Get To Know High Museum of Art Highball Competitor, Ben Yabrow {Himitsu}

Photo via Instagram @himitsu

A couple nights ago, my friend and I went to an unfamiliar place in Buckhead. Neither one of us had heard of this Himitsu. I did some research and found that it was a Japanese Sushi and Cocktail Bar. Nice! I was excited I was able to get a reservation as well as the opportunity to interview another competitor in the High Museum of Art’s mixology competition, Highball. 

Before that could happen, we had to find the place. GPS was not letting us be so great. Finally we were guided in the general direction, “go through the courtyard.” That we did and still couldn’t find it. It was super cold last night too! We asked someone and nope, they had never heard of Himitsu. Just as we had given up in frustration, a very sharp dressed gentleman was walking very quickly up the walkway. We asked him. Yes! He was going to Himitsu!  He walk up to a building that we had passed several times and put in a code. At that point, I had a feeling that this was the person I was there to speak with. So I asked if he was Ben. And he was Ben! We confirmed our reservation at the door, then proceeded to the bar.

I formally introduced myself and told Ben the details of why I was there. First we order some cocktails. I asked if you knew what he was making for Highball. He said didn’t have all the components but could recreate it with what he had.  As he gathered everything to make the cocktail, I enjoyed watching the other bartenders making beautiful cocktails, the romantic atmosphere with the sounds of hip hope quietly playing in the background. It’s a really too spot. 

Ben was ready to wow me, but it didn’t know that yet. His cocktail for the Highball is inspired by the dessert. I’m not going to spoil the rest by telling you exactly what that means, but please be assured that this cocktail is something that you have never tasted before. The presentation is pretty awesome too. His international travels and apprenticeships under some of the best in the industry was strongly reflected in this amazing cocktail. At one point I asked why he gravitated towards bartending. He answer, “it was a way to show my creative side.” Well Ben, I definitely appreciate your talents. 

Come see Ben in action this Saturday at the High Museum of Art for Highball! Do not miss it!!


Rapid Fire Q & A

Hometown?

Marietta, GA

What time did you get up this morning?

9:30

What did you have for dinner last night?

Kyma

1st alcohol that touched your lips.

Green Apple Smirnoff

Describe your job in one word.

Rewarding 

Describe your job in one cocktail.

Daiquiri 

Name a historic person you would like to make a drink for.

Earnest Hemingway

What would you make?

Other than a daiquiri? A corkscrew#2

Popcorn or potato chips?

Potato Chips

What’s your mixologist superpower?

Supersonic hearing.

If you were ice cream, what flavor would you be?

Mint Chocolate Chip. Not because I like but it’s a flavor that people either love or hate.

Ginger ale or ginger beer

Ginger Beer 

What color is your toothbrush?

Teal and white.

Cocktail that represents Atlanta.

Whiskey Peach

Mimosas or Bloody Mary

Bloody Mary

Favorite menu item at Himitsu.

Sakura

Best midnight snack.

Ramen 

Advice for aspiring bartender.

Find someone to work under. Study a lot. Stay humble.

What: Highball
Where: Margaretta Taylor Lobby, High Museum of Art
1280 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
When: February 18, 2017, 7:30pm-11:00pm
Tickets: http://www.high.org

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Get To Know High Museum of Art Highball Competitor, Bryan Holmes {Davio’s Southern Steakhouse}

Photo by Gannon via Twitter @MSquaredPR
Today I headed to Buckhead to meet with Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse bartender, Bryan Holmes. This Saturday, Bryan will be competing in Highball, the High Museum of Art’s first ever mixology competition. This Atlanta native, comes to the competition with 21 years of bartending under his belt. He started his road to mixologist, at Ippolittos, when someone didn’t show up for work and was asked to fill in. 21 years later Bryan is representing Davio’s in a most epic competition on February 18th.

During my visit Bryan made me The B & B, a cocktail he made on the fly when PR reps came into the restaurant requesting a cocktail for National Ice Tea Month. It was so good it was added to the menu. You can’t go wrong with whiskey, basil, blueberries, and ice tea!  Delicious!!

Bryan’s Highball cocktail is inspired by Edgar Allen Poe. You don’t want to miss it! Grab a ticket before they’re sold out!

 

Rapid Fire Q & A

What time did you get up this morning?

5am and then 8:30am. 

What did you have for dinner last night?

Kale & Sausage Soup and a Sushimi   Bowl

1st alcohol that touched your lips.

Champagne

Describe your job in one word.

Multitasking

Name a historic person you would like to make a drink for.

Edgar Allen Poe

Popcorn or potato chips?

Potato chips

Coffee or Tea?

Coffee

What’s your mixologist superpower?

Preciseness
Cocktail that represents Atlanta.

Old Fashioned 

If you could bath in any liquid besides water, what would it be?

Coconut Water

Farthest place you’ve traveled.

St. Barts 

Last song stuck in your head.

Stand Up by Ludacris.

Mimosas or Bloody Mary

Bloody Mary

What color is your toothbrush?

Silver
Favorite menu item at Davio’s.

Veal Tenderloin 
Best midnight snack.

