Chicago Black Restaurant Week starts Feb 12

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Celebrate Black History Month by trying a new restaurant when Chicago Black Restaurant Week gets underway this Sunday with nearly 30 restaurants to choose from.

There are nearly 30 restaurants to choose from. ABC7's Hosea Sanders took on breakfast, lunch and a dessert all in one day, including making stops at a few places that were new to him.

Lauran Smith the brains behind Chicago Black Restaurant Week. This is the second year for the event.

As much as it's about celebrating black-owned businesses and great cuisine, the timing of the event has a special meaning.

"So Dr. Carter G. Woodson in 1926 created Negro History Week which fell on the second week of February. So when I was in the process of creating Black Restaurant Week, I wanted to honor his legacy and have it the second week of February every year just so that we won't forget about him and everything he started for us as an African American community," said Lauran Smith, the creator of Black Restaurant Week.

Now from the history to the food! The Currency Exchange Café is one of three stops we made. Yes, it used to be an actual Currency Exchange, too. They kept much of the original décor but added their own flavor to the menu.

"We're doing everyday a different special. We're doing a drink, a food item and a dessert. On Monday, for instance, we're going to do shrimp and grits with our house made limeade and a biscuit," said Megan Jeyifo, the general manager of the Currency Exchange Café.

From one delicious dish to dessert. Nadia's Gourmet Grapes adds a twist to fruit.

"We have over 30 different toppings. Our best sellers are our nutty, but we basically just dip our grapes in a caramel, chocolate or a vanilla," said Tamara Brown, owner of Nadia's Grapes. "Some people like to stay basic, but once they branch out it's over from there."

Last, we went from sweets to shrimp! Haire's Gulf Shrimp has secret family recipe that started from very humble beginnings.

"I spent two years sleeping in the restaurant on the floor on a cot. I needed to be there, be there and work there until it started generating," said Finnie Haire, the owner of Haire's Gulf Shirmp.

Black Chicago Restaurant Week starts Sunday, Feb. 12, and runs through Feb. 19. For more information visit: null
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