With 15 years of culinary experience and a love for organic, local foods, Chef Joe Schafer brings a passion for rustic Southern cuisine to Parish Food & Goods, a vibrant Inman Park eatery and market that pairs modern influences with traditional Southern comfort food.
Schafer, a Georgia native, began his culinary path as a dishwasher at a mom-and-pop restaurant in his hometown of Senoia, ending up with a kitchen position and a career for life. Schafer’s talent for creating down-home cuisine—which he describes as “rustic Southern, refined with European techniques”—was honed at the Art Institute of Atlanta, where he graduated from with honors in 2001. From there, he went on to practice his culinary skills at local restaurants such as Rainwater, where he learned under Chef Todd Annis, and the Globe, where he helped win Atlanta Magazine’s Restaurant of the Year award in their first year of operation. Schafer joined Concentrics in 2008 as a sous chef at Murphy’s, helping to create upscale comfort food at the Virginia Highlands neighborhood favorite restaurant. A year later, he took on the sous chef role at TAP, Atlanta’s first true gastropub.
When he’s not in the kitchen, Schafer relaxes by tending to the watermelons, okra, beets, and other vegetables in his organic garden. He’s also passionate about curing and smoking his own bacon, known around town as “Joe’s Bacon,” which he hopes to eventually market to the public. Schafer resides in Atlanta with his wife, Toni, and their dog, Cleveland.