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  • 16 Sep 2014 2:47 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Source: Greenville Online

    Lillia Callum-Penso, lpenso@greenvillenews.com

    Ford Fry is the type of chef you wish were in your own town. Innovative, community oriented and friendly to boot, the Atlanta-based Fry has made a mark on his adopted city. You can pretty much bet on Fry opening a new concept every few years or so. And we're not talking similar concepts, but vastly different, opposite spectrum-type stuff.

    Fry's JCT Kitchen, which he opened in 2007, straddles the southern-inspired road, while his The Optimist focuses on seafood. His no. 246 restaurant is locally sourced Italian and St. Cecilia, which opened earlier this year is seafood forward European. Then there's King & Duke, which opened in 2013, and is centered on hearth-style cooking, meaning no cooking with gas.

    Read the full article.

    Each of his restaurants speaks to a different side of who Fry is. That may be why Fry has an endless supply of ideas.

    Generally, he starts with a concept, a book, a theme, a dish, and then builds from there. JCT is inspired by Fry's interest in southern cuisine, but with a twist. He wanted it to be an expression of "what is southern to everybody." That meant fried chicken and cornmeal tamales.

    Read the full article.

    The Optimist was named restaurant of the year by Esquire Magazine in 2012, and the King & Duke earned a spot on the list in 2013. Ford has been nominated for a James Beard Award, and won Restaurateur of the Year from the Georgia Restaurant Association.

    He is humbled by the recognition, but not dictated by it.

    "Some may have a different opinion, but my personal opinion is if you turn olive oil into a powder I don't like the texture. I like the taste of just good olive oil itself, so why would you waste time to turn it into a less appealing texture just for the sake of being interesting," said Fry.

    Chef Ford Fry will be cooking with Table 301 executive chef of culinary operations Michael Kramer at a special dinner at The Lazy Goat on Sept. 20. Tickets are $150 and may be purchased by going to http://euphoriagreenville.com.
  • 06 Sep 2014 3:45 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: Savannah Morning News
    By JULIA RITCHEY

    Savannah takes few things more seriously than its history, architecture and fairly liberal drinking culture.

    So when a 31-page overhaul of its alcohol ordinance was unleashed onto the public the Friday before Labor Day, it came as a surprise to bar and restaurant owners whose establishments would be most affected.

    These owners and managers took to Facebook and the city’s public forums this week to voice concerns about several of the draft’s provisions, though most acknowledged revisiting the city’s 15-year-old ordinance was overdue.

    Representatives from a cross-section of establishments appeared at the meeting to listen to city staff go over the ordinance - from Savannah institutions such as Pinkie Master’s and Crystal Beer Parlor to the not-yet-opened 39 Rue de Jean.

    Most of the industry’s concerns boil down to about four key areas, including the repeal of a “hybrid” license to be replaced by a more expensive late-night one, beefed up security requirements, the elimination of bar cards and the rights afforded to adults ages 18-20.

    Sean Brandon, Savannah’s management services chief, said the city was trying to strike the right balance between public and private interests. He said much of the new ordinance was an attempt to be more consistent with state law.

    “We want something that makes the community better,” said Brandon.

    Although the ordinance states it would be enacted for “purposes of establishing reasonable and ascertainable standards for the regulation and control of alcoholic beverages,” the debate over what constitutes reasonable has been acute.

    Michael Owens, president of the Tourism Leadership Council, said he fielded calls and emails from about 60 owners and managers over Labor Day Weekend pertaining to the ordinance.

    “The real question is: What is the exact problem that we’re trying to solve?” said Owens. “I think our issues are really more outside the establishment than inside the establishment, and I’d be happy to hear the thoughts and considerations of the city on how they intend to address that problem.”

    By Tuesday, the date of the first public meeting on the ordinance, at least one proposal was nullified after the city received near unanimous criticism for trying to restrict 18- to 20-year-olds from restaurants serving alcohol after 10 p.m.

