Taste of Johns Creek 2011: It's worth $20

by S. Lee Guy

September 12, 2011

As a food blogger in the Alpharetta area, I always get jazzed up for Taste of Alpharetta. Itís an awesome opportunity to sample a lot food, albeit mostly pork sliders!

Iíll usually try to hit some of the surrounding restaurant events but for some reason Iíve always missed Taste of Johns Creek. I suppose their small size has caused the event to slip under my radar. With their 4th annual event approaching, itís time to consider attending. Is this yearís event worth a visit and a twenty spot? I believe it is. Hereís whyÖ

The Event and Cost

Chattahooche High School hosts this event with proceeds benefiting school functions. I suppose the charitable aspect is appealing. Tickets are $20 at the door or $15 in advance for unlimited samples. I typically spend $30 just on myself at Taste of Alpharetta, so the cost is a value to me. On the flip side, children four and over are required to pay. It seems a little unreasonable to charge kids full price, something that could make family attendance cost prohibitive.

The Restaurants

Like any taste of event in the burbs, youíll have to navigate around the chain restaurants like Chiliís, Outback and Buffalo Wild Wings. And if you want to split hairsÖ many joints are not in Johns Creek at all. The 57th Fighter Group Restaurant is from way inside the perimeter.

On my to-try list would be:

Italian Ė While I donít see favorites like Rosa Mia, a few decent joints remain. Johns Creek is experiencing an Italian restaurant renaissance. Donít pass up the opportunity to sample Dal Cuore, Lucianoís and Sugo.

Pizza Ė My personal favorite pizza, Verra-Zanno in Johns Creek, is not on the list. However, Rosaís Pizza gets a lot of praise and is worth a try. Jersey Boyz isnít half bad.

Sinbadís Feast Ė This Persian buffet got a somewhat decent review from the AJCís John Kessler. I wouldnít miss them at this event.

Tasca Latin Bistro Ė I wasnít super impressed when I reviewed them here on my blog. But at Taste of Alpharetta this year I really enjoyed their panna cotta.

Cuziís Ė Hereís another I donít care for in real life. I mention here because they have taken home awards from Taste of Alpharetta in years past.

Kozmoís Gastropub Ė These poor guys are struggling due to the Douglas Road closure. Theyíve missed the mark at their Taste of Alpharetta booth. It's hard to capture the cool vibe of their restaurant in a tent outside. Iíd still give them a taste.

Whatís Missing?

Asian food.

Given the sizable Asian population in Johns Creek, Iím disappointed in the offerings this year. Critics are starting to take note of joints like Sichuan House. Restaurants like Simonís and Mandarian House miss the mark.

All in all, I think Taste of Johns Creek is worth a shot for visitors going solo.

S. Lee Guy is a Roots in Alpharetta blogger. His work can be found at and