Atlanta Business section is where we discuss tips and tricks on how to improve or market your business better! We also dive into some of the small businesses in Atlanta that you should be on the look out for as they grow and prosper. The Atlanta Tribe shows Atlanta in a new light.

When I started film school, I couldn’t tell you the difference between a producer and a director. Many of my fellow classmates were in the same boat and they did not know all Atlanta film jobs on set. Actually, one of the best things film school did for me was clarify the responsibilities of each role. If you haven’t gone to film school it can be embarrassing to ask what each job does, so here’s my list of important jobs on set and what they do.

Film Producer

The producer is the be all end all of the project. They are there from day one until the project wraps. They are in charge of securing money, hiring the crew, and making sure the project goes smoothly. Almost all of the producers work is before production. Once the shooting starts the producer should be able to take a step back and let the film happen. Ultimately, however, the producer has the final say on everything with the project because they are the ones who control the money, and if they don’t want to pay for something or want to cut something out, it is completely their call. The producer and director should have a close relationship or at least an understanding for each other because they both want the same thing, a good movie.

Set Director

The director is in charge of making the movie. They are in charge of the story and creative aspects of filmmaking. In pre-production, they create the shot list, storyboard, overheads, and script breakdown. Then, they meet with the first A.D. to create the shooting schedule based on all of the paperwork. The director’s vision is what drives the movie forward. Whether they wrote the script or worked with a writer, they are there to make their own movie with their own vision. On set, they work with the actors to shape their performance, cinematographer to create a stunning shot, and the first A.D. to make sure they are on schedule.

The only person that is above the director is the producer because the producer controls the money. Once filming has wrapped, the director works with an editor to create the final project. The director, much like the producer, sees the project through to the very end.

Set First A.D.

The First Assistant Director is the right hand to the director, if the director says something needs to get done, the first A.D. will get it done. They are in charge of making sure the production is on schedule, they have a list of every shot that needs to be filmed that includes the actors, props, and locations of each. They film everything in the most logistical way possible because time is money, especially on set. While the director is meeting with the actors or talking to the cinematographer about the next shot, the first A.D. has everyone already moving equipment there so that when they’re ready to shoot, everything should be set up.

Film Cinematographer

First things first, the cinematographer does not touch the camera. They create the shots and control the lighting and make it look how they want but the camera operator is the one that executes the shot. The cinematographer is in charge of the entire camera department, whatever they say goes, but if you want to work with the cameras and actually do the shots, then camera op is right up your alley. On smaller sets of course the cinematographer is also the camera op. Near the end of pre-production, the cinematographer will meet with the director and go over the shot list to collaborate on what they think each shot should look like.

Set Production Assistant

Some of you are probably very familiar with this job but for those who are just getting started, a P.A. does whatever they’re asked whenever they’re asked to. If someone needs coffee you’re going to grab their coffee. If something needs to get picked up for later, you’re driving to pick something up. You are the workforce that the first A.D. will call upon to make sure everything gets done. When I first started doing P.A. work, I worked on very small sets. I was the only P.A. which meant I did everything that needed to get done, but this also meant I was able to work closely with everyone on set like the director and D.P. This was extremely valuable to me because I was able to learn about every job on set. If you can find a job like that I would recommend taking it.

Atlanta Film Jobs on Set

In the film industry there are many titles and slang terms. They can all be very confusing, especially if you never ask what they mean. I hope this list has been helpful in clarifying some of the important job titles on set. If you you learned something new from this make sure to check out my other articles on Atlanta film!

Want to feel like a celebrity? Umi is your place to be. This is perhaps one of the most extravagant dine outs of Atlanta, with a constant celebrity parade including A-Listers like Sir John Elton, Ashlee Simpson, Tom Cruise, Sir Anthony Hopkins, and a number of local tastemakers. So an evening at Umi guarantees not only a treat for your taste buds but a treat for eyes as well. Don’t we all just love to hang out with celebrities? Course we do. Specifically, the dimly lit, intimate atmosphere of the dining room, packed with A-List celebrities is impossible to miss experience.

What Is UMI All About?

A union of modern Japanese flavors combined with the classics brought together in a contemporary, elegant setting is what Umi is all about. Located in Buckhead, one of Atlanta’s most bustling neighborhoods, the restaurant doesn’t fail to grab the attention of both celebrities and commoners. In addition, to showcase the mantra of pure and hygienic Asian fare, Todd Murphy, designer and artist of Atlanta, has kept the interior simple yet classy with earthy, organic elements as work.

Star Feature of UMI

While the restaurant boasts of a celebrity clientele, the menu too is no less a show-off of premium quality ingredients. The head chef, Fuhuyiko Ito has designed a menu that features the finest quality fish from the world’s best seafood market and the topmost quality ingredients. Their hottest items include; sautéed foie gras, baked lobster tempura, sushi-grade fish that is lightly cooked, or called Aburri and black cod miso. In addition, accompanying these mouth-watering assortments are salads, soups, starters, nigiri, sashimi, traditional rolls, and specialty house. The beverage list is not short of artistic. It features delectable items such as handmade cocktails, artisan roasted Lamill coffee, beer, and pressed and premium wine. 