    The draft, which had been in the works for more than a year, had stipulated midnight originally, but some restaurant and bar owners questioned the logic of having a curfew at all in a town with such a heavy military and college presence.

    Jamie Durrence and Alan Williams, managing partner and director of operations for Daniel Reed Hospitality, which operates Soho South Café, Local 11ten and The Public Kitchen & Bar, said the regulation of legal adults with a curfew was unacceptable.

    “Members of the military and SCAD students are a huge client base for our restaurants,” Durrence said in a statement. “It just does not seem very hospitable and makes little sense considering you can legally bartend in the state of Georgia at 18 years and pilot an aircraft at 17. But not eat where alcohol is served after 10 p.m. or midnight? Unimaginable.”

    On Wednesday, the Georgia Restaurants Association spent most of its two-hour meeting at the Pirate’s House going page-by-page through the ordinance to explain the new regulations to its members.

    Mike Vaquer, the association’s lobbyist, said he’d been working with the city on the ordinance since June of last year. While the city is being diligent in trying to get its ordinance caught up with the times, he said, there were still areas for concern.

    “There are more questions than there are answers here, but we’ve come a long way,” Vaquer told members.

    Late-night licenses and security

    The elimination of a $250 “hybrid” license for establishments that transition into bars (or furniture stores serving spirits) was touted as an improvement. However, in its place, the city is proposing a $450 late-night entertainment establishment license for any bar or restaurant open past midnight.

    The city said the provision was not meant as a revenue generator but as a regulatory tool to better police establishments having problems in the late-night hours, i.e. nightclubs such as the now-shuttered Dosha and Frozen Paradise.

    Currently, about 30 bars hold hybrid licenses. City staff could not provide an exact number for how many establishments would be required to have the proposed late-night license, though it would likely be much higher.

    The owners of Lulu’s Chocolate Bar said they were originally classified as a hybrid bar until they appealed the decision based on the fact they operate the same business all day. Co-owner Rebecca Radovich said the idea of having to pay an extra fee and get bouncers for her casual dessert bar is just silly.

    “We’re not part of that late-night exodus problem,” said Radovich at Tuesday’s forum. “To be lumped back into that after we just got out … that’s one of our biggest concerns.”

    TLC’s Owens said he too is concerned.

    “Making anybody that’s serving alcohol after midnight to have security under penalty of law seems to be a little bit of an overstretch,” said Owens. “Think of the Pink House. At midnight, are they supposed to bring in uniformed security? That may not be the impression that they want nor we as a city want at all of these establishments.”

    Vaquer said he is encouraging staff to take a look at the operational footprint of a business in order to not cast such a wide net.

    “If I go into an establishment at noon … and I go back in at 1 a.m. and it looks exactly the same, then we’re not changing our business model. We’re continuing to operate as we have been,” said Vaquer.

    In concert with the proposed license fee is additional security requirements for bars of certain occupancy loads.

    For example, a bar with an occupancy load of 101-200, like The Jinx, would be required to have one door person and two additional security people on Friday and Saturday nights after midnight and on six major holidays.

    Language pertaining to security requirements for these late-night establishments is lifted verbatim, in parts, from Charleston, S.C.’s municipal code. City staff met with Charleston officials and looked at other codes such as Scottsdale, Ariz., when formulating the new ordinance, said city spokesman Bret Bell.

    Read the full article.
  • 05 Sep 2014 12:47 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
    By Dan Chapman and Michael Kanell 

    Only the strong needed to apply Thursday for the warehouse jobs posted at the Norcross unemployment office.

    “Will perform repetitive work, stand, walk and bend for long periods of time,” the notice read. “Will carry up to 25-100 pounds frequently. Will lift up to 25-50 pounds, shoulder high, frequently.”

    The temporary job pays $8 an hour.

