Entrepreneurs Open 2nd Black-Owned Plant-Based Restaurant In New Jersey

Adenah Bayoh and chef Emeka Onugha are transforming plant-based dining with their second Black-owned restaurant, Brick City Vegan, now open in both Newark and Montclair, New Jersey. They offer fresh, flavorful dishes that prioritize health and sustainability without compromising taste.

Their mission extends beyond food — they aim to make vegan dining accessible and promote community health. They opened their first location in downtown Newark in 2021 to an enthusiastic reception and have now expanded to Montclair, according to Blavity.

Adenah Bayoh, originally from Liberia, arrived in the U.S. at 13, fleeing civil war. Her entrepreneurial journey spans real estate and restaurants, starting with an IHOP in Irvington. She also owns Cornbread, a farm-to-table soul food spot. Bayoh chose a vegan lifestyle for health reasons and wanted to show that plant-based food can be satisfying and delicious.

Chef Onugha, who began cooking at age 8, draws inspiration from his Nigerian roots to infuse Brick City’s menu with flavors from home. His goal is to make vegan food accessible and promote healthier communities.

The duo’s expansion to a second location was no small feat, requiring meticulous planning and community support. Despite the challenges, their commitment to quality and community remains unwavering. With a mission to promote healthier eating without compromising on taste, Adenah and Chef Emeka are not just serving food — they’re creating a positive impact in their communities

Learn more about the restaurant via its official website at BrickCityVegan.com

Be sure to follow them on Instagram @BrickCityVegan

Also, you can support the business by visiting its locations at 915 Broad St, Retail 1, Newark, NJ 07102, and 2 South Willow St, Montclair, NJ 0742


Black Teacher Retires From School After 30 Years And Opens A Local Bar And Lounge In Her City

LoLecia Day, a 53-year-old former public school teacher, is pursuing her dream of running a bar with the opening of Day Drink Lounge, a Black-owned craft cocktail bar & lounge located in Duncanville, Texas. She has truly taken an exciting leap after retiring from her career of 30 years.

LoLecia’s decision to start her own business in the bar industry began with a desire to prioritize herself after years of putting others first.

“I realized that all of my life I’ve made myself available to other people. This time I wanted to show up for myself. Do something just for me,” she told D Magazine.

Despite having no prior experience in bartending or running a restaurant, she dove headfirst into her dream. She ran the lounge alongside her teaching career for over a year until she retired from education in April 2024, to focus full-time on her passion project.

LoLecia says she drew inspiration from her entrepreneurial background. Previously, she successfully ran a plus-sized lingerie boutique in Paris, Texas, catering to a niche market. She was also influenced by her parents, who instilled in her a drive to create and innovate.

Seeing a need in Duncanville for a sophisticated nightlife option closer to home, she opened Day Drink Lounge. Unlike traditional bars, Day Drink Lounge offers a cozy and inclusive atmosphere. It features distinctive cocktails, small plates, and live music, making it a favorite spot for locals.

Moreover, her decision to open Day Drink Lounge coincided with a resurgence in the bar industry post-pandemic. While bars faced challenges during lockdowns, there’s been renewed interest in cocktails and socializing.

Her commitment to the community extends beyond her lounge. Recently appointed as the Assistant Director of Economic Development for Duncanville, she continues to invest in her city’s growth and prosperity. Through her journey, LoLecia hopes to inspire others to pursue their dreams actively and fearlessly.

“The mistake a lot of people make is dreaming about what they want to do with their lives,” she said. “I believe in putting action behind my goals. I manifested the life I wanted, and I hope other people are inspired and know that they can too.”

Learn more about the business via its official website at DrinkDFW.com and follow the brand on Instagram @DayDrinkDFW

Also, you can support the business by visiting its location at 215 W. Camp Wisdom Road, Suite 5, Duncanville, TX 75116.


