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Archive for August, 2010

Summer Shade Festival/Corks & Forks

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

August 28–29, 2010 at Grant Park in Atlanta.  For more information, visit Summer Shade Festival/Corks and Forks.


Cypress Street Pint & Plate 3rd Annual Pig Roast

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

August 28, 2010 in Midtown Atlanta.  For more information, visit


Karen Bremer Named Georgia Restaurant Association Executive Director

Friday, August 27th, 2010

The Georgia Restaurant Association (GRA) announced the selection of Karen Bremer as Executive Director. With over 35 years in the hospitality industry, Bremer will take leadership of the association representing one of the largest industries in the state.

Bremer will succeed Charles Hoff, who has served as Interim CEO since March of this year. Hoff will continue to serve as the GRA’s General Counsel and member of the GRA Executive Committee. “This is truly an exciting time for the GRA and Georgia’s Restaurant Industry,” said Hoff. “Karen has been a pivotal part of the development of the GRA as an organization and is a true leader in the hospitality industry. Her professional arch and personal passion for the GRA make her a great fit for this role.”

Bremer’s tenure in the hospitality industry includes serving as President of Peasant Restaurant, Inc., a multi-unit, high visibility city-wide operation. Bremer then bought two of the Peasant Restaurants, Dailey’s and City Grill, and began her own hospitality company. Although due to the recession both restaurants closed in 2009, Bremer was recognized that same year with the Lifetime Achievement GRACE (Georgia Restaurant Association Crystal of Excellence) Award for her outstanding contributions to Georgia’s Restaurant Industry.

Bremer is a founding member of the GRA, Past President of the GRA Board and has served on the board of directors for the National Restaurant Association, Atlanta Convention & Visitor’s Bureau (ACVB) and Team Georgia. She has garnered numerous awards including the ACVB Member of the Year Award in 2002 for her role in founding Downtown Atlanta Restaurant Week.

“Having Karen Bremer assume the role as leader of the GRA is incredibly important,” said George McKerrow, who is a founding GRA member and President and CEO of Ted’s Montana Grill, Inc. “In this challenging time for our industry, having a strong state restaurant association is more important than ever before. As the cornerstone of the state’s revenue base, the health and well-being of our restaurant industry is imperative. With Karen at the helm, our voice will be heard – and it will be strong.”


Concentrics Dissolves Partnership with St. Hilaire

Friday, August 27th, 2010

Bob Amick and Todd Rushing, co-founders of Concentrics Restaurants, announce their decision to dissolve Concentrics’ partnership with Jonathan St. Hilaire and BAKESHOP.  St. Hilaire will operate BAKESHOP under internal management.

“We sincerely enjoyed working with Jonathan St. Hilaire and assisting in the success of BAKESHOP,” states Bob Amick, owner of Concentrics Restaurants. “We were pleased to maintain a relationship with him for so many years and wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”

St. Hilaire worked as the Executive Pastry Chef for all of Concentrics’ Restaurants until 2009, when he partnered with Concentrics in the opening of BAKESHOP. The Midtown boulangerie and patisserie offers breads, croissants, cakes, quiches, sandwiches, salads and brewed coffees. The concept operates in true European style—baking batches throughout the day for both wholesale and retail offerings.

Classically trained at the French Culinary Institute, St. Hilaire’s resume lists culinary positions in New York City including Terrance Brennan’s Picholine, Payard’s Patisserie and Bistro, Bouley Bakery and Danny Meyer’s Eleven Madison Park. And in Atlanta, Hilaire worked in at 1848 House, Canoe, Spice, The Four Seasons Hotel, Executive Chef of the Westeye Group, and as Executive Pastry chef at Woodfire Grill. St. Hilaire was recently selected to be on the advisory board for Le Cordon Bleu, a worldwide leader in gastronomy, hospitality and management.

Concentrics Restaurants, founded in 2002 by Bob Amick and Todd Rushing, specializes in chef-driven culinary destinations including ONE. midtown kitchen, TWO urban licks, TAP, PARISH Foods & Goods, Murphy’s, Lobby at TWELVE, Room at TWELVE and  LUMA on Park. The company offers a full-service development and management team and has partnered with Murphy’s Restaurant, Sports Radio 790 The Zone, Legacy Property Group, France Developments, The Novare Group and ECD Company.

St. Hilaire recently participated in Restaurant Forum’s April 2010 Chef’s Roundtable cover story.


Gary Mennie Named Executive Chef for The Woodruff Arts Center

Friday, August 27th, 2010

Legendary Partners of Atlanta, the newly-selected culinary service partner to The Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta, announced that Gary Mennie has joined The Woodruff Arts Center as Executive Chef. The Woodruff Arts Center houses four arts organizations – Alliance Theatre, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, High Museum of Art, and Young Audiences.

A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Chef Mennie trained under French master chefs at Maxime’s of New York and West Hollywood’s L’Orangerie, before joining the kitchen at Spago. Among the youngest chefs to achieve Mobil Four Star Status — during his ten-year tenure at Canoe restaurant in Atlanta — Mennie has established a reputation for translating local farm-to-table concepts into upscale and elegant cuisine. His resume in Atlanta also includes opening Taurus and serving as the Executive Chef at The Livingston Restaurant at the Georgian Terrace Hotel.

Legendary Partners of Atlanta is scheduled to begin services at The Woodruff Arts Center in the fall of 2010. Among its plans are a refreshed restaurant concept, enhancements to public food offerings, and offering an array of special event catering choices. The company isa a collaboration between A Legendary Event and Centerplate. Legendary Partners of Atlanta’s Tony Conway said, “We are thrilled to welcome Chef Gary… He will bring a fresh new dining experience to this landmark facility.”

Serving 250 entertainment, sports and convention venues across North America, including 21 performing arts centers, Centerplate is a hospitality company based out Stamford, Conn.


Huddle House Announces Resignation of CEO Phil Greifeld

Friday, August 27th, 2010

Huddle House announced the resignation of Chief Executive Officer Phil Greifeld. Huddle House, Inc., is an Atlanta-based 400-plus-location full-service family diner chain. The 46-year-old franchise has locations in 19 U.S. states, primarily in the Southeast, Midwest and Southwest.

Greifeld joined Huddle House in 1995 and spent nearly 12 years leading the Huddle House brand as its CEO. Greifeld stepped down from his role as President and CEO to pursue other opportunities.

Ken Keymer, current Huddle House Board Director and former CEO of VICORP Restaurants, Inc. (parent company of Village Inn and Baker’s Square) and former CEO of AFC Enterprises, (parent company of Popeyes’ Famous Fried Chicken) will take over as interim CEO.

Huddle House ended its fiscal July with a 3.5 percent same store sales increase in its franchised stores as well as a 2.1 percent increase in its Company Store Division.

The restaurant chain also released its new prototypes at its annual franchise convention. Two options have been released: A retro fit model that existing franchisees can apply to exteriors and interiors while expanding menus offerings, and a new larger prototype that showcases the evolution of the American diner, featuring a deeper menu including home meal replacement options; preemptive cooking technology; new interior and exterior color schemes; and the first ever Huddle Thru (drive-thru).


Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival

Sunday, August 8th, 2010

August 8, 2010 at JCT. Kitchen, Atlanta.


ACF National Convention

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

August 2–5, 2010 in Anaheim, CA. For more information, visit

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