September 16, 2013

Post-Wedding Brunch ~ Groom’s Night Out ~ Engagement Party ~ Rehearsal Dinner Ideas!!

Posted in Other Events, Planning Tips and Information, Weddings tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 10:00 am by JBEvents

Atlanta has a ton of options for where to have your special event regardless of whether it is a wedding, mitzvah, anniversary or birthday celebration, Engagement Parties, Bridesmaids Luncheons, Groom’s Gatherings or any other special occasion and many times once the decision is made for where to have the MAIN event, you are trying to figure out where to have other segments of the celebration.  Most of my clients opt to have the extraneous celebrations at locations other than the main venue so that their guests can experience more of what the city has to offer.  Sometimes the clients want to keep the other activities close by where the main celebration will be for ease of guest transportation and that is always something to consider.  However, regardless of whether your guests are based in Downtown, Midtown, Buckhead or elsewhere, you definitely have options of where to go and how to get there.  

Transportation companies that we work with offer a variety of vehicles to assist in transporting your guests.  Some clients opt for a “FUN” and somewhat unique method of transporting their guests, like a Trolley, while others opt for more of a party-type vehicle like a limo-bus that offers comfortable seating around the perimeter of the vehicle with special lights and usually built-in bars.  This type of transportation allows for your guests to begin the party enroute to the celebration and if your guests don’t all know each other, this will also encourage mingling so that the group can become comfortable.  After all, they are there for the same purpose — Your celebration. Of course there are also standard Shuttle Buses that can accommodate various numbers of guests ranging from 10 – 56 passengers. 

The WHERE to go is the subject at hand and with all that Atlanta has to offer, making a selection can be difficult.  We are here to assist with making the best decision for your group and can arrange any and all of the details for you.  There are a few locations that I feel warrant mention.  

Davio's sign

One happens to be Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse located in Buckhead. Under the direction of Executive Chef, Richard Lee and Sous-Chef, Carlos Tavarez, the menu offers tasty options ~ whether you are in the mood for a delicious steak from any of their fine cuts of meat, or the classic well-known recipes such as their Tagliatelle Bolognese, Crispy Chicken Livers, Homemade Sausages, Veal Scaloppini or something from their wide selection of fresh seafood dishes, you can rest assured that you will have an amazing meal.   I’ve written about Davio’s before as an excellent location for a Rehearsal Dinner or a romantic anniversary or birthday dinner, but they also offer the option of using the restaurant before normal business hours, for a day-after Brunch.  You could have your Brunch from 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM and have the restaurant to yourself.  Depending upon the number of guests, the clients preferences and the weather, the brunch could utilize the fabulous covered Terrace.  For a minimum of 20 guests, they offer a Breakfast Buffet at the cost of $22.50 Per Person.  The menu consists of clients choice of 2 entrees (Scrambled Eggs, Spinach and Tomato Frittata or French Toast, Mascarpone, Warm Maple Syrup) along with the following Side Dishes and Condiments ~ Sausage or Bacon, Home Fried Potatoes, Seasonal Fresh Fruit Salad, Bagels, Cream Cheese, Tomatoes, Preserves, Muffins, Croissants, Preserves and Butter in addition to Orange Juice, Coffee, Tea and Decaffeinated Coffee.  There is also the option of an Omelet Station which would be Chef Attended for an additional $7.50 per person.  I’m hungry just thinking about this!

Davio’s also happens to be a wonderful location for a Groom’s Night Out, or an Engagement Party.  With private event rooms that can accommodate 10 to 80 in Private settings or with a restaurant buy-out they can accommodate up to 300 guests.  

20130109_164048 20130109_164102 daviosweb-12 Davios inside Web_NoWM_006_C_CXP_6757

One of their signature dishes for Appetizers is a sampling of Spring Rolls, Buffalo Chicken, Chicken Parmesan, Philly Cheese Steak and Shrimp Cotija Spring Rolls.  These are undoubtedly the BEST Spring Rolls I have ever tasted.  I could easily make my meal off of the Buffalo Chicken and the Chicken Parm Spring Rolls.  

Photo courtesy of Robin Lori Spring Rolls ~ Photo courtesy of Robin Lori

For businesses looking for a wonderful option for a Corporate Lunch – Davio’s can accommodate this type of event as well.  You can select from various menus of a seated meal.  

One of the special types of Private Dining they offer is a Chef’s Tasting.  The Chef’s Table is an epicurean adventure that is sure to delight your party’s taste for fine cuisine.  Their team will offer an exclusive dining experience for 6 to 14 guests to take part in a chef’s designed tasting menu with paired wines from their extensive list. This type of experience is especially created for those who have a passion for fine food and wine.

