April 23, 2001
Houston Mill House open again with new caterer
By Michael Terrazas firstname.lastname@example.org
With a new caterer and some new decor, the Houston Mill House is open again as a lunch and meeting destination and a tether to Druid Hills history.
Mill House Catering, a division of Gwinnett Countys Georgia Fine
Restaurants, will be staffing the kitchen at Houston Mill House (HMH).
The company also caters for Little Gardens in Lawrenceville and Vines
The house also has undergone its most extensive remodeling in 20 years,
according to Ron Foust, senior financial analyst for Information Technology
Division and vice-president of the HMH board of directors. The remodeling
includes a new paint job, a new hardwood floor in the buildings
Terrace Room, new window treatments and carpet, remodeling of the kitchen
and storage areas, and the opening of two new roomsthe Terrace Room
and a cozy pub spacedownstairs for meetings and private
As far as we can tell, said HMH manager Ginny Trump, everybody
seems really pleased with the new menu, and we have many customers who
are frequent visitorstwo or three times a weekso thats
a good sign.
All our efforts are pointed toward making sure our guests are shown
sincere personal service and have a memorable dining experience,
said Joe Fidelibus, vice-president of Georgia Fine Restaurants. Our
business goals are simple: To hold our guests on a pedestal, not our egos.
We look forward to many years of serving the Emory community together.
Another innovation is HMH will experiment with offering Sunday brunch,
beginning this Mothers Day, May 13. Foust said the event will be
a trial to determine if brunch is a viable option.
Houston Mill devotees will be relieved to learn head chef David Newborn
has retained his predecessors two most popular menu items: crab
cakes and sesame chicken fingers. Foust said rumor has it the call to
keep sesame chicken on the menu came from the highest echelons of University
This is indeed good news about the reopening of the house,
said President Bill Chace. We are delighted, and we thank the Emory
Womans Club and the Houston Mill House staff for seeing to this
The presidents wife, JoAn, said, The natural warmth of Houston
Mill House represents the best in Emorys traditions of hospitality
Built in 1922, the houses history actually dates back to the 1870s
when its namesake, Major Washington Jackson Houston, built a mill near
Hahn Woods (located across Houston Mill Road from the house). Emory acquired
the house in 1977, and the Womans Club immediately began planning
its use as a hospitality center.
After spot duty as an office space and even a makeshift fraternity house,
HMH opened in (more or less) its present form as a restaurant/bed-and-breakfast
in 1980. During construction of the Carter Center, President Jimmy Carter
and his wife Rosalynn stayed in the house, and one of the facilitys
two lodging rooms is named for him. The other is named for former Emory
president James Laney.
Though the University owns the house and its property, the business itself
is still run by the Womans Club. A dramatic renovation of the house,
including physical improvements such as
We have a five-year plan, Trump said. While we have done some improvements, the elevator is down the road a bit; we just couldnt afford it right now. We did redesign the downstairs bathroom to make it ADA-compliant, and were investigating the option of a portable ramp to allow wheelchair access to the main floor.