I love when a friend has something good to prove and does so.

I bet you have been thinking what I have been thinking. The Miller Brothers clothing store, tucked away in a former bungalow on a side street in the Buckhead Village, is a men’s clubhouse. I get it. The television is usually tuned to a PGA tournament or SEC football. A stocked bar serves up mellow bourbon on the rocks. And with a quick first glance, it looks like their business is primarily Peter Milar products and 5-pocket pants. Wrong. We couldn’t be more wrong. Those specific items are actually the smallest part of their sartorial story, and Greg Miller wanted to prove it to me

Truth is, so much of Robby and Greg Miller’s success can be attributed to their diverse product mix.

More things you didn’t know: they employ seven tailors sewing custom pieces for their growing private label clothing and sportswear, and they have 100% of your formalwear needs, including white dinner jackets. They can outfit you head-to-toe, just no hat, no matter the occasion.

And since neither brother is braggadocios, I’ll be the first to tell you that they are home to over twenty-four progressive and higher end Italian lines for men. Twenty-four. That’s more than anyone in Atlanta.

Indeed, sprezzatura has landed in Buckhead.

In case you missed the word sprezzatura when it was one of our 11th grade Wordly Wise vocab words, Sprezzatura means the art of looking great, without fussiness, putting a lot of thought into your clothing, only it doesn’t appear that you did so.

I suppose the twenty-four Italian lines actually makes Robby and Greg the godfathers of Atlanta’s Spezzatura. (godfather; 9th grade Wordly Wise: a man who is influential or pioneering in a movement.)

The magic of the Miller Brothers’ high quality Italian lines like Castangia is the way they drape on your body. The handmade craftsmanship and finest materials make the pieces feel like a custom make. There is nothing more handsome than the Castangia brand. 

I had forgotten that Miller Brothers had a plethora of Italian. And I don’t know how I could have forgotten that because my husband owns thirty Italian shirts and over twenty Italian sport coats, each one purchased at Miller Brothers over the many years.

Also, in 2019, while I was bewildering away at a month-long French immersion course in the South of France, Jeff visited and we attended the Monte Carlo Open Men’s Tennis Championship. There, Jeff met Giovanni and fell in love with Giovanni’s sport coat. But when Jeff asked him who made it, Giovanni shook his head and refused to tell Jeff. Giovanni never talked to Jeff again. So yes, When in Rome . . . do not ask about their clothing. Anyhoo, at the Monte Carlo Open, when Giovanni wasn’t looking, Jeff snapped his photo and immediately sent it to Greg. Greg had Giovanni’s exact coat in the store. Now Jeff has Giovanni’s sport coat. So there, Giovanni.

That’s the lure of the Miller Brothers, exceptional service. I see why so many people flock there. Not every item is out on the 1,450 square feet of selling space. Robby, Greg, Jonah, Jerry, and Cole keep tricks up their stylish sleeves. When they say, “Hold on. I have just the thing for you,” and disappear, believe they are returning with a satisfied smile and a load of attractive bounty.  

For the new customer, here is what you need to know. Robby, Greg, Jonah, Jerry, and Cole will stretch you. They will let you keep your style, but they will challenge you to mix it up in some small way that no one else dons. Step in and roam about with a keen eye remembering you cannot see everything just by looking. They have something for everyone. Go find your touch of sprezzatura. It’s there, waiting.

Business keeps booming on. What started almost thirty years ago as two brothers in a townhouse off East Paces Ferry with a $15,000 loan from their father has proved to be a Buckhead mainstay.

Robby and Greg’s family affair continues. Seems the retail fever is in the Miller DNA. The next generation has joined the crew. Greg’s daughter, Madison Freeman, and Greg and Robby’s nephew, Cole Einbender, have jumped aboard, there is no succession plan created or even talked about. Robby and Greg have no plans to do anything except continuing to clothe you.

While you are visiting that corner of Buckhead, check out their other eponymous store, Miller Collective. Madison is running the Collective. It’s a whole ‘nother ball of surprises full of noteworthy gifts for the howdy, the haut-y, the surfer, the kid, the hostess, the adored pet, yourself, or the book and paper lover. Between the two stores, they are capturing the cool.  

Miller Brothers    3207 Paces Ferry Place   (404) 233-8000  www.MillerBrothers.com

Those who have dined in a Schlotzsky’s or a Rising Roll Gourmet Café around town effectively have Mike Lassiter to thank for the experience. Lassiter, CEO and founder of Franchising Concepts, brought the former to the Georgia area and the latter to the masses. More locally, Lassiter also helped spearhead the creation of the venerable Chastain Park Tidal Waves swim team.

His swim and sandwich influence around Georgia — there are now five Rising Roll locations in Atlanta alone — is a result of Lassiter “falling in love with Atlanta,” and completely altering his career trajectory for his desire to call Chastain Park home.