With an in-house Pastry Chef, their dessert creations are not only visually appealing but very delicious.  Pastry Chef, Kathleen Miliotis, creates homemade breads, pastries, ice creams and desserts fresh every day!



Everyone that you come in contact with at Davio’s makes you feel welcomed and important.  You will always see the General Manager, Claude Guillaume, walking around and greeting guests as well as the Assistant Manager, Paul Dunn and the Floor Manager, Peter Kuluberis.  Amy Howard is the Sales Manager and she is awesome to work with.  She is one of those people who you feel an instant connection with and her attention to detail, and customer service is exemplary!!!  


Another wonderful restaurant option that does offer Private Event Space is Brio Tuscan Grill.  There are two locations, Buckhead and Perimeter/Dunwoody.  The Buckhead location can accommodate Private Groups ranging from 24 to 60 guests in one of two rooms while the Perimeter/Dunwoody location can accommodate from 10 to 60 guests in one of three special rooms.  The Perimeter/Dunwoody location also offers a Bocce Ball court – where your guests can enjoy a game throughout the event.  They offer a rather large Private Dining menu to select from for Luncheons, Dinners or even All-Day Meetings.  

Brio sign

Brio is another restaurant that is a wonderful choice for Rehearsal Dinners, Engagement Parties  Bridal Showers or Groom’s Night Out.  With excellent food and service and a full bar, you can’t go wrong taking your guests for a special occasion here.

Briio - perimeter Brio Tuscan Grille Dunwoody Brio Tuscan Grille

While this is just a tiny sampling of fabulous restaurants available for your special occasion, if these don’t suit your taste, we would be happy to  make arrangements for something completely different for you.  We offer personalized assistance with any social celebration, regardless of the size of the group.  We are available to source and secure venues, negotiate Contracts, assist with menu selection, arrange for your stationery needs, floral decor, specialty linens, favors, transportation, entertainment, audio/visual needs as well as any other requests in addition to event production.  Contact us today for information and assistance in planning YOUR Special Occasion.

Janice Blackmon Events is an award-winning Event Planning company that specializes in assisting their clients with a stress-free planning process and a flawless event.

March 1, 2013

Rehearsal Dinners, Bridal Luncheons/Showers, and other Celebrations!!!

Posted in Other Events, Planning Tips and Information tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 7:59 am by JBEvents

Let’s face it, Atlanta has a TON of amazing restaurants and venues for Private Events!  While having options is a great thing – it can also be confusing – so this blog post will focus on a few of my favorite restaurants that would be PERFECT for Rehearsal Dinners, Bridal Luncheons/Showers, Guy’s Night Out, Birthday or Anniversary Party’s as well as any other special occasions!!

My recommendations are based on factors such as quality of food and service, atmosphere, ability to accommodate various sized groups, ease of access and flexibility of the venue on menu as well as other details.

Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse at Phipps Plaza


Davio’s Atlanta is located in the heart of Buckhead, Atlanta’s hot spot for the best shopping and the finest dining.

The restaurant offers a large display kitchen, an in-house bakery, vibrant bar, and lounge and outdoor patio complete with soft seating and fire pits.

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As a Northern Italian Steakhouse their menu includes – Aged New York Strip Sirloin, Filet Mignon, Porterhouse and Veal Chop. The menu also includes well known classic Davio’s recipes such as Tagliatelle Bolognese, Crispy Chicken Livers, Homemade Sausages, Veal Scaloppini and an amazing assortment of Davio’s Spring Rolls that are some of the most delicious tasty morsels around.


If seafood is more of what you desire, they offer a wide selection of fresh seafood dishes to include Organic Salmon, Tuna and Lobster.

To satisfy your sweet tooth, you will find a large variety of desserts, each made in-house daily to even  include house-made gourmet ice cream.


The wine list contains Italian varieties as well as American and other regions around the world.  They also offer a full bar if wine is not your thing!


Davio’s offers Private and Semi-Private Dining areas that can accommodate from 10 to 300 guests.  They have rooms that are cozy enough for smaller celebrations as well as being able to combine them in order to accommodate more guests.  

