Atlanta’s highly anticipated food and beverage festival, Taste of Buckhead, is back September 14 at The Stave Room at American Spirit Works. Venture on a culinary escapade with elite chefs and mixologists from American Cut, The Big Ketch, Smokebelly, SweetWater Brewing Company, and many more! This one-of-a kind experience allows you to taste top bites all while moving from table to table inside the 10,500-square-foot room.

Taste of Buckhead

This must-attend soirée hosted by the Buckhead Business Association (BBA) has been a staple in the community for 14 years. “Taste of Buckhead really captures the true essence of Atlanta,” says Barry Hundley, 2017 president of the Buckhead Business Association. “This city is an incredible melting pot of flavors and all of that diversity is represented in this event. We are able to bring together some of the area’s best restaurants to create a premier culinary experience.”

Event-goers will indulge in unlimited tastings from more than 20 of Buckhead’s finest eateries. Savor a variety of flavors from decadent meats to sweet treats and explore the diversity of the Buckhead culinary scene in one place. “Every year, we work to bring in new flavors, tastes and vendors to ensure that our guests get a vast sampling of all that Buckhead has to offer,” Hundley says. “This year is no different and the VIP experience now includes access to the fantastic outdoor courtyard of The Stave Room at American Spirit Works. This VIP area will be more intimate and will offer guests exclusive tastes that will not be available in the main area.”

While here, help feed the hungry by participating in the Spirit Wall. Select your favorite spirit or bottle of wine from this wall and your $20 donation will benefit Second Helpings Atlanta. “The Buckhead Business Association is sincerely committed to giving back to the community,” Hundley says. “This event allows us a terrific opportunity to rally our members to support an organization that benefits Buckhead. With the goal of eliminating hunger in the Atlanta area by rescuing surplus food and delivering it to those in need, Second Helpings Atlanta is the perfect benefactor for this event.” A percentage of the proceeds will go toward Second Helpings Atlanta, which takes surplus food from restaurants and redistributes it to those in need.

TOB spirit wall


VIP ticket holders early admission starts at 5:30 p.m. and a private tour of American Spirit Whiskey’s distillery opens at 6:30 p.m. There are only 150 VIP tickets available for purchase for $75. General admission tickets are $50 and doors open at 6 p.m. For purchase options, click here.

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Screen Shot 2017-08-07 at 1.00.17 PMEverything in the cozy Decatur shop, HomeGrown, is made by local artisans. We especially love unwinding with a candle by Kismet ($14-$24). Purchase one from its Vintage Collection and the brand will refill your container at a discounted price. The Sandalwood and Rose scent is perfect for this time of year.

 Details: 412 Church St., Decatur;

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Hayden Owner of Cat Cafe in CafeJava Cats Café burst onto the Atlanta scene with a unique idea dedicated to serving both the people—and cats—of the city. Half of this cat café is dedicated to coffee concoctions and tasty treats provided by Gathering Industries, and the other half is where feline friends from PAWS Atlanta find their fur-ever home. Stop in for a cup of joe or a snuggle.

Details: 415 Memorial Dr. SE., Atlanta;

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By Annie Paschal

Matt Ryan promo shot How Atlanta Falcons’ Quarterback Matt Ryan Stays Active and Stylish in his Banana Republic Gear

Being fit and healthy is one of the keys to looking great. Another important factor is fashion. What you wear can change the game. Here’s where the new Rapid Movement Chino collection by Banana Republic comes into play. This line is ideal for men who stay active and appreciate sleek and comfortable attire.

Some of the top athletes in the U.S. were selected to be a part of the Banana Republic Men’s Style Council, including Matt Ryan, quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons. And notably, the National Football League’s 2016 Most Valuable Player.

We caught up with the hometown hero about being a tastemaker and to get his thoughts on the new pant collection. As someone who spends nearly half his time in workout apparel, Matt appreciates that the Rapid Movement Chino collection allows a man to combine a refined look with a similar ease to that of athletic wear. “It’s about being able to move and be comfortable … and that’s one of the cool things about the new chinos. As stylish as they are, and as good as they look, you can move around in them,” Matt says. These pants are made from breathable cotton fabric combined with an expertly crafted stain- and water-resistant coating to provide optimal longevity.

