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4/4 2014

An Exclusive Opportunity To Live At The Artisan In Decatur

artisan decaturThe Artisan in Decatur is one of my favorite condominium buildings in metro Atlanta.  Central Decatur location, spacious floor plans, well appointed interiors, tons of on-site amenities, building concierge- it’s just a fantastic building.  My new listing at The Artisan ups the ante even further: it’s a rare  three bedroom condo- and a corner unit to boot!

I could blather and bloviate endlessly about why you should buy this condominium.  You know that.  Instead, I’m going to turn the microphone over to the owner, who can give you a much better idea as to why The Artisan rules…

 

Q. What makes living in The Artisan so great?

A.  The Artisan is a wonderful community – full of people who love living in downtown Decatur. Everyone is always out and about – walking to restaurants, dance classes, concerts in the square…taking full advantage of all the city has to offer. There is a closeness among residents – evidenced by drinks on Friday nights on the pool deck, watching fireworks on the 4th of July together, impromptu snow day ‘picnics’ in the amenities room…And of course, the ease of condo living can’t be beat.

 

Q. What makes living in Decatur so great?

A.  Decatur, what’s not to like?  This is a highly functioning, well-run city, full of progressive, urban-oriented people who love to be out in the streets. It has a small-town feel with all the good things a city has to offer: Great restaurants and bars, independent stores and coffee shops, parks and pools for all ages, amazing school district, walkable and bike-friendly downtown and neighborhoods, festivals throughout the year from jazz to books, races and other activities, wonderful public services and support, MARTA train station access to downtown and airport, near to Emory, Agnes Scott, and CDC, several weekly farmers markets (and the massive international farmers market), trails for biking and for hiking, community gardens, and so much more…we could go on endlessly!

 

Q. 24 hour eating binge in Decatur- where are you going?

A.  Wow…Well, we’d start off at Dancing Goats, of course, for a caffeine injection. Then to Revolution Doughnuts for a sweet treat. Or maybe a hearty breakfast at Thumbs Up (or both!). Lunch would either be at Souper Jenny’s new location on West Ponce or at Victory Sandwich bar. Dinner is a toss up between Leon’s, Raging Burrito or Chai Pani. After dinner drinks at Paper Plane or Kimball House. A late night treat…at the new Butter and Cream opening soon!

 

Q. What do you love about your condominium?

A. It’s bright and light-filled, with beautiful floors and high ceilings. We love the kitchen and the open-floor plan. It’s well-designed, with everything on one level – so convenient. We are only moving two blocks away and will visit our friends here often!

 

Posted by Jon at 1:43 pm on April 4, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : Decatur, Home Selling

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3/31 2014

Where Do Atlantans Migrate From?

As anyone who has spent more than five minutes in Atlanta might know, most of us aren’t from Atlanta originally.  The population of the metro area has doubled in the last thirty years- pretty ridiculous growth all around.  Ever wonder where everyone is coming from?  The folks at Spokeo have put together a pretty cool table, based on out-of-state mobile phone numbers that have been matched to local addresses:

 

Chicago… who knew?

Posted by Jon at 6:16 pm on March 31, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : Current Events

3/28 2014

Why You (Or Someone You Know) Should Buy This House In Tucker…

My new listing in Tucker has it all: quiet cul-de-sac location, ridiculously large back yard, designer kitchen, spa-like bathrooms, gleaming hardwood floors, built-in speakers throughout and a brand new roof.  It’s a good one.  A really good one.

That said, my words can only do it so much justice.  I turned directly to the source: the homeowner.  Our q and a, below.  Full listing information here, and to schedule a tour, you know where to find me.

