A family-owned restaurant in Brooklyn, NY, has received financial gains.

Torri Clayton, a Harlem native, is the owner of Cheri’s Bedstuy, a venture that opened in 2019 to pay homage to her family and provide more southern cuisine comfort food in Brooklyn, NY. 

According to Black-Owned Brooklyn, Clayton collected the recipes her family passed down for generations to begin her own restaurant.

The venture required sacrifice and risks. The restaurant owner maxed out her credit cards and took out personal loans to bring Cheri’s Bedstuy to life, “Good Morning America” mentioned. What she now calls a “labor of love” has led to menu items including grilled lamb chops, shrimp scampi, and fried lobster tails to be enjoyed by locals.

“A labor of love. It was a dream that was realized,” Clayton expressed during a taping of “Good Morning America.” “It was a surprise to my family and the way that they just rallied