Diner en Blanc 2016 Atlanta, GA

This year I was so happy to be sponsored to attend Diner en Blanc in Atlanta. I went from the waiting list to be able to register during the second phase. Thanks Melissa! Registration was a slight battle, but I got in! Yay! I brought my partner in crime, Leslie, as my guest. 

Rules of Diner en Blanc are as followed. 

1. Wear all white!! 

I had nothing white. Eeek! And of course I waited till the last minute to look for one. Like the night before! 1 1/2 before closing time. I figured someone should have a white dress on sale. I wasn’t feeling buying a dress that I would most likely not wear again. I went to Macy’s first. There were a couple options, but nothing exciting. Next, I checked out Forever 21. They had a cute white lace dress that I actually liked. And it was $10. I thought that if I didn’t find anything that would be the dress I would purchase. Well I didn’t find anything, so that’s the dress I got. Lol! 

2. Bring a folding square table and two white chairs. 

Our chairs were purchased from Ikea. That was easy. They had plenty and they were $8! The table not so easy. Leslie and I sent the bat call to everyone we knew. No square table. Friends had round, rectangle, small, but no square table. We wasn’t really trying to purchase a table for one night. I suggested Leslie go to the Goodwill  just to see if they just so happened to have a table. At first, all she saw was some TV trays. That would not work. Too small. Just before leaving, she decided to ask them if there were any square tables in the back. And guess what?? Out of the back came a woman carrying a square table. AND it was $5!!! Yes!!! 

3. Bring food curated by yourself.

We decided that we would go Vietnamese with our meal and make Pho. Leslie made this fantastic lemongrass broth. We then added carrots, squash and coconut chicken to it. So good. We also had a marinated kale salad made by Leslie’s daughter, Din. It was delicious! Instead of bread, we went with popcorn seasoned with rosemary salt.  I made a gluten free chocolate cake to end the meal on yummy note. 

4. Be on time or get left.

The event was held at a secret location. We were only given a location to meet our table leader. We got there on time. I wasn’t going to get left! Once we were all checked in, we proceeded by foot, one block up, to the event location, The Shops at Buckhead. As we filed in, we set our tables up. There were about 2 thousand people all setting up. Once every one was done it was beautiful! 

It was so awesome seeing everyone all dressed up. Some of the table decorations were so beautiful. People went all out! Our table wasn’t as fancy as some but it was cute. A white tablecloth, candles, silver lantern, and amazing food is all we needed. The food was our decor! 

After setting up, every one waved a white napkin. Time to eat! Our food was so good! I enjoyed every bite! 

There was also a photo booth! Yes!! Y’all know know I love a photo booth! Check out the snaps!

The night came to a close with a sea of sparklers against the beautiful night sky. With that, we packed up our things and went home! My first Diner en Blanc experience was amazing! Can’t wait till next year!

Penelahpe’s Culinary Services Presents..A Spring Taste 

Are you ready for the next installment of the Penelahpe’s Dinner Party Series? Wait! What? You missed the last one??? So sorry to hear that. Well I’ll go ahead and get up to speed with what you missed. Fortunately for you, there’s a dinner party next week. So it’s not too late to experience the awesomeness that is Penelahpe’s Culinary Services. 


Led by Chef Leslie Gordon, Penelahpe’s Culinary Services put together an unforgettable night of food, cocktails, and great company. Upon arrival, guest were greeted with the specialty cocktail of the evening, Spring Bliss. This wonderful cocktail was made with Blood Orange Italian Soda, Lime and Silver Tequila, with Pink Himalayan Sea Salt and Thyme rim.  A great all around spring sipping cocktail. And a delicious start to a fantastic evening. The night’s beer sponser, Down Home Brewing Company, provided the perfect beer to accompany each course. Check out the rest of the menu!

Spring Bliss
Summer Set Clams and Popcorn with Citrus Salt
Arugala Salad with Shitake Mushrooms and Spicy Lime Vinaigrette. Beer Paring: DHB Summer Set Pilsner
Mango Sorbet Cleanser Beer Pairing: DHB Bittersweet IPA

Spinach Ramen with Smoked Paprika Chicken, Hot and Sour Shrimp, Fried Tofu in Smoked Garlic Chili Sauce. Beer Pairing: DHB O’l Heffe Wheat
Green Tea Cheesecake with Sea Salt Crust

Penelahpe’s next dinner party will be a midnight dinner in loving memory of Chef Gordon’s father. It’s going to be awesome! So don’t miss out! Tickets can be purchased by clicking photo below! CLICK IT!! See y’all there!


