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‘Cue Barbecue – Milton

Every Friday, Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series I like to call Foodie Friday. This week I continue a summer series reviewing barbecue restaurants in Alpharetta.

I vividly remember my first visit to ‘Cue about a year ago. This random barbecue joint opens up shop with no fanfare in a space that had proven to be unlucky to restaurants. It didn’t take me long to figure out that they were a boutique barbecue shop. But slowly I started to notice some familiar things. The racks of fresh bread, hand-cut fries, course chopped Q, delicious stew. It all reminded me of something. Then I started seeing faces that looked familiar including the owner of the joint. It all came together for me then… this is Swallow at the Hollow!

I went home and googled like mad, thinking this must surely be the second location of my favorite Roswell Q joint. Not so much. Turns out that Swallow’s former chef, Paul Doster, went out on his own. Thankfully he brought the best of what I remember from his days in Roswell. If you’re familiar with Swallow at the Hollow then you’ll know what to expect at ‘Cue. The barbecue is very similar. Many of the side items are as well. The Brunswick stew is a tad different but very similar. Everything is made from scratch, even the pickles.

But let’s talk about the barbecue… They cook shoulders and serve as a course chop. There is always a good mix of outside meat with the inside stuff. Noticeable smoke ring? Yep. Tender and moist? Check. Decent sauce that doesn’t overpower? Stick to the vinegar and pepper stuff and you’ll be alright.

I’ve had the ribs a few times but find them to be inconsistent. When they are on, look out! Very good stuff, tender yet with some body (fall-off-the-bone is over tender in my book). But I’ve had racks here that are fatty and unappetizing.

Don’t like ribs or pork barbecue? Shame on you! ‘Cue also has brisket, chicken, and sausage in addition to off-the-wall stuff like barbecue pizza and nachos.

I mentioned that the sides are all homemade. It is tough to go wrong with anything. I enjoy dipping the bread into stew. I’d also suggest trying their seasonal veggie of the day. Almost always a winner.

Can you tell I’m a fan of this place? Of all the Q joints I will review this summer, ‘Cue is by far my favorite. Nevertheless I think they have some things to improve upon. Those would be…

- Often I find the outside brown portion of my chopped pork to be overdone. It can sometimes be the consistency of very crisp bacon. It should be chewy but not crunch. They also don’t apply a rub to their pork (if they do, it isn’t much). In my opinion they are losing the chance to add a big flavor profile to their barbecue.

- Their restaurant is small. There’s no other way to put it. ‘Cue is very popular right now and is literally bursting at the seams. This tiny strip mall can’t handle it. Parking and finding a seat are tough. They’ve gotta get out of this piece of real estate pronto.

- Decor. To be fair, I can’t knock places like Dickey’s on fake Q joint decor and not do the same for ‘Cue. It is a little hokey.

So there you have it. ‘Cue is a winner. Disagree with me? I’m always up for a barbecue debate. Leave me a comment or shoot me an email at lee@rootsinalpharetta.com

'Cue Barbecue on Urbanspoon

Dickey’s Barbeque Pit – Milton

Every Friday, Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series I like to call Foodie Friday. This week I continue a summer series reviewing barbecue restaurants in Alpharetta.

I took some grief in my review of Cheeky Taqueria when I called their restaurant “contrived”. I still stand by that claim. However, Dickey’s in Milton is a textbook example of contrived franchised barbecue. Every bit of the decor is there to trick you into believing you’re eating at a generations-old barbecue restaurant. It is embarrassing really.

Dickey’s is a franchise concept out of Texas. Their menu consists of pulled pork, brisket (sliced and chopped), baby back ribs, sausage, turkey and chicken plus the usual suspects of sides. Today I picked a two meat plate of pulled pork and ribs.

The pork was a tremendous disappointment. There was no outside meat whatsoever and no smokey flavor. It was a tad on the chewy side. I thought Slope’s pork was bland, but these guys might have them in this department. I didn’t even finish the stuff.

The ribs were tender enough but also lacked flavor. No smoke was evident, nor was there any rub or caramelized sauce. Again, they were bland and boring.

They offer three sauces served warm in pump vats (like the way Wendy’s does ketchup). Their regular sauce tastes like KC Masterpiece, just a little more thin. The sweet and hot sauces are not much better.

With my general dislike of the proteins, I devoured the side items. The Brunswick stew was was hearty and flavorful. I also liked the fried okra and yeast roll.

