Stylish, Not Stuffy There’s no wrong way to join us here: for a casual drink at the bar, or a long, leisurely dinner among friends. For a quick grab-and-go breakfast, or for a classic cocktail to end the evening. We don’t believe in tradition for tradition’s sake. We believe in comfort, care, and deep-rooted Southern soul. Join us and feel the energy of the room around you, and you’ll see what we mean.
Mark Alba, Executive Chef
Executive Chef Mark Alba is obsessed with fine ingredients and the ongoing evolution of cooking techniques. With more than 2 decades of experience in the kitchen, he is an enthusiastic and thoughtful leader who approaches each dish with curiosity, working to emphasize fresh, local flavors and giving his careful attention to every detail. This focus makes him exceptionally well-suited to cooking for all of our guests, but particularly those with dietary restrictions, as he shapes their dishes to accommodate their needs while still satisfying their hunger for a memorable meal.
Before joining us, Chef Alba served as executive chef of some of Atlanta’s most beloved and noteworthy restaurants, including 5Church, The Optimist, STK, and JCT Kitchen. He also brings a wealth of experience working on private and semi-private events, thanks to stints leading the kitchens at The St. Regis Hotel and Legendary Events. He earned his degree in Criminal Justice at Louisiana State University, but ultimately, he couldn’t resist the call of the kitchen, and returned to the city of his birth to study Culinary Arts at The Art Institute of Atlanta. After graduation, he steadily climbed the ladder of the city’s dining scene, including roles as sous chef at the Hotel Nikko (now The Grand Hyatt) and James Beard Award winner Canoe.
Chef Alba grew up in Baton Rouge, where his love for cooking took hold while helping his mother in the kitchen. Today, he also enjoys cooking for his wife and kids and spending time with them both in and out of the kitchen. A lover of smooth jazz, he is also an avid fan of Formula One racing and fascinated by exotic cars. He is proud to bring his lifetime of cooking experience and his love of ingredients to Hartley.