    Earlier that day, in Midtown Atlanta, fast-food employees and home-health workers rallied to more than double their wages. Most make $7.25 an hour, the minimum wage.

    The rally and job fair, though separated by 20 miles, spoke in unison about the nature of work in Georgia’s post-recession economy. Both spotlighted low-wage work, and as the economy limps back, those jobs make up a larger percentage of Georgia’s workforce than before the recession.

    Consequently, calls to raise the minimum wage resound loudly among workers and some politicians, who say it will help lift Americans out of poverty.

    And it is sparking pushback by those who believe raising wages will hurt the economy.

    Raising the minimum wage, they argue, is a job killer and raises costs for employers.

    “A dramatic minimum wage increase to $15 is not the solution to relieve poverty,” said Karen Bremer, executive director of the Georgia Restaurant Association.

    In restaurants, for example, a large hike would mostly serve to eliminate jobs for young people and “entry-level” workers, Bremer said.

    The argument over low wages is nothing new, but the voices have grown louder of late.

    Globalization, the demise of factory work and union clout and the shift to temporary or contract workers have worked to depress wages in the last three decades. The 2007-2009 recession obliterated 8.5 million jobs nationwide and flipped many families into bankruptcy or foreclosure, and they are finding it tough to fight their way back.

    Manufacturing and construction jobs were the big losers during the recession. And they paid an average of $61,637 a year, according to a recent study by the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

    New restaurant, hotel and nursing jobs have predominated since the recession ended. Yet they pay, on average, 23 percent less than the jobs lost during the downturn.

    “The picture of a breadwinner working on an assembly line has now been replaced by a breadwinner working on a cash register,” said Jack Temple, a policy analyst with the liberal National Employment Law Project (NELP). “There has been an economic restructuring. And the shift has been unequivocally bad for working families.”

    The rise in temporary jobs further depresses wages. Roughly 2.5 percent of all U.S. jobs are classified as temporary - most with little security and without benefits - up from 1.4 percent in 1990, the BLS reports. And in metro Atlanta, over the last five years, only hospitals have created more jobs (11,000) than temp agencies (8,210).

    Traditionally limited to administrative work, the temp industry has shifted headlong into once solidly blue-collar fields like manufacturing, transportation and warehousing. And “temp” is something of a misnomer, as Fortune 500 corporations keep temp workers employed for months and years at a time as a hedge against an economic downturn.

    Overall, workers employed by staffing agencies earn 22 percent less than the average wage for all private sector workers, according to NELP. And low-wage workers - temp or otherwise - avail themselves disproportionately of food stamps, Medicaid and other taxpayer-financed services.

    Few states have created as many low-wage jobs as Georgia.

    A decade ago, about one in 33 Georgia workers made minimum wage. Today, that has risen to about one in 20.

    Restaurants, for example, employed 7.2 percent of all Georgia workers a decade ago, BLS data shows. Today, 8.5 percent of all state workers are in that business. Many, like Joshua Collins, toil for $7.25 an hour.

    Collins, 25, sat in the middle of Ponce de Leon Ave. on Thursday, blocking traffic outside a McDonald’s. He demanded a wage of $15 an hour, more than double his current cook’s salary at a nearby Burger King. Collins was the first demonstrator cuffed, arrested and marshalled into a Fulton County prisoner transport van.

    “The fast-food corporations are making billions and billions of dollars and they can’t give us a raise?” he said in an interview before being hauled away. “We’re going to get our $15 an hour and a union. Something will come of this.”

    For the first time, low-paid health care workers joined the protest, such as Latonya Allen, 45.

    “Home care workers deserve $15 an hour just like fast-food workers. We do the dirty work, the hard work that no one else wants to do,” said Allen who is paid $9 an hour caring for a McDonough woman with cerebral palsy. “I have no retirement, no time off, no benefits, no paid vacation or sick days. But I am willing to fight for my rights. I’ll do whatever it takes.”

