Soul Daddy Is America’s Next Great Restaurant

Fast Casual Eatery Opens In 3 Cities Today

Posted by on May 2

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The winner of America's Next Great Restaurant, an NBC reality show that pitted potential restaurateurs against each other in front of a group of celebrity chef investors, was announced last night. The investors chose Jamawn Woods and his restaurant, Soul Daddy, which is now open in three locations across America as of today.

Soul Daddy's concept is all about making Southern cuisine (aka "soul food") healthier while still making it just as comforting. Menu items feature ribs, baked herb chicken, collard greens, black-eyed peas, and cornbread waffles -- items that have been given healthy "makeovers," so to speak, while still maintaining soul food traditions and expectations.

Interestingly, Soul Daddy wasn't the name of the restaurant at the start of the show. Woods originally presented investors with the name W3, which stood for Woods' Wings & Waffles. He wanted to have a restaurant concept built around the theme of "chicken and waffles." Eventually, his mindset changed to Soul Daddy as he realized he wanted to give his restaurant guests healthier menu options.

Now, Woods is part owner of a three-restaurant chain along with investors Bobby Flay, Lorena Garcia, Curtis Stone, and Steve Ells. Locations are open today in Los Angeles at Hollywood & Highland, the Mall of America in Minnesota, and the South Street Seaport in Manhattan.

Investor Bobby Flay says of Jamawn Woods, "He's come a long way [and] is doing it for all the right reasons: for a better life for his family."


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