9 Most Iconic Black-Owned Restaurants Across America
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Photo Credit: Getty Images

9 Most Iconic Black-Owned Restaurants Across America

black owned business , California , Cuisine , georgia , Illinois , kentucky , Atlanta , United States , Charleston , United States , Chicago , United States , Los Angeles , United States , Louisville , United States , Memphis , United States , New Orleans , United States , NYC , United States , Washington D.C. , United States , Louisiana , New York , south carolina , Tennessee
Kelsey Marie
Kelsey Marie Oct 29, 2020

Food is such an important part of African-American history and culture. Black families gather for meals on Sundays, holidays and to celebrate monumental moments in life through generations. Black restaurant owners serve up traditional foods such as fried chicken, biscuits and collard greens to empower their communities and provide a tasty escape. 

There are iconic restaurants around the U.S. which served as safe havens during the Civil Rights Era and beyond, here are 9 that we must continue to support, especially during this financially hard time for many businesses.

Ben’s Chili Bowl has been a landmark restaurant in the DC area since 1958 when it opened. This spot is so iconic that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Barack Obama approved. 

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The restaurant remained open during the 1968 race riots and the Black Lives Matter movement this year. 

When dining at Ben’s Chili Bowl, you have to get the half-smoke, a pork and beef sausage with chopped onions, yellow mustard and chili. 

Located in Atlanta, this historic restaurant has been open since 1947. During the Civil Rights Movement, activists would gather and dine at The Busy Bee Cafe during their strategy sessions.

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You can feast on Southern dishes and their iconic fried chicken which is marinated for 12 hours before being fried. 

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Dear Frontline Workers,⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ We give you this food as a small token of appreciation for your hard work, commitment and dedication to our friends and families. You selflessly put your lives on the line daily to protect us and that sacrifice is priceless. We pray for your well being and that God puts an armour of protection around you and your loved ones. Forever Grateful – AMEN⁣⁣ 🙏🏾 to @furmanfoto for the beautiful 📸’s ⁣⁣ #frontline #workers #heros #doctors #nurses #food #appreciation #hardwork #committment #dedication #melbasharlem #meals #northerncomfort #support #feeding #coronavirus #covid19 #virus #medicine #NYC #Harlem #global #pandemic #socialdistancing #physicaldistancing #positivity

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Head to Harlem for this iconic NYC restaurant serving up comfort food such as fried catfish, mac and cheese, collard greens candied yams and more. 

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When in LA, you have to hit up Roscoe’s. Not only is the fried chicken and waffles amazingly delicious, but there are also generous helpings of biscuits, omelet and mac and cheese. 

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When you do what u do. Ain’t never asked for no accolades, no P.R. company pushing them. Nope nope nope. Just feeding the hood for 30 years doing what they do. I gave her so much hugs earlier. Told her it’s big for our community, fa we culture. Shout out to the ladies of Bertha Kitchen and their #jamesbeard #jamesbeardaward medal for being an American Classic. I respect it because I the same way. I doing it for the love. Do it for the culture. #gullahgeecheenation #geecheeeats #eatlocalchs #chseats #holycityeats #firstbitechs #gullahfood #seaislandcuisine #eaterchs #culturethroughfood #afrocooking #gullahgeecheecuisine #africandiaspora #africanroots #caribbeanroots #gullahgeechee #gullah #geechee #geechie #northcharleston #charlestonsc #explorechs #explorecharleston #chs #chsnews #chsdaily

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Bertha’s arguably has the best fried chicken in all of South Carolina. When dining here, you should also try the collard greens and pork chops. 

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Thursday’s pork chop plate!

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For over 65 years civil rights activist and chef Leah Chase served up Creole comfort food for patrons of Dooky Chase. The restaurant was owned and operated by Leah and her husband since the 1940s. Although Leah passed last year, her legacy lives on through this iconic restaurant. 

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This iconic Memphis spot was a meeting point during the Civil Rights Movement. Activists like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gathered here for its famous fried chicken and turkey & dressing dishes. 

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Located in South Side Chicago, this eatery has been a neighborhood staple for almost 50 years. Every donut made here is hand cut, fried and glazed. If you’re not into donuts, you can try an apple fritter topped with fresh pecans!

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Shirley Mae’s has been in business for over 30 years and is praised by patrons for its smothered pork chops, ham hocks and fried chicken.