Chef/Owner Karen Patton’s passion for cooking expands over 30 years. It began in the kitchen with her mother helping prepare family favorites and observing her aunt as she baked pies, cakes and homemade rolls. Her mother was a diabetic and this regulated how most meals were prepared. When she became a mother herself, she would treat her children as her own little test subjects preparing recipes found in magazines, but to no avail, all they wanted was hamburger helper. So, she focused on baking and found it was an area she not only enjoyed, but it also gave her an opportunity to be creative.
Over the years, she continued to expand her culinary interests and began catering for family and friends. Approximately five years ago, she became part owner of a catering business while continuing to work her corporate job. With the economic downfall, she was forced to make a life changing decision.
Chef Karen received her culinary training from Atlanta Technical College and has always had an interest in nutrition and healthy eating. She has provided cooking demonstrations at Grady Memorial Hospital to its diabetic patients and East Metro Farmer’s Market. Chef Karen has joined First Lady Michelle Obama’s Chefs Move to Schools initiative working with Charles Drew Charter School’s “Healthy You, Healthy Drew” program. She is a member of the American Culinary Federation’s Atlanta Chapter and Georgia Organics.
She has formed a non-profit organization Épice of Life that will focus on providing nutritious meals to seniors and persons with diabetes while educating children on nutrition and the benefits of local growing using the café’s on-site garden.