    Ten demonstrators were arrested for refusing police entreaties to quit sitting in the middle of the busy street.

    The higher wage push is gaining steam with California (minimum $10 an hour), Massachusetts ($11), the District of Columbia and its Maryland suburbs ($11.50) and Seattle ($15) already requiring employers to pay workers more. San Francisco, Chicago and New York City are likely to follow suit.

    President Obama, who supports a national minimum wage of $10.10 an hour, said last Monday that fast-food workers deserve a raise “so they can provide for their families with pride and dignity.”

    A growing number of economists, though, say that raising the minimum wage benefits more than just low-paid workers. Standard & Poor’s, the financial research agency, reported last month that low-wage jobs fuel income inequality which is “a drag on long-run economic growth.” The ratings agency reduced its U.S. growth forecast from 2.8 percent to 2.5 percent over the next decade.

    “The current level of income inequality in the U.S. is dampening GDP growth, at a time when the world’s biggest economy is struggling to recover from the Great Recession and the government is in need of funds to support an aging population,” S&P wrote.

    Howard Mavity, a senior partner at Fisher and Phillips, an Atlanta firm that represents fast-food companies in labor disputes, agrees that the minimum wage should be raised a bit. A jump to $15 an hour, though, would put too much of a financial burden on franchise owners and not solve the impoverishment of low-wage workers.

    “The purpose of the minimum wage is to try and help people get by,” Mavity said. “So if we only jack up the minimum wage, we won’t get at key structural issues facing the economy (like) better education and a trained workforce.”

    There is a heated debate about how to improve the lot of American workers, but in general, there is agreement that more money is good for working people, for boosting the middle class and for the economy as a whole.

    “When there are working people who can’t support their families, who can’t pay their rent, your whole community is going to suffer,”said NELP’s Rebecca Smith.

    Characteristics of Minimum Wage Workers, 2013
    The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. Nationally, 3.3 million workers are paid minimum wage or less. Here are some of their characteristics…

    Percent who work full-time: 35.5%
    Percent with college experience: 42.2%
    Percent who live in the South: 46.4%
    Percent food prep workers: 46.7%
    Percent aged 25 or older: 49.6%

    Sources: Cheryl Russell, Bureau of Labor Statistics

  • 05 Sep 2014 12:26 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution Politcal Insider Blog

    By Greg Bluestein and Daniel Malloy

    If you listened closely to Democratic Senate hopeful Michelle Nunn’s comments Thursday, you might have heard an attempt to distance herself undefined ever so slightly undefined from President Barack Obama’s foreign policy.

    Nunn called Obama’s much-criticized recent remarks that he had no strategy to encounter the growing threat of ISIS an “unfortunate choice of words” and urged the administration to “quickly develop the right military strategy” against the militant group that’s carving out a caliphate in parts of Iraq and Syria.

    Nunn almost precisely a year ago backed a military strike in Syria to deter President Bashar Al-Assad from using chemical weapons against his own people, which at the time matched the positions of Obama and Georgia GOP Sens. Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson.

    But Obama a few days later backed off in the face of overwhelming opposition in Congress, and Nunn drew flak in her Democratic primary for the position. She has since focused much of her campaign rhetoric on domestic policy, such as the jobs plan she rolled out Thursday.

    She said in an interview that ISIS is a “dangerous terrorist organization that has to be defeated and that we must take a lead in that” through air strikes and cooperation with regional partners.

    “I also believe we need to recognize that we cannot fight a civil war on the ground in Iraq or Syria,” she said. “We have to look to the leadership of that region to resolve the long-term historic undefined but I think resolvable undefined schisms and conflicts with the right leadership there.”

    And then she came close to siding with some legislative leaders pushing for more Congressional oversight of the nation’s growing role in the conflict.

    “The president has to work closely with Congress. Especially at this moment in time, it’s incumbent for the president and Congress to come up with a unified strategy.”

    ...

