Taste Decatur This Saturday!

Mmmm…delectable Decatur….mmmm….

A curious Nubbs writes in…

On the radio this morning I heard that Taste of Decatur was happening this weekend on the Square…this was the first I have heard about it – have I been living under a rock? Is this really going on? They said tickets were $10, over 50 restaurants were participating and some boutiques and restaurants were giving away free stuff. Just looking for confirmation that this really is happening this weekend.

According to the worldwide internets, Taste of Decatur is indeed happening this weekend, though I’ve not heard much and haven’t been contacted directly about it.  Here’s the official website, which gives a good deal of info, including a list of participants (but no specifics as to what individual restaurants and shops will offer).

That said, if you’re a participating business and know what you’ll be offering for the event, feel free to provide details in the comments section below.

Also, today only (Thursday) you can get half-price tickets for the event on Living Social. [via Carl]

29 thoughts on “Taste Decatur This Saturday!”


  1. Yeah, the first I heard of it was via a tweet from Carl this afternoon. So they’re not exactly winning points for promotion.

    That said, I’ll probably venture over.

  2. I could use some clarification as to how this event actually works. I envisioned this as an event where the restaurants have tents/booths set up and samples are given in exchange for tickets, ala Taste of Atlanta. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. Several places refer to tickets, but the event’s Web site describes a situation where attendees get a bracelet and then just go to the actual restaurants around town to get half-off a certain item, a free item, or whatever that establishment chooses to offer to braceleted folks. So what are the tickets for? I’m confused.

    1. Maybe they should call it the “Decatur Food Crawl”.

      But seriously, I don’t really understand it either. I asked the city for clarification, but haven’t heard back yet. I can’t even figure out the organizer.

      1. Yeah, “Taste of Decatur” is a bit misleading. “Crawl” would be more accurate. When everyone’s got a booth, you can walk around and see what you want. Here, it’s kind of a crapshoot wherein you hike over to a restaurant, maybe get a free item, or are perhaps offered a half-price item that you are then put in the position of declining and looking like a douche.

        Here’s a press release where they indicate that a ticket-exchange system would be used. But maybe they dropped that idea in the three weeks since it came out, going with the bracelet idea instead. Anyway, there’s a contact in there for ya: http://tasteofdecatur.com/?page_id=105

        In case I don’t sound negative enough, I’ll also point out that there’s a 70 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms Saturday.

      2. Heard about this for the first time on Living Social this morning & bought tickets.

        Here, it’s kind of a crapshoot wherein you hike over to a restaurant, maybe get a free item, or are perhaps offered a half-price item that you are then put in the position of declining and looking like a douche.

        I hope this is not the case, but I suspect it will be. : |

      3. This is not a city event and we haven’t been able to get much in the way of detail either. It sounds like an interesting idea but we don’t know which businesses are participating. I know that Cheryl Burnette has been trying to find out more information so she may have more to share.

      4. I think it will be interesting to see what kind of turnout this event will have. I would agree with the comment earlier that the “rain’ in the weekend forecast doesn’t seem favorable. But we’ll see how it goes.

        1. Well, it appeared they had sold around 700 tickets on Living Social alone when I bought mine last night.

  3. If you hop around enough through all the links you get to this:

    While a portion of the proceeds from your ticket is given to the Decatur Youth Fund, you will receive access to specific deals and incentives during 11am-6pm on April 24th for being a Taste of Decatur participant. There’s no need to come looking for tents and booths. This event will allow you to shop and eat directly inside the businesses accessing the best of Decatur.

    As an added bonus, you will receive a Taste of Decatur member card that will allow you to access deals and incentives throughout Decatur on an ongoing basis. There will be monthly events to highlight aggressive incentives available only to Taste of Decatur members and Taste of Decatur card holders. The businesses in Decatur will advertise specials, deals, and incentives on tasteofdecatur.com regularly so stay tuned in to the best website in the city: tasteofdecatur.com.

    Seem to me that it’s a pretty good deal at $5.00 ( Living Social, thanks for letting me know about that site) or- $10.00 a ticket, especially since some of the money goes to the Decatur Youth fund. I can’t imagine why anyone would have an event in Decatur without using the skills of Lyn and Cheryl, but, any way you slice it , it sounds like a pretty good deal.

    1. At $5 a head, it’d be hard for it NOT to be a good deal. My only complaints were the apparent lack of promotion and poor explanation of how the event actually works.

      From a logistical standpoint, are places like Cafe Alsace or Cakes & Ale without much mingling room going to sacrifice staff and tables to service folks who are only there for a free item or a half-priced appetizer while there are regular customers there shelling out for a full meal? Or are we just going to be handed something relatively portable and sent on our way?

    2. I think it’s fair to ask how anyone can expect to have a successful event like this in Decatur without Cheryl or Lyn knowing about it, much less helping.

      I wish them luck, but I’m a bit skeptical.

  4. This looks like a great event! This is my first time hearing of this event too. Don’t recall our DBA (Decatur Business Association) mentioning it, but regardless, it seems interesting. I look forward to attending! I’ve also posted this event on our LinkedIn page — LinkedDecatur. 🙂

    Cheers,
    Marcus

    1. If I’m not mistaken, the DBA is not planning this event, according to the website it’s another group – the gentleman at the Good Mornings Atlanta clip.

