MAYA Steaks Seafood

MAYA: Superior Steak in Sandy Springs

When a new steak restaurant comes along you expect the focus to be on high quality, great tasting steaks. And that’s what MAYA Steaks & Seafood gets exactly right.

MAYA Steaks & SeafoodThe upscale spot in Sandy Springs is the latest restaurant from Mimmo Alboumeh, chef and owner of Red Pepper Taqueria in Buckhead and Decatur. MAYA, named for Chef Mimmo’s youngest daughter, is an American steakhouse with a Spanish flair. Chef Mimmo, who was born in Lebanon, grew up in Spain and spent time in Italy before coming to Georgia.

Chef Mimmo is passionate about finding the right beef to serve. As he was planning the menu, he tasted selections from a variety of meat purveyors. From all of them he selected Braveheart Black Angus Beef, not just for the superior taste but for the treatment and processing of the cattle. Chef Mimmo even traveled to one of their farms in Tennessee to witness this firsthand. Braveheart beef is unique to MAYA; no other Atlanta area restaurants carry it.

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AG Pick: Kimmel Illuminate Chardonnay 2013

Looking for an unoaked Chardonnay at an unbeatable price point? Try the 2013 Illuminate North Coast Chardonnay from Kimmel Vineyards.

Illuminate ChardonnayIt’s a delicious answer to oak fatigue – that sensation when you drink a heavy-handed Chardonnay and you fear you might find a splinter in your tongue. The Illuminate Chardonnay is stainless steel fermented with no oak influence or secondary fermentation. What you get in the glass is pure, fresh fruit.

The Kimmel family has been growing Chardonnay in northern California’s Mendocino County since 1986, on the cattle ranch that was established by Ed and Lillian Kimmel in 1963. Lillian, or Nana as she is affectionately called, is still at the helm and celebrates her 90th birthday this month. Today the fourth generation is cultivating a love for the land.

The 2013 Chardonnay is 100% Chardonnay from the North Coast AVA. The wine is bright yellow in color, with tropical fruit and apple aromas. Flavors of golden apple, Asian pear, pineapple and guava come together in a lingering gently tart finish. Bright acidity adds a refreshing mouthfeel.

For this kind of taste, you won’t believe that the Illuminate North Coast Chardonnay costs just $9.99 a bottle.

Kimmel produces a variety of premium and everyday wines. For more information visit kimmelvineyards.com.

14.5% alcohol

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Kevin Gillespie Celebrates Pork in New Cookbook

Love all things pork? Can’t get enough bacon? Then you’ll want to pick up a copy of Pure Pork Awesomeness by Chef Kevin Gillespie.

The cookbook out March 31st features recipes from around the world with pork as the featured ingredient. The Atlanta chef, restaurateur and Top Chef fan favorite shares his love for pigs and offers dishes for any occasion or day of the week.

Pure Pork AwesomenessYou’ll have a new appreciation for how delicious and versatile pork can be with more than 100 recipes like Milk-Braised Pork Shoulder, Pork Vindaloo, Thai Red Curry Pork, Slow Cooker Country-Style Ribs, Ham Burgers, Bacon Popcorn and Bacon-Molasses Chipwiches.

The book is full of information on pigs, from guides to breeds, parts and labels to cooking methods and techniques. It even answers the question, “why do pigs have snouts?”

Fans can join Chef Gillespie for a special cookbook release party on Sunday, March 29th from 2 to 6 p.m. at Gunshow. Admission includes a signed copy of the book with a rare edition of the “lost” chapter and an array of appetizing pork offerings. Guests will also enjoy drink specials including beer from SweetWater Brewing Company. Tickets are $50 and are available through Xorbia.

Chef Gillespie opened Gunshow in Glenwood Park in May 2013. His second restaurant, Revival, will open this June in Decatur. Chef Gillespie’s debut cookbook, Fire in My Belly, was selected as a James Beard Award Finalist.

Pure Pork Awesomeness: Totally Cookable Recipes from Around the World by Kevin Gillespie with David Joachim is published by Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC, and is available for $29.99.

For more information visit chefkevingillespie.com.