Q.  Your back yard rules.  Tell me why you love it?

A.  It is great for entertaining. We have a yearly Oktoberfest and invite friends and family. Actually, we can either do that in the front or back of the house. We had a TinkerBell Party for our daughter when she turned 4. We put up a great tent for shade and have room for the kids to run! 

bigbackyardtucker

Q.  What do you love about your house?

A.  I LOVE the bathtub. Before we had the old cast iron tub. It was tiny and didn’t keep the water hot. Now, with the fiberglass tub the water will stay warm for hours – trust me! Also, it is deeper than normal ones with the perfect recline on the back. Turn up the built-in speakers in there, turn off the lights and light some candles for hours of relaxation. It is my perfect retreat place and what I’ll miss the most of the house. 

Q.  Sell me on life “ATP”?  (Editor’s Note: Forget ITP or OTP… ATP is where it’s at)

A.  You can escape on the weekends out of town and don’t have to worry about trying to get out of intown. We are close to the highways so it is easy to get anywhere – as long as Atlanta traffic is cooperating. I basically give myself 30 minutes to get anywhere – downtown, cobb galleria, deep into the decatur burbs, Brookhaven, etc.  I think the closer in you are to town, the less Southern and old country you have to deal with. We still can get hippie stuff – like a weekly Farmers Market on Main Street, the Farm Mobile comes by weekly, Mother Nature and the Tucker Meat Market are within walking distance. The co-op delivers fresh produce to Mother Nature that we can pickup weekly during the summer. – You just don’t think those things can happen once you cross 285, but they do! Oh – and the DeKalb Farmer’s Market is just a quick drive down 78 or you can go just as far and hit Stone Mountain the other way on 78.

Q.  24 hours of binge eating within a five minute drive- where are you going?

A.   Some people love Blue Ribbon Grill. Others love Los Hermanos. More love Matthews Cafeteria and there is always Growler Time on Main Street for good beer to take home when you can’t find anything good to eat. 

Don’t miss the one, folks.  All the details fit to print, after the link.

Posted by Jon at 3:23 pm on March 28, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : Home Selling

3/25 2014

Atlanta Real Estate Market Update

The Atlanta Board of Realtors recently released their February Market Brief, their monthly synopsis of market activity int the Metro Atlanta real estate market.   The big picture price perspective:

Atlanta Median Price

 

The key take-aways, by the numbers:

  • Median sales price for February 2014 was $187,000.
  • Prices increased 16.9% from February 2013.
  • Median prices increased 3.9% in comparison to January 2014.

A 17% jump year-over-year.  Low inventory.  Spring “selling” season should be interesting.

* Source: Atlanta Board of Realtors; data is pulled from 11 metro Atlanta counties: Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, and Paulding

Posted by Jon at 1:49 pm on March 25, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : The Market

3/20 2014

Russell Gottschalk, Atlanta Jewish Music Festival

russellgottschalkRussell Gottschalk is the Founder and Executive Director of the Atlanta Jewish Music Festival (AJMF), which opens their Spring festival tonight with a show  featuring the Afro-Semitic Experience at Steve’s Live Music.  AJMF is an incredible, one-of-a-kind festival, and Russell is an incredible, one-of-a-kind dude.  Get to know Russell and more about the festival…

Q. What is the Atlanta Jewish Music Festival?

A.  The Atlanta Jewish Music Festival (or AJMF) is the pre-eminent producer and promoter of Jewish music experiences in Atlanta, providing opportunities for musicians and audiences to strengthen their connection to Atlanta’s Jewish community through the power of music. We program events year round, including artist residencies, teen open mics and collaborative concerts, but focus on our signature program, a multi-day, must-attend Spring Festival (3/20-29, see www.atlantajmf.org for full details).

 Q. The keys to Philips Arena and an unlimited budget- go!

 A.  I’m not sure we want to be in the Philips Arena as I question our ability to unify enough of our communities to create a vibrant and social atmosphere in such a large space. But if we had unlimited funding (the holy grail for non-profits), we would certainly be able to expand existing programming and add another full time staff. And I guess the “key” to obtaining such a windfall lies in engaging the right philanthropist. There are a few Jewish supporters (some here in Atlanta, others on the national scale) that have the capacity to give at astronomical levels. The key to ‘unlimited’ funding would be finding the right mission overlap between our impact and the desired outcomes of a large philanthropic foundation.

