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Bulgaria Comes to Cobb


Jay Yovchev, Owner

The next time you go out for ethnic food, try stepping out of the box. Rather than the traditional Italian or Chinese, consider Bulgarian fare, right here in Cobb. Philippopolis Tavern offers an array of fresh, hearty Bulgarian dishes, reasonably priced for an affordable night on the town.

Owner Jay Yovchev moved to the States from Bulgaria eight years ago with a nuclear physics degree. Not able to find a job in his field, Yovchev began working with Papa John’s Pizza. The store where he worked eventually became the #1 Papa John store out of 5,000 sites. So with a flair for restaurant management and his grandmother’s recipes, Yovchev decided to open Philippopolis Tavern in December, 2011. The restaurant name is derived from an ancient Bulgarian city, which is now known as Plovdiv.

Influenced by neighbors Greece, Turkey, Serbia, and Romania, Bulgarian food has evolved into a unique cuisine with many different flavors in its dishes, says Yovchev. Bulgarians favor the slow cooking of stews and soups. They also use fresh vegetables, particularly tomatoes, sweet red peppers, eggplant, and zucchini. Some of the entrees are moussaka, chicken or pork kavarma, and mixed sausage grill.

“There are so many distinct tastes in our foods that customers can try different dishes when they visit for a whole new experience each time,” he says.

Customer service is paramount to Yovchev.

“My customer  is my employer,” he states. “I want each customer who comes through my doors to leave with a smile.”

Backing that up with fresh, made-from-scratch dishes, Yovchev also offers reasonable pricing and specials. Open daily, Philippopolis Tavern is a fairly quiet establishment for lunch and weeknight dinners. However, on Friday and Saturday nights, the tavern hosts live bands or a disc jockey.

The restaurant is located at 1995 Windy Hill Rd., Suite 1, Smyrna, GA 30080. For more information, visit or call 678.383.6164.

(Paid advertisement. Reprinted from the April 2012 issue of EAST COBBER.)