Celebrated St. Pete restaurant Chief’s Creole Cafe has closed

Elihu and Carolyn Brayboy own the building and look to lease it out to another restaurant.

click to enlarge Chief's Creole Cafe - Photo via Chief's Creole Cafe/Facebook
Photo via Chief's Creole Cafe/Facebook
Chief's Creole Cafe
In St. Pete's bustling foodie scene, it's no secret that restaurants tend to come and go. But earlier today, The Burg' lost one of its culinary gems.

The owners of Chief’s Creole Cafe—located at 901 22nd St. S— took to Facebook to announce the immediate closure of their southern restaurant.

“Mr. & Mrs. B are moving to their next chapter. We wish to thank our staff for their dedication, loyalty, and commitment,” the restaurant’s social media reads. “We will retain the facility and it will be available to any entrepreneur who would like or need a venue.”
The southside restaurant was known for its variety of flavor-packed dishes like jambalaya, fluffy beignets, crawfish fritters, gumbo and red beans and rice alongside many other Creole entrees.

Just late last year, the southern restaurant expanded its dinner hours and added a wide spread of vegan dishes to its menu.
Elihu and Carolyn Brayboy opened Chief’s Creole Cafe in South St. Pete in the fall of 2013, in honor of Elihu’s late mother, Mary Brayboy.

In addition to their pink building on 22nd St. S, the Brayboys own a variety of other parcels throughout St. Pete’s Deuces district. The Brayboys are of course known for their delicious southern dishes, but even more so for being active in St. Pete’s Black community over the decades.

Further detailed in St. Pete publication the Weekly Challenger, the Brayboys have worked towards restoring the historic Deuces neighborhood, which was once the "epicenter of the Black community during the days of segregation."

According to a February article from St. Pete Catalyst, the Brayboys recently announced plans for a "uniquely affordable housing project" in the Deuces district.

Following the immediate closure of Chief's Creole Cafe, it seems like the St. Petersburg Black History Bike Tour will have to find a new headquarters. 

About The Author

Kyla Fields

Kyla Fields is the Managing Editor of Creative Loafing Tampa Bay who started their journey at CL as summer 2019 intern. They are the proud owner of a charming, sausage-shaped, four-year-old rescue mutt named Piña.
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