 

Q. Last meal in Atlanta: where are you going, and what are you ordering?

A. Definitely chicken and waffles. Obviously there is Gladys Knight and Ron’s Chicken and Waffles but recently I discovered Bantam and Biddy, who are giving Gladys and Ron a run for their money. If I want to stay close to home, the Majestic does a respectable chicken and waffles dish too.

 

Q  Favorite neighborhoods? 

A. I’m a Candler Park resident so I’m partial to Decatur, Virginia-Highlands and Little Five Points. But I also love to go down to East Atlanta for the nightlife and I could see my fiancee and I settling down further north (Brookhaven is really making some moves) or on the West Side. As an Atlanta native, I love the diversity and appeal of our distinct neighborhoods. All we need is a bit more public transportation to tie them all together.

Posted by Jon at 4:03 pm on March 20, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : Brookhaven, Candler Park, Current Events, Decatur, Doing Good, Five Questions With...

3/11 2014

Jesse Grossman, Community Bucket

Jesse Grossman is the founder and CEO of Community Bucket, an Atlanta-based venture that connects millenials with service projects throughout the city… with a social twist.  It’s all about making the city better, while also helping (relatively) young folks connect with one another.  Get to know Jesse and Community Bucket…

Q. What is Community Bucket, and why is it awesome?

20130629_CB_7570-150x150

A. Community Bucket is a better platform for meeting new people around Atlanta. We connect like-minded, socially conscious adults – typically in the 20’s to 30’s age range – through social volunteering experiences with local nonprofits. We launched in 2012 and have since been building a community of people who are looking for new ways to do good and meet new friends.

Community Bucket is awesome because of the people who join. It’s a diverse group of young, active people from many backgrounds, yet everyone is connected by the simple desires to do good and be social. Hundreds of people have embraced the concept already, and we are constantly impressed by the quality of people who attend our events. Everyone shows up to have a good time and genuinely get to know other people, and we think that is awesome. As we expand, we hope to show more Atlantans the power of ‘Service Made Social.’

Q. Mayor for the day- what’s on your agenda?

A. Well, this is going to be one busy day…I’ll probably start with a just few big things that may or may not get me fired after day 1…but here we go:

I’d lift the regulations against street vendors and food trucks so we can catch up to other U.S. cities on the growing local/independent food scene.

I’d make MARTA free every Friday, and subsidize all taxis on the weekends so people are incentivized to use public transportation.

I’d give all teachers a hefty raise, because they deserve it

I’d keep the Braves at Turner Field

Q. 24 hours to eat your way through Atlanta- where are you going, and what are you eating?

A. That sounds too good to be true… so I am definitely starting my day with a big breakfast at Sun in My Belly. Next, I’m heading over to Lotta Frutta in the Old Fourth Ward for a delicious Cuban-style sandwich. After lunch, I’ll walk up the beltline and get a Chocolate Sea Salt King of Pops in Inman Park. For an early dinner, I am trekking up Buford Highway for some BiBimBap and traditional Korean food at Woo Nam Jeong Stone Bowl House. And to keep the gluttony going, I will probably eat my second dinner at The Porter in L5P, the best bacon burger in town (in my opinion), along with some type of dark beer on draft. If I’m still hungry after that, I’ll probably get some pizza from Fellini’s on Ponce. There’s truly too much good food in this city for one day.

Q. Favorite neighborhoods?

A. I really like the revitalization of the Old Fourth Ward in recent years, with all of its independent restaurants, bars and stores. It’s also very walk-able with the Eastside Trail now complete, and the Freedom Trail that connects it with other cool neighborhoods. Plus, you never know what you’re going to find when walking around.

Q. In ten years, Community Bucket will…

A. We’re going to be a staple in every major city, because we combine two very important things that matter to young professionals: meeting people and making an impact. From Atlanta to New York to Seattle, we believe we can be the solution for millions of young people. One of our goals is to positively change the perception of volunteering. We already do so by creating a superior experience that is built around ‘service made social.’ Not only does it benefit the individuals, but it makes our cities that much better.

