The famous Marietta bakery, through a concessions firm, is one of 126 restaurant vendors to win a contract with the City of Atlanta last week to sell products at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in the new Maynard H. Jackson, Jr. International Terminal, set to open in the spring.
“It’s exciting, exhilarating, humbling, it makes you proud, all those wonderful things,” said Johnnie Gabriel, owner and president of Gabriel’s, which is at 800 Whitlock Ave. in Marietta. “I think we’ll do a good job of promoting Atlanta, Marietta and the South — leave a good taste in people’s mouths.”
Gabriel said an Atlanta company called Concessions International inquired about a year ago about putting a Gabriel’s kiosk in the new terminal. As in a franchise deal, Concessions International will bake and prepare the products using Gabriel’s recipes, and it will operate the kiosk, which will be called Gabriel’s Desserts.
Gabriel will regularly test the products to make sure they meet her standards and consult with the concession firm.
“They will be using our signature recipes,” Gabriel said. “We will probably offer smaller pieces of products for them to take, like the petite cakes, slices of pound cakes, cookies, cupcakes and whoopie pies. Fun, tasty little things you can pick up as you’re traveling.”
The new kiosk will be located in the B portion of the terminal, Gabriel said, along with 17 other food and beverage vendors.
Gabriel said her bakery already does some shipping business, and she hopes the airport exposure will increase that.
But she said the airport kiosk is the all the expanding she will be doing for a while.
“Unless you can pretty much duplicate yourself, it’s hard to have more than one location,” Gabriel said. “Marietta’s been our home and will stay our home. But Concessions International has some super people. They’re top-notch, so I think it will be great.”
Another Cobb County restaurant, Weinerz Butcher Shop & Deli, at 1592 Atlanta Road in Marietta north of Windy Hill Road, will be opening a Weinerz Grill in the terminal as well, but the owner declined to answer questions about their operations at the terminal.
Chain restaurants that won spots in the new terminal include Ruby Tuesday, P.F. Chang’s, Pappadeaux Seafood, Pinkberry, McDonald’s, Chick-fil-A, Willy’s Mexicana Grill, Popeyes, Dunkin’ Donuts, T.G.I. Friday’s, Fresh to Order, Little Azio, Carrabba’s Italian Grill, The Varsity, Five Guys Burgers and Fries, LongHorn Steakhouse, La Madeleine, Chipotle, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Bojangles’, Fatburger, Shane’s Rib Shack, Coffee Beanery, Starbucks, Goldberg’s Bagel Co. & Deli, Asian Chao and Jersey Mike’s Subs.
There will be 24 retail stores in the terminal, including MAC Cosmetics, Swarovski, Brookstone and The Body Shop.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said that all together, the contracts are expected to generate $51 million in annual revenues for the vendors.