Peter Chang has officially landed in Atlanta once again joining Dahe Yang, owner of Tasty China in Marietta. Chang’s agenda is to train a young chef to take the helm at Tasty China as he, along with longtime friend Yang, open a fancier restaurant called Peter Chang’s in the space vacated by Olive’s Waterside. The restaurant is slated to open early December 2010.
Chang told me during a brief visit this past Spring that he desired a more upscale restaurant with nice ambiance, finer service, and broad wine selection.
A bold move considering our city/country is currently in the grips of the worst recession in a generation.
Even popular Atlanta chefs like Richard Blais (Flip) and Shaun Doty (Yeah! Burger) have resorted to flipping hamburgers to put cash in the bank. Both our city’s prestigious Mobil 5-Star restaurants (Seeger’s and Dining Room at The Ritz) are but distant memories. And, many local upscale restaurants, in an attempt to avoid certain doom, are reinventing themselves or offering ridiculously reasonable three-course meals to lure diners back in the door.
Be that as it may. Chang still wants nicer digs, wine inventory headaches, and swanky service to complement his legendary cooking. In a recent interview Chang told me he plans to unveil several new dishes when his new restaurant opens. Yang claims those recipes are etched in Chang’s mind, not written anywhere.
Chang’s migrant ways and explosive cooking style have earned him legendary status among foodies, and even big city ink slingers who stop what they are doing and jump a plane as soon as word gets out of his whereabouts. So expect write-ups in the NY Times, Washington Post, and every big city paper up and down the east coast.
Who knows? Chang might just be the spark we need to reignite our fizzled dining scene.