Fuhuyiko ITO

The head chef and co-owner of Umi, Fuhuyiko Ito is the person under whose leadership the dynamic team works wonders for the restaurants. Fuhuyiko has an outstanding culinary experience of 28 plus years of both classic French and traditional Japanese flavors. This Toyo-born culinary genius, promises unimaginably ecstatic levels of sushi experience at Umi, right in the heart of Atlanta’s most lively neighborhoods. Specifically, Umi is a miracle of Ito’s cultural heritage and his unrelenting passion for only premium and organic ingredients. His diverse menu utilizes influences that are international and also progressively classic in their approach. The Asian fare at Umi’s remains unmatched even today.

Dessert Dynamics

Lisa Ito, the pastry chef at Umi, adds new definitions to the dessert menu of Atlanta’s best Sushi destination. Armed with her passion for chocolate and her training of French classics, Lisa creates ethereal unions of Japanese heritage and contemporary flavors. In addition, her pastries and creative dessert items are the results of a harmonious marriage of flavors and exotic ingredients.

Hot Dishes

If you happen to visit Umi, you can not afford to miss out on the following show stoppers at Umi.

  • Black Cod Misoyaki

Black cod marinated in miso and then grilled to perfection

  • Baked Lobster Tempura

Served with a delicious creamy sauce

  • Chilean Sea Bass YU-AN Yaki

Sea bass marinated in Yu-an sauce and grilled to perfection


Sauté foie gras served with the sauce of the day

  • Tuna Foie Gras

Topped with sautéed foie gras, with ponzu sauce on a bed of wilted kale

  • Rock Shrimp Tempura

Served with ponzu sauce or spicy, creamy sauce

  • Wagyu Toban Yaki

5A imported Wagyu, dashi sake broth

  • Lobster Toban Yaki

Served with soy butter sauce

  • Seared Diver Scallops

Toban grill and Soy Ginger sauce

  • Chicken Teriyaki

Served with rice and vegetables


The omakase is the most popular demand for the restaurant. It includes the following:

  • Miyabi

Hotdish, chef selection, sashimi plate, starter, soup, assorted nigiri, premium, and dessert

  • Umi

Starter, coup, chef selection, assorted nigiri, hot dish, sashimi plate and dessert

  • Iti Kase( Sushi bar only)

Coursed chef selections and hand-selected items of the day

What Atlanta Magazine Has to Say

According to Atlanta Magazine, this hot sushi destination in Buckhead is a stunning contrast of woods and an army of cooks tackling the white oak, eleven seater sushi bar, propped along the back wall, and bathed in buttery tones.  Most weeknights, the ambiance envelops you in a sedate cloud while the meals focus solely on the contemporary Japanese flavors of Fuhuyiko’s traditional cuisine. Ito’s menus, while traditional and classic, are strongly influenced by Nobuyuki Matsuhisa’s playbook, from Nobu’s chain of global restaurants.

Finally, the authenticity and precision of flavors in the food alone casts Umi among the highest ranks of the culinary industry of the Atlanta. Adding to the grandeur of the restaurant is also the close proximity of St. Regis, where most star athletes and celebrities often stay during their trips to Atlanta.

Do you want to savor some artfully arranged and masterfully cooked sushi?

If you are ready to take on the Japanese food venture in Atlanta, then Chef Art Hayakawa has brought you a real Japanese traditional Sushiya.

There is no need to spend money to visit Japan to enjoy this traditional delicacy. All you need is to spend just $185 to book your reservation at Sushi Hayakawa. The money does not only give you an entry to this mini- Japan in Atlanta but also allows you to taste Hayakawa’s fourteen courses, two-and-a-half-hour honkaku  ( traditional authentic omakase).

It is a popular Japanese extensive meal in which as dinner, you can allow the chef to steer.  Besides this, early reservations can get you front seats to see and experience Hayakawa’s dexterity at the sushi counter.

With its exceptionally crafty atmosphere and services, Hayakawa is undeniably one of the most delightful characters in the food scene of Atlanta. It is the right eatery for you if you are fond of eating sushi. Chef Hayakawa is, without any doubt, is a master at crafting sea delicacies. With his spectacular skills of handling fish, he, at the same time, incredibly charming and entertaining to his guests. He does not only greet his guest personally but also tell them a litany of their life’s details.

Doesn’t’ it sound interesting?

At the sushi bar, you can select dishes from the tasting menu ranging from $95 to $135. Plus, you will be served premium nigiri- a special fish that is imported from Japanese markets. The fish comes with the amazing flavor of house-made soy sauce.  If you are lucky enough to get the seat in time, don’t miss out on Hayakawa’s signature dish Scallops and monkfish liver.

Atlanta’s Japanese Sushiya- A must-try Cuisine

As mentioned earlier, Sushi Hayakawa is a creation of Chef Hayakawa, who has brought traditional and intimate suShiya to Atlanta from the finest and famous markets of Japan. The restaurant is located on Buford’s Highway’s food emporium. The serenely designed eatery is a great place to experience something different and truly unique.

Chef Atsushi has curated the finest fish selection using his expert and professional knowledge in Atlanta. Specifically, he offers the sources from Toyosu market Tokyo and many other countries in the world. Sushi Hayakawa has become a must-to-try staple since 2008 that invites its guests to experience some authentic Japanese vibes outside of Japan.

Honkaku Omakase

Visiting Sushi Hayakawa and not experiencing Honkaku Omakase is not justified. This fourteen-course meal incorporates the finest in -house offerings.  Honkaku Omakase is a two-and-a-half-hour food session and limited to only two guests every day. The guests can order exclusive dishes and special fish varieties to treat their taste buds.