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Check them out online:

Livingston Restaurant + Bar at the Georgian Terrace Hotel

Livingston entrance-gallery-full

Livingston Restaurant + Bar features several vibrant entertaining spaces perfect for an engagement party, bridal shower, rehearsal dinner, wedding reception, or post-wedding brunch. The Private Dining Room boasts spectacular views of the fabulous Fox Theatre & accommodates 20 seated and 35 cocktail. The Mezzanine overlooks the bustling dining room below creating a celebratory atmosphere that accommodates up to 60 seated & 120 cocktail. Livingston Restaurant is also available for a private buy-out to accommodate a seated dinner of up to 100 guests with plenty of room for mingling prior to dinner in the mezzanine. If you wish to go all-out and celebrate in style with exclusive use of the restaurant and bar and lounge they can accommodate parties of up to 180-200 with a buffet style reception.

Livingston Terrace at night Livingston Private Dining overlooking Fox Theatre g1-p2-full Livingston Mezzanine West side Livingston Mezzanine South side Livingston Mezzanice left side Livingston main-dining-room-4-gallery-full Livingston main-dining-room-2-gallery-full Livingston lounge area Livingston chef Table Livingston bar-lounge-gallery-full Livingston bar-empty-gallery-full Livingston Bar view of front door

Guests will enjoy Executive Chef Zeb Stevenson’s innovative local cuisine featuring plated brunch menus starting at $25 & dinner menus start at $38. They also provide customized buffet and passed hors d’oeuvre packages starting at $60 that are ideal for entertaining larger parties. Please note pricing does not include 20% gratuity or tax.

Livingston fish-gallery-full Livingston popper-gallery-full Livingston strawberry-puffs-full

Check them out online:

Baraonda Caffe Italiano

Baraonda outside sign

Baraonda private dining rooms are reminiscent of an old Tuscan home with its soft pastel walls, dark paneling and domed ceilings which are accentuated with beautiful central crystal and gothic chandeliers. The Tuscan room holds up to 50 people seated and up to 70 people for a cocktail reception.  The wineroom however, holds up to 80 people seated and up to 120 people for cocktail reception.

Baraonda bar-patio

Baraonda Tuscan Room Baraonda Wineroom

The meals are served Family Style and the price point is quite reasonable.  How about Tiramisu or Cheesecake for dessert?  In addition to those options, other desserts are also available.  

Baraonda offers a rather extensive wine list as well as a full bar!

Baraonda Antipasta Baraonda Pizza image Baraonda Tiramisu Baraonda cheesecake Baraonda Food

Check them out online:

Gordon Biersch

Gordon Biersch Buckhead Gordon Biersch Midtown jpg

Inspired by the Reinheitsgebot of 1516, the Gordon Biersch experience rests upon the foundations of purity, simplicity and precision. This philosophy is most recognizable in their selection of authentic German lagers, each crafted on-site using only malted barley, hops, yeast and pure, filtered water. This same dedication extends to their kitchen, where the chefs create fresh dishes that perfectly balance comfort and excitement.

With two locations in the Atlanta area {Midtown and Buckhead} Gordon Biersch is an excellent option for any Private Event.   They will customize a menu and package to suit your tastes and budget.  They will be happy to accommodate special vegetarian or dietary needs.

You and your guests will enjoy being able to taste the beers crafted on-site giving you a truly unique experience while also enjoying delicious food and desserts!!!

Gordon Biersch ~ Midtown

Midtown - Mezzanine Bar Midtown Marzen Room

Private Dining Room seats 60
Room has a 60 inch HDTV for slideshows and presentations
Microphone and speaker system
Opens up to a private loft with 3 billiards tables, 3 HDTV’s views of the brewery, and private bar
Private Dining Room and Loft will do 120 receptions style events
Gordon Biersch ~ Buckhead
Buckhead Marzen Room Buckhead Billiards
Private Dining Room seats 60
Room has a 60 inch HDTV for slideshows and presentations
Microphone and speaker system
Opens up to our billiards room with 4 billiards tables and 6 HDTV’s
Private Dining Room and Billiards will do 150 guests for a reception
Gordon Biersch Beer and food Gordon Biersch Garlic Fries gordon-biersch-brewery GordonBierschDinner.IMG_2731 gordon-biersch-grilled-chicken
Check them out online:


Maggianos Buckhead Maggianos Cumberland Maggianos Perimeter

At Maggiano’s, their belief is that every guest deserves to enjoy fresh, made-from-scratch food served in abundance. 

For Private Events, the meal is served “Family Style”.  This method is conducive to bringing families together whether it’s for the first time, or it’s a familiar occasion.  It creates a much more intimate environment which results in the evening becoming an experience and not just a meal.

There are a variety of menus to select from at various price-points allowing you to offer your guests an amazing meal.  They also have a wonderful wine list as well as a full bar.  