One gimmick I kinda enjoy at Dickey’s is the free soft serve ice cream. They have a self-serve machine with cups and cones. Since I was still hungry after leaving half my meat uneaten, I wasn’t shy and ate two cones.

There are a lot of barbecue restaurants along Highway 9 in Alpharetta and Milton. Dickey’s is not one I suggest. Maybe they are catching the overflow from ‘Cue down the street.
Dickey's Barbecue Pit on Urbanspoon

Studio Movie Grill on Holcomb Bridge

I hope SMG employees can see chiropractors as part of their benefits package. These poor servers have to walk around hunched over Quasimodo. I kinda felt bad for them.

Thursday night my wife and I made our first visit to the new Studio Movie Grill theater on Holcomb Bridge. I wrote a preview article about this a few weeks back. If you’re not familiar with their concept then read my article here. It’ll be interesting to see if this idea takes root in the burbs.

The theater is in an old grocery store, restored beautifully into a modern theater. Walking into the lobby feels nothing like a typical movie theater. Gone are cheesy video games and greasy pop corn stands. It is more like an upscale waiting room with a bar. You wait until they call you to enter the theater. It is almost like a train station or an airport terminal. “We are now seating for Sex and the City.” Excuse me, that’s my movie. Let me bring my cosmopolitan.

The theaters themselves are different of course. Each horizontal isle has seats on either side. The seats closest to the screen have a long bar-like table. On the other side of the isle are little tables big enough for two people. The little tables are perfect for a couple on a date because you have a tiny bit of privacy. On the other hand, these seats have more obstructions when Quasimodo walks by with drinks. If you want to avoid seeing the servers, sit at the bar seats.

You sit on chairs that are a lot like the big chairs in a conference room at work. They are comfortable but nothing like traditional theater chairs.

On each table is a little button and a red light. Pressing this alerts the staff that you need attention. The servers are very attentive and any of them can wait on you. I found that they have a small army of wait staff in each theater. We didn’t have to wait long at all when our button was pressed. The staff all carry little hand-held Palm-OS looking things to take orders. Very high tech.

So let’s talk about the food. The menu is heavy with stuff like pizza, burgers, sandwiches, wraps, etc. I picked a fried chicken sandwich and my wife a pizza. I didn’t care for the pizza much at all as it was a little on the bready side. My sandwich was pretty good but on par with something like Chili’s. It was about what I expected. This place isn’t going to win any culinary awards anytime soon, that’s for sure. It’s chain restaurant food with a couple-a extra bucks tacked onto the price.

Let’s talk beverages… They serve Pepsi products. Yeah, it’s a shame too. Someone from SMG corporate assured me here on my blog that they’d have Coke products in Atlanta. Not so much. They do have Diet Dr Pepper which is a decent alternative. Their bar has some interesting cocktails yet lacks a deep selection of beer.

The movie watching experience was nice. You can feel the quality in their projectors and sound system. The basic ticket prices for movies are in-line with traditional theaters in Alpharetta.

All in all, I thought it was a cool theater. The food isn’t anything to write home about, but I kinda expected this. There is some disruption to the movie from the wait staff but I expected this as well. They do indeed try hard to minimize the interruptions. Quasimodo won’t say a word to you without a button push.

I’d go back to Studio Movie Grill. Drinking Yeungling while watching a movie is terrific. Having someone refill your drinks ain’t bad either. But get dinner somewhere else before coming.

And for complete disclosure… I was invited to attend on media night and was given free admission and food. I don’t think it clouded my judgment though. I’ll let my readers be the judge of that.
Studio Movie Grill on Urbanspoon

Scratch Fresh – Burgers, Biscuits and Shakes

Every Friday, Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series I like to call Foodie Friday.

I believe we are on the tail end of this burger craze. For the sake of my cholesterol, I certainly hope we are. But in the meantime, let’s add yet another custom burger shop to the mix.

Scratch Fresh quietly opened up about a month ago. I say quietly because they literally hung a banner sign and started cooking. They have a website with no content, have performed no marketing that I’m aware of and have almost no reviews online. Nevertheless, they have a terrific location and people are finding them. For lunch last Saturday they had a decent crowd.

It is easy to compare Scratch to Five Guys. They cook a hand made burger on a flattop griddle. You add toppings like you would at Five Guys and the prices are similar. They deviate from Five Guys in that their menu is more broad and the toppings more numerous.

