Explore

Soul Food: Gumbo Yaya Takes America’s Southern Flair to Paris

By Parker Diakite

Share

Just outside of Rue Charles Robin, in the 10th Arrondissement of Paris, is a restaurant dressed in America’s southern flair.

 

Outside of Gumbo Yaya Southern Kitchen, you will find picnic-style tables and condiments like Louisiana Hot Sauce and Aunt Jemima syrup that make up the tables’ centerpieces.

 

Inside, you’ll find what appears to be your favorite uncle throwing down on fried chicken, while your favorite auntie is putting her foot in the waffle mix, cornbread, and macaroni and cheese. As for the restaurant’s owner, Lionel Chauvel, he wouldn’t have it any other way.

 

“I’m originally from Benin, but I have aunties living in Macon, Georgia,” Chauvel tells Travel Noire. “I would visit them during the summers and on Sunday mornings we would eat chicken and waffles.”

 

Those summers in Macon is what inspired Chauvel to bring one of Black America’s favorite brunch items to Paris. “I want people here to experience the Sunday mornings I had,” he says jokingly.

 

Gumbo Yaya opened in September of 2015 and the menu features chicken and waffles, a chicken and waffle burger, sweet tea lemonade, kool-aid, pecan-pie, and more. There are even options for vegans.

 

 

“I found out about chicken and waffles on Instagram so me and my friends decided to try this American dish here,” says 24-year-old Melody Dacalor, a patron at the restaurant. “Surprisingly, we actually like it.”

 

Seating is limited and the wait-times can surpass an hour, so it’s best to get there early.  Gumbo Yaya , located at 3 Rue Charles Robin, is open Monday through Friday from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., and in the evenings again from 7:30 p.m. until 10:30 p.m. On Saturday, the restaurant is open in the evenings only from 7:30 p.m. until 10:30 p.m., and closed Sundays.

 

“I had no idea this restaurant would be so popular so I do plan to open a second and third location throughout Paris,” Chauvel says. “It brings me so much joy that people enjoy this American cuisine. It makes me feel proud of Black American food and my culture.”

Share
Travel Noire

Parker Diakite

Want more?

Get exclusive, unpublished tips from Travel Noire's CEO to help you get off the beaten path, into the hearts of locals and onto a better, more cultured life.

One Of Oakland’s Favorite Black-Owned Coffee Shops To Open A New Café In San Francisco

One Of Oakland’s Favorite Black-Owned Coffee Shops To Open A New Café In San Francisco

In 2014, Keba Konte founded Red Bay Coffee Roasters, one of few black-owned coffee shops in the United States. In a world full of pumpkin-spice,  Konte has stuck to his African origins and is managing to stand out in the Bay area with his candied yam lattes. RELATED: 15 Black-Owned Coffee Shops Every Traveler Should […]

Parker Diakite

How To Spend A Day In Black-Owned Tampa, Florida

How To Spend A Day In Black-Owned Tampa, Florida

Tampa, located along Florida’s Gulf Coast, is a mix of historic architecture and modern landmarks. The city is infused with Cuban and Spanish flavors, gorgeous views, and a vibrant scene of art and entertainment. If you are passing through, here is a great way to spend the day supporting the local black community. Morning Enjoy […]

Leah Freeman-Haskin

How To Spend A Day In Black-Owned Bermuda

How To Spend A Day In Black-Owned Bermuda

Not too long ago, Bermuda tourism officials announced an ambitious goal of doubling the number of black travelers to the island by 2025. The announcement by tourism officials was publicized after a report revealed that African-American spent nearly $63 billion on tourism in 2018. As Bermuda’s tourism agency works to attract more black visitors, here’s […]

Parker Diakite