The Dynamic Duo
Food makes the world go round and just like you, we are obsessed with everything wine and dine! Sharing a meal around the people you love is an event in itself. There almost isn’t a single form of entertainment that doesn’t happen around food.
As restaurateurs, it is in our hearts and souls to share what we have learned in almost 40 years in the food and hospitality industry with you.
Leonardo Moura and Chef Jamie Adams are the owners of two popular Atlanta restaurants, il Giallo Osteria & Bar and Lagarde American Eatery. Fate brought them to join forces in the food business and they have now made it their mission to create a space where more memories can be created around friends and family.
With great food, tasty cocktails, and a cultivating atmosphere, we are here to help you fully embrace your love of food and become the magic maker in your own kitchen.
I had several jobs during high school and after I graduated I went to work for The Mad Italian, a Philadelphia cheesesteak spot that had great food with awesome hospitality, and I stayed with them for 8 years. After that I packed my bags and went to Italy where I stayed for close to five years, but that’s a whole other story that I haven’t written yet.
In 2000 at the age of 41, I became, the lucky recipient of 4 Coronary Artery Bypass Grafts (CABG), fondly referred to as “Cabbage” aka, quadruple bypass. That was a pretty weird week-I went for a checkup and ended up in the hospital, surreal I have to say. I narrowly escaped catastrophe-I almost died, went broke and I had left ENO, but before leaving, God placed my wife into the midst of all that mess, although I wasn’t aware at the time that I would go on to marry her, or that she would give me a bicycle that would launch me back into road cycling; in short I got a chance to start over in life, spiritually and physically and I am forever grateful to that universe that listens…
Okay, enough of the sappy stuff-fast forward to the present; you all have probably already heard of il Giallo and as I mentioned above, check out the website for all kinds of info and history. Lagarde is about to happen, a thing I’ve wanted to do for a very long time and my business partner/friend Leo has had an itch to do an American restaurant since he landed here from Brazil, so here we are. Check out the “About” Tab for more!
I am honored to have been a featured chef at The James Beard House in New York, I competed in The Food Network’s “Chopped,” I was also featured on “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”, years ago I was selected to participate in a TBS-TV “Super ChefCook Off”, and more forever ago I was highlighted on “Great Chefs of the South”. I am truly grateful to have had these experiences.
Like most immigrants we started from the bottom, and not speaking any English made moving here even more interesting. I would love to bore you with all the details of our beginnings, but I am going to fast forward to my restaurant experience.
I worked for several pizza chains in my early days, Pizza Hut, Papa Johns and Donato’s Pizza and later I became a busser and server at Violette Restaurant under Chef Guy Luck. My love for the restaurant business flourished when an opportunity to work for Buckhead Life Restaurant Group came through a friend at Violette, and that’s when my career took off. I worked for BLRG as a server, assistant manager, beverage manager, AGM and eventually General Manager, all within a very short period of time. At BLRG I met my greatest mentor Mimi Cogan, my restaurant inspiration Pano Karatassos, my business partner and best friend Chef Jamie Adams and the rarest and most precious jewel of all, Antoinette Moura, my wife.
I left BLRG for a year, to get my Master’s Degree in Restaurant Business, in pursuit of acquiring a franchise with IHOP. Please read that phrase again with a little sarcasm. While at IHOP-U I learned a ton- from properly cutting a tomato, to saving pennies on the dollar, to how to responsibly and financially run a restaurant business. 20k later (and I am not still NOT bitter)… scrambled eggs anyone?
The il Giallo “il Jah-lo” project started by Pano offering Chef Jamie and I an opportunity to buy Veni Vidi Vici, to which I had returned after finishing my “IHOP degree.” Chef Jamie and I pressed really hard to make the deal work but, I guess, fortunately we could not make it work. We signed the lease for il Giallo late 2014 and had that pup going by
October 31 st , 2015, now known of course as Gialloween. il Giallo has taught us tremendously and we are extremely grateful to the City of Sandy Springs and all the cities around it for the wonderful support .
Lagarde, our latest, is a fun concept to describe; come as you are, neighborhood driven, affordable, irreverent, edgy, family friendly, fun (have I mentioned fun yet?), screams sharing and above all, beautiful. All of the senses are touched, even the sixth one. Lagarde is also a very personal concept for me- the merging of two friends’ dreams. I have always dreamed of owning an American Restaurant that honors hard work, diversity and the land that adopted me as a son. To me, Lagarde is the equivalent of someone crossing the finish line in first place, it goes beyond just a dream, it also represents my love for the country that provided me great opportunity. The eagle in our logo represents the free spirited and the bold. The eagle rests on the A for America, which is surrounded by the fifty stars and lastly, GA in red, is for where we are in this vast land. “Bon Temps” describes the good times to come, Jamie’s family is from New Orleans, a city that was love at first sight for me. N.O., I am not biased, I just don’t believe in coincidence - Chef Jamie’s middle name is Lagarde from his grandmother-so we have LA and GA all in one word! I can’t wait to see the restaurant packed with a great “everything goes” mentality and vibe!
“Let the Good Times Roll” and I mean it!
“Cooking is not difficult. Everyone has taste, even if they don’t realize it. Even if you’re not a great chef, there’s nothing to stop you understanding the difference between what tastes good and what doesn’t.”
– Gerard Depardieu
On the Podcast
Welcome to the Katzenjammer Podcast! We are so excited you're here! In this first episode, we introduce who we are and why we decided to talk about the chaos of the restaurant life.