Great food + great prices = A Fabulous Event

Maggianos Lasagna Maggianos chocolate cake Maggianos meal Maggianos Mushroom appetizer Maggianos plate of food Maggianos Profiteroles Maggianos Riggatoni

Maggianos table of food

Each of the Atlanta area Maggiano’s offer Private and Semi-Private rooms for smaller intimate groups of 20 up to large events for 200+.  

Maggianos.Baby Shower Maggianos.Birthday Party Maggianos.Dinner Party Maggianos.Rehearsal Dinner

Check them out online:

Are you hungry yet?  Any of these restaurants would be an excellent option for your next special occasion.  We would be delighted to assist in making arrangements for your celebration and can guarantee that with any of these restaurants combined with our service, your event will be delicious and flawless.  Contact us for information!!

June 4, 2011

She Said YES to more than just the Dress!!

Posted in Weddings tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 9:03 pm by JBEvents


What a great couple!  You can’t help but smile when you look at these 2. 

The day began with Ryan and Tarra from The Moore Agency providing hair and make-up services for the crew.  As always, they did a wonderful job and had the bridal party looking just beautiful. 

Nita had been featured on the TLC show, “Say Yes to the Dress” and I would have to say, she made an excellent selection.  The dress she chose was a Lazaro fit n flare design with a slight sweetheart neckline and asymmetrical ruffles starting just below the hips.  The dress also had a champagne sash with a side-bow.

She wore different accessories for the ceremony and reception – both of which looked fabulous with the dress.  For the ceremony, she wore a three-strand of pearls, while for the reception; she changed to a more modern chunky necklace that paired well for the party.

The bridesmaids wore short eggplant colored dresses by Jim Hjelm.  The bouquets which contained pink peonies really stood out against the dresses. The four young greeters wore hot pink dresses. 

The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus was the site for the traditional Filipino ceremony led by Father Mario Lopez.

The wedding party departed the church after the ceremony in a Trolley and made a few photo stops along the way with one being the Woodruff Arts Center, before arriving at the reception location of The Ritz-Carlton ~ Buckhead.

Capturing the images of the day were Chris and Allie of The Reason photography.

My staff videographer was also capturing the memories of the day and I’m sure the end result will be one that the couple looks back on years from now and will be able to relive the emotions of the day.

As guests arrived at the Ritz-Carlton ~ Buckhead, there were greeted with delicious hors d’oeuvres and beverages which included the signature drink of a White Sangria.  A video montage provided entertainment for the guests while they enjoyed Cocktail Hour.

Once guests were invited into the Ballroom, they entered to see yet another vision of beauty.  The 17 tables held two different types of floral centerpieces designed by Flowers From Us.  The tall arrangements consisted of a clear vase with a submerged stem of orchids while a lush arrangement in various shades of pinks, purples and greens with crystal beads draped around graced the top of the vase.  The other tables had a variety of different sized clear vases each with monochromatic stems of flowers for a very interesting display.

The wedding party had a great time as they strutted their stuff while being introduced – but not to be upstaged, the bride and groom entered and proceeded to have their first dance, which they choreographed to the wonderful jazz standard, At Last by Etta James.  The groom had confessed he didn’t sleep the night before because he was worrying about the dance – but judging from the sidelines, I would give them a 10!

DJ Ryan from Spectrum Entertainment kept the crowd entertained throughout the event.  I think that all of the guests were more than ready to begin dancing by the time dinner was complete.  Spectrum also provided the ambient lighting and the gobo that was projected onto the dance floor.

McEntyre’s bakery provided the round 5 tiered cake that was embellished with a French scroll design on each tier while a cluster of peonies graced the top of the cake. 

When it came time for toasts, the Best Man, long time friend of the groom and the Maid of Honor, youngest sister of the Bride reveled the crowd with amusing anecdotes.

One of the very fun and popular aspects of the evening was the Photo Booth supplied by the photographers.  The couple provided some of the props which included small chalkboards, fake mustaches, hats, glasses and various other fun items. 

Towards the end of the evening, guests were treated to a late night snack of sliders and fries.  It was a total hit! 

When it came time for the party to end, guests were invited to wish the couple farewell with a bubble fanfare.  One of the sweetest moments of the day came during the few minutes while the bride and groom were hanging out in the ballroom after the guests had left to get ready for the bubble fanfare, and the DJ started playing a song and the two of them just started dancing.  It was completely unscripted and very touching.

We are so happy to have been a part of this celebration, and making it even more special to us, was this was the second wedding for this family that we had the pleasure of coordinating!!! 

Wishing happiness always to Nita and James!!

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