African American cuisine is unique. In fact, it’s a culture and classification all its own. From individual dishes to full-course meals, the variety you get in each dish is sure to satisfy the soul. Here in the city of Chicago, there are several black-owned restaurants. Some are hidden gems in their neighborhoods, others are well known. Last summer during the pandemic, many people of color decided to avidly support black restaurants across the city. While there are so many places to eat in Chicago, it can be hard to decipher what is black-owned and what is not.
However, one company is on a mission to acknowledge black-owned restaurants and bring them the support and recognition they deserve. Black People Eats, a company created by Jeremy E. Joyce, has made it his mission to connect people to black-owned restaurants. Since 2016, the company has been on a mission to highlight black-owned restaurants in Chicago. Since then, they have expanded their quest to other cities. Last year they created a list of restaurants for the Juneteenth celebration weekend. This year, they did the same. Black People Eats list of restaurants spanned across the city highlighting those offering Juneteenth specials. This list ensured that people knew about the eateries. The company even challenged consumers to support them throughout the weekend. Not only did Black People Eats created a list for Chicago, but they also developed one for restaurants in Atlanta, Georgia.
While the excitement to support black-owned restaurants surges during the Juneteenth holiday this company works towards celebrating African American cuisine 365 days of the year. In addition to highlighting these unique dining establishments, Black People Eats has organized a Black-Owned Restaurant Relief Fund. Jeremy E. Joyce and his team launched their first fundraiser during the pandemic. Their efforts raised $100,000 to help restaurants ran by people of color who were financially affected by the COVID-19 stay-at-home order. This year, the company has a similar goal to finance and aid in keeping black restaurants open. Not only does the company promote African American eateries, but they also provide recipes for gourmet dishes created by black people. Check out the Blaktober E-Recipe book on Instagram. It provides unique and easy recipes for black cuisine, created by black people.
Jeremy E. Joyce and his team at Black People Eats are working towards changing the narrative of supporting black restaurants beyond Black History month, and now beyond Juneteenth. For more information on Black People Eats follow them on social media @blackpeopleeats and be ready to indulge in a plethora of enticing images that will make you want to lick your screen.
Liz Lampkin is a Lifestyle, Love, and Relationships writer. Follow her on social media @Liz_Lampkin.