


How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else
How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else

Jack (Jeremiah Parker Hobbs) wants to be a writer, not a busboy. I've done both so I totally connected with this character. The 'waiter life' is fast and furious, sometimes not leaving much time to reflect and ponder, let alone act on planning, one's future. Jack's life is that, but he discovers inspiration along the way.

I've seen Jeremiah in a number of plays and have always enjoyed his work, but especially so in this performance. 

When I saw that Carolyn Cook, whom I've seen perform on numerous occasions, was directing this play I knew then and there that it would be magnificent, and she doesn't disappoint. 

I'm a huge Carolyn Cook fan! I've known for years that she's a marvelous actress and now I know that she's a brilliant director, which I also heard from some of the cast. I can hardly wait to see what she does next!


How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else
How to Use a Knife | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Britt Else

Kim (Cynthia D. Barker) plays an Immigration officer on an unforgiving, wholly determined hunt for a war criminal and she takes her job—and search for justice—serious! She gives us some laughs along the way, but is resolute in tracking down her murderous suspect. She also has a keen sense of style!

If "How to Use a Knife" is your first Will Snider-written play, I'm sure it won't be your last. I for one will be seeking out this multiple, prestigious award-winning playwright's work!

This one-act play is 1 hour 45 minutes with no intermission, but you're so enraptured with the story and character's lives that you barely notice the passage of time. Be sure to arrive a little early to get your concessions...I recommend one of the big-as-your-head cookies! 

If just thinking about this play is making you hungry, enjoy one of these neighborhood restaurants before or after the show. El Bandido is a personal favorite.

This restaurant is about to close! Make your reservations (get your tickets) and see "How to Use a Knife" at Horizon Theatre by this Sunday, June 25. 

NOTE: This play contains "spicy" language and is not intended for children. Equivalent to PG-14.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

The King and Prince: Part 2 - The Food

One of the many pleasures of staying at The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort is the magnificent culinary experience! 

I was recently a guest of The King and Prince when I and fellow media guests enjoyed quite a lot of the food and beverage the resort has to offer guests, but the dining adventures didn't stop there. Important to experiencing the whole of a destination, our hosts felt it important to savor other flavors of St. Simons Island. I'm going to share some of those with you here. 

This isn't a chronological recounting our our dining experiences, nor is it a exhaustive listing of everything we tried. There's simply not enough room or time to share everything, but I hope you'll enjoy these, some of my personal favorites...


King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

On the occasion of our final evening together, our group was treated to a most divine Wine Dinner, one unlike any other I've had the pleasure of enjoying. If this is how Executive Chef James Flack cooks the rest of the year—and I got the distinct impression it is—every guest at The King and Prince is in for a culinary delight!

Our wine dinner started with a reception when we enjoyed bubbles and each others delightful company. By this point, I'd met most of the others in the media group—this was a working trip, so our schedules were quite tight—so this reception was a great opportunity to connect with a few more and to chat with newly made friends. 

Everyone dressed for the occasion! It was akin to dining at the Captain's Table on a cruise ship. In the Retreat Roomwe had a panoramic view of the ocean, flanked by palm trees swaying in the coastal breeze.

Our first course was dramatic! Through a glass dome, we could see a tiny billowing cloud surrounding our Smoked Sea Scallops. Centered in a shell on a pool of lemon curd, the perfectly seared scallops were topped with Georgia caviar and pepper brunoises. It was as visually stunning as it was delicious!

King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

Our second course at the Wine Dinner was my personal favorite! Gorgeous, isn't it?

It was a Grilled Georgia Peach topped with foie creme fraiche, pickled blueberries, summer greens and maple-pecan dressing! Have you ever in your life had such a decadent salad? We enjoyed this course with Cambria Voignier.  

I had the pleasure of sitting next to our wine presenter that evening, Michelle Schmitt of Jackson Family Fine Wines. When enjoying fine dining, I'll typically have a pre-dinner cocktail and then switch to wine to enjoy with my dinner. The wines at this particular dinner were exceptional, as was Michelle's presentation of them. Not only is she extremely well versed in the resort's wine list, she's incredibly funny!

King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

The dessert course at our Wine Dinner was a Raspberry Tart topped with a bushel of raspberries, strawberry-rhubarb ice cream, a most decadent pistachio brittle (seriously good!), and mint foam, all surrounded by a moat of kiwi gel.