But let’s get to the burgers, shall we? I enjoyed my Scratch burger a lot. It was perfectly cooked with a little singe on the outside, yet was juicy and flavorful. Is it the best burger in Alpharetta? I wouldn’t go that far. Is it better than Five Guys? Oh hell yes. The Windward location of Five Guys is pretty shitty anyway. This place would be a terrific alternative. Anyway, I promise not to mention Five Guys anymore.

This appears to be a family-run operation; the service is friendly and attentive. They are also very kid/family friendly. My kids enjoyed the chalk boards in the back of the store. They laughed and laughed while getting covered in chalk dust.

There are several things I believe Scratch can improve on. Among those are:

Fresh cut fries – They serve frozen fries. But to give them credit, they were cooked perfectly with a nice golden brown crisp on the outside. To remain competitive I think they need fresh cut spuds on the menu. Even, um, the other place on Windward does this.

Pepsi – I don’t tolerate Pepsi products. Really disgusting. I know it probably costs more to offer Coke, but this is metro Atlanta. Shame shame! Although their lemonade is very tasty.

Milkshakes – I tried one of the hand-spun shakes and it was pretty good. I’d suggest they hide the food service containers of shake flavors. They line a wall and look kinda tacky. It diminishes the experience a bit, taking it from a hand-spun shake down to something I’d expect from McDonalds. They also serve a cinnamon roll dessert which my wife didn’t care for at all.

All in all, Scratch is probably my favorite mid-grade burger joint in North Fulton. They offer a friendly environment that is welcoming to kids and a more diverse burger menu.

Scratch Fresh is located on Highway 9 near Windward, across from Walmart near Meyers Deli.

12872 Alpharetta Hwy 9 Ste 110

Alpharetta GA 30004
Scratch Fresh on Urbanspoon

Slopes BBQ – Alpharetta

Every Friday, Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series I like to call Foodie Friday. This week I continue a summer series reviewing barbecue restaurants in Alpharetta.

I really want to like Slopes BBQ. There are several reasons outside of barbecue that make these guys so darn likable. First, they seem to hold some pretty conservative political views. If you’ve read my blog before, you’ll know I’m a hardcore red state kind of fella. Behind the counter the Slopes folks have a cool collection of right-wing bumper stickers. I got a chuckle out of a few of them.

Slopes also does a great job at old fashioned social networking. I mean the face-to-face variety, not Twitter and Facebook. They are friendly folks who get to know their customers well. I have a lot of friends who are very loyal Slopes customers for this reason.

Slopes is probably the oldest Q joint in North Fulton that is still operating. They are also in the midst of expansion, currently with six stores across the northern burbs. Consider this a review of their Alpharetta location, which is actually in South Forsyth in the Midway area.

I have a hard time getting excited about the barbecue at Slopes. The pork comes finely chopped but not to the point of being minced. It is very lean, often dry and lacks smoke flavor. There is absolutely no outside meat (aka bark) served. I once asked about this, wondering if I could order it with some outside meat mixed in. I was told that they remove this in the morning and put it into the stew. I was stunned! The best most flavorful part of the barbecue is drowned in the Brunswick Stew.

They serve a sauce that I find similar to Williamson Brothers in Marietta. It is a tomato base with a little vinegar and some tang. There is also a spicy version available. I find that I use more sauce here than at any other local Q joint. The meat needs a lot of it.

I mentioned the Brunswick Stew before. As you would imagine, it is pretty good. Slopes makes the most authentic Brunswick Stew around. It is smoky and flavorful. The rest of the side items are above average for the most part.

I also like the cobbler at Slopes. On my last visit they had four varieties. I tried the peach and was impressed. You really should save room for a bowl of it.

I keep telling myself that I ought to just order a vegetable plate and cobbler on my next visit. Yet I keep trying the chopped pork hoping that I will like it more. They now offer beef brisket everyday which looks pretty tasty. I haven’t tried their ribs or chicken.

Slopes has a lot of potential to be a well rounded Q joint. I just find their pork to be one dimensional and not pleasing to a refined barbecue palate. Yet there are scores of locals who would disagree with me on that assessment. If you enjoy the Q here then that’s alright by me. They are for sure with a try.
Slope's Barbecue of Alpharetta on Urbanspoon

Smokejack BBQ – Alpharetta

Every Friday, Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series I like to call Foodie Friday. This week I continue a summer series reviewing barbecue restaurants in Alpharetta.