However, you need to makes sure that you reserve your seats in advance to get the front and center space at this Japanese eatery if you want sushi master to serve you personally. Reservations are also important because space is tiny at Hayakawa. Chef has to turn down several guests who show without reservation at the restaurant.

Despite the small space, Hayakawa has managed to make his mark in Atlanta’s food industry. And the accolades from many renowned reviewers such as Atlanta Magazine,  Zagat, Men’s Journal, and bon appétit, etc.

Hayakawa’s Delicious Menu

Food revelation at Hayakawa is mainly for the fish diners who love to taste a Japanese version of fatty tuna, sushi, and bluefin. The dining place is great to succumb to the taste of amber-toned and succulent Shima aji that has a powerful tuna flavor.  If you have never been to the height of deep-sea during the scallop season, it is difficult to find out the real taste of candy-like scallops. However, there is no worry if you have got your reservations done in Hayakawa. There is no way you can’t fall in love with meaty and fresh scallops that Japanese-trained Chef Hayakawa prepares.

In addition to this, you can order nigiri and sashimi that are served raw to the diners with the tiny wasabi cubes. In addition, this incorporation makes sashimi tenderer and juicier.

Hayakawa- Luxurious Delicacies at the Restaurant

Hayakawa is not the place to eat only; it is an eatery to see some artistic food creation, and the sashimi platter is an example of that. The oval platter comes grouped around a frame-curled fish set with toothpicks as it is just leaped out of the sea. The platter is a beautifully sectioned and deep-fried to present it as a main course. Finally, know that this artistry takes time and no wonder why the sashimi platter needs a full hour for the preparation.

Fatty tuna, as mentioned earlier, is another super-rich inert luxury you should not miss out when visiting Hayakawa. The impassioned odes of Chef Hayakawa have taken this eatery to the whole new level.  The masterfully prepared recipe is an excellent way to celebrate the Japanese cuisine and a dish you have never tasted before.

You don’t remember the size of the restaurant but the taste of the food.

If you agree with this, you don’t want to miss out on the exquisite dining experience at Spring restaurant. The restaurant has made its mark on the food domain with its exceptional and delectable menu that you might not get anywhere else. Chef Brian- the master chef of Spring restaurant, has successfully turned the dining experience of the guests in a joyous celebration. The innovative and fine-dining experience at this eatery often retains in the memory of the guests due to its delicate interludes and amazing cuisines.

Whether you order pan-roasted halibut or choose to treat your taste buds with wax beans or red snapper, there is nothing is basic in this restaurant. The eatery excels at designing menus that can be harmonized with sustainability and seasonality. Chef Brian is dedicated to utilizing the ingredients that are grown in the local farms. It is because he wants to raise food that is grown by artisans and local farmers ethically. And the creative chef has done it by introducing some flavorful and healthy dishes in American cuisine.

His belief in simple cooking is what makes the dishes in the menu extraordinary delicious. You visit the restaurant once, and its honest service and unpretentious ambiance will make you visit it again and again.

The Specialties in Spring Restaurant

The small-town restaurant is located on the top of breathtakingly beautiful railroad tracks in a relatively remote site of Marietta Square. The destination might not sound as worth risk-taking for a culinary experience.  But this is not the case.  This simple yet elegant restaurant is full of charming vibes that you might not get in a large and delicately designed five-star hotel.  Who wouldn’t love watching a rail train rambling slowly by outside while savoring the most appetizing food?  Every thirty-minute, a train passes by the Spring restaurant.

 This is not the only defining attribute that makes Spring restaurant in Atlanta worth visiting. The French technique-driven menu made with innovative and organic ingredients is another highlighting feature that keeps you tied to the dishes of this restaurant. The Shrimp bisque, for instance, has an amazingly smooth and silky version you have ever tasted e before.  The scrumptious delicacy will make you fight for the smallest dollop of the sauce it is topped with. Besides this, you will love to devour perfectly pan-seared grouper of Pepin and Child.  The dark chocolate mousse will make your day if you are in celebration mood.

 However, if you want to rate Spring restaurant for bell and whistles, the eatery spot might fulfill your expectations. The dining rooms have intentionally been kept minimalistic and reflect the austerity to a certain point. It is because the restaurant does not follow rich culinary trends. That is what makes this restaurant one-of-its-own-kind as masterfully talented head-chef Brian ensures to bring you the best meals possible.

What is in the Menu?

Menu of this beautiful restaurant is comprehensively divided into three sections to help guests make their choices.  Let’s navigate you through the choices on the menu.


Dinner has starters and main courses.