Coupled with Benvolio Prosecco, fresh-brewed coffee, and delightful dining companions, this was a wondrous crown to a delightfully indulgent, exquisite dining experience. 

It was apparent—in the taste, presentation and introduction—just how much Chef James enjoyed creating and preparing this meal. He was modest about his success, but we were not with our applause.

King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

One first dinner together was when we first met Executive Chef James Flack who treated us to a cooking demonstration! The humongous fish above—there were two displays of this—came with credentials of being fresh and locally caught (the slip of paper on the display). They were Black Grouper and Red Snapper

This dinner was in the 'Solarium', located in the historic part of the resort! It too has a magnificent view of the beach and ocean.

King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

After Chef Jame demonstrated how to expertly filet a fish, our servers bought to our tables expertly prepared grouper! The sauteed fresh, crisp vegetables were amazing—I'm salivating as I write this—and the grits, Gayla's Grits from Lakeland, Georgia, flavored with Gouda cheese, were spoonfuls of heaven!


Sandcastle Cafe | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

Breakfast at Sandcastle Cafe, locally-owned and serving breakfast since 1989, was out of this world! 

In addition to their famous buffet, we were treated to French toast and waffles and juice and coffee! I had to try a little of everything (that's my plate pictured above), and it was a good thing...we had a full day of tours ahead of us! 

Everything was delicious! The grits were amazing, the biscuits and gravy were amazing, and the bacon was perfectly cooked. I'm not inclined to give a two-thumbs-up to biscuits and gravy unless it's well deserved. My mother made the best in the world, so when someone approaches that splendid childhood food memory, as did Sandcastle Cafe, I find myself in awe...between bites, that is.


Echo at King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

After a first full afternoon and evening, we were on our own for breakfast on the first full day of the trip. Of course, we media folks found each other, so no one dined alone. I enjoyed the morning meal with my dear friend Patti of Anatomy of a Dinner Party and our new friend Renata of TALK Magazine

We dined at Echo, the resort's crown jewel of dining options. The restaurant is appointed with elegant nods to the resort's connections to WWII naval history. And it's conveniently located between the main lobby and the beach!

I had a breakfast sandwich unlike any I've ever had...the Fried Green Tomato Po-Boy! Wow! It was amazing...truly. This po-boys is made with scrambled eggs, ham and Swiss cheese, and served with breakfast potatoes and a miniature parfait. If you leave hungry, it's your own fault!

My mother never made friend green tomatoes, but when I was in grade school one of the neighborhood grandmothers did. I ended up loving what as a kid I thought was experimental cuisine—I'd never heard of cooking tomatoes that weren't ripe! But, man did they taste amazing. It wouldn't be until I was an adult that I would have them again. Now I enjoy them every chance I get.


Gnat's Landing | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

I used to live by the strict rule of "Never Eat Cajun in Illinois" because I once had "Cajun" Red Beans & Rice at a restaurant in Illinois that tasted like it was out of a can. Blech! Don't get me wrong, I've had AMAZING food in Illinois, but that particular instance had me ordering the "local" cuisine of cities I visited for many, many years.

Well, the chef at Gnat's Landing either has a Cajun/Creole background or an honest love for the cuisine, because the shrimp in their famous 'Slaw Bowl' (that's mine pictured above) is beautifully seasoned! The texture from the Ramen and the fresh cabbage make this dish extra crispy, and the "Bug Juice" TANG (spell it backwards) made everything extra special!

We also enjoyed orders of their awesome Fried Pickles and their Vidalia Onion Pie, which is served in small bowls and isn't a pie at all, but is totally delicious! This is a flip-flop-friendly dining destination...go relax and enjoy! 


Georgia Sea Grill | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Georgia Sea Grill | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

One of our amazing dinners was at the casually refined Georgia Sea Grill. Owner Zach Gowen greeted us and Chef Tim shared with us the restaurant's commitment to source products from local, regional, and sustainable resources whenever possible.

I enjoyed a dirty martini, served with the perfect amount of ice shards—just how I like it—and the Wasabi Pea Encrusted Tuna starter. The pickled bok choy was divine!

