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Restaurant Review: Brezza Cucina

posted on May 4, 2016 at 1:04 pm
Torn and crispy potatoes served alongside the JW roast chicken Photo by Erik Meadows

Torn and crispy potatoes served alongside the JW roast chicken
Photo by Erik Meadows

If you found yourself shrugging when it was announced that celebrity chef Jonathan Waxman was opening a restaurant in town, don’t fret. You weren’t alone. Waxman was a pioneer of California cuisine, with contemporaries such as Alice Waters and Jeremiah Towers. Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold once called him “the Eric Clapton of chefs.” Waxman became a more current household name thanks to a recent stint on Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters.” He has restaurants in New York, Nashville, and now, since opening Brezza Cucina in October 2015, Atlanta. In short, he is kind of a big deal.

But these days it takes more than the name of a famous out-of-town chef to woo and captivate Atlantans.

Atlanta is proud of its homegrown talent — chefs like Adam Evans, whom Waxman enlisted to sail his Atlanta ship. Evans was the soul of the cooking that put the Optimist on the map. He paid his dues working there and at Ford Fry’s flagship JCT. Kitchen and Tom Collichio’s short-lived Craftbar before that. In recent years, Evans has enjoyed substantial creative freedom and his cooking seemed to thrive in such environments. But at Brezza, the talented chef appears to have been benched.

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