BLACK OWNED RESTAURANTS IN ATHENS
Athens is widely known for its local restaurants, including black-owned restaurants. You'll find a wide variety of flavors, from:
- Bright Caribbean notes at Kelly's Jamaican and Rashe's Cuisine, to
- Southern soul food at Weaver D's , Food for the Soul, and The Plate Sale, to
- Barbecue at Dawg Gone Good and
- African flair at Mannaweenta Ethiopian restaurant
Set out on a culinary journey of discovery at these black-owned restaurants, and plenty more listed below.
At Weaver D's, you'll be greeted by Dexter Weaver himself with a greeting of "Communication" to place your order and "Automatic" to thank you for it. Dexter's slogan, "Automatic for the People" graced one of famed Athens band R.E.M.'s most popular albums. The mutual admiration between Dexter Weaver, Weaver D's and R.E.M. led to Dexter's accompanying the band for their induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and Weaver D's to be named an America's Classic by the James Beard Awards (which are the "Academy Awards" of food.) Fried chicken, pork chops, mac & cheese, squash casserole, greens, and other southern soul food staples are on the menu.
The Plate Sale is far newer than Weaver D's, but the story is just as fascinating and the food just as soulful. Michael and Shyretha Sheats have an ever-rotating menu of seasonal specials that they serve from Hendershots on Prince Ave. Their vision is wide, with the restaurant just part of their overall goals surrounding everything preservation and rediscovery of their heritage, such as their nearby family farm. Did you know? The restaurant's name comes from a long tradition in the Black community of holding a "plate sale" of meals to raise money. The restaurant's profits are being funneled back into their farm preservation and a number of exciting projects.
Rashe Malcom, like the Sheats family, is not just an entrepreneur but a community activist. In addition to her Jamaican restaurant, Rashe's Cuisine, she founded the nonprofit Culinary Kitchen of Athens. Culinary Kitchen of Athens is a resource for people who have cottage food licenses and need assistance selling their products to commercially. Resources include a shared commercial kitchen, workshops for food entrepreneurs, and a winter market to bridge the gap when traditional farmer's markets are closed. Rashe's efforts were particularly needed during the Covid pandemic, and they did not go unnoticed: she was named "Envisioneer of the Year" at Envision Athens's "2020 Good Neighbor Awards."
These stories are just the tip of the iceberg. We know you'll enjoy discovering more as you dine at these Athens black-owned restaurants.
While you're in Athens, we think you'll also like getting to know more about our Black History.