CHICAGO — An event spotlighting Black-owned restaurants in Chicago and nearby suburbs is back for its seventh annual celebration.
Chicago Black Restaurant Week kicks off Sunday and runs through Feb. 20. Neighbors can travel from Fulton Market to Oak Park and Auburn Gresham to Lynwood for an array of dishes and treats. Diners who stop by this year’s featured restaurants will receive special discounts decided by each restaurant.
Lauran Smith, a social media manager originally from Memphis, came up with the concept for Chicago Black Restaurant Week in summer 2015. The goal was to support Black-owned eateries by giving them a platform to shine. The first restaurant extravaganza kicked off in February 2016.
Smith chose to hold her event the second week of February to honor scholar Carter G. Woodson.
Woodson created National Negro History Week in 1926 to celebrate the successes of African Americans. The celebration came during the second week of February, during Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass’ birthdays — Black History Month wasn’t recognized until 1975.
Chicago Black Restaurant Week commemorates Black history while creating a stage for Black entrepreneurs to have time in the spotlight. Over the past seven years, 200 restaurants have participated and 50,000 customers have dined, Smith said.
The event also has increased and diversified the locations of participating restaurants. Neighbors can choose from three dozen eateries this year.
In Beverly, Flippin Flavors has fresh hoagies and jerk chicken salads. Dock’s Chicago, a Chicagoland staple for more than three decades, has fried fish sandwiches and shrimp po’boys. And when diners start craving something sweet, Afro Joe’s Coffee and Tea in Auburn Gresham has sweet potato pie puffs and tiramisu lattes.
Here’s what’s open:
- Luella’s Southern Kitchen, 4609 N. Lincoln Ave., Lincoln Square
- Hidden Manna Cafe, 3613 216th St., Matteson
- Kitchen + Kocktails Chicago, 444 N. Wabash Ave., Streeterville
- The Mukase Restaurant, 1363 W. Wilson Ave., Uptown
- Surf’s Up South Shore, 2236 E. 71st St., South Shore
- Haire’s Gulf Shrimp, 7448 S. Vincennes Ave., Greater Grand Crossing
- Flippin Flavors, 1848 W. 95th St., Beverly
- Cocoa Chili Restaurant, 135 N. Kedzie Ave., West Garfield Park
- Surf’s Up Bronzeville, 4317 S. Cottage Grove Ave., Bronzeville
- Pink Panini Soups & Salads, 17505 Kedzie Ave., Hazel Crest
- Taste 222, 222 N. Canal St., West Loop
- Unbeatable Eatables, 3208 W. 95th St., Evergreen Park
- Afro Joe’s Coffee & Tea, 8344 S. Halsted St., Auburn Gresham
- Good to Go Jamaican Restaurant, 711 W. Howard St., Evanston
- Dozzy’s Grill, 2537 S. Wabash Ave., South Loop
- Flavours Seafood Bar, 19755 Torrence Ave., Lynwood
- Flammin Restaurant, 641 E. 75th Street, Park Manor
- Lemme Get Ummm, 7016 W. North Ave., Galewood
- Mabe’s Deli, 312 E. 75th St., Park Manor
- CheSa’s Gluten Tootin Free Gourment Food Truck, 3517 N. Spaulding Ave., Avondale
- Prāzbar Chicago, 78 E. 47th St., Grand Boulevard (pop-up every first Sunday of the month)
- Can’t Believe It’s Not Meat, 1368 E. 53rd St., Hyde Park
- Surf’s Up Lombard, 845 E. Roosevelt Rd., Lombard
- Dock’s Chicago, 321 E. 35th St., Douglas
- Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, 2537 S. Wabash Ave., Douglas
- Kozy Korner Deli, 15451 Cottage Grove Ave., Dolton
- Copper Still Martini Lounge, 1961 Ridge Rd., Homewood
- Eddie’s Food & Liquor, 9809 S. Cottage Grove Ave., Pullman
- Demera Ethiopian Restaurant, 4801 N. Broadway, Uptown
- Wrap Shack 162, 954 E. 162nd St., South Holland
- Surf’s Up Oak Park, 6427 W. North Ave., Oak Park
- The Black Vegan Restaurant, 2300 S. Kedzie Ave., Little Village
- Juiced by Shic, 12801 S. Harlem Ave., Palos Heights; 14735 Pulaski Rd., Midlothian
- Phlavz Bar & Grille, 717 W. Maxwell St., South Loop; 24 Orland Square Dr., Orland Park
- Bureau Bar & Restaurant, 2115 S. State St., Near South Side
- Bureau Pizza Co., 719 S. State St., South Loop
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