Fun in the Photo Booth!

Beer Sponser  Down Home Brewing Coompany
Down Home Brewing Coompany


Social Media Guest Winner, Ashley!

A Night of Moroccan Inspired Cuisine + An Interview with Chef Leslie Gordon

Last night,  I was invited for an evening of amazing Moroccan inspired cuisine. Penelahpes Culinary Services held their Non-Holiday Dinner Party in the Historic West End. Established in 2004 by Chef Leslie Gordon, Penelahpes Culinary Services have been serving up “healthy gourmet” meals to some Atlanta’s most influential residents.  

Chef Gordon did not hold back in bringing her skillful hand to the table. I really loved the beautiful decorations that complemented the theme of the private event. Some of which was made by Chef Gordon!  Everything came together beautifully.


Let the Penelahpes Culinary Services experience begin….

Ginger Kiss

As guest arrived, they were warmly greeted with a Ginger Kiss. You can find the recipe here! It’s a great cocktail to impress your guest with.


Samosa served with Tomato Jam

These samosas were delicious! They were filled with perfectly seasoned potatoes inside. But what brought these delightful bites to another level was the tomato jam. So good!! Everyone wanted a jar to take home with them.


Thai Wheat Clams

Seriously tasty! That’s how I would describe the clams. The broth was made with one of my favorite local beers, Thai Wheat by Second Self Brewing Company. With the beer being brewed with ginger and lemongrass, and Chef Gordon adding her special Moroccan spice mix, the clams were given a very exotic flavor. 


Wilted Spinach Salad with Ginger Dressing

Some love was definitely put in this salad! I saw a few guests asking for seconds. 


Spicy Gyro Spiced Roasted Vegetables (Indian eggplant, portabello mushrooms, mixed peppers, red onions, bok choy, and love.)

I love roasted vegetables. The spices added to this melody of vegetables was superb. So on point!


Coconut Curry Chicken

So first of all, the chicken was so moist and tender. Like it literally fell off the bones! The coconut and curry along with some intense spice made for a unique piece of chicken. Very tasty!


Lemongrass and Cilantro Salmond

Jasmine Rice with Golden Raisins and Cardamon 

Another delicious plate of awesomeness! Let’s start with the Jasmine Rice. It was complemented by Cardamon and golden raisins. I could have just eaten that by itself. I loved how the golden raisins gave you a burst of sweetness ever so often. So good! The Salmond  was very flavorful. The freshness of the lemongrass and cilantro really came through.


Death by Chocolate Chai Cake w/ Blueberry Lemon Ginger Sauce

Amazing!!! Super moist. Extreme rich flavors. Spicy. The blueberries were rolled in Cardamon Sugar!! Yes, please! I enjoyed every bite!! I still can’t believe it was vegan! 


This was truly an amazing culinary experience. Every guest left with a full belly and a souvenir to remember the amazing night. A spoon necklace!! How cute is that! Some guests even got in photo booth with the chef!


I got a chance to interview Chef Gordon. Get to know her below!

Chef Leslie Gordon ~ Penelahpes Culinary Services

Who or what influenced you to become a chef?

I cooked my whole life. My mom always encouraged me to cook. Her support was waking up after two weeks of finals in New Orleans to get a grocery list for a holiday dinner. When I entered culinary school my dad took care of my son. I also got knocked up and needed a trade that I would enjoy. Lol!

How would describe your culinary focus? 

My culinary focus is healthy gourmet. When I cook, I just want peoples’ taste buds to explode and their bodies to wake up and feel good!

If you could cook a meal for the first family what would it be?

Um..what I cooked the other night. lol! I would cook some collard green grits and fried fish. Yum! I want some now with a nice green salad and some spicy pickles for the collards!

Name a chef you are most the inspired by and why?

Chef Deborah Berry and Chef Calavino Donati are two chefs who taught me to be creative, innovative, and don’t sweat the small stuff by being flexible and believe in your flavors. Chef Scotley taught me about techniques and he is truly a hands on chef as well. All these Chefs believe in me. 

What is your life’s motto? 

Life’s motto?  Shit…believe in my truths and love myself and don’t let nobody tell you shit!

What’s your favorite Atlanta restaurant?

I can’t say for real. I volunteer at many events and have had food from all over Atlanta. And I love it all! Plus I cook at home a lot. 

Favorite childhood dish and who made it?

My mom would make chuck roast and the leftovers would be served on a slice of white bread with mash potatoes and meat and gravy. Man that was it!!!!! It was love on a plate!!
For more information about Penelahpes Culinary Services, visit www.penelahpes.com.