It was not the Library Kitchen and Bar that inspired me to write a cookbook, nor was it the reason I chose Chef Johannes as my co-writer—it was all coincidental.
In my January 17 blog, Look What’s Cooking, I wrote about my upcoming Pinnacle Lust companion cookbook. I relayed the moment that I felt ready to start the journey of writing a cookbook and the process of bringing a world-class, Michelin star-trained chef into the project.
Chef Johannes Klapdohr and I go back seventeen years—when he was chef de cuisine of Nikolai’s Roof in downtown Atlanta.
Once I lost my willpower and let fine dining be the primary part of my social life, things rolled fast. First, the pounds piled on. Then, my husband and I were slowly added to many top restaurants’ VIP lists. And after that, it didn’t take long before the chef gave us special attention. Beyond our specific reserved table, there were certain foods that he would prepare especially for us.
But with Chef Johannes, things were different. We booked exclusive events where we rented the entire place, or the entire team, and Johannes always made sure that each event was the one to remember.
Johannes’ culinary skills continuously captured our hearts and stomachs. His pleasant personality and European manners only added to the image of the perfect chef. The only problem was that chefs like Johannes do not stay in one place forever. Sooner or later, they leave to pursue better opportunities where they can grow in their career and touch a new dream.
And so did Johannes. Following his dreams, he left Nikolai’s Roof, leaving behind a large hole in the culinary community of Atlanta as well as many splendid memories in diners’ minds and palates.
So when it was my time to write a cookbook, it was obvious that Johannes Klapdohr would be my first choice for my project.
Upon our reunion, I discovered that he is now the co-owner of the Library Kitchen and Bar. Learning about the place and its history, left me laughing. Seriously, I thought, the Library Kitchen and Bar? I couldn’t believe the serendipity. This was meant to be—a chef and the co-owner of a restaurant named Library Kitchen and Bar is now the co-writer of my cookbook…wow, things must happen for a reason.
The Library Kitchen and Bar was opened just a few months ago on New Year’s eve, set in a 160-year-old structure that was previously home to the historic The Library Club Restaurant. The historic charm and the stylish design, along with the modern paintings and the farm-to-table menu, make the place unique, attractive, and very welcoming. People say it is the trendiest dining spot in the area.
And I think to myself, the world goes ’round.