Father And Son Duo Open Newest Black-Owned Caribbean Restaurant In New Jersey

Meet Parris and Tristan Jordan, a father-son duo who opened Bacchanal Junction, the newest black-owned Caribbean restaurant in Bloomfield, New Jersey. With a wealth of experience in hospitality and a deep-rooted passion for Caribbean culture, the Jordans bring a fresh and vibrant dining experience to Bloomfield and East Orange.

The menu blends Caribbean cooking traditions with a modern twist, featuring dishes like Shark Bites, Jerk Salmon, and Stewed Kingfish with Creole Sauce. Guests can also look forward to island-style drinks such as the Hibiscus Buccaneer and the Caribbean Kiss Pisco Sour.

Bacchanal Junction adds a touch of tropical elegance to the area with its stylish decor and warm welcome, promising to delight locals and visitors alike.

Behind Bacchanal Junction are Parris and Tristan Jordan, a father-son duo with extensive experience in hospitality. Parris, known for his work in consulting and hotel development, has led projects worth over $20 billion, including renowned Caribbean destinations like Atlantis and The Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman.

Tristan, armed with a degree in Hotel & Tourism Management from New York University, shares his father’s passion for Caribbean culture and cuisine. With his background in asset management, he brings a fresh perspective and dedication to quality to Bacchanal Junction.

“At Bacchanal Junction, we’re on a mission to celebrate the rich tapestry of Caribbean flavors and culture,” Jordan told Patch.com. “From savory jerk chicken to succulent seafood dishes, every bite tells a story of tradition, innovation, and passion.”

Learn more about the restaurant via its official website BacchanalNJ.com and be sure to follow the brand on Instagram @BacchanalNJ

Also, you can support the business by visiting its location at 558 Arlington Avenue, Bloomfield, NJ 07003


Entrepreneur Makes History, Opens Newest Black-Owned Gelato Shop In Philadelphia

Galen Thomas, an African American entrepreneur and culinary artist, has opened Cloud Cups, the first and only Black-owned gelato shop in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. A native of West Oak Lane with a passion for gelato, Galen’s shop promises a delightful experience with its diverse array of flavors and immersive atmosphere.

Cloud Cups boasts a spacious 2,000-square-foot venue, accommodating up to 50 customers. The shop features a cozy lounge area, a retail section, and an upcoming gelato-making workshop, according to Eater. Designed with a whimsical “cloud” aesthetic, the shop showcases dreamy floors by Raheem Spataccino and colorful murals by renowned graphic artist Justin Richburg.

For Thomas, who graduated from Frozen Dessert University and Carpigiani Gelato University, this marks a significant milestone in his five-year journey in the gelato industry. What started as a humble scoop truck has now become a flagship location, complete with tastings, events, and more.

Thomas credits much of his success to the late Charisse McGill of French Toast Bites, who supported him along the way. To honor her legacy, he’s crafted two special flavors featuring her famous French Toast Bites.

Cloud Cups delights customers with a rotating selection of 36 gelato and sorbet flavors, including traditional and experimental varieties. Vegan and non-dairy options are also available, catering to diverse preferences. They’ve also teamed up with local businesses like the Cheesecake Lady and Bean 2 Bean Coffee Company to create unique flavors that celebrate Philly’s culinary diversity.

In addition to indulging in delectable treats, customers can browse specialty merchandise, including graphic t-shirts and gelato-scented candles made by Thomas’ fiancée. Cloud Cups also plans to host gelato-making workshops soon.

Learn more about the brand via its official website CloudCupsGelato.com

Be sure to follow them on Instagram @CloudCupsGelato

Also, you can support the business by visiting its locations at 3525 I Street, Kensington, Philadelphia, PA.


Meet The Black Woman Who Owns Three Chick-Fil-A Restaurants In 3 Different States

Meet Sereena Quick, who has made history by becoming the first Black woman to own a Chick-fil-A in three different states — Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. The 39-year-old entrepreneur most recently opened her Chick-fil-A restaurant in her hometown in Philadelphia.

“It really is astounding just this accomplishment to really inspire and motivate the people in our community,” Quick said, according to AfroTech. “The young Black boys and girls in our community, who are going to one day look at me — or even at this opportunity — and say, ‘I too can do this.'”

