Editor’s Note: An updated story on black-owned food businesses in Utah can be found here.
While thousands are making a statement about injustice at marches, protests and vigils, many Utahns have found an additional way to fight racial inequity.
They are spending their dining dollars at restaurants, food trucks and bakeries owned by people of color.
“For a white person who is not comfortable going to a protest,” said Rita Magalde, owner of Sheer Ambrosia Bakery, “this is another way to support black Americans.”
Magalde said the number of people following her home-based baklava business on social media has increased significantly in the past week as people mourn — and protest — the Memorial Day death of George Floyd.
Many are looking for ways to support black-owned businesses.
“To have so many people, all at one time, find out about my business and want to support me, is exciting,” Magalde said, especially since she lost a large part of her business when restaurants closed due to the coronavirus.
Magalde said she is grateful for the support but also feels conflicted. She wants people to support her bakery because she offers a quality product. “We, as black people, don’t want to be victims,” she said. “We are strong, and we are proud people and hard workers.”
Other businesses are stepping up, too.
Salt Lake City’s Brownies! Brownies! Brownies! is sponsoring a black-owned food truck roundup Friday and Saturday at its shop, 1751 S. 1100 East. It runs from 5 to 8 p.m.
On Friday, the featured truck is Dawgz-N-Leenks. On Saturday, Balabe Senegalese Cuisine and Kafe Mamai, from the Spice Kitchen Incubator program, will be featured.
Here’s a list of 21 black-owned restaurants, food trucks, bakeries and even a brewery in Utah. Because of COVID-19, many businesses are offering only takeout or delivery. Call ahead for details.
African Restaurant • Traditional Ethiopian fare served with spongy bundeena flatbread for sopping up spicy meat and vegetable stews, 1878 S. Redwood Road, Salt Lake City; 801-978-9673 or https://www.restaurantji.com/ut/salt-lake-city/african-restaurant-/
Diversion: A Social Eatery • Located in the Salt Lake City’s Marmalade neighborhood, owners Ryan Petersen and Jennifer Stone serve healthy all-American fare such as hamburgers, tacos and pizza that are baked — not fried. 535 N. 300 West, Salt Lake City; (801) 657-7326 or diversioneatery.com.
11 Hauz • This family-owned and operated Jamaican restaurant serves recipes handed down from chef/owner Sheron Grant‘s grandmother, 1241 Center Drive, Park City; 435-200-8972 or 11hauz.com.
Joe’s Café • Southern breakfasts, including biscuits, gravy and grits, as well as sandwiches and burgers for lunch, 1126 S. State, Orem; 801-607-5377 or joescafeorem.com.
Horn of Africa • Somali and East African food in a west Salt Lake City strip mall, 1320 S. Swaner Road, Salt Lake City; 801-908-5498 or somali-restaurant-slc.business.site.
Mahider Ethiopian • The combination platter is an ideal way to sample Ethiopian stews, vegetables and flatbread, 1465 S. State St. Suite 7, Salt Lake City; 801-975-1111 or mahiderethiopian.com.
Sauce Boss Southern Kitchen • Chef Julius Thompson serves catfish, blackened pork chops, shrimp, grits and other soul food favorites with collard greens, mac ’n’ cheese and other popular sides, 877 E. 12300 South, Draper; 385-434-2433 or saucebosssouthernkitchen.com.
Yoko Ramen • This small noodle shop was purchased about 18 months ago by Jameel Gaskins (formerly of Pago). It serves several varieties of ramen, sandwiches, wings and gyoza. 473 E. 300 South, Salt Lake City; 801-876-5267 or https://www.yokoslc.com/.
Policy Kings Brewery • This nano-brewery/bar makes small-batch beers and is named for the historic Chicago gambling empire that provided financial support for black businesses in the 1930s and ’40s, 223 N. 100 West, Cedar City; policykingsbrewery.com.
Lovee’s Cakes • Cakes, cookies and desserts for birthdays, weddings and other special occasions, 1706 E. 5600 South, South Ogden; 801-390-6114 or loveescakes.com.
Sheer Ambrosia • While growing up in North Carolina, owner Sherrita “Rita” Magalde worked in a Greek restaurant, babysat the owner’s children and learned to make gourmet baklava from their “yiayia” or grandmother. Orders by phone or online at 801-891-6242 or sheerambrosiabakery.com.
Balabe • This orange truck takes Utah diners on a trip to Senegal, a country in west Africa where one of the most popular dishes is mafe, a rich tomato and peanut butter stew with chicken, fish or lamb. The truck serves it two ways: over rice or on french fries, the latter a twist on Canadian poutine. Visit facebook.com/balabeslc.
Dawgz-N-Leenks • Owner Pete Richards sells beef hot dogs, sausages and traditional Southern hot links, including his Da Bay, wrapped in bacon, topped with grilled onions and peppers and his housemade barbecue sauce. Visit facebook.com/DawgznLeenks.
Jamaica’s Kitchen • From spicy-sweet jerk chicken to tender goat curry with rice and beans, this truck delivers Caribbean flavors and vibes. Visit facebook.com/jamaicaskitchenslc.
Makaya Catering • Owner Roody Salvator sells Haitian street food from this mobile food truck, including marinated chicken, pulled pork, plantains and pikliz, a spicy cabbage, carrot and vinegar slaw. Call or text 801-493-5873 for pickup at 1051 S. 300 West on Friday and Saturday from noon to 8 p.m. Delivery available through Chefpanzee. Details at facebook.com/makaya.caters.
Taste of Louisiana • Menu includes Southern favorites like seafood gumbo, toasted po’boys sandwiches and peach cobbler. Visit tasteoflouisianautah.com.
Casual Cuisine • 801-554-6581 or casualcuisinecaterers.com.
Miss Essie’s Barbecue • 6064 S. 300 West, Murray, 801-262-3616 or missessiesbbq.com.
Spice Kitchen Incubator • This refugee program has several food entrepreneurs who provide international cuisines for events and parties. Options include: African Spice, Kafe Mamai and Namash Swahili. Call 385-229-4484 or visit spicekitchenincubator.org.
Zahara • Amina Ait Omar, a classically trained Moroccan chef, and her co-owner, Mohamed Baayd, cater events and sponsor pop-up dining. Their specialties include lamb, chicken and vegetable tagine and couscous with teffya — caramelized onions, raisins and garbanzo beans. (385) 212-4518 or https://www.zaharaslc.com/.
Rob Sauce • This bottled glaze is “better than barbecue sauce,” according to owner Rob Clark, who says it gives that umami taste to wings, beef, vegetables and even tofu. Available online and select grocery stores. Details at: https://www.therobsauce.com/.
This story has been updated to include more black-owned food establishments.