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Meet Adriana Coppola of A&A Alta Cucina Italia in Johns Creek

Today we’d like to introduce you to Adriana Coppola.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I come from a traditional Italian family from a small town near Naples, Sorrento. My father worked around the world in the Italian restaurant business for his whole life.

Growing up in a house filled with the flavors and aromas of southern Italian dishes fueled my passion for cooking. I got involved with it through the kitchen where I grew up, watching my mom, aunt, and family cook. Italians take great pride in their traditions and their cuisine is no exception. Mealtimes are an integral part of our daily routine, a special sharing time with family and friends.

Most of the products you find in an American supermarket that are labeled “Italian” are not really Italian at all. When you try them at home they are not authentic and taste nothing like you would find in Italy. So this is how A&A Alta Cucina was born – finding a way to capture the aromas and flavors of our Italian cuisine by infusing natural herbs in extra virgin olive oils, balsamic vinegar and making blended seasonings and salts that capture the essence of our Italian dishes.

A&A was found in 2011, 6 months after I arrived from Italy. I started preparing my products in Suwanee, at the Shared Kitchen, and after winning the grand prize of Flavor of Georgia with our Blueberry Balsamic, I was unable to continue handling my company by myself, so I passed the production side to the Shared Kitchen. This allowed me to focus more on running the business. Production is currently done in Decatur now.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It has not been easy, where I struggle the most was with communication (due to my lack of English) and also all the regulations implied in the food business.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the A&A Alta Cucina Italia story. Tell us more about the business.
My company is basically me, I manage the sales, inventory, production, labeling, marketing, website and everything involved in the business unless the production which I passed two years ago to a co-packer.

A&A offers from Infused Extra Virgin Olive Oils, Balsamic Vinegars Reductions, Tomato Sauces, Gourmet Seasoned Salts, Pestos, Balsamic Jams and our latest line Chutneys. A&A is most known for the balsamic reductions, they are sweeter and thicker than regular balsamic, and also for the local flavors I use to make them.

What I am more proud is that all my products are artisan made, in small batches which allows offering the best tasting and high-quality goods and that even being small the products are found in more than 250 stores around the U.S and have won several prizes as The Cherry Balsamic Vinegar was a Flavor of Georgia finalist in the category of Salsas, Chutneys & Condiments in 2014.

In 2015, the Blueberry Balsamic Vinegar was not only the winner in the same category (Salsas, Chutneys & Condiments) but also the overall grand prize winner!

As an active and proud member of Georgia Grown, A&A is always endeavored to manufacture products using local ingredients that allow us to continue with our local concepts, that’s why the first product of our new line Chutneys was the Vidalia Onion Balsamic Chutney, which already won the Good Food Awards this year.

The contrast of flavors between the sweetness of the Vidalia combined with the tartness of the Balsamic Vinegar creates a flavor so unique that makes this a luscious Southern and exquisite accompaniment.

Our sustainability and local concept, the exquisite flavor and high quality of our products and our packaging are some of the characteristics that set us apart from other similar companies.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I don’t see it as a “luck” but as passion and love for what I do. Being perseverant, having courage, seeing every failure as an opportunity to learn and grow.

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Getting in touch: VoyageATL is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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