Friday, July 3, 2015

Patak Butcher

Robert and I went to Patak Butcher the other day. Our friends Joanna and Herman have been telling us about this place forever so we finally decided to make the trip and we are glad we did.

Patak Butcher has been open since 1981 and they have a wide variety of meats from all around the world. Patak sausages are hand-made, twisted and smoked in their factory with no substitutes or fillers.

Photo Credit: Patak

Fresh products include Ground Chuck, Beef Roladen, Ox Tail, Pork Chops and many others. Remember that if you come on Monday this selection will be very limited.

Thanks to the twin Fessman smokehouses they can produce up to 20,000 pounds of product per day. You can purchase Canadian Bacon, Smoked Salmon or Trout and Smoked Pork Chops to name a few.

Photo Credit: Patak

Their cured products are dried in a specialized Travaglini Italian drying room so they have plenty of space for a variety of meats. Dried cured products include but aren’t limited to Westphalian Ham, Hungarian Segelli, Moldavia Salami and German Landjager. You can ask for a taste of anything you’d like.

They also carry a wide variety of imported items from around the world. These include cheeses, chocolates, cookies, jams and condiments.

The bread is amazing. Get a round of European bread while you're there. Or maybe some good rye.

Photo Credit: Stephanie M. on Yelp

Be ready to stand in line. It’s become quite a popular place. Especially right before a holiday. Make friends with the people around you. We met Erica who had been going to Patak for 20 years and she helped us so much. She’s the one who suggested the European bread, the pork tenderloin stuffed with sausage and explained what many of the products were and the best way to cook them.

The hours of operation and directions can be found on this link:

It’s worth the trip!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015


Blackberries are always a fun summer treat. I have a blackberry plant in the back of our property.

Blackberries are funny plants. They grow one year and produce fruit the next. And that's it.

I should have ripe berries by the end of June and will pick them once they look more dull than glossy.

After all the berries are picked,  I'll chop it down right to the ground. Next year the plant will start to sprout and grow again.

As it sprouts weave the growth between two poles with wires 3 and 5 feet in height.  I'll fasten them to the trellis in a fan pattern.

I won't get fruit again until the following year because as I trellis the plant it will be in it's growing season.

The best way to have blackberries all year long is to plant one this year and another next year.

That way you'll always have a plant that has fruit and another plant that is in it's growing season.


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Cobb County Master Gardeners Garden Tour - May 9, 2015

Robert and I were invited to attend the Cobb County Master Gardeners Garden Tour with our friends Katie and Bob.

This years theme was "Through the Garden Gate". We walked through 4 private gardens and 2 public garden sights.

Whimsical scenes scattered through the Hartley Garden created one of the most fun gardens on the tour.

Here is the description from the garden tour flyer of this garden located in Smyrna.

"Sloping acreage and shade presented significant challenges when the Hartleys moved in 20 years ago. Now, rock retaining walls prevent erosion, pathways provide access to plantings, and an abundance of soil amendments and compost have improved soil texture for optimal plant growth. Meandering paths are highlighted by shade-loving natives, variegated foliage, ferns and low maintenance collections of Hosta, Heuchera and Helleborus. Surrounding the waterfall feature, a carpet of Dwarf Mondo thrives in a spot where sun-loving grass could not grow. Tucked into this wildlife habitat, a fire pit and pond enhance enjoyment of the outdoors."

Other gardens included the Baroni Garden in Powder Springs, the Lovelace Garden also in Powder Srpings, The Bramwell Garden in Atlanta, Green Meadows Preserve in Marietta and Ford Elementary School in Acworth.

We had so much fun riding around in Bob's Jeep with the top down and the sun in our eyes!

Visit for more information on Cobb County Master Gardeners and how you can become a Master Gardener!