Setting Down Roots and Rolling out Franchises 

Mike Lassiter

Lassiter first came to Atlanta an outsider in 1985. He was working for a photo-finishing firm based out of Houston, Texas, and relocated to Sandy Springs for work. Soon after, Lassiter said he “was lucky enough to get introduced to Chastain Park.”

“I just loved Chastain Park so much,” Lassiter said. “With the sports fields, the family atmosphere, the golf course, the walking around the park, I said, okay, I’m going to (live) here one day.”

Lassiter would see that ambition come to fruition. First, there was business to tend to.

Lassiter already knew he wanted to remain in Atlanta. When he was asked by his job to relocate back to Texas he replied no, he wanted to remain here.

“I knew right then and there my career with them was over when I told them no,” he said.

Looking for a new venture, Lassiter remembered his favorite lunch spot from his original hometown, Schlotzsky’s. There weren’t any in Georgia at the time. He connected with the company’s corporate office, requesting a call should they ever want to expand into the Peach State.

It took over four years for Lassiter to get a call back, but once he did, his career path immediately transformed.

“The timing was perfect, I was looking for something else,” he said. “I met them, got invited to Texas, did my due diligence and said, ‘I want to do this.’”

Lassiter bought the rights to develop Schlotzsky’s locations in Georgia as an “area developer.” Later he bought the rights to Houston. Lassiter opened 85 locations in the two areas between 1991-99. At one point he personally owned a location in Roswell.

“My company was the largest developer (of Schlotzsky’s) outside of Dallas,” Lassiter said. “The Dallas area developers wanted Houston, and they made me a great offer and bought me out. I sold that business and then created Franchising Concepts. We help people go find franchises, we help the business tee everything up, and we get franchises ready to go.”

Beyond sandwiches

Lassiter inadvertently found his next major franchising opportunity while having lunch at a father-son owned café in Alpharetta.

“You go in there and there are a lot of products made from scratch,” he said. “There was an incredible chicken salad with chicken that had never been frozen. They made their own pasta salad, pimento cheese, there was so much freshly made food. The food was all of a very high-quality profile.”

Lassiter touts Rising Roll was Zagat-rated “Excellent” for 13 consecutive years when the publication still rated such restaurants.

In 2003, Rising Roll Gourmet Café came to be with a focus on fresh, easy and healthy food. There are currently about two dozen locations in operation or in the works around the southeast and Texas. Many can be found around Atlanta, including at the Candler Building, Regions Tower in Midtown at the Wells Fargo Building in Atlantic Station.

Rising Roll was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, as was the entire restaurant industry, but Lassiter said the company “is definitely making a strong comeback.” The next major step for the company is expanding its presence at hospitals and colleges/universities, he said.

Meanwhile, Lassiter says the driving focus of the company is on community. Rising Roll is an avid supporter of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, the Murphy-Harpst Children Center in Cedartown and Bert’s Big Adventure, a nonprofit providing all-expense paid trips to Walt Disney World for children with chronic and terminal illnesses and their families.

Lassiter witnesses, and helps develop, Chastain Park’s prominence


Lassiter saw his desire to call Chastain Park home become a reality in 1995. He’s lived in the community since. He first purchased a home on Hillside Drive when he was single.

“I got engaged and married and moved four houses away,” he laughed. “My wife and I would walk around the area and down Broadland [Road]. I said if any house became available, I was going to buy it. Well one day I thought I saw an agent putting up a ‘for sale’ sign. It really wasn’t on the market, but I asked to see the house. I made an offer right then and there to buy it.”

Lassiter said to all the amenities Chastain Park offers within walking distance makes its an “amazing place.”

“It just continues to get better,” he said. “When I moved here, the path around the park was just a little dirt in some areas and a little bit of sidewalk. They have really developed it into something special. It’s a gamechanger. The horse park is special. The concert venue is special. It’s been upgraded so much around there, and the community is involved in the park. Chastain Park is a great part of Buckhead because its family focused, too. You walk around there and see so many families and couples. It gets better every year.”  

Lassiter has helped that influence grow. Around the time of Rising Roll’s foundations, he led efforts to create the Tidal Wave swim team.

“I swam in college, and I got together with another former college swimmer,” he said. “Together, we launched the Chastain Park swim team in 2003. The pool hadn’t had an organized swim team in a long time, or maybe ever. We got the community together, got the initial team together, hired a coach and created the Tidal Wave Swim Team. We were given an award for the best new swim team, and I still have that trophy in my house.”

The team has since captured eight Atlanta Swim Association championships in addition to providing the opportunity for numerous swimmers to compete in Buckhead.

“So much positive has come from [the swim team],” Lassiter said. Every time I walk by there and see the sign, it just feels really good to see the difference we made there.”

Though Lassiter is now seeking to downsize and move to the North Georgia mountains — his three adult children are all set to leave the nest or have already — he remains thankful for his time in Buckhead and Chastain Park.

He still has no regrets saying “no” to moving away from the area nearly 40 years later.

“I love the community so much,” he said.