For my main course I had the "Cajun Spiced" Fresh Catch, served with orzo, fresh corn (right off the cob!), arugula and green goddess. The fish was incredibly tender and perfectly seasoned. To this day I don't know how I still had room for pecan pie and ice cream


King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
King and Prince Resort | St. Simons Island | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

Immediately following our farewell "Resort Southern Breakfast" (an abundant buffet!) in the Retreat Dining Room, we engaged in a little friendly competition. 

Each team had 10 minutes and approximately a bazillion ingredients from which to choose to create the ultimate smoothie...it was a 'Smoothie Competition'! 

Our smoothie creation (pictured above) had more than 14 ingredients!

You know those cooking competition shows you watch all the time? We found out what it's like when the clock is about to run out of time! While my team got a mention for presentation, the winning team took the prize—bragging rights—for exceptional 'smoothness' and flavor! The competition was a super fun way to spend a final few moments with new friends.

[more food and drink photos]

"Thank you!" to The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort, to the many restaurants where we dined, and to Leigh Cort Publicity for planning such a fantastic culinary experience!

Disclaimer: While this was a hosted media familiarization trip, all opinions are my own.

Still deciding where to visit and stay on your vacation? I invite you to explore The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort's website at length, as well as to peruse their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. 

I think you'll find it delicious!

My complete King and Prince three-part series...

The King and Prince: Part 1 - The Sights
The King and Prince: Part 2 - The Food
The King and Prince: Part 3 - The Resort (coming soon)


Wednesday, June 7, 2017

10 Reasons to See "Nobody Loves You" in the Park

Horizon Theatre's production of "Nobody Loves You" is coming to Piedmont Park! 

For the third consecutive year, Horizon is sharing one of its super-popular musical comedies at the Park's Promenade. This year's show—one of the theatre's mainstage plays earlier this year—has been met with hilarity, fantastic acting, super-fun musical numbers, and awesome reviews.

With only four performances, Wednesday through Saturday, June 14-17, this is a can't miss-show. In no particular order, here are 10 awesome reasons why...

1.) It's free! 

That's right. Horizon Theatre is giving away thousands of free tickets to see the four-day run of Nobody Loves You in Piedmont Park. There's also reserved seating for a nominal fee, closer to the stage, and if you're not a fan of sitting on the grass, there are tables available, too!

How awesome is it that Horizon brings free theatre to our local community and many others visiting our fair city. Thank you, Horizon Theatre!


Jeanette Illidge and Patrick Wade | Nobody Loves You | Horizon Theatre
Jeanette Illidge and Patrick Wade | Nobody Loves You | Horizon Theatre

2.) The cast is phenomenal!

If you're an Atlanta theatre regular, you'll recognize names and faces of many of the cast, several of them multiple Suzi Bass award nominees and winners!

Pictured above are the stars of the show. Patrick Wade (Jeff) plays a skeptic of the reality television show Nobody Loves You and he's taking action to blow their cover...to prove that they're not really making love connections, but it's all just a sham. Hilarity ensues.

Jeanette Illidge (Jenny) plays a producer of Nobody Loves You and the love interest of Jeff, whose secondary objective of joining the show was to win back his ex. You're laughing already, aren't you?

3.) It's in Piedmont Park, "Atlanta's Favorite Greenspace"!

This is the third year that Horizon Theatre has brought one of their mainstage shows to Piedmont Park, which is in the heart of Midtown and easy to get to! The Promenade is near the Atlanta Botanical Garden—accessible from the Garden's entry road—and the Sage Parking Deck, accessible from Piedmont Avenue and Monroe Drive. 

I've attended the last two Horizon Theatre shows in Piedmont Park and can personally attest to their being great fun...the shows and seeing them in the Park! [2015] [2016

4.) It's a show-within-a-show!

If you're a fan of reality television, this one is on steroids, but has an actual plot.

"The game of love is on! Tune into 'Nobody Loves You,' the TV show-within-the-show that follows attractive singles pairing up to find love...Take a behind-the-scenes ride through this hilarious musical comedy about the intimate and gut-wrenching quest for love while millions of viewers watch!"  


Austin Tijerina, Travis, Leslie Bellair | Nobody Loves You | Horizon Theatre
Austin Tijerina, Travis, Leslie Bellair | Nobody Loves You | Horizon Theatre

5.) You get to meet the cast and take photos with them!