Growing up in the public housing community of Raymond Rosen Homes and raised in a single-parent home, Quick faced many challenges. But she did not let it stop her. She graduated college and started a career as a juvenile probation officer in Philadelphia.

Her career took a turn when she moved to California and connected with Jon Hooper, the owner/operator of Chick-fil-A, Auto Mall Parkway in Fremont, California. Inspired by this mentorship, Quick decided to transition into the restaurant industry. She later returned to Philadelphia, where she continued to learn from experienced operators like Stanley Webber and Chris Walsh.

In just three years, Quick went from being the Executive Director at Chick-fil-A Malvern in Pennsylvania to becoming the proud owner of her Chick-fil-A restaurant in the state.

The new store on City Ave, owned and operated by Quick, is set to create over 100 jobs, contributing positively to the local community. Quick, who grew up in North Philadelphia, expressed gratitude for the opportunity to give back to the city and empower future leaders.

“I am passionate about creating long-term positive change in my community and look forward to this new chapter in the place where I was born and raised,” she said.

Be sure to follow Sereena Quick on her Instagram @SrnQuick


Meet The Founder Of The First Black Woman-Owned Creative Daiquiri And Margarita Bar In Houston, Texas

Miyosha Weston, a dedicated wife, mother, sister, and daughter, is the first Black woman in history to own a creative daiquiri and margarita bar in Southeast Houston. Her establishment is called My Famous Daiq’s and Dogs and as the name indicates, it also includes a Gourmet Chili Hotdog stand.

With a journey marked by diverse business adventures and 33 years of corporate experience, Miyosha brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her latest venture. Her story is not just about entrepreneurship; it is a narrative of resilience, continuous learning, and the pursuit of excellence.

While establishing her groundbreaking business in 2021, Miyosha decided to go back to school, not only to learn the intricacies of running a business but also to master the art of building and leading a team. This commitment culminated in Miyosha achieving her Master’s in Human Resource Management, a testament to her dedication to personal and professional growth.

“Pouring into my business means investing in people,” she expresses. “I am firm about building a great team, and my education in Human Resource Management equips me to create an environment where everyone can thrive.”

My Famous Daiq’s and Dogs stands as a beacon of Miyosha’s innovative spirit, offering handcrafted daiquiris and margaritas alongside a Gourmet Chili Hotdog stand. She invites the community to join her in celebrating the Anniversary event on May 1, 2024, where guests can experience the unique blend of flavors and witness the manifestation of Miyosha’s entrepreneurial vision.

About the Owner
Miyosha Weston is a visionary entrepreneur, wife, mother, sister, and daughter, with a rich background in corporate America and a supportive family, for 33 years. Her journey includes diverse business ventures, and she is now celebrated as the first woman Black-owned creative daiquiri and margarita bar owner, complemented by a Gourmet Chili Hotdog stand in Southeast Houston. She shares her success with her husband Jacie Weston, Jr., and two children Jordon and Miyah.

About the Business
With an impressive selection of over 150 mixed creations, this innovative bar promises a one-of-a-kind journey through the world of tantalizing flavors. Unlike any other daiquiri and margarita bar, My Famous Daiq’s and Dogs has a two-lane drive-thru for those customers who choose to drive and keep going. This bar is a haven for enthusiasts seeking a diverse walk-up, drive-thru, and extensive menu. From classic favorites to bold and inventive concoctions, patrons can embark on a flavor adventure curated to satisfy every palate including flavors for the non-drinker. The bar boasts not only an extensive daiquiri and margarita selection but also features a Gourmet Chili Hotdog stand, adding a savory twist to the overall experience.

Be sure to follow My Famous Daig’s and Dogs on Facebook and Instagram.