Starter Choices

  • Maine Lobster Bisque 

You can order it in three different flavors such as sweet corn, butternut, and navy beans

  • Tuna Crudo

 Spring makes Tuna with cucumber, fennel, and sun gold tomatoes

  • Foie Gras Torchon

 Try balsamico  extravecchio or fig  for the world-class  taste of Gras  Torcgom

  • Apple and Endive Salad

The salad choices include pickled onion and walnut

Main Course

·        American Pan Roasted Red Snapper

The unique seafood recipe is served with red kurri, savoy cabbage, and marble potato

  • Garganelli

 You can enjoy black trumpet, burgundy truffle, and butternut

  • Pan-Roasted Duck Breast

Roasted beets and crispy kale are what make it a timeless delicacy 

  • Dry Aged Strip Loin 

Comes dipped in the mouth-watering garlic potato sauce and roasted cipollini


Despite being a small set up, Spring restaurant has a huge collection of world’s famous wines to pair with the meals. You can have;

  • Sparkling  
  • White, Red  and Rose  wines
  • Champagnes


The choices that the dessert collection of Spring restaurant offers are tempting enough to make you order all of them.   You can indulge in the taste of

  • Tarte Tatin, made with calvados sabayon and red grapefruit
  • Sorbet
  • Gianduja Custard, topped with hazelnut cream,  and preserved cherries
  • Panna Cotta, the multi-flavored dessert is made in pistachio, finger lime, and red grape-fruits

Thus, this rustic-chic Atlantic restaurant has a natural up-scale environment, offering you the best seasonal Southern food. From the friendly staff, well-presented dishes, masterfully designed menu to minimally simple décor, everything contributes to give you outstanding and memorable dining experience.

Ray’s restaurant is your best choice for fine dining when in Atlanta city. With so many options spread across, what makes this downtown restaurant a top choice is its dedication to serving qualitative, exotically prepared seafood and entrees. The dining house not just offers a wide variety of seafood but also ensures its freshness, sustainability, and its delectable presentation.

Ray’s in the city has made it their mantra to make their dining experience even more magical than it already was. The past year brought tremendous reinvigoration for their bar program. Diners now, are not only offered their usual best, but also may treat their taste buds with craft cocktails featured on their specialty for the day. These craft cocktails are seasonally inspired, leaving diners simply awestruck with the delivery of flavors.

Ray’s in the city prizes fish as the star of most of their main dishes, which is most often found and enjoyed best in grilled form. However, their mouthwatering, fresh sushi collection, and raw oysters make it a fine struggle for diners to make their choice.

How It All Came Together

John Schadl, the Sales and events manager of Ray’s in the city, expresses his deep attachment to this particular part of Atlanta. Having worked in the food industry for 35 years, he travelled the world from Paris to Spain, from Rome to North Africa, but never could settle anywhere. Atlanta’s love for vibrant flavors kept pulling him back to the city of food until he finally realized this is where he belongs. He has been a dedicated team member of Ray’s in the city since 2010 and has contributed his expertise not only in the human resource, operations and training, but also looks after the events side of the restaurant. His passion for combining creativity and enthusiasm with flavors has made Ray’s one of the finest dining restaurants if the city. According to John, a great team brought together in the most vibrant part of Atlanta is what Ray’s in the city is all about.

Dean Bertholet, the executive head chef, joined Ray’s Restaurants back in 2003. He worked in Ray’s on the river as an Executive Sous Chef and then moved downtown later to open doors to Ray’s in the city as the Executive chef.

For about five years, Dean moved on from Ray’s to work as the head chef at four Google facilities spread across Atlanta. Unable to stay away from Ray’s any longer, Dean Bertholet returned in 2015 to take the dining experience to new heights of ecstasy with his creativity and passion for food.

Chef’s Creations at Ray’s in the City

While the restaurant boasts of an extensive menu with fish as the star of their main courses, the following delicacies are ones you sure don’t want to miss if you find yourself lucky enough to visit the restaurant. Brought together by the Executive Chef’s own genius and creativity are the following showstoppers of Ray’s in the city.

  • Salmon Oscar

This indulgence is made up of a succulent giant lump of crab meat flavored with Yukon gold, béarnaise, and served with whipped potatoes and grilled asparagus. Simply delicious!

  • Crispy shrimp and grits

This decadence is made of Cajun butter, bits of stone-ground cheddar cheese, and corn salsa. The work of a genius, I’d say!

  • Horseradish encrusted black grouper

This beauty is made up of whipped potatoes of Yukon gold and Swiss chard.

  • Broiled seafood platter

This, seafood lover’s dream come true, platter is made up scallops, haricot verts, shrimps, Yukon gold whipped potatoes, jumbo lump crab cake and fish

  • Steak Frites

Parmesan frites, 6 ounce tenderloin. Need I say more?

  • Chef’s featured pasta

Seasonal ingredients tossed together with chef’s handmade pasta. Because pasta is life, isn’t it?

Happy Hour

Is there any greater happiness than happy hour in one of the best restaurants in the city? Of course, there isn’t. Ray’s in the city brings a happy hour from Monday to Friday, in their lounge and bar from 3 pm to 7 pm and then from 9 pm till closing time. Offers in their happy hour include:

  • Their most popular cocktails features in the regular drink specials between the range of 6$ to 9$
  • Bar bites at half prices which include crispy point shrimp and Judith calamari, New Orleans BBQ shrimps and blue cheese chips with loaded Statesboro
  • Live music from Wednesday to Saturday in the lounge and bar
  • Oysters on the half shell at 1.50$

Private Dining to Make Your Occasions More Special

Ray’s in the city not just vows to make you a customer for life once you visit them but also take great delight in making your occasions all the more special for you. So whether you have a rehearsal dinner on your hands or a corporate dinner designed to impress, a birthday party or an anniversary celebration, you can trust Ray’s in the city to take care of it all for you.

From an accommodation of 10 people to full restaurant bookings, their competent team of award-winning chefs, event managers, and a well-trained staff will put together an event your guests are never likely to forget.

