Where would Chef Sarah Simmons of City Grit and new Birds & Bubbles eat if she could eat dinner anywhere tonight? She’d head back to her own college town, Athens, Ga., to dine at The National!

After attending college with Chef Peter Dale, fellow Public Relations students at University of Georgia, plus years as cross-country peers in the culinary field, Sarah is happy to put her plate in Peter’s hands…as long as there is some sautéed okra on it.

“Right now, I’ve been traveling on the weekends and cooking at college football games, and it’s making me really homesick for Athens, Georgia, which is where I went to college. So if I could go anywhere right now for dinner, it would be to The National in Athens. I would just let Peter Dale, who is the chef and owner, cook for me. I would eat anything he made.

Read the full interview with Chef Sarah Simmons by Of a Kind here.

Since we’re feeling sentimental, our two-night series at Sarah’s culinary salon City Grit was one of the most fun offsite cooking experiences we can recall to date. It was the year Chef Peter Dale won Food and Wine People’s Best New Chef - Southeast that we took our Mediterranean fare with a North Georgia twist up to the big apple, serving:

New Year’s Black-Eyed Pea Soup
Beef Tartare with Harissa and Salsify Chips
Shrimp Stewed in Plantain-Peanut Sauce
Roasted Chicken Thigh with Braised Endive
Bruléed Carolina Plantation Rice Pudding