For press inquiries, contact 281-532-6457 or myodogs@gmail.com


Vegan, Plant-Based Restaurant, Native Foods, In Downtown Chicago Is Now Black-Owned

In January, the Chicago culinary scene shines a spotlight on its diverse vegan options, focusing on Native Foods in the South Loop (218 S. Clark). The beloved vegan eatery now heralds a new chapter as it becomes Black and employee-owned, thanks to local entrepreneur Dame Dia.In September 2023, a significant milestone occurred for Native Foods. Dame Dia, the former Chicago District Manager for the brand, was presented with an extraordinary birthday present: the chance to become the owner of Chicago’s last standing Native Foods location. This news was enthusiastically welcomed by the community, particularly by those who were concerned about the potential closure of the Chicago Loop location following the earlier shutdowns of the Wicker Park and Lakeview branches. Dame officially assumed ownership of the restaurant in late November 2023.

Dame’s path to ownership is a narrative of resilience and community support. After relocating to Chicago over five years ago to be with his now-wife OnJaLee LaShay, he brought a rich 15-year experience in the restaurant industry. His career journey, beginning in Queens, NY, is a story of remarkable growth, starting as a dishwasher at Red Lobster and escalating to the General Manager of the same restaurant. Before leaving New York, his career had progressed to managing multiple eateries at JFK Airport’s Terminal 5, where he also met OnJaLee.

OnJaLee, who is known in Chicago as “The Connector” for her vast marketing and networking skills has been instrumental in this endeavor. The pair, having met at JFK Airport, decided to unite their skills and passion to embark on this business adventure together.

The rejuvenated Native Foods is poised to introduce a captivating mix of traditional vegan recipes and, in the near future, West African cuisine, showcasing Dame’s Senegalese heritage and culinary prowess. These cultural dishes, frequently adapted to vegan preferences for his wife, are expected to infuse the menu with distinctive flavors and will be incorporated later this year.

As Veganuary unfolds, Native Foods warmly invites both Chicago residents and visitors to explore and enjoy its rejuvenated, culturally rich culinary offerings. Join us in celebrating a dream come to fruition, a journey flavored with ambition, community connection, and culinary innovation.

Founded in California in 1994, Native Foods is a premier vegan restaurant chain known for its innovative and delicious plant-based cuisine. Emphasizing sustainability and ethical eating, it has been a staple in the vegan community for years, continually evolving to meet the diverse tastes of its patrons. Learn more at NativeFoods.com

For press inquiries, contact onjalee@olashay.com or 773-357-5603.


Black Childhood Friends Team Up To Bring Organic, Plant-Based Food To St. Louis

Childhood friends DeVonte’ “DJ” Jackson and Derrick Mosley have teamed up to bring plant-based comfort food to St. Louis with their new venture, Da Vegan Way. The duo combined their shared passion and expertise for cooking to offer locals a menu of familiar dishes with a vegan twist.

When the pandemic hit and Jackson faced a job loss, he seized the chance to pursue his lifelong culinary dream. Jackson newly embraced a vegan lifestyle at that time and decided to launch Da Vegan Way where he shares his health journey while earning extra income.

“It was very liberating and allowed me to unlearn old harmful habits and learn new healthier ones,” Jackson told Feast Magazine.

Jackson initially took the risk by himself but soon after, Mosley, with a culinary background, joined him. Their kitchen collaboration balances professionalism and fun.

“I enjoy working with a friend who shares the same desires for self-sufficiency and growing our vision,” Mosley said.

Transitioning to a plant-based diet can be overwhelming. Da Vegan Way aims to ease the shift, offering plant-based twists on familiar favorites. Jackson and Mosley rely on fresh, organic ingredients, quality seasonings, and a dash of creativity and love for their vegan creations.

Their menu boasts hits like Chik’n Bites, loaded nachos, and deep-fried oyster mushrooms with sweet heat jerk or barbecue sauce. The duo also loves dishing out coconut chickpea curry and veggie teriyaki stir fry for their simplicity and rich flavors.

Beyond notable events like the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, Da Vegan Way appears at various St. Louis markets and pop-up events, spreading the joy of vegan comfort food.

“What makes this all worth it is knowing we have a hand in positively rewriting the narrative of vegan comfort food across St. Louis,” Jackson said. “I see the community growing stronger day by day!”