Directing has always been my passion. I’ve done it my whole life. I started with lego stop motion movies and then moved onto short films as I grew older. Over the years I’ve learned and realized how to be a better director. It takes a lot to be the head of a project, but the end product is always worth it. Here is everything I know about becoming a better director.


Having a clear vision for your project is a must. You have to know the story, the themes, and the characters inside and out. While that sounds like a lot to keep track of, it is completely necessary. There is one big difference between an idea and a vision. That is a vision is a fully developed idea. An idea is just the beginning stage of a vision. Your vision has to be clear. You have to know which characters experience which things and for what reason. You have to know the flow of your story and where it should take the audience, and you should know how it all leads up to the end. If you don’t have a clear vision for your film it will end up being confusing and unorganized.


Vision is nothing without organization. You can have all the ideas in your head but if you don’t know how or when those ideas come into play then you might as well not have a vision. Many directors that I have worked with on smaller sets are not organized in the slightest, and the film suffers greatly from this. Nothing flows together or makes sense; it’s a mess. All of these directors are capable of making something better but they don’t have their ideas organized. You must be organized as a director and know what needs to happen. If at any moment it seems like you don’t know what to do, you will lose the respect of your crew. They don’t want to be led by someone that doesn’t know what they are doing.


Just like organization is to vision, communication is to organization. Organization will help you communicate your ideas better to the rest of the crew. Having the vision written down and organized is useless if you can’t communicate what needs to happen to your cast and crew. Communication on set should be simple. You tell people what needs to happen as clear and concise as possible. You can give more information to actors about a scene or their character, but you don’t have to explain everything to everyone.


As much as we’d like our projects to be 100% ours, a lot of communication has to happen to get a project off the ground. There are so many moving parts on set and so many experts in each department. You have to cooperate with all of them to get your project made. Someone might suggest a compromise because of schedule restrictions, and you have to learn to meet people in the middle. You can fight for parts that you think absolutely cannot be changed. Although, Pick your battles wisely because you can’t win them all.

Director Qualities

These are the pillars to directing that I have learned so far. There might be room for more, but if you want to know the core of what it means to be a good director then follow this list. Too many people want to be directors for the wrong reasons. They want to be the man in charge, or they want to have their name in big letters at the premier but at the end of the day only a few want to do it for the right reasons. That being to tell a good story. That should be the only goal of a director. If they want fame or to feel important on set, the movie is already lost.

Did you know that the average human tongue possesses ten thousand taste buds? How amazing would it be if you found a place that would not leave even one single taste bud dissatisfied? Masterpiece promises to deliver a taste that will not just blow your senses away but also leave every single taste bud of yours tantalized beyond imagination. If that fact itself isn’t enough to tempt you, then it would be even more interesting to find out that Masterpiece has been awarded two prestigious awards. These awards include Silver Spoon Awards for the best restaurants in Georgia 2018 and James Beard Foundation Awards 2018, making it a not to miss restaurant in Atlanta.

To reflect the Atlanta today, this restaurant has its own signature style of iterating the Atlanta famous dry-fried eggplant. Adding to the appeal of the restaurant is its dedication to serving locally-grown produce on its menu. So whether you are a timid dinner or one of the more adventurous ones, Masterpiece will make sure to give you something to fall in love with.

What Makes Masterpiece a Fine Choice

If Szechuan food is your ultimate indulgence, then Masterpiece should be your first choice. Jennifer Zyman, a well-known food critic, stated that Masterpiece is the best stop for Chinese food in Atlanta. It was definitely not an understatement. Whether you are living in Duluth or far away, you can always visit it when it comes to your hot plate of favorites. After all, it is not where you eat when celebrating – it is what you eat that matters.

 At the top of its list of specialties is the dried fried eggplant. This dish carries a divine combination of pepper ash powder and eggplant with chili powder, where the dish reaches a crescendo and ends up in an explosion of Szechuan flavors. A salty, crispy, crunchy exterior with a sweet, creamy exterior and the perfect balance of numbing spices with the right dose of aromatic, tingly Szechuan peppercorns, this dish is a dream come true.

The next bite of indulgence is Masterpiece’s artisan handling of pork. Dong Po Pork is carefully prepared belly of pork, braised, and then lathered in the glaze like a mahogany hue, almost giving you the feel of a mythical tree extract.

While the dry-fried eggplant promises to blow your senses away with its electrical intensity, the Dong Po Pork transports you in another fantasy land of taste with its mellow and soothing tones of spices and texture.

What’s on the menu

Rui Liu, the head chef of Masterpiece, came to Atlanta from Northeastern China on a visa that was only granted to individuals with extraordinary accomplishments. His menu, comprising of 125 main dishes, is nothing short of extraordinary too. Some of those include the following:

For All the Meat Lovers

  • Fried crispy pork
  • Bean curd with sliced pork
  • Stir-fried pork with celery and hot pepper
  • Shredded pork with garlic sauce
  • Dong Po Pork
  • Chairman Mao’s braised pork
  • Double cooked pork
  • Sour cabbage
  • Dry, spicy beef pot
  • Shredded beef with wild pepper
  • Shredded beef with hot pepper
  • Boiled beef in chili stew
  • Fried beef with ash and hot pepper powder
  • Stir-fried mutton
  • Cumin lamb
  • Dried beef chow fun (flat noodle)
  • Stir-fried beef tripe
  • Cumin lamb
  • Stir-fried mutton

