Forty Years of Family and Fine Cuisine


Kristen Eleveld


In a world full of chain restaurants, food trucks, and meals delivered to your door, it’s rare to find a truly unique place to sit down for a meal. Fortunately, for residents of Gwinnett County, The Village Corner German Restaurant & Bakery is committed to giving you a genuine and inimitable place to go for dinner – and, if you’re lucky, dessert.

When Claus and Hilde Friese moved to the United States from their hometown in Germany, they decided to work in the fields that they knew best. For Hilde, this was baking her homemade bread, which she made fresh in her own kitchen and sold to her neighbors. Claus, who was more experienced with the corporate side of things, took care of the business-related details of the operation. Soon, the Frieses found themselves with so many regular customers that they knew they needed a bigger space from which to serve their community.

It started as a wholesale bakery where customers could not only buy delicious bread, but cookies, pastries, and a variety of other homemade treats as well. Hilde’s extraordinary baking skills combined with Claus’ business know-how made them popular in the neighborhood, and they continued to grow and expand their bakery into a much larger opportunity. A small sandwich shop was added so customers could enjoy lunch or dinner after shopping for their favorite dessert, and The Village Corner quickly became a growing presence in the Stone Mountain community.

In the meantime, one of the Friese’s three children, Carl, was making his way through Johnson & Wales Culinary School, after which he obtained a master’s degree in the art of fine cuisine. He joined the family business, using his skills as a chef to add even more variety to the menu options. With so much talent in one family, it was no surprise that the once-tiny bakery is now a full-fledged restaurant and bar – where they even brew their own beer on the premises.

Now in its third location in the Stone Mountain area, The Village Corner has proven itself to be a one-of-a-kind experience time and again.

“It’s hard to find another place like ours,” said Carl Friese, who is now the owner/operator of the restaurant. “People love to drive by to see what we’re about, and we are a great stop to make on your way to Stone Mountain.”

Last month, they celebrated Oktoberfest with menu specials, live bands, and an authentic accordion player. It’s one of their busiest times of the year, and they celebrate in style!

But if you missed the festivities in October, there are still plenty to choose from for the rest of the year. In December, The Village Corner will host three gingerbread house workshops. They provide everything you need to build your gingerbread house. All you have to do is sign up online and enjoy your delicious creation. There will be plenty of holiday treats for you to munch on while you build, so be sure to bring your sweet tooth along.

Throughout the year, the restaurant also reaches out to the community through small but significant gestures. They may raffle off a dinner for two, or give away a free dessert. To ring in St. Patrick’s Day, they promote the “Raising of the Green” event for the local Art Station.

You don’t have to wait for a holiday to celebrate at The Village Corner. The Frieses and their restaurant have played host to many rehearsal dinners, birthday parties, wedding showers, and even private corporate events.

“We’ve been here for forty years, and it’s still a one-of-a-kind place,” said Carl of his parents’ legacy. “We would love for new faces to stop in for a meal!”

If The Village Corner sounds too tasty to pass up, head over there for your next meal: 6655 James B. Rivers Drive in Stone Mountain. Don’t forget to visit their website and sign up for their newsletter to keep up with all the events they are hosting for the neighborhood! With a fun, unique atmosphere and a plethora of authentic German dishes, it’s impossible not to enjoy your time at The Village Corner.

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