3/5 2014

What Is Curb Appeal?

This is curb appeal:

FRONTVIEW

It’s a picture of my new listing at 1971 Braeburn Circle in East Atlanta.  It was built by Stoney River Homes in 2007, although it looks and feels like it was finished yesterday.

Some homes just have “it”- and you know it the minute you lay eyes on them.  This is one of them.  3 bedrooms, 2. 5 bathrooms, and 2 of the most inviting front porches you’ll ever have the pleasure of relaxing on.  Doesn’t really matter if you’re looking at or within this home- it looks good from all angles.

If you’re looking for a good looking home, this is it.  Call me and I’ll share the details and set up a personal tour.

 

Posted by Jon at 7:50 pm on March 5, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : East Atlanta, Home Selling

2/27 2014

House Flippers Is Casting In Atlanta

If Flipper were alive today, he'd have a reality show (and it would be on A&E).

If Flipper were alive today, he’d have a reality show (and it would be on A&E).

Word on the street is that a major cable network is casting for a new show called “House Flippers”.  They’re on the hunt for teams of two- couples, family members, best friends, etc.  If you have renovation skills, enthusiasm and a streak of narcissism, then this might just be the break that you’ve been looking for.   This could be your big reality television/real estate break!

To fill out a casting application, check out their website: http://www.houseflipperscasting.com/

 

 

Posted by Jon at 2:05 am on February 27, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : General

2/18 2014

Twenty-Four Hours Eating and Drinking Through East Atlanta

Buy this house... and enjoy walking to tons of delicious establishments.

Buy this house… and enjoy walking to tons of delicious establishments.

My new listing at 1681 Glenwood Avenue in East Atlanta is fantastic.  Sure, I could spend the entirety of this blog post going on about the incredible (and total) renovation that was done on the house four years ago.  Or we could spend some time surveying the massive backyard (almost as deep as right-center field in Fenway Park).  But instead, let’s dwell on what makes living in East Atlanta so fantastic.  Courtesy of my client, a dreamy twenty-four hour itinerary to help eat and drink your way through the neighborhood:

6a: Bike to HodgePodge to chow shrimp and grits and coffee

9a: Basketball at Brownwood Park (Editor’s Note: This gluttonous day requires exercise.)

10a: Stop at Spotted Trotter to grab chorizo

Noon: Salsa, ‘Rita and Pork Belly tacos at Holy Taco

3p: Guinness(es) at Elder Tree

5p: Urban Cannibals catch of the day

6p: Bike to Morelli’s for ice cream

7p: JagerBombs at Graveyard

9p: Argosy pizza and dogs

11p: Show at the Earl, boiled peanuts during set break

2a: Mary’s cocktails and nonsense

4:30a: Close out Graveyard

6:30a: Walk home

6:59a: EAV in 24 Hour Dream Ensues

Posted by Jon at 3:05 am on February 18, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : East Atlanta, Home Selling

2/4 2014

Chef Val Domingo Talks Meehan’s

Meehan's

Val Domingo is the chef at Meehan’s, the Irish pub mini-empire of Atlanta.  With locations in Vinings, Downtown, Sandy Springs and Atlantic Station, they’re strategically located within twenty minutes of my core real estate business.  Not that its absolutely critical to always be within twenty minutes of a perfectly pulled pint of Guinness and a home made shepherd’s pie… but it’s always appreciated.  A quick chat with Chef Val on pubs, Meehan’s and where he eats when he’s not working…

Q.  What makes or breaks a pub?

A.  What makes  a pub:  customer service-developing a relationship with your guests; food quality is excellent and unique; inviting atmosphere

What breaks a pub:  negative, selfish atmosphere; poor food; average-below average customer service

Q.  Hidden Atlanta gems?

A.  Smoke Ring:  great casual bbq in Castleberry neighborhood, Whistle Stop Cafe in Kennesaw:  excellent down home breakfast/lunch spot.