In the wonderful Horizon Theatre tradition, after the show you'll get to meet the cast and take photos with them! Being the celebrity-spotter I am, this perk is a huge one for me and I love seeing so many other theatre-goers talking with the cast, congratulating them on their performances and getting to know them a little more. 

If you saw Nobody Loves You at Horizon Theatre in Little Five Points earlier this year, you'll notice a cast change in the Piedmont Park show. Pictured above from the earlier show is Austin Tijerina, who played Evan, a hilarious character being played by Leo Thomasian in the Piedmont Park show. 

And the lovely young lady in the red jacket is the totally awesome Leslie Bellair (Samantha) who will be the only actress to have performed in all three Horizon Theatre productions in Piedmont Park. I'm a huge fan of her work! 

6.) It's sexy!

It's a story about people falling in love, and yes...there is sex. Or at least the innuendo of perhaps, maybe that happening. Okay, maybe there's only some sexy dancing and sexy outfits, and maybe a shirt comes off and maybe there's some crushing, and some flirting and kissing, and...well, let me just say that it's one of the sexiest musicals you'll see this year.

7.) There will be food and drinks!

You're going to get hungry and thirsty, right? Of course you will! 

The grounds will open at 6:00 p.m. (show starts at 7:30 p.m.), so bring a picnic and enjoy. NOTE: Feel free to bring your own food, water and soft-drinks, but no alcohol and no glass, please.

There will be food trucks and concessions, as well as beer, wine, water and soft-drinks available for purchase. [more info]

Remember, the earlier you arrive the closer you can get to the stage! But it's such a big show, they're all great seats. 


The set of "Nobody Loves You" | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
The set of "Nobody Loves You" | Horizon Theatre | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

8.) The set is awesome!

Twin sisters and Suzi Bass award winners Isabel and Moriah Curley-Clay have done it again! The above photo is of the in-theatre set, which isn't as static as you might think. I can only imagine how much more spectacular the set will be when it's up in Piedmont Park. We're talking lots more real estate...more possibilities!  

9.) You're going to laugh!

Yes, it's a musical. Yes, it's about a reality television show. Yes, it's about the drama of people falling in love. And it's all incredibly funny! From the lyrics of the songs (listen closely so you don't miss this fun!) to the "off camera" shenanigans, to the plot twists and turns, prepare to have your funny bone tickled all night long!  

10.) Horizon Theatre loves YOU for your support!

Lisa Adler, Co-Founder and Co-Artistic/Producing Director, shares every opening night of every show that ticket sales make up for only about half of what it takes to run the theatre. Not everyone can see a show at the theatre, but most everyone can go to a free show...and then tell friends and family how great it was! 

I can't speak for the theatre, but I'm certain that Horizon is grateful for your support, whether in ticket purchases, subscriptions and/or sharing how much you enjoyed your theatre experience with friends and family. 

There you go...10 great reasons to come to Piedmont Park to see Horizon Theatre's production of Nobody Loves You. I think you're going to love it!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

The Cook's Warehouse - New Location

There will soon be a new location of The Cook's Warehouse and it, too, will feature all the wonderful things you've come to expect from this Atlanta-based foodie wonderland. 

I have the awesome privilege of bringing you regular "construction updates" leading up to the opening of the new The Cook's Warehouse in the Chamblee neighborhood, at Peachtree Station.


The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Rendering courtesy of The Cook's Warehouse
The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Rendering courtesy of The Cook's Warehouse


On my first visit, the building did not yet have a sign on it, but The Cook's Warehouse provided the above rendering of what it will look like...it will be very easy to locate!

The new store will be two doors down from a Whole Foods Market—slated to open this summer—in Peachtree Station. There will also be numerous restaurants—the foodies will already be here!—in Peachtree Station, some of the restaurants open now.

Many of the former customers and clients of The Cook's Warehouse from the Brookhaven location—which shuttered when leasing climbed to an unreasonable level—are excited and looking forward to the new store.

Currently, the plan is to have a soft opening of the Chamblee location around mid- to end-July and then host a Grand Opening in October. Stay tuned for the official dates!