Among the Sea Food Delights You Find

  • Boiled fish with chili stew
  • Boiled fish fillet with ash powder and chili
  • Steam fish fillet with spicy chili
  • Fish fillet with pickled cabbage pot
  • Fish fillet with sizzling rice
  • Stir-fried squid
  • Fish fillet pickled cabbage and wild chili
  • Fishball soup (handmade)
  • Salt and pepper squid
  • Shrimp with garlic rice
  • Seafood with soft tofu spot
  • Sea cucumber with sizzling rice

Chicken Duck

  • Onion spicy dry pot chicken
  • Stir-fried with diced chicken and cashew nuts
  • Broil chicken gizzard
  • Yo-yo Duck pot
  • Stir-fried smoke tea duck
  • Smoked tea duck
  • Dry pot “Tu Fei” duck

Calling Vegetable Lovers Are

  • Kung Pao tofu
  • Eggplant with garlic rice
  • Celery with tofu slice
  • Fried tofu with Szechuan hot pepper powder
  • Stir-fried minced pork with sour green beans
  • Sauteed Shanghai Bok choy
  • Sauteed broccoli
  • Stir-fried ear mushroom

A Little Extra

  • Dang Dang noodle
  • Braised beef noodle soup
  • Hot and sour rice noodle
  • Yang Chun noodle soup
  • Dragon style wonton soup
  • Potsticker
  • Coriander minced fish soup
  • Tomato and egg soup


Masterpiece is a Szechuan restaurant that is family owned and operated. The menu is put together by the star chef Rui Liu, featuring 125 dishes. They are located at 3940 Buford HWY, Duluth GA, 30096.

One of the most romantic, prettiest eateries with a nostalgic nineteenth-century décor, Kimball house has an enchanting feel.  Not only does the décor of this restaurant take inspiration from the old traditional bar, but also the food choices it offers have an authentic touch.  You will feel like you are attending a ceremony in an old grand hotel bar when visiting the restaurant. The Victorian wallpaper and wainscoting are the key features that catch your attraction when you stepped into this vintage restaurant. 

Kimball Atmosphere

The presence of Miles MacQuarrie (bartender) creates an inevitable air in the restaurant, and you will feel wonderful as he attends all the guests.  His tasteful creations of beverages such as New Tokyo, which is a perfect concoction of yuzu, ginger, brandy, and scotch or Classic absinthe-rinsed Sazerac, are some of the main attractions that make guest love to come Kimball house. The eatery has become one of the favorite oyster bars in Atlanta in a very short time.  

Kimball house serves food and beverages that not only mean to increase the appetite of the people but also reflect farms, seasons, and personalities of the guests. Hospitality, passion, and humility are the main elements of this restaurant that make its recipes special. The warm and welcoming ambiance adds to the overall impression of the Kimball house.

A  Glimpse of History

The Kimball house on a stubby hill of East College Avenue. The place used to be a Decatur railway depot, constructed in 1891.  Kimball House is the fourth eatery that has occupied this space over the past few decades.  

However, it is the recent decade that played an important role in the success of this restaurant. And the credit goes to the creative team of the restaurant that includes Bryan Rackley, MacQuarrie, Matthew Christison, and Jesse Smith. From financing the place to renovating and designing the menu, these people have proven how teamwork can pay off you.

All these partners embraced an idea of an innovative atmosphere that evokes the feel of a public house and bygone saloons. The restaurant went through a rebuilding phase in 1883.  It was when it incorporated the real downtown Atlantic feel with massive chandeliers and ornate décor. The new décor set a new standard of class and sophistication.

The Warm Ambiance at Kimball House

As the restaurant sits on the historic train depot, it has an amazingly persuasive feel, making the restaurant stand out among Atlanta’s food domain.  The main dining room was only a concrete slab floor. The cavernous dining hall was a bar that has now turned into a storage room.  The kitchen is beautifully renovated with some new and interesting equipment. The huge built-in L-shaped table makes a unique place for garde manger and pastries. The newly renovated restaurant creatively pulls out the history of the space.

A  Restaurant with Seven Owners

This might sound bizarre to you, but Kimball’s house is a rare eatery that is run by seven owners. The astonishing unity and creativity galore have made the place worth visiting.

For example, MacQuarrie is a genius bartender who understands both flavorful combinations and creativity. His cocktail program is full of amazing beverages that have catchy names such as Scurvy Dodger and Mexican Razor Blade. Not only are the names of these cocktails that make guests order them but the refreshing and unique taste.

William Bubier is another talented owner of Kimball house who is maître d’hôtel and manages reservations.  Phil Meeker and Jeffrey Wall are the head chefs who gathered their cooking skills from La Fourchette and East Atlanta’s Holy Taco. Together they created artful and intense recipes to bring some remarkably innovative dishes such as Hawaiian rolls or Duck liver pate.

What Is on the Menu?