Q.  Make me hungry- what should I be eating if I’m at Meehan’s?

A.  As far as appetizers, the devil’s on horseback, pub nachos, and the Ahi Tuna Tostadas are my favorites in that category.  The Devil’s on Horseback are dates stuffed with goat cheese, wrapped in apple wood bacon, fried and served on thinly sliced roasted golden beets and topped with a red wine reduction.  It’s clearly like a dessert for an appetizer.  The Ahi Tuna Tostadas has blackened ahi tuna shaved thin and served on top of a corn chip with avocado corn salsa, sriracha and cilantro sour cream.  Perfect on warm, spring day!!!  The Pub Nachos come with either chicken or short rib chili and is the perfect sharing appetizer for a group of friends.

In the sandwich category, the one sandwich that has clearly stood out is the Black and Tan Short Rib Sandwich.  Basically, it’s short rib braised in Guinness and Smithwick’s for 12hrs, served with caramelized onions and roasted crimini mushrooms, Swiss cheese,  and house made Guinness Mustard on marble rye.  If you’re not in the mood for that, all of our burgers are Certified Angus Beef, and our lamb burger is 100% organic local lamb from White Oak Pastures.  If you’re looking for a chicken sandwich, we serve a very popular Grilled Chicken BLT on toasted bolillo bread, with spicy mayo, smoked gouda cheese, and sliced avocado.

In terms of comfort food, our sheperd’s pie, bangers and mash, and our meatloaf, is the way to go.  In the sheperd’s pie dish, we braise leg of lamb in Guinness and veal stock for 12 hours and hand pull the meat.  It is served with veggies and a garlic mash potato jacket and topped with a red wine gravy that we make in house.  Our bangers for the bangers and mash dish is locally made from a butcher shop that also makes our corned beef and ham, called Heywood’s Provisions in Marietta.  It is a very savory and tasteful Irish Sausage that come with caramelized onions, mushrooms, peas, and red wine gravy. The meatloaf is very unique in that we incorporate 3 types of meat:  CAB ground beef, Italian Sausage, and All Natural Bison, served with haricot verts, mash, and red wine gravy, you can’t go wrong with my version of this classic comfort food.

In addition to all these, we have some lighter/healthier options as well.  The grilled veggie sandwich incorporates grilled zucchini, eggplant, roasted red peppers, grilled red onions and crimini mushrooms with goat cheese, pesto aioli, on multigrain bread.  We also have a very popular sweet potato hummus that is served with lavash crackers, celery and carrots.  And don’t forget our entree salads that we offer such as the Baby Kale salad with 3 onion vinaigrette, Blackened Chicken Salad with Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette, and the Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette.

Q.  When you’re not in the kitchen, where are you eating in and around Atlanta?

A.  Usually I don’t frequent many restaurants but when I do, depending on what my wife and I are hungry for, we usually go to Sam’s BBQ 1 in Marietta for lunch, Whistle Stop Cafe in Kennesaw for breakfast, and if we go out  to dinner, we check out places like Thaicoon & Sushi in Marietta, or Taj Mahal Indian in Kennesaw.

Q.  Why is Meehan’s awesome?

A. We are 110% equally dedicated to our guests and the food we prepare.  The first thing that people think of an Irish pub is its alcohol first, then the average pub grub food.  At Meehan’s, we are changing that stigma where our guests, whether you are a regular or first timer, have recognized our food as creative and quality driven as the alcohol choices we provide.  This is due to the fact that we source as much local ingredients as possible and prepare everything from scratch.  Furthermore, we have embraced the fact that having healthier food options on our menu is not a trend and  are just as important as the comfort food that Irish pubs are known for.   Coupled with a welcoming atmosphere where my service staff and managers develop a relationship with each of our guests, our goal is to consistently exceed our guests’ expectations every single day. 

Posted by Jon at 6:39 pm on February 4, 2014 : 0 comments

Labels : Downtown, Five Questions With..., Midtown, Sandy Springs, Vinings