The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

The primary contractor working on this store is no stranger to The Cook's Warehouse. He's worked on other locations, so he has a strong working knowledge of how to build out the signature The Cook's Warehouse experience.

The Peachtree Station store will be approximately the same size as the East Cobb location, boasting 4,500 square feet of shopping, learning, team building, special events, and foodie paradise!

Some additional info:

Address: 5001 Peachtree Boulevard, Suite 520,, Chamblee, GA 30341 (map)
Hours: Monday-Saturday 10am-8pmm, Sunday 11am-6pm (Sunday hours TBD)
Parking: Ample free parking
Neighborhood: Chamblee
Events: Yes! Yes! Yes! They'll be announced closer to opening.

The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor


As you can tell from the above snapshot of the new store's blueprint, it's getting a lot of use. They're at the point where the store will visibly have something new going on every day, at an exponential rate, until it's time to open the doors to this highly anticipated shopper's delight.

When guests enter the store, they'll first see the customer service island, which is also checkout. High-end kitchenware will be on the immediate right and the demonstration kitchen will be on the right at the rear of the store.

The demonstration kitchen will be the site of cooking classes and chef demos, featuring local celebrity chefs, Atlanta restaurant chefs and distinguished chefs from around the world. And, if you're visiting from out of town and want to include a unique culinary experience as part of your vacation, The Cook's Warehouse can customize an experience just for your merry band of travelers. 

In an upcoming update I'll share more with you about the various kitchen partners, like Sub-Zero Wolf, which is an impressive list!


The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

The Cook's Warehouse is the largest dealer for Big Green Egg in Atlanta and you can expect to see some Big Green Egg grilling demonstrations in the outdoor courtyard, a mere few steps from the store's front door. 

This courtyard may very well be the site of a number of activities, but some of that is still being worked out. It's certainly a lovely space.


The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
The Cook's Warehouse, Chamblee | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

The new location in Chamblee is going to e a foodie paradise, because (1) it's The Cook's Warehouse, (2) it's located next to a brand new Whole Foods, and (3) Peachtree Station will feature multiple restaurants. And there will be ample parking, and it's conveniently located near Brookhaven, Buckhead, and I-285 and easy to get to from I-85.

Why is a tourism blogger writing about a kitchen and cookwares store, you ask? That's a very good question. Thank you for asking.

When I'm a tourist in another city, my 'go-to' souvenir is a book about the locale I'm visiting, but more recently it's been a cookbook by a local chef in that city. The latter is more difficult to find, but not at The Cook's Warehouse. And there are other local items to serve as a souvenirs from your trip to Georgia, like sauces and marinades, jellies and jams, and a whole lot more! 

If you're shopping for a friend who lives in the Metro Atlanta area, one of The Cook's Warehouse cooking classes make for a wonderful gift (and that's a souvenir that can last a lifetime!). Classes will indeed be offered in the new location, including their most popular class, "Knife Skills".


Mary Moore, Founder, The Cook's Warehouse | Photo: Travis S. Taylor
Mary Moore, Founder, The Cook's Warehouse | Photo: Travis S. Taylor

Speaking of local, Mary S. Moore herself is a Georgia girl. She got the idea for The Cook's Warehouse when visiting New York City, but I'll save that story for another post.

On this initial visit to the Peachtree Station store, Mary did say, "It's not a hobby!", speaking of opening a store. But then she recounted that she often calls The Cook's Warehouse "my 22 year hobby". 

Opening a new store is indeed hard work. Keeping multiple stores open and successful for decades takes dedication, tenacity, business savvy, and totally awesome people skills. Mary Moore is extremely talented in each of those departments.

In addition to the new location in Chamblee, The Cook's Warehouse has stores in East Cobb and Midtown, the latter being its flagship store. 

I for one am super excited about the new store opening in Chamblee, not just because it's on the way home (the Midtown store is, too), but because it will be a destination, for tourists and locals, for all things kitchen and cooking! When you visit, I think you'll agree with me that their tagline is perfect..."Every Excuse to Cook"!

Keep an eye out for the next update on The Cook's Warehouse in Chamblee!

NOTE: This is not a paid post. I have received no payment, either in cash, goods or services, for writing about The Cook's Warehouse. I am however a frequent shopper at the store, have attended cookbook signing events and I have great admiration for Ms. Moore's work and philanthropy.