You’ve heard me use the term boutique barbecue, right? Well Smokejack was the restaurant that took my boutique barbecue virginity. It was a bit of an, um, uncomfortable experience at first. Up until that point, my ideal Q experience consisted of roadside shacks or decades-old family-run joints in dingy old buildings. Smokejack is none of these really, well except for the old building.

And it is that building and what they’ve done with it that impresses me the most about Smokejack. They are in the heart of downtown Alpharetta in a terrific old building. It is beautifully restored with brickwork and exposed beams. I think it’s rustic yet refined but not in a way that makes it feel fake or contrived. What they have accomplished with the look and feel of this restaurant is what I hope the future of dining in downtown Alpharetta looks like. During the day the atmosphere is that of the power lunch with downtown businessmen in suits entertaining clients. Happy hour is hopping at their inviting bar. Yet even with that, they offer perhaps one of the best kids eat free deals on Monday and Tuesday nights.

But let’s talk about barbecue. It is amazing how far away I’ve been and smelled their smokers. I’ve caught whiffs of the amazing hickory smoke from across downtown Alpharetta. It will put you in the mood, that’s for sure. Their pork comes pulled, which I kinda like. It is always tender and fairly lean. The outside meat, some call it bark, is very delicious. Tons of flavor in these little morsels of pork goodness. They seem to baste the meat in the kitchen before hitting the table. I’m not talking sauce at this point either. It is something I just don’t care for a lot, and tends to cover up what I believe is very good meat underneath.

They serve only a mustard-based sauce. The fact that they offer only one sauce doesn’t bother me really. I hate it when a Q joint dishes up half a dozen sauces. Makes me think they are trying to be all things to all tastes. Pick a sauce you think complements the meat and go with it. Smokejack does just that. Nevertheless I’m not crazy about the mustard sauce here. It is nothing like the South Carolina mustard I’ve experienced. It has more vinegar and tang than I’m accustomed to out of the Palmetto state. I suggest ordering it on the side and using it in very small quantities (like drops of it).

I’ve yet to find any side items at Smokejack that wow me. They are all made from scratch, except maybe the french fries. Really wish they would consider making hand-cut, skin-on fries. I also think the Brunswick stew should be listed as a side item and not all by its lonesome on the soup list. This is Georgia, and stew is a side!

I’ve tried some of the other menu items on the barbecue side of the menu including ribs and burnt ends. I’m by no means an expert on brisket so I won’t pass judgment here. But it is worth mentioning that they have burnt ends on the menu, something that Texas aficionados should take notice of.

All in all, Smokejack is a cool joint.The restaurant is beautiful and the service prompt and friendly. If you haven’t been, you owe it to yourself to try it once. I tend to like their Q but find their sauce and heavy basting a little disagreeable. That’s probably more of a personal preference on my part though.
Smokejack on Urbanspoon

Emory Johns Creek Hospital

“Oooh fuuudge.”

Only I didn’t say “fudge.” Yeah, I said it as the pain shot through me. It hurt. But more than the pain, it just didn’t look right. It was also Sunday, which meant I was bound for the emergency room. Which hospital did I choose? Emory Johns Creek. What happened? You’ll have to keep reading.

It has that medical school mystique right there in the name. “Emory”. I don’t know if it is true, but a hospital with a top university in the name seems to hold so much more credibility. I have nothing whatsoever to back that up, but it sounds good. It is kinda like sending your kid off to college. Do you want to tell the golf buddies that you sent junior to Emory University or North Paducah College? Same for medical stuff. “Yeah, I got my ingrown toenail removed at… Emory.” Oh la la!

But that’s not why I went there. Of course not.

My first experience at Emory Johns Creek was three years ago. My wife was pregnant with our second baby. Our first was born at Northside (what I call the baby factory). Emory had just opened and was in-network for our insurance. Not only was it closer to home, but they also sported a level 3 NICU. I don’t exactly know what that means, but 3 is better than 1 and 2. And, God forbid, if something were to happen to little Bubba, I’d want a level 3 NICU. Thankfully we didn’t need it.

So the decision on where to have the baby was a no brainer, Emory! Our son was among the first born in the new hospital. The staff were just terrific. They were much more personable and friendly than what we found at Northside. I blame some of that on them just not being as busy. Northside delivers a gajillion babies every minute. It is easy to get lost in their shuffle. But the employees at Emory all seem to love what they are doing, from the MD’s down to the cafeteria workers.