Anything at Octopus Bar

5 words to describe yourself.

Indulgent, Generous, Athletic, Bashful, Witty 

Advice for aspiring bartenders.

Ask if you don’t know. Put everything back in its place.

 

 

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What: Highball

Where: Margaretta Taylor Lobby, High Museum of Art

1280 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

When: February 18, 2017, 7:30pm-11:00pm

Tickets: www.high.org

Get To Know High Museum of Art Highball Competitor, Amy Burns {Hampton +Hudson}

Photo via Instagram @hamptonhudson

Allow me to introduce you to Amy Burns, whimsical bartender at Hampton + Hudson as well as competitor at the High Museum of Art’s High Ball. Originally from Toronto, Amy now lives in Atlanta with her 15 year dog, Bill Murray. Amy studied Art History at Georgia State and was more than excited that a mixology competition was being held amongst such amazing art. Her travels abroad have had a great deal of inspiration on tge development of her craft cocktails. She has a love for Tiki drink as “you can never be sad with a Tiki drink in front of you!” Her theme for the competition is Alice in Wonderland. I’m already a fan! You should probably grab a ticket so you don’t miss out! February 18th is the day! Be there!
Rapid Fire Q & A

What time did you get up this morning?

2pm

What did you have for dinner last night?
Steak & Sweet Potatoes 

1st alcohol that touched your lips.

Vodka 

Name a cocktail you make for someone you want to impress.

The Last Word

Describe your job in one word.

Exciting 

What color is your toothbrush?

Pink 

Describe your job in one cocktail.

Mai Tai

Name a historic person you would like to make a drink for.

Salvador Dali 

What would you make?

Clover Club

Popcorn or potato chips?

Popcorn 

What’s your mixologist superpower?

Power of Conversation 

Ginger ale or ginger beer?

Ginger Beer

Cocktail that represents Atlanta.

Ferrari

Worse cocktail served to you.

Pizza Martini

Mimosas or Bloody Mary?

Bloody Mary

Favorite menu item at Hampton + Hudson.
Hot Chicken Biscuit Sliders

Best midnight snack.

Hummus & Carrots

If you were ice cream, what would be your flavor?

Chunky Monkey

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go.

Greece

Describe yourself in 3 words.

Outgoing, optimist, funny

Weird quirk.

I like mayo on everything.

Advice for aspiring female bartenders.

Don’t let the boys push you around.  Stand your ground.

What: Highball
Where: Margaretta Taylor Lobby, High Museum of Art
1280 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
When: February 18, 2017, 7:30pm-11:00pm
Tickets: www.high.org

Get To Know High Museum of Art Highball Competitor, Jonathan Turner {Grain Spirits + Food}

Photo provided by Jonathan Turner

On the road to the High Museum of Art‘s 1st mixology event, Highball, we meet Atlanta resident, Jonathan Turner. Before becoming the Beverage Director at Grain Spirits + Food, Jonathan worked as a photographer, a woodworker, as well as dabbling in the real estate industry. Five years ago he added bartender to his skillset.  He has worked at some of Atlanta’s well known establishments such as, 7 lamps, 1 Kept, and Tavernpointe. On February 18th, Jonathan will represent Grain with an amazing craft cocktail sure to be a crowd pleaser. Check out Jonathan’s rapid fire answers then head to the High Museum of Art and purchase ticket to the Highball so you don’t miss out!

Hometown?

Hapeville, Georgia
What time did you get up this morning?

6AM



What did you have for dinner last night?

Matag Burger

1st alcohol that touched your lips.

Gordon London Dry Gin



Describe your job in one word.

Composer



Describe your job in one cocktail.

Old Fashioned



Name a historic person you would like to make a drink for.

Jerry Thomas



What would you make?

Stuck in a Barrel



Popcorn or potato chips?

Potato Chips

What’s your mixologist superpower?

Ability to see everything.



Cocktail request that makes you roll your eyes.

Nothing really. I give the people what they want, and then something extra.



Bartender or mixologist?

Bartender



Cocktail that represents Atl

Mosaic Tempo



Mimosas or Bloody Mary?

(Shows tattoo of mimosa on finger)



Cocktail snob or nah?

Nah



Favorite menu item at Grain

Cheeseburger Tacos



Best midnight snack.

Does Whiskey count?

Advice for aspiring  bartenders.

Shut up, keep your head down, and listen.

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What:  Highball

Where:  Margaretta Taylor Lobby, High Museum of Art

1280 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

When:  February 18, 2017, 7:30pm-11:00pm

Tickets:  www.high.org

Highball, The High Museum of Art’s 1st Mixology Event, Happening February 18, 2017


Next Saturday the place to be will no doubt be at the High Museum of Art. There, 15 local bartenders will compete at Highball for bragging rights, a cash prize and be named Atlanta’s top mixologist. Ticket holders to this boozy event will enjoy light bites, music, samples of craft cocktails and vote for their favorite bartender. All proceeds from the Highball event benefit the High Museum of Art. 