Matt Ryan checks out the new Rapid Movement Chino Collection at the Banana Republic store inside Lenox Square.

Matt Ryan checks out the new Rapid Movement Chino Collection at the Banana Republic store inside Lenox Square.

When Matt wants to have a night out in Decatur with his wife, Sarah, he prefers to don something slightly more refined and the chinos are an obvious choice. He credits Sarah and Banana Republic with helping him stay stylish over the years. “I had always shopped at Banana Republic growing up and I’ve worn their clothes for a long time. When I was approached to partner with them, I thought it would be a great fit because I’ve been a customer forever. I like their stuff and thought it was nice to be able to give my input a little bit too,” he says.

The collection is now available in-store and online at Each pant, which retails for $98, comes in a variety of colors including burgundy, black, olive, charcoal, gray and more.


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Nuggets of Wisdom from POUR on How to Build Your Perfect Bar Cart


Abbey Glass Studio in Ponce City Market

On July 15, we sat down with some of the most in-the-know bartenders in the city to learn how to create an Instagram-worthy bar cart and craft tasty cocktails.

Local fashion designer Abbey Glass played host to POUR, an educational cocktail party company, and its co-owners Kendall Dreyer and Katie Ewing, alongside Duane Kuhlers of Octopus Bar, at her Ponce City Market studio.

In an effort to bring Atlantans a sip and shop event with a twist, POUR socialites from the Atlanta area attended ready to imbibe—and shop the night away.

Before you can begin whipping up dirty martinis to dazzle your friends, you’ll need these bar cart essentials.

Abbey's inspiration for her fall/winter line is Marie Antoinette in the modern day—she's classic and regal with a little bit of an edge.

Model in the Black lace Jane top and Winter White Blair skirt. Abbey’s inspiration for her fall/winter line is Marie Antoinette in the modern day— regal with a little bit of an edge.

  • Shaker Tin: Shaking a drink while using a pint glass as an improvised top can cause the glass to break. So be sure to grab one with a metal bottom and top.

  • Strainer: Kendall recommends a Hawthorne-style strainer, which are designed to quickly strain drinks while leaving them free of objects (fruit, ice) you don’t want in the glass.

  • Jigger: Start with a basic 1-ounce jigger for simple drinks.

  • Bar Spoon: A ⅛-ounce bar spoon is useful for ladling out liqueurs or other speciality add-ons.

  • Mixing Glasses: Just about any glass will do (think pint glass). Keep these around for quick and easy mixing.

Once you have your tools assembled, give these recipes from Kendall and Katie a whirl.


An Aviation

Gin serves as the base of this lite beverage. It adds a crisp and refreshing taste to the libation without overpowering it the way vodka sometimes can. A playground for cocktail crafters, it’s no wonder why Kendall of POUR always says, “Why drink vodka when you could have gin?”

2 ounce gin

½ ounce lemon juice

½ ounce maraschino liqueur

A bar spoon of crème de violette

Shake all ingredients.Strain into a chilled coupe.Garnish with lemon twist.



Built around rye whiskey, this is a classic for those who prefer dark liquors. The smooth, spicy taste of rye whiskey packs a punch over plain bourbons. Stir up a timeless Manhattan with this simple recipe.

Screen Shot 2017-07-22 at 11.38.19 AM


2 ounce rye whiskey

1 ounce sweet vermouth

3 dashes Angostura bitters

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass and stir with ice.

Strain into a coupe glass and garnish with cherry.

Details: Abbey Glass Studio at Ponce City Market, 675 Ponce de Leon Ave. NE., Atlanta; To plan your own personal cocktail party with POUR, reach out to Kendall or Katie at

Fashion photos courtesy of Abbey Glass, photography by Wedig & Laxton 2017.

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Microneedling is the process of tiny needles penetrating the skin to create thousands of controlled micro wounds to the dermis. This process stimulates your skin’s natural ability to heal itself and produce new collagen and elastin. It also softens fine lines and wrinkles and reduces the appearance of scars, hyperpigmentation and pore size, which all results in tighter, brighter, smoother and more radiant skin.