    Republicans took quick aim at Nunn’s jobs plan on Thursday, in part for not vowing to repeal Obamacare and for seeking to raise the minimum wage. Republican David Perdue’s spokeswoman, Megan Whittemore, had this to say:

    “After reading Michelle Nunn’s so-called ‘jobs plan’ it’s clear her campaign will stop at nothing to deceive Georgians about who she really is and what she stands for. This confusing attempt to describe her vision for job creation is full of contradictions. Michelle Nunn mimics many of David’s ideas and then immediately undercuts them by advocating some of the same failed liberal approaches that caused the economic problems in the first place.

    “Missing from the ‘jobs plan’ are obvious solutions to address the economic crisis President Obama and Democrats in Washington have created. For example, Michelle Nunn claims she is for reducing the regulatory burdens on small businesses, but completely ignores the negative impacts of Obamacare, which is cutting back workers hours and increasing costs for families. Similarly, she claims she supports energy independence, but refuses to address how burdensome regulations on the coal industry will raise energy prices and destroy jobs.”

    And the Georgia GOP’s Leslie Shedd:
    “In Nunn’s latest so-called jobs plan – in which ‘there’s no pricetag for her pledges’ – she claims she will support No Budget, No Pay legislation. The problem? Nunn’s loyalties lie with Harry Reid, who, in addition to endorsing Nunn, also said it would be ‘foolish’ for Senate Democrats to even propose their own federal budget. So long as Harry Reid is leader, he will block any chances of passing a budget.

    “But it gets worse, a recent study by the Georgia Restaurant Association shows that [the minimum wage hike in] Michelle Nunn’s so-called jobs plan could cost more than 21,000 jobs statewide. It could cost state and local governments an additional $164 million annually because of the 60,000 public workers that could be affected.”
    ***

    Read the full article.

  • 04 Sep 2014 10:05 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: Peach Pundit

    By: CHET MARTIN 

    A friend of mine recently fell in love with Savannah. He thought the city beautiful and the people lovely, but the fireworks moment was a conversation with a bartender you aren’t likely to find out of Chatham County. The bartender came of age up north, raised by anarchist, hippy parents. To rebel, he joined the military and discovered a fondness for drink. He decided to live in a place where he could always have an adult beverage in hand. Enter Savannah.

    Now city fathers have come to regret that easygoing approach to alcohol. A proposed ordinance would make every bar or restaurant that serves alcohol a 21-and-up establishment after 10 PM on Fridays and Saturdays. They argue the measure is necessary to reduce the high levels of crime the city experiences on weekends. Restaurateurs argue the measure will kill business and the charm that draws tourists to Savannah. The money quote comes from Georgia Restaurant Association representative Mike Vaquer:

    “This is a military town. Are we going to tell a 20 year old G.I., who is out on the Southside and wants to go into Applebee’s to eat at 11 o’clock at night that he can’t do so without his parents?”

    Government has a habit of denying adult citizenship to 18-20 year-olds who are just that. We will see if Savannah will join that ignoble tradition.
  • 02 Sep 2014 7:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: WJCL News

    By Nick Natario

    SAVANNAH, Ga. (WJCL) – Savannah stands apart from many places across the country. Not just with its beauty, but alcohol policies.

    It’s one of a handful of places where you can drink booze, in public, in a “to-go cup” downtown. But city leaders are worried their outdated ordinance might be creating a problem.

    For more than a year they’ve worked on changes, and on Tuesday the public got a first look.

    “This is really the beginning of a process,” Savannah Management Services Bureau Chief Sean Brandon.

    For two hours leaders laid out the proposal. One change, anyone under 21 couldn’t be in a bar or restaurant after ten on Fridays and Saturdays.

    An idea met with resistance from some owners.

    “Then I propose that the city provide me with a fee annually to compensate for that lost revenue,” said Crystal Beer Parlor owner John Nichols.

