Omnivore - Seen and heard at last week’s Atlanta Food & Wine Festival

Here’s (some of) what you missed...


  • Tiffanie Barriere’s Bayou Sour cocktail spotted at the African American Cocktail Legends seminar
  • Angela Hansberger

The fifth annual Atlanta Food and Wine Festival this past weekend wove the stories of the south in a meaningful, innovative fashion with all the attention to detail one would expect from a southern host. Now that we’ve finally, fully recovered decompressed, here’s a handful of the weekend’s most quotable moments.

Co-founders Dominique Love and Elizabeth Feichter toasted the opening day clinking glasses and hoping the AFWF would be “setting the tone across the south,” as they were here to “entice people to eat, drink, and explore.” This year’s dedicated seminars and dinners sponsored by state tourism departments (SC, MS, AL) were curated to “tell their story in a much more meaningful way.”


  • Pulled pig from Alabama’s Archibald’s BBQ
  • Angela Hansberger

Charlie Nelson, whose great, great, great grandfather founded Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery noted: “There is an inherent craft in whiskey in that barrels are made by humans,” during his Bourbon, Barrels, and Beyond seminar. And the distillery wants to “honor the traditions of the past but embrace the changes of the future.” His brother, Andy Nelson, added a neat bit of trivia after talking staves and bung holes: “There are more bourbon barrels in the state of Kentucky than there are human beings.” The crowd learned about hoop rivets, bilge, stave joints, and what exactly a bung hole is.

Archibald’s BBQ out of Tuscaloosa, Ala., served up remarkable ‘cue in the tasting tents. Hefty cups full of pulled pork “cooked slow and low over hickory wood” and swimming in a vinegary orange sauce were served with a smile by owner Woodrow Washington whose grandaddy founded the joint in 1962. Road-trip worthy, trust.


Bar man Greg Best intrigued bystanders with a teensy bit of insight into his highly anticipated Krog Street Market establishment. Best roamed the festival grounds handing out grim reaper-clad wooden nickels while whispering valor morghulis (that’s “all men must die” in “Game of Thrones” speak) in people’s ears. He’s also been spotted rocking a shirt with the same reaper with sickle emblem, of course

During a Chateauneuf du Pape wine tasting session which was as much a history and geography lesson, Charleston’s Frederick Corriher said “There is life in the vineyard. Keep tasting and keep tasting and explore different things as it sits in your glass.


The African American Cocktail Legends seminar with One Flew Souths Tiffanie Barriere, cocktail historian Dave Wondrich, and the Bitter Southerner’s Chuck Reece explained how “If you went up a steamboat up the Mississippi, there’s a good chance your bartender was black.” And, “these (cocktail) recipes need to be written into American culinary history,” added Wondrich. A great discussion ensued with questions from attendee and the Sound Table bartender Navarro Carr. We’ll even share Barriere’s Bayou Sour recipe: equal parts bourbon, Peychaud’s bitters, fresh lemon juice, Poirier cane syrup.

Annnd, last but certainly not least, here are some rather detailed field notes from when we were soberest: Thursday night + Friday

Festivities kicked of with a bang (and some drizzle) during last Thursday’s launch party over at Ponce City Market (PCM). A crowd of 500 braved the rain for cocktails, small bites, and music to usher in the festival’s fifth anniversary.


  • Angela Hansberger
  • South Carolina flounder with corn and bean salad, chow chow, and passion fruit caviar from Polaris

Sean Brock (Husk, McCrady’s, Minero) thrilled folks with tacos, an intro to his forthcoming PCM Minero outpost. Anne Quatrano and executive chef Daniel Chance of soon-to-come Dubb’s Fish Camp dazzled with chilled oysters with green tomato, sorrel, and horseradish. Linton Hopkins and Jason Paolini of Restaurant Eugene hooked everyone up with a fun AFWF Bingo card to use throughout the weekend. Brooks Reitz of Charleston’s Leon’s Oyster Shop and the Jack Rudy Cocktail Co. stood nearby shaking a bourbon and tea cocktail.

On Friday morning, the Loews Hotel’s chef Olivier Gaupin and Atlanta City Council Rep. Kwanza Hall helped raise a glass to festival founders Elizabeth Feichter and Dominique Love. The room was positively filled with Southern food and beverage luminaries. If you spotted one of the many silver flying pig pins on certain folks’ lanyards, it meant they’d attended the AFWF all five years.


What better way is there to commence a southern experience of food and drink with close to 100 seminars than bourbon? Bourbon, Barrels and Beyond: Repurposing the Container that Built America was an in-depth discussion on flavor profiles, staves, mellowing, and charring led by Charlie and Andy Nelson of Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery (founded in the 1800s by their great-great-great grandfather).

During The Art of Collaboration, moderated by the AJC’s Bob Townsend, craft brewers Spike Buckowski (Terrapin), John Roberts (Max Lager’s), and Wayne Wambles (Cigar City) introduced us to the official beer of the festival, Cuvee du Gamall, hoppy session sour. We also learned of an upcoming collaboration between Terrapin and Cigar City called “Vapricot.”

After getting our learn on, we headed to the tasting tents, which were packed with good eats and LOTS of beverages from the south.

Five best things we put in our mouths:

  • South Carolina flounder with corn and bean salad, chow chow, and passion fruit caviar from Polaris (GA)

  • Pork Rib from Southern Soul BBQ (GA)

  • Mr. Jones bourbon cocktail from Grain’s Keving Bragg, representing Four Roses bourbon (GA)

  • Duck fat poached Springer Mountain Farms chicken from Nick Leahy of Saltyard (GA)

  • Delaware Bay oysters with shaved ice potlikker and hickory smoked salt from Feast BBQ (KY)