‘Chi-Raq Cuisines’ is Cooking Up Mixed Feelings

Antwan Jeffries is 21 and a business owner – something that people would be head-over-heels to applaud, right?

Well, there are some claps and then there’s a bit of controversy surrounding Jeffries’ new restaurant venture. And that issue lies in its name – “Chi-Raq Cuisines.”

“I was thinking of Chitown, but at my age, it’s called Chi-Raq. It’s not to glorify it but it’s just what we grew up calling it,” he told CBS reporters.

The name, an eye-catcher for sure, is also a social stigma Chicago has been trying to evade since its rise in popularity in 2011, allegedly stemming from Chi-rapper King Louie.

Aside from its negative connotation, Jeffries, who is from the South Side and flipped from his days of selling drugs into obtaining his GED and succeed in culinary school, views his decision as a positive step toward becoming part of the solution as opposed to the problem.

Here’s a local piece about the controversy.

More on this story to come.