Participating Mixologist

Greta Buccellato – 5 Church 

Amy Burns – Hampton + Hudson 

Blake Carter – Sweet Auburn BBQ

Bobby Dudley – The SOS Tiki Bar

Brent Hesse – 1KEPT

Bryan Holmes – Davio’s Atlanta

Hannah Leonard – GRAIN

Jonathan Turner – GRAIN

Carmaleita Lyght – Lyght House Cocktails

Jose Pereiro – Drift Fish House & Oyster Bar

Corey Phillips – Bellina Alimentari

Trip Sandifer – The Painted Pin

Ryan Smith – Reboot Retrocade & Bar

Jessica Smith – Urban Tree Cidery

Ben Yabrow – Himitsu
To purchase tickets visit www.high.org

High Museum of Art Student Pop-Up Show


I have some really awesome news!! My beautiful daughter, Sage, currently has a painting hanging in the High Museum of Art. Yay!! Students grades K-12 were invited to participate in the High’s first Student Pop-Up Show. Sage immediatly wanted to be a part of it. She got all of her art supplies out and went to work. She created a piece she entitled “ATLANTA”. It’s so awesome!


Yesterday morning, she arrived at the High Museum and proudly hung her art. These young artists are so amazing! Their work will be on display until October 22. Go check them out! 

“ATLANTA”

Eat Your Art Out At Twelve Eighty

 

A few weeks ago, The Atlanta Food Bloggers’ Society was invited to Twelve Eighty for an exclusive menu tasting. Twelve Eighty is located in the Woodruff Arts Center. Right across from one of my favorite places to visit in Atlanta, the High Museum of Art. As many times I’ve passed this restaurant, seeing people sitting and sipping on their cocktails, I’ve never once stopped in. I like cocktails!! It wasn’t that the restaurant was unappealing, from the outside looking in. Twelve Eighty has a really very nice, artsy, contemporary look. Very appealing! So I was very happy to have the opportunity to experience this restaurant for the first time with a blogger menu tasting.

 

When we arrived we were immediatly greeted and offered a glass of wine. Now that’s how you introduce a first time diner! From the time I walked through the door, to my departure the staff was exceptional! Executive Chef John C. Metz came out to greet us and answer any questions that we had before the dinner began.

We started the tasting with a lunch option, the Chopped Spring Salad, featuring crispy onions on top. Very nice start to dinner. From there it just got better and better. Not only were these dishes delicious, they were plared beautifully.So beautiful that you almost didn’t want to eat it. Almost. Truly a work of art. 

Chopped Spring Salad ~ crisp romaine, jumbo asparagus, vine ripe tomato, pancetta, “Sweet Grass Dairy Farm” Asher Bleu, avocado, squash, chick pea, creamy Italian dressing, crispy onions

Maine Lobster Roll ~ Fresh Lobster, Avocado, Buttery Toasted Brioche Roll

Three House-made Dips ~ Olive Tapenade, Hummus, Pimento Cheese, Fresh Veggies, Grilled Baguette

Main Lobster Deviled Eggs ~ chives and citrus aioli

Lollipop Smoked Chicken Wings ~ Ashley Farms Frenched Wings and Maple Bourbon Sauce

Melon and Grape Salad ~ fresh cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon, red grapes, arugula, fresh mint, crumbled feta, euro cucumber and honey lavender white balsamic

Jumbo Sea Scallops ~ Pearl Cous Cous, sun-dried tomato, local wild greens, radicchio, shiitake mushroom, lady peas, cremini mushrooms, and parsley oil.

Farmer’s Vegetable Farro ~ vine-ripe tomatoes, zucchini, squash, lady peas, shiitake mushrooms, yellow grape tomato, arugula, parsley oil

 

Open-Faced Bruschetta Steak Sandwich ~ baby red and yellow grape tomatoes, caramelized onion, roasted garlic aioli, pressed baguette and basil crème fraiche

Dessert was amazing! I loved every one of them. I would order all of them all over again , multiple times. With such great desserts, you could easy make this a place to meet a date before heading to a show at the Alliance Theater. I would be impressed!

Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta ~ Italian Custard topped with Macerated Seasonal Berries & Raspberry Coulis

Key Lime Cheesecake

Decadent Chocolate Torte ~ rich chocolate cake served with house made salted caramel ice cream

Accompanying these beautiful course were some fantastic crafted cocktails.  I would definitely come back and sip on every single last one of them. These cocktails were great! Grab your girls because Girls Night Out just got interesting! Needless to say you if you pass by the window of Twelve Eighty on your way to the High Museum of Art, you just might see me! If so, come in and join me!

 

Strawberry Caipirinha ~ Mae De Oro Cachaca, Fresh Strawberries, Lime Squeeeze
Old Cuban ~ Bacardi 8 Aged Rum, Sparkling Wine, Lime, Mint, Angostura
El Diablo ~ Excelia Tequila Blanco, Crème De Cassis, Fresh Lime Juice, Ginger Beer
The “High” Kick Mule ~ Medley Brothers Bourbon,

Twelve Eighty

Woodruff Arts Center 

1280 Peachtree Street NE 

Atlanta, GA 30309 

(404) 733 4200 
*I received this dinner complimentary. All thoughts and opinions are my own.