Kimball House has extensive and delicious choices on the menu.  The menu is divided into the dinner menu, beer and wines, cocktails, and pastry, and coffee. Here are some of the favorites:


  • Shrimp Cocktail
  • Crispy Veal Sweetbread
  • Beef Tartare
  • Grilled Oysters
  • Hawaiian Roll


Beef Ribs- served with broccoli and butter beans

Duck Breast-   served with sweet potato, shishito, crème Fraiche


  • Dry-fried Eggplant and Okra
  • Chicken Skins
  • Roasted peppers
  • Squash Carpaccio
  • Stir Fry

Soups & Salad

  • Green Salad- turnip, basil vinegar, cashew green goddess, pistachio
  • Potato Soup

Steak Dinner

Luckily, the restaurant has a delicious variety of steaks including

  • Dry-aged rib eye
  • Prime Ribeye
  • Prime Spirals


  • Garam Masala Cake
  • Chocolate Mousse
  • BlackBerry Meringue
  • Vanilla Crème Brulee


  • Espresso
  • Macchiato
  • Cappuccino


  • Rum
  • Brandy
  • Amaro
  • Rye
  • Malt Whisky

Key Takeaway

Kimball House with pristine and historic location is a one-of-its-kind restaurant in Atlanta that you should not miss out on if you want to enjoy some amazing recipes and cocktails. The seven-owner eatery has a charming appeal and pleasant environment that is worth your time and money.

Ethiopian born and raised, Titi Dimissie and Ash Nega knew they were meant to be together forever when decided to live in Atlanta. What they didn’t realize at the time of their marriage was that their partnership would not be limited to being husband and wife only.  With Ash’s dream and visualization of Desta, their partnership translated into a co-ownership of the vision come true, that is, Desta their restaurant. Recognizing Ash’s passion, his wife Titi dedicated herself to bringing her husband’s dream of Ethiopian Kitchen to come true right in the heart of Atlanta.

The couple had initially decided to start on a small scale establishment. However, their focus was not even slightly minimalistic in delivering what the essential elements of their business model were; premium quality ingredients, traditionally rich and classic flavors, hygienic food, well organized, and top-notch service. After tremendous efforts and relentless hard work of the couple, the doors of Desta Ethiopian Kitchen opened for public on 1st July 2006. Their humble venture had started with accommodation of only eight people: seating for four and a countertop for four people to stand.

Today, the testimony of their phenomenal success can be found in their capacity to seat 250 guests. With multiple upgradations and expansions, they have not compromised on the core values of their business and still give first-time visitors a stunning shock. The originality, values, and genuineness of their simple yet remarkable business model are still very much in place. 

Bringing uniqueness to their brand is the marriage of modernized business tactics with true Ethiopian culture. This is what Desta Ethiopian Kitchen is all about.

The Food

Sticking true to the definition of Desta, which means happiness, their menu is designed to make all palates and the inner souls happy.


Do you crave for breakfast at night? Well, no problem. Make your way to Desta, and you will be treated to a scrumptious breakfast no matter what time of the day it is. It must be morning somewhere in the world after all, right?

So here are the start features of their breakfast menu:

  • Chechebsa

Small flat pieces of bread braised with berberre ( Cayenne pepper) and your choice of olive or Ethiopian butter.

  • Foul

Crushed beans sautéed in spices, garnished with tomatoes, fresh diced onion, and pepper. Finished off with butter and olive oil. Served with pita or white bread.

You may further load this treat with a scrambled egg, boiled egg, or feta cheese for additional charges.

  • Kinche

Cracked wheat cooked tender with Ethiopian spices and butter.

  • Fetira

This is a traditional Ethiopian breakfast made up of flatbread with layers of eggs and served with honey.

Teaser Treats

Their teaser appetizers are just the thing to be at the top of the list of favorites. They are:

  • Gomen Siljo Dip

A combined dish of gomen (mild, collard greens, seasoned with spices) and tofu, seasoned with ginger, garlic, a touch of olive oil, and hot mustard. Served with your choice of pita bread or injera (spongy soft flatbread, of a slightly sour taste with a hole, often used as a utensil for scooping up food)

  • Sambusa

These crispy treats are stuffed with your choice of either lentils or minced beef. They are to die for.


Your choice of Salmon or beef. A flour tortilla wrap or Injera filled with their delicious kitfo ( served rare, medium-rare or medium-well)

  • Salmon Starter SALAD

A made fresh on order salad, topped with your choice of cooked or rare Salmon, seasoned with Ethiopian spices.

  • Kitfo Slice

Tortilla wrap filled with a delicious kitfo, jalapeno peppers, and ayib ( cottage cheese) and cooked to perfection as per your choice.

Their signature entrees promise to tantalize your taste buds.

Hosting Your Private Parties

Gearing up for your next private event? Desta located at Emory Point, is the best option for you. They offer comfortable yet sophisticated and elegant accommodation of up to 100 guests, be it a buffet dinner or a seated gathering. Your options to grace your events at Desta are limitless, and you will fail to impress your guests.

They offer customizable menus that are tailored to suit the taste preferences of your guests while staying within your budget.

Options Provide Are

  • Sound system and microphone
  • Buffet meals include silver chafing dishes
  • Bartender and a full bar exclusively for your guests
  • A pull-down, full-sized projector screen which you can connect to your laptop if needed. The projector also connects to the television in case there is an important match you and your guests can’t miss.
  • Decoration of the room as per your choice
  • Your choice of satellite radio music

Catering Services

They offer catering services for your private events, even outside the restaurant, at a venue of your choice. Their top of the line, fully equipped staff, ensures flawless and impressive delivery of their buffet-style catering and presentation. Be it an intimate birthday party or an upscale wedding reception, Desta is equipped to handle it all for you.