So fast forward to a few months ago. Into the Emory ER I go with… a stubbed toe. I felt like an idiot but the thing was pointed sideways. I hobbled into the ER and signed in. My first impression was… this place still has that new hospital smell! Even after three years! It was beautiful inside. There was almost no wait before I was back to see the doctor. The ER doctor was funny, giving me crap for breaking my “wee wee wee all the way home toe.” I told him that if this medical thing he has doesn’t work out he could try standup.

I survived the broken toe, barely. Thought about playing it up, like a man cold, but I held off. I’ll get back to you on surviving baby number two. He’s a handful.

Emory Johns Creek is a winner. Nice hospital, not crowded at all, with super friendly staff. It is my first choice for most hospital needs. I say most because I’d take my kids straight to Children’s Healthcare at Scottish Rite of course. A good rule of thumb to follow… If they are still in the womb or on the verge of coming out… Emory. Once they are a tax deduction, CHOA.

I don’t always get sick, but when I do, I choose Emory Johns Creek. Stay healthy my friends.

River Tavern – Milton

Every Friday, Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series I like to call Foodie Friday.

This is the forth restaurant to occupy this space in a two year stretch. If you’re keeping score at home, that’ll be Forster’s Grill, O’Keefe’s Gastropub, Mike’s 57 Grille and now River Tavern. I’m going out on a limb here, but I think the Tavern probably has what it takes to last. I’ve been impressed on my two visits.

River Tavern has been open for just eight days now. I guess you could call it a soft opening. They still don’t have a liquor license, so the “tavern” part is a work in progress. If you’re familiar with this space from one of the previous restaurants, you’ll see that they’ve made a few changes. The bar has moved and the restaurant is more open. The floor plan is simple but not very comfortable. I’m not sure if they are going for a minimalist type of decor or if a more inviting space is in the works.

The menu is like that of a gastropub. On the appetizer list you’ll find stuff like shrimp and grits, fried mac and cheese and even beef carpaccio. Their list of sandwiches includes a monte cristo and a shortrib sandwich. Entrees vary from meatloaf to trout and even a few steaks.

On my first visit I picked the grilled meatloaf. They use a combination of beef, pork and veal and lightly grill prior to serving. The portion size was generous when combined with the mashed potatoes and seasonal veggie. I wasn’t real hungry on this day but still managed to make it disappear. Very delicious stuff.

I’ve also tried a roast beef panini they offered as a lunch special. The beef was cut thick yet still tender and juicy. The mayo was advertised as having horseradish but didn’t taste of it. Overall it was a decent sandwich and was a better value for lunch.

The prices are a little steep and will probably keep me from visiting too frequently. They make up for that with an inventive menu from a talented young chef. This guy clearly knows what he’s doing. He also looks kinda like Kevin Gillespie.

I’m impressed with what I’ve seen at the River Tavern. As I said at the start, I think they’ve got what it takes to be successful. It will be interesting to see where they take this concept. Best of luck, guys!

River Tavern is on the corner of Highway 9 and Bethany Bend near Starbucks.
River Tavern of Milton on Urbanspoon

Alpharetta Florist Reviews – Part 2

This is the final post of a two part review of florists in Alpharetta. If you haven’t already, please follow this link and read my first post.

A little more than a week ago I bought my wife seven arrangements of red roses as an anniversary gift. All seven came from different stores, two from full-service florists, some from grocery stores, big box retailers and Costco.

For the last week I’ve watched each arrangement and observed the roses themselves. The results have been surprising. Here’s what I found, starting with the full-service florists.

Florist at Windward

By far the best arrangement of the group. The blooms were not the largest but they held up the best. Nine days after purchase, they are still in the vase and looking decent.

This is the second time I’ve purchased flowers from these guys. Both times I’ve received above average service. The folks here are from somewhere in eastern Europe and speak with an accent that can be hard to understand. But they always help me out to the car with my flowers. You’ll also get a very sturdy car carrier for the roses. You could drive home like Bo and Luke Duke and that vase wouldn’t turn over.

Alpharetta Flower Market

This is the current name of the florist on Main Street in the heart of downtown Alpharetta. On first impression, these roses were the best. The blooms were the largest of the seven arrangements I purchased. Even the baby’s breath buds were big. Going on initial wow factor, these guys win. However, these roses started drooping after just a few days. At the end of a week, the entire dozen held their heads down in shame.

Costco

The biggest surprise of them all. Dollar for dollar, they were the cheapest. Seventeen bucks scored two dozen of these guys, cheaper than even Walmart. On top of that, they were large blooms. The stems came trimmed of thorns and were easy to arrange. They also lasted well into the second week. I’ve purchased flowers at Costco before and they never performed as well. Maybe we got lucky on this purchase. If you don’t mind arranging the roses in your own vase, this is the way to go.