    “This is a military town,” said Georgia Restaurant Association representative Mike Vaquer.

    “Are we going to tell a 20 year old G.I., who is out on the Southside and wants to go into Applebee’s to eat at 11 o’clock at night that he can’t do so without his parents?”

    But officials say something needs to be done because safety is a concern. Officers showed statistics on how alcohol creates a problem on the weekends.

    “These are arrests on just Friday and Saturday nights and you can see those two nights of the week account for the majority of arrests of the week,” said Lt. David Gay. Officials also want to do away with employee bar cards.

    They say it’s a hassle and would prefer owners make their employees take a third party online course instead. Another possible change, where “to-go cups” are allowed.

    Leaders want to now include Forsyth Park. But some neighbors questioned this decision.

    “If savannah is pushing to get a higher end tourist, that’s not the way to do it,” said Savannah resident Bob Rosenwald.

    City leaders stressed the alcohol ordinance is months, if not another year, away from being changed.

    The next round of meetings will take place Thursday, Sept. 18, in the Bryan room at the Savannah Civic Center at 1 p.m and 6 p.m.

    Watch the video.

  • 02 Sep 2014 4:19 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    By Karen Bremer

    Source: www.myajc.com

    The cost of doing business has become increasingly expensive. It’s the product of repeated bad policies by elected officials following an aggressive agenda by organized labor. Ironically, the economic havoc they leave in their wake will eliminate the very jobs they proclaim to protect.

    Earlier this month, the National Labor Relations Board overturned a 30-year rule that gave local franchisees, including many that operate in Atlanta, the freedom to run their day-to-day business practices independently of their franchiser.

    The franchising model has successfully created millions of jobs; it did so by helping aspiring business owners realize their dream by offering resources to launch a locally owned operation underindividual management. This includes everything from capital investment to hiring employees and setting shift schedules to disciplinary actions and terminations.

    Unions, dissatisfied with declining numbers, would much rather target big corporations than a small, locally owned business with fewer employees. It has pushed to remove the traditional division between them and make franchisers liable for franchisees’ employment practices, though franchisers have no control over these practices. By tying franchisees to the hip of their parent company, labor unions can redefine a “small business” as “big business” and go after the parent in their organizing efforts.

    This dissolution of the “joint-employer standard” will have a chilling effect on job creation, particularly in Atlanta, which leads the nation as home to the most franchise headquarters. Aspiring business owners will be less likely to pursue their dreams, since they will face a lot more hurdles as a franchisee. Franchisers will have to be more involved in the day-to-day activities of local employment practices, which will add to their franchisees’ costs. In the end, jobs will be impacted.

    But it doesn’t end here. Unions are emboldened by the NLRB ruling and have begun a renewed push to demand minimum-wage hikes from business - as high as $15 per hour, more than double the current federal minimum wage.

    Any hike in the minimum wage comes with an undesirable price tag. Restaurants are low-profit, low-margin operations. On average, a third of their budgets goes to wages and benefits. When the cost of labor rises for a restaurant operator, hard choices follow. Entry-level job opportunities are diminished, and employee hours are scaled back or, worse, eliminated altogether.

    Read the full article.

    Karen Bremer is executive director of the Georgia Restaurant Association.
  • 02 Sep 2014 9:52 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: Savannah Morning News

    By: Eric Curl

    City officials are already reconsidering at least one restriction in a new alcohol ordinance, although there are plenty more proposals business owners and residents would like to see dropped.

    A prohibition against anyone below 21 years old from dining in an alcohol-serving restaurant after 10 p.m., without a parent or legal guardian, appears to be the first victim of public sentiment since the ordinance was announced Friday.

    There is an almost complete certainty the “10 p.m. rule” will be changed, said Sean Brandon, management services bureau chief.

    “What form that takes, that will somewhat depend on what we hear from you,” Brandon said.