Accolades and Recognition

  • Awarded by
  • Certificate of Excellence by Trip Advisor
  • Award Best of Atlanta by Atlanta Magazine
  • Awarded by Zomato Users’ Choice
  • Winner at Creative Loafing, Best of ATL

Here’s What Some Have to Say about Desta

  • Yelp: Top places to eat in in Metro Atlanta
  • CBS Local: Best Ethiopian food in Atlanta
  • Creative Loafing: Best breakfast combo at Desta
  • The Aha Connection: Food frenzy at Desta
  • The Daily Meal: Desta Ethiopian Kitchen
  • Off The Eatin’ Path: A tapestry of inviting flavors
  • Atlanta Magazine: Desta Ethiopian Kitchen

In a nutshell, Desta is not just good in pictures or from he way its menu looks, but the customers who have visited it speaks loudly of its amazing good and service.

Cooking is not just a job – it is quintessentially an art. This is the belief in the Mediterranean. With his mother as the role model cook for him, Kameel’s passion for food flourished at a very early age in life. With the assistance of Aviva, his sister, Kameel, opened the doors to their restaurant, Aviva by Kameel in 2012, on October 8th. He couldn’t have chosen a more fitting name as Aviva in English means spring, all concerning revival and freshness.

The Place Where Quality Lives

The restaurant only cooks with the finest quality premium products and strictly prefers using all local produce. Even their selection of meat is purely born and bred in America with no additional preservatives, chemicals, or extra hormones. All of the cooking is only done in olive oil, with not so much as a stick of butter present in their kitchens, keeping the food light and easily digestible.

When diners take their first bite of the food at Avivas, their taste buds immediately pick one unique element, and that is passion. Kameel’s passion for the culinary arts is what sets apart his restaurants from the others. It is his passion for cooking that no culinary training can ever instill in chefs, and no restaurants can ever pretend to possess. One bite at Aviva’s, and you won’t be able to stop from coming back over and over for more.

Kameel’s perseverance and relentless practice paid off tremendously in delivering all-natural, wholesome, and fresh foods. Getting rated as Atlanta’s Number 1 restaurant for lunch amongst so many bests was not an easy feat, to say the least, but the brother-sister pair made it happen. Their mantra is, when fresh, wholesome and passion combine, great food is bound to come” and that it does.

All Like a Family at Aviva

At Aviva’s, the core principle of the establishment is to treat everyone like family. This philosophy takes to form the moment you step into the restaurant and are engulfed with overwhelming warmth and welcome or even when you just dial through the phone for catering services. Not only do they believe in making all their customers and staff a part of their big family, but they also provide food that is healthy, hearty, and completely natural.

Hot Platters of Aviva by Kameel

The following are the star platters of the restaurant.

  • Chicken Shawarma

Hormone-free, grilled chicken breast strips, with Turkish spice seasonings

  • Rosemary Chicken

Half a chicken baked with Aviva’s secret spices and fresh rosemary. Meat so tender you will love how it falls off the bone

  • Lamb Shawarma

An authentic Turkish creation of shawarma; definitely a fine break from your typical gyro

  • Lamba Kafta

Ground lamb meat patties mixed with veggies and herbs and then grilled to perfection with peppers and onion

  • Wild-caught Salmon

Wild-caught Scottish Salmon, free of dyes, additives or hormones. Grilled with olive and then given a fine topping of dill-lime-caper sauce.

  • Veggie platter

Your choice of any four of their veggie sides. All of the options are vegan and gluten-free.

Aviva Cares for the Community

Aviva’s by Kameel is a strong supporter of health initiatives across the globe, appreciating employees and supporting the local community. They are continually making efforts to give back to the community and uplifting it, sharing their food with needy, and helping all those in need in every way possible for a better lifestyle for everyone. You will often but not surprisingly see Aviva’s team passing out food for free at local fundraisers, at cancer-treating organizations, orphanages, and also often conducting speeches at universities to encourage a healthy lifestyle including a healthy diet. They aim to be a part of a large community. They do their best to achieve that, outside their restaurants, in, and beyond business hours.

Aviva Loves to Support You

The team at Aviva’s loves being a part of local and national initiatives, especially those where they can promote the positive effects of food on your health, which they are the most passionate about. Just like a family takes care of each other’s health, so does the team at Aviva’s. They love to hear about organizations their customers are part of and find ways in which to assist them in making a positive impact. So you can also share your story with them if you think it can bring about a positive development for the community and be assured of Aviva’s support in your venture.

Catering Services

If it is a corporate event or lunch, you have to host, trust Aviva to deliver the most well-crafted menu for a flawless event. You can choose the a-la-carte option if you wish for everyone to get what they like, or you may trust their classic catering and have all the right flavors delivered right to your office.

If it is a special day you need help with, Aviva has had the honor of catering at the most exclusive wedding receptions and private events over the years. Their fresh, wholesome, Mediterranean flavors will only up the scale of your celebrations. With their passion for qualitative food and the importance of family, they make sure they deliver the best for your family and friends on your special day.

What Others Have to Say

  • A Yelp review says that Aviva by Kameel is the only restaurant that not only talks about but also delivers high-quality meals prepared at home.
  • A Trip Advisor review calls it the best restaurant in Atlanta.
  • Creative Loafing Atlanta offered kudos to the restaurant for not having a freezer on-premises, proving the commitment of the restaurant to freshness.
  • Atlanta Magazine admired Kameel for never facing any hesitation in giving people samples with his own hands outside his restaurant.

If you are someone who has always yearned for truly fresh meals, you are surely going to find some peace at Aviva by Kameel.