Looking ahead, Jackson and Mosley plan to shift from markets to full-scale catering. Through digital cookbooks and educational content, they aim to encourage those embracing a plant-based lifestyle.

Be sure to follow the brand on Instagram @DaVeganWayLLC


Black Entrepreneur Does Homework, Now Owns 20 Airport Restaurants To Hit $50M In Revenue This Year

Meet Randy Hazelton, the 43-year-old CEO of H&H Hospitality, a Black-owned company that runs concession stands and restaurants in major U.S. airports. Starting from scratch and learning from his past, he now runs over twenty different airport restaurants, employing nearly 100 people. He owns multiple Shake Shack and Auntie Anne’s stands, and his company is on track to hit $50 million in revenue this year.

Growing up in a military family, he moved around a lot and eventually settled in Atlanta. He credits his dad for instilling discipline in him. But as a teen, Randy often skipped homework to play basketball because he said he enjoyed it more than just sitting down and studying.

When he ventured in a business and went through tough times, he realized his bad habits when he was a teenager. In 2006, he left his job to open Café Circa, a restaurant and bar in downtown Atlanta. While the business did well, it wasn’t efficient enough and eventually led to bankruptcy. Randy realized the reason was that they didn’t understand the restaurant business.

“We didn’t know how to make money because we didn’t do the homework,” Randy told Forbes. He sold Café Circa in 2012 and used the money to start his franchising operation.

Hazelton founded H&H Hospitality in 2007 and they’ve been thriving with the support of a government program called Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Act (ACDBE), which supports minority and women-owned businesses at federally funded airports.

“It changed my life,” he said. He calls the program a “springboard” for smaller companies aiming to expand in restaurant franchising.

One of H&H’s spots is a Freshens yogurt and Famous Famiglia pizzeria at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson Airport, one of the busiest in the world. They’ve also teamed up with Concessions International for a Shake Shack and Auntie Anne’s restaurant on another concourse. Next year, the company plans to open a Slutty Vegan, a popular plant-based burger brand owned by entrepreneur Pinky Cole.

Moreover, the business has its challenges, including fees, advertising costs, and managing employees. To overcome those and succeed, Randy transformed himself into a “homework nerd” and used a copy-and-paste formula of what already works.

“Borrow from other folks,” he says. “Some of the greatest successes are just copycats of something already here.”

Be sure to follow him on Instagram @RandyHazelton and follow his company as well @HH_Hospitality


Daughter, Owner Of Chicago’s Oldest Black-Owned Restaurant Celebrates 50 Years Since Her Dad Opened It

St. Rest Country Kitchen, a beloved Black-owned soul food restaurant on Chicago’s South Side, is celebrating 50 years in business. Founded in 1972, the family restaurant is now owned by Daniella Coffey who continues the legacy of her late father and founder Rev. Larry Hopkins.

In 2021, Coffey and her husband, John, took the reins from her father. At the time, the restaurant faced a major financial hurdle with $600,000 in debt and the looming threat of foreclosure. Sadly, her father passed away just two months later.

Within a year, the family overcame the odds, paying off the debt and reorganizing the business. They are now seeing continuous success.

“Great customer service, sanitation, and great food. Those are our pillars here and of course faith,” Coffey, who also serves as the head chef, told Fox 32 Chicago.

Her mother Sophia Hopkins, who is now 77 years old, still works as the restaurant’s lead waitress. She is responsible for making everyone feel at home, apart from belting out her Southern tunes.

For 5 decades, St. Rest Country Kitchen has been serving soul food classics like turkey legs, short ribs, smothered pork chops, cabbage, black-eyed peas, succotash, and candied yams. Their menu certainly boasts comfort food that satisfies every patron, including NBA legend Michael Jordan who dined there.

Learn more about the restaurant at its official web site at StRest2Country.

Be sure to follow Daniella and her family’s restaurant on Instagram @Daniella_Coffey

Also, you can support the business by visiting its location at 727 E 87th St, Chicago, IL 60619.