Publix – Downtown Alpharetta

They have the nicest in-store flower shop of any grocery store. The arrangement I bought looked pretty good, with the best greenery of any of the store bought flowers. They were also the most expensive of the store bought. How did they perform? The roses never opened beyond their buds and drooped quickly. I was very disappointed overall.

Walmart and Target

Fair at best. Small roses with little to no greenery. They both lasted a little longer than Publix but not an entire week. Target’s roses lasted a bit longer. I don’t suggest either store.

Kroger

They sell 15 roses for about the price of a dozen. That’s a plus I guess. But these were the only flowers to actually lose petals during my experiment. All in all, a disappointment.

Final Thoughts

My wife seems to enjoy taking flowers and arranging them in her own vase. She doesn’t place a lot of value in the presentation of flowers from a florist. So going on that alone, Costco is the way to go. Flowers from a florist will cost you eight times more per stem. Not worth it in the long run.

However, if you can catch flowers in season, florists are the way to go. I’ve purchases roses from florists that are bigger than baseballs. That’s never going to happen at a store. I would love to see a florist adopt a social media strategy to alert customers when they receive a shipment of super premium blooms. Something similar to my social media advice to restaurants would probably work here. Take note, florists!

As much as I’d like to see the traditional florist stick around, stores like Costco are going to make that tough. They are likely to become my go-to spot for spur-of-the-moment flower purchases. Were I to pick a traditional florist in Alpharetta, the Florist on Windward would be my first choice.

Alpharetta Florist Reviews – Part 1

This is the first post of a two part review of florists in Alpharetta.

You could blame the big box retailers I suppose. The independent florist in America is dying and that is a shame. I’m usually not one to go blaming Walmart for the troubles of the small businessman. I like Walmart… a lot. In the case of florists, I don’t think it is Walmart they have to blame.

In my view, florists today have two worries. The first is the drop shipment suppliers. These are the internet and phone flower sellers that basically Fedex a box of flowers to your “lucky” recipient. I’m not discussing these guys. You’re a schmuck if you even consider buying from these clowns.

Second, I think florists need to worry about grocery stores. While Walmart and Target do indeed sell flowers on the cheap, they are currently not clearing floor space for dedicated flower departments. There are some halfway decent flowers to be bought in grocery stores like Publix and Kroger. As a result of all this, Alpharetta has a paltry number of full service florists.

So that’s where my little exercise comes in. Can the flowers purchased at grocery stores and big box retailers stack up to a real-deal florist? Last weekend was my wedding anniversary. I thought this was the perfect time for such a comparison. Over the course of two days I bought seven arrangements of red roses and presented them to my beautiful bride. Two of them were obviously from florists while the others were store bought. I didn’t tell her anything else about them. I randomly numbered the arrangements so I could keep track.

We’re a few days into my little exercise so I don’t want to give final results. I’ll wait and see which flowers have longevity before posting my final review. So far the roses are holding up pretty well. I’m seeing some drooping from one of the expensive florists, which is disappointing.

This chart shows where I purchased the flowers and the after tax cost. Some arrangements had more than a dozen so I noted the quantity.

Flowers Purchased

Florist / Store Cost Number of Flowers
Publix - Downtown Alpharetta $16.04 12
Alpharetta Flower Market - Downtown Alpharetta $69.55 12
Costco - Windward $17.11 24
Kroger - Windward $13.90 15
Target - Hwy 9 Milton $10.69 12
Walmart - Windward $10.70 12
Windward Florist $69.55 12

The Value of the Florist

It is all about the presentation. The two arrangements from florists I purchased both came in heavy vases with red ribbons tied to them. The roses themselves were slightly larger than store bought and the stems were longer and thicker. The extra greenery was nice with white contrast from baby’s breath. While some store bought flowers will contain extra greenery, it usually isn’t much. Store bought flowers come in these cheap plastic bags and look terrible.

I appreciate the service I get out of a real florist. In my next post I’ll get into some of the extras I received at Alpharetta’s florists. If you are a regular buyer of flowers, it pays to get to know your florist. Each flower has a season. Knowing when that is and getting hints from your florist will result in bigger and more beautiful flowers that last longer. Is it worth paying four or five times the cost? Stay tuned and I’ll let you know what I think.

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