Collagen remodeling in healthy skin takes at least 90 days. So the effects of microneedling may not be fully appreciated for at least three months after the procedure, but the effects last for years. The results are gradual and mild because this is a natural progression. Microneedling helps the skin help itself. A patient won’t see major results from just one treatment. They’ll see major results from a series of five to six treatments if they have a lot of signs of aging (loss of elasticity/sagging skin, loss of collagen, wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, pore size, etc.).  Some people, who have severely neglected their skin (smokers, sun worshipers, fast food addicts, etc.) need more than six.


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Details: 770.929.0634. ATLANTA - 280 Elizabeth Street Suite C Atlanta, Georgia 30307. CONYERS- 1366 Wellbrook Circle Suite B Conyers, Georgia 30012
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puppeteerJeff Domke Brings a Unique Experience to Children and Teens with Type 1 Diabetes at Camp Kudzu

One summer, Morgan, a Camp Kudzu camper, asked the puppet, Woodrow Weasel to be her date to the end-of-summer dance. Woodrow gladly obliged, but the day of the dance, due to complications from her Type 1 diabetes, Morgan had to stay in the infirmary. Woodrow overheard the news and decided to surprise his date at the infirmary. The 9-year-old girl was overjoyed and the moment was so magical that it’s hard to remember the man behind it, Jeff Domke, was even there.

Known as the “Puppet Dude,” this year will be Domke’s 15th summer creating special moments, such as the one above, with Camp Kudzu attendees. The nonprofit camp is dedicated to providing children and teenagers with Type 1 diabetes a camp experience that caters to their health needs. Their weeklong camps are filled with adventurous activities such as archery, fishing, kayaking,    zip lining and more.

Domke, who is a professional puppeteer and education program coordinator at the Center for Puppetry Arts, initially got involved with Camp Kudzu after the Center for Puppetry Arts received a grant to do puppet education at special needs camps. Having never been to summer camp himself, he fell in love with the experience it provides children. After losing the initial grant that brought him to Camp Kudzu, he continued to volunteer freely each summer. Now, a private donor funds Domke’s visits to the camp.

This summer, he will bring his professional puppeteer skills to Camp Kudzu’s third (July 9-14) and fourth (July 30-August 5) camp sessions. While there, he will lead puppet-building workshops, puppet shows, use puppets to teach children about cultures from around the world, and host the annual talent show with the help of his         co-host, Woodrow.

Domke assures that you don’t have to be a master puppeteer to bring joy to kids at Camp Kudzu, all you need is your time and dedication. As a nonprofit with a small yearlong professional staff, over 400 volunteers are needed each summer to make Camp Kudzu a wonderful place to learn and play. The staff will teach you everything you need to know to be a great volunteer. Plus, no prior knowledge of diabetes is required.

Want to volunteer and support puppetry throughout the year? Domke encourages people to volunteer as a docent at the Center for Puppetry Arts, or simply support the center with your admission to their amazing exhibits and shows.



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By Carolyn O’Neil, M.S., R.D.N.

The island of Bermuda is set like a jewel about 800 miles off the coast of North Carolina. It’s easy to be on the beach by afternoon via a three-hour direct flight from Atlanta.

Long loved for its tropical, yet traditional feel (hello, Bermuda shorts), this British isle is blooming with brilliant new reasons to visit.

One shining example is Fairmont’s Hamilton Princess & Beach Club. For over 130 years, the Hamilton Princess hotel has welcomed guests to its tony in-town location planted perfectly next to the marina sparkling with yachts and harbor views.

The hotel’s Exhale spa offers treatments and fitness classes such as Core Fusion Barre, and Yoga. Or, jump in the hotel’s private transport to the Princess Beach Club to enjoy watersports and loll the day away on the pink sand with beach drinks in hand.

Details:, gotobermuda.comtaste_of_bermuda

Taste of Bermuda

Bermuda’s mix of cuisines from the Caribbean, West Africa, Portugal, and jolly old England is deliciously diverse. When out on the island, look for local specialties such as Bermudian fish chowder and codfish cakes. The star of the show is certainly fresh seafood including spiny lobsters, black grouper and yellowfin tuna.

To bring the light and tropical taste of Bermuda to home cooking, slice lemons, limes or oranges in half and grill cut-side down. Grilling citrus mellows the acidic flavor and caramelizes the natural sugars in the fruit. Also, the citrus juice squeezes out more easily on top of grilled fish, chicken or vegetables and is a low-calorie, salt-free addition with a big flavor bonus. You could even grill fresh limes to add to Bermuda-inspired Dark ‘n Stormy® cocktails.

Sorbets Simplified

A cool and creamy frozen dessert can be summer’s best friend. Sorbet, also known as sorbetto in Italian, is simply frozen fruit with the addition of sugar. You can’t make a sorbet without sugar, which gives these icy fruit desserts their spoonable smoothness. But, look for sorbet brands with fewer than 30 grams of sugar per half serving. In 2018, new nutrition facts labels will add a separate line to reveal the amount of added sugar per serving. That way you know how much sugar is coming from the mango in a mango sorbet and how much is cane sugar added to the recipe.

Nutrition plus: Fruit sorbets can be a source of vitamin A and   vitamin C. Both nutrients are important for the health of our skin, certainly key with summertime’s revealing fashions!

Carolyn O’Neil, M.S., R.D.N. is the author of “The Slim Down South Cookbook: Eating Well and Living Healthy in the Land of Biscuits and Bacon.” Her blog is


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Believe it or not, what you need to achieve your fitness goals already lies within you. See how House of Payne Personal Training can help you tap into your undiscovered potential.

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Whether you enjoy taking in tunes laid back in a lawn chair or rocking out in a crowd, there is something in Atlanta for nearly every type of festivalgoer.

Jazz on the Lawn

Callanwolde Fine Arts Center presents its Jazz on the Lawn series. Talents new and old will unite from the Atlanta jazz and R&B community.

rhonda_thomasJUNE 16:
Rhonda Thomas
A staple in the underground Atlanta jazz scene for the past decade, this soulful singer has shared the stage with India Arie, Avery Sunshine, and Sam Moore.

JUNE 30: Joe Gransden
At only 42 years old, Gransden has toured the world, released
14 albums, and been compared to Chet Baker and Frank Sinatra.
He dazzles audiences with his raw vocal talent and hard bop
trumpet style.

JULY 14: Joey “Papa J” Sommerville
Influenced by years spent with B.B. King protégé Big Joe Burrell, and Phish, Sommerville brings his own new mix of contemporary jazz, rock, R&B, and classic blues.

JULY 28: Virginia Schenck and The World Jazz Trio
Known onstage as “VA,” Schenck has studied piano, voice, and dance. She fell in love with jazz after becoming friends with former Allman Brothers Band member, Jaimoe.

AUGUST 11: Bob Baldwin
Baldwin developed his affection for jazz from his father at a young age. He has since taken his skill set to the next level by composing and producing his own music. Most recently, he released “The Brazilian-American Soundtrack.”

Details: Tickets $20 online, $25 at the door. 980 Briarcliff Rd. NE., Atlanta;

Sunset Sessions

Park Tavern is excited for the return of its free Sunset Sessions concert series. These burgeoning artists are sure to get you out of your music comfort zone.

JUNE 4: Jamestown Revival and Colter Wall
Jonathan Clay and Zach Chance are the rock duo that form Jamestown Revival. Their Americana sound is inspired by           Willie Nelson, Guy Clark, and The Rolling Stones. Colter Wall will also bring down-home country melodies to the stage.

JUNE 11: John Paul White and Lera Lynn
Originally a member of the Grammy Award-winning group The Civil Wars, White has now branched out on his own as a folk singer-songwriter. Lynn joins the ticket to share her experimental rock and pop noire.

JUNE 18: Meg Mac
This Australian local is known for her groovy, alternative R&B, and blues-rock featuring vocals and a keyboard.

JUNE 25: Surfer Blood
After the loss of Surfer Blood’s guitarist, Thomas Fekete, to stomach cancer, this band has rebounded with a new album that stays true to their beachy indie-rock feel.

AUGUST 20: Girls Guns & Glory and Cold Heart Canyon
Rock ‘n’ roll, blues, and classic country all find a home in the sound of Girls Guns & Glory, which pairs nicely with Cold Heart Canyon’s bluegrass sound.cold_heart_canyon

Details: 500 10th St. NE., Atlanta;

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