  5. I already bought my ticket before the details of this “event” became more apparent. After looking at the updated website this morning, I have learned that this is not really a tasting festival, but a “membership program.” False advertising much?
    Now I’m not stating any of this as fact, but this is what I gather: a couple days ago the website listed virtually all restaurants and shops in decatur as participants but didn’t reveal all the “special incentives and freebies”. You are led to believe this is in fact a typical tasting festival. The website has now removed more than half of the restaurants and all but one of the shops. All of the businesses except 2 are only offering deals like discounts with a purchase. So basically, we’re paying $5 or $10 to have the freedom to pay even more money at local businesses and then for an added bonus we get to be “members” of whatever it is they’re peddling and have the great opportunity to get prodded to spend even more money at businesses around decatur in the future. And as far as the fund raising aspect goes, I don’t trust that any of this money will be going to a good cause. I hope I’m wrong, but everything points to a scam here.

    1. Yeah, I’m a little concerned about this event myself. Hopefully it is legit. Someone please report back, since we haven’t heard “boo” from the organizers.

      But in its defense, even before they had listed the specific discounts at participating businesses, they did say – deep within the website – that it would take place at individual shops and be a combination of free-bees and discounts.

      The disappearance of many of the participating restaurants is concerning.

    2. I don’t know that this is a scam, but I find it more than a little dishonest to list nearly every restaurant in town as a “Venue” and then kill over half the list less than 24 hours before the event begins. It also smacks of poor planning that all the specials are discounted entrees and BOGO type deals. How much food do they think we can eat in a day? If it were appetizers or small plates or the like, then I could conceivably hit four or five places.

      That said, if it’s a rip, meh… I’m out $10, and the Decatur community can commence dispensing capitalistic justice in the ensuing months. And chances are I can come with $10 in savings over lunch and dinner.

      Guess I’ll find out in a few minutes.

  6. Mrs. Lump just tracked down one of the so-called organizers of this event by phoning Rockit, the establishment distributing the bracelets. After pointing out the deceptive bait-and-switch nature of dropping more than half the participants (and, let’s be honest, most of the good ones) the night before the event and revealing that the majority of what people would get for their admission was 20%-off deals and drink specials and the like, he didn’t have a lot to say. He did indicate that if you bought through Living Social (as I suspect most of us did) you’d need to inquire with them about a refund (we have). It’s not the amount of money involved. It’s the principle. And as KM indicated, we too are very skeptical that much, if any, of this money will actually find its way to charity.

    Taste of Debacle? Bad Taste of Decatur in Your Mouth?

    1. Please report this to the Office of Consumer Affairs. They’re pretty good about looking into scams like this– particularly Internet scams.

  7. This thing was a joke/rip/scam, whatever yo want to call it. Makes Decatur look bad. I don’t know if Rockit had anything to do with this other than distributing hand stamps, but I will definitely make sure to tell people not to shop there. Even on Saturday when you went to get your hand stamped, they couldn’t tell you what any of the so called deals were. Our fault for buying tickets when no actual information on the event was posted. Basically we ended up paying $5 bucks to have the opportunity to get a deal like a free app with 2 entrees, or buy one get one or 15% your meal. You can get better deals than those for free in the Savvy Shopper.

    1. Why would you tell people not to shop there if they were just distributing hand stamp and may not have any more culpability than the restaurants who did stay on the list? Great way to keep our downtown active- mete out punishment and assign blame without knowing any details.

  8. Sounds more like a scam than anything else. I was waiting for some friends outside Brick Store this afternoon when a woman came up to me and asked if I knew where Will Call was for Taste of Decatur. The printed conformation page she had listed 101 E. Court Square as the location for “Will Call” for this “Event”. 101 E. Court Square is the old courthouse. Needless to say, there was no will call at the courthouse.

    On the bright side, maybe this will scare folks away from buying tickets to events and festivals over the interwebs and I will actually be able to get a ticket to the Beer Festival!

  9. http://airbornecombatengineer.typepad.com/in_decatur/2010/04/taste-of-decatur-was-a-fubar-from-the-get-go-to-the-letdown.html

    Here’s a good link that has a lot of the information that has been gathered. It’s looking more and more like its just a scam, those memberships were free to begin with on the TAG site, restaurants were removed from the website day before and day of the event, the organizer goes by both Ellis Stanley AND Ellis O’Neil…Not sure what Rockit knows but know that if you go there don’t take the membership in lieu of a refund because that was already free.

  10. Don’t get this Ellis Stanley/Total Access Guide event confused with the annual “Garden of Eatin’: A Taste of Decatur” event that has been held every year for 14 years by the Decatur Cooperative Ministry (a local non-profit serving the needs of the homeless). I just hope Mr. Stanley has not left a bad taste in our community for the real Taste of Decatur which will be held this coming September 25th. See http://www.decaturcooperativeministry.org/tasteofdecatur/home.htm

    1. Follow-up:
      The person/entity that perpetrated the “Taste of Decatur” on our community last weekend has now changed the name of their website to “Tour of Decatur”. Be warned…the URL is still the same (www.tasteofdecatur.com) so it’s the same person/entity who is now planning another questionable promotion. Also, this Total Access Guide (TAG/MAG) and Stanley Ellis doesn’t seem to have any physical address. Go ahead…try to find one. As the saying goes: fool me once shame on you…fool me twice…I’m an idiot.

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