    Brandon’s comments came at the start of the second meeting Tuesday at the Savannah Civic Center concerning the new rules governing alcohol sales, after the restriction had been repeatedly criticized during an earlier meeting that morning.

    The news was welcomed, although many of the business owners, in addition to one college student, said they would like to see the city go a step further and reverse an existing prohibition against “minors” under 21 from entering bars that feature live music and other entertainment venues that serve alcohol.

    Dollhouse Productions’ owner Peter Mavrogeorgis said the restriction resulted in him having to turn away parents who brought their children to see a performance by musician Art Garfunkel at his West Savannah performance space.

    “Art Garfunkel could only serve to bore them or enrich them,” Mavrogeorgis said. “It just seems absurd.”

    Travis Coles, general manager of Club One, said Savannah is a college and military town and a bulk of the people in the city have nowhere to go because of the “archaic” rule. Coles suggested the city require a separate license if an establishment’s owner wants to allow those who are 18-20 years old.

    “If we screw up, yank that license,” Coles said.

    One license that is being proposed, which would be required to operate alcohol selling establishments after midnight, was deemed too costly and burdensome. The license, which would cost $150 for beer and wine and $300 to serve liquor, would replace a “Hybrid” license in place now that allows restaurants to transition into bars.

    The license would impact more businesses, even if they do not provide entertainment, said Mike Vaquer, a lobbyist representing the Georgia Restaurant Association.

    “This proposal is far too broad,” Vaquer said.

    Read the full article.

  • 29 Aug 2014 8:52 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: Atlanta Business Chronicle
    By: Martin Sinderman, Contributing Writer

    While Atlanta’s array of new restaurants gets most of our attention, it’s the ones that date back a few decades (or more) that, in many ways, say the most about the city.

    “Atlanta’s dining scene is a vibrant and exciting array of all types of restaurants, from fine-dining to fast casual, food trucks to quick-service,” said Karen Bremer, executive director of the Georgia Restaurant Association.

    At the end of the day, many undefined but not all undefined of the restaurants regarded as Atlanta’s “classics” have strong connections to the city’s Southern heritage.

    “Atlanta still stays true to its Southern roots,” Bremer said. “This city has a lot of great Southern restaurants with many different styles of Southern cuisine.”

    Read the full article.

  • 26 Aug 2014 1:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Source: Buckhead Business Radio

    Featuring David Audrain and Stephanie Everett with Exposition Development Co., Karen Bremer with Georgia Restaurant Association, Josh Brass with US Foods, Mark Haidet with Siftit & Takorea, Archna Becker with Bhojanic

    Listen to the Podcast: Play in new window | Download

    Karen Bremer/Georgia Restaurant Association
    Executive Director

    Karen I. Bremer Executive Director, Georgia Restaurant Association With over 35 years in the hospitality industry, Bremer is the Executive Director of the Georgia Restaurant Association, representing one of the largest industries in the state. The GRA serves as the unified voice for over 16,000 foodservice and drinking places in the state of Georgia with total sales in excess of $16.5 billion which provides more than 405,800 jobs. 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. Currently, Bremer serves on the Industry Board of Georgia State University’s Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality, Board of Directors of DeKalb CVB, Atlanta Community Food Bank, Council of State Restaurant Associations and the Arby’s Foundation. She has also been inducted to Les Dames d’escoffier International and the International Women’s Forum. Bremer was the former owner of Dailey’s and City Grill restaurants and was a top executive with the Peasant Restaurant Group, starting out as a manager and ultimately being named its President. Bremer has garnered numerous awards including the ACVB Member of the Year Award in 2002 for her role in founding Downtown Atlanta Restaurant Week. In 2009, Bremer received the Lifetime Achievement GRACE (Georgia Restaurant Association Crystal of Excellence) Award for her outstanding contributions to Georgia’s restaurant industry. Recently, Bremer has also been listed as a notable Georgia by Georgia Trend Magazine for back to back years in 2012 and 2013.

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