Feb 13th, 2019, 10:20 AM

Ten of the Best Black-Owned Businesses in Paris

By Moumi Camara
Owners of Le Tricycle standing next to their food bike. Image Credit: Le Tricycle Facebook
Is it possible to live in Paris solely off of black-owned businesses?

Netflix recently released a documentary series Trigger Warning with Killer Mike. The 6-episode show is hosted by Micheal Render, aka Killer Mike of hip hop duo Run The Jewels, where he challenges social issues and its effects on the black community in creative and humorous ways.

In the Pilot episode entitled “Living Black”, Killer Mike shares how 54 years post-segregation, the U.S. dollar only stays in the black community for six hours, compared to Jewish and white communities where it stays for an average of 23 days. He decides to “live black”  for three days, buying from only black-owned businesses. To his shock he found it to be way harder than he had originally assumed. The rapper had to give up both his home and his car. He wasn't even able to eat at most black-owned restaurants because they do not typically use food from black-owned farms. “Living black, even for only three days, was way more difficult than it should’ve been", he states post-experiment.

Micheal Render,a.ka. Killer Mike, standing next to other half hip hop duo Run the Jewels, El-P. Image Credit: Netflix 

While this may have been difficult for Killer Mike, "living black" in Paris is much more feasible. Because of France's colonial ties to North and West Africa, Paris is a city with a large and vibrant African-descended population. The African Diaspora has great influence on traditional French cuisine and fashion, but they also have many businesses of their own. Throughout the city, you’ll be able to find restaurants, entertainment, and a diverse array of shops while still keeping your money within the black community. With only a few more weeks to go in February, in honor of Black history month and celebration Black and African culture here’s a list of some of the top black-owned businesses in Paris.

Restaurants

Wally Fay: Loved by many, this eatery landed itself a spot on Time Out's list of 100 best restaurants in Paris. Owned by Olivier Thimothee, this trendy restaurant is a mix of West African and Caribbean cuisine that serves seafood dishes, marinated chicken, and twists on traditional meals. 

Waiter holding a plate of rice and yassa poulet. Image credit: Waly Fay 

Black Spoon: Owned by Fati Niang, this is the first food truck to offer African cuisine. The menu includes classic Senegalese and Malian cuisine such as Yassa chicken and Tiep Bou Dienn. Their location can be tracked using their Facebook page or Track the Truck. 

Crowd waiting to order from Black Spoon food truck. Image credit: Black spoon Facebook 

Le tricycle:  This unique restaurant is the first vegan food bike in Paris, and they are known for their vegan hotdogs and mixture of African cuisine.  After gaining much popularity, they opened a second location in Paris that goes by the name JahJah.

 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today's Bowl at @letricycle 51 rue de Paradis #letricycle #vegan

A post shared by LE TRICYCLE🌍 (@letricycle) on

A display of vegan bowls and the famous vegan hotdog. Image credit: letricycle instagram 

Gumbo YaYa Chicken and Waffles: This restaurant inspired by the American South is owned by Lionel Chauvel. The menu features soul food such as chicken and waffles and seafood gumbo. They also accommodate to vegans with options like their veggie bowl. 

 
Popular dish of chicken and waffles with their famous Louisiana hot sauce. Image credit: Gumbo YaYa Instagram 

Dear Muesli: An organic cereal brand made by “the Muesli boys”, three brothers, Sylvain, Dikom, and Bakang. Although this brand is not offered in store, it is easy to order, and it allows you to create your own mix. If you are within the Paris area, it will deliver within two days. 

 
 Granola boosters customizable for each client. Image Credit: Dear Muesli Instagram 
 

Entertainment

Le Paris Noir: Created Kevi Donat in 2013,  Le Paris Noir, also known as Black Paris Walks, offers guided tours of black Paris. They offer two kinds of tours, the first takes place in the Latin Quarter and Saint-Germain where you can learn about the rise of the global black culture and black figures who where inspired in Paris. The second tour takes place in Pigalle and "Little Africa"  where you get to see the evolution of immigration in Paris and its diverse African community. There is also an option of doing a combination of both guided tours. 

 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Le Paris All Day Everyday. #LeParisNoir

A post shared by Le Paris Noir by Kevi Donat (@leparisnoir) on

Kevi Donat doing a guided tour of black Paris. Image credit: Le Paris Noir Facebook

Presence Africaine: Founded in 1947 by Senegalese Alioune Diop, it is the first magazine to publish many of the best known Francophone African writers. Since 1949, it has expanded to a publishing house and a bookstore.

Presence Africaine bookstore. Image Credit: Presence Africaine
 

Fashion

BaZara'pagne: Togolese designer Lodia Kpodzro uses her roots as inspiration for her brand through printed fabrics and accessories. Her boutique can be found in Chatelet. 

Latest collection of winter 2018 called #EMEFA. Image Credit: BaZara'pagne

Dada Wax Couture: This store uses African fabrics, also known as wax, to produce a range of unique clothing and accessories. While they are slightly outside of the city, the store offers appointments, fittings, and consultations to customize outfits for any occasion. They specialize in creating decorative items as well.



Customizable clothing, tailored to fit each individual. Image Credit: Dada Wax Couture

For more black-owned experiences, visit Goutte d'Or. The community has an abundant amount of shops and diversity, with products ranging from fresh food to clothing, restaurants, bars, and hairdressers. While the African Diaspora isn't often fully represented in French media and politics, Paris is a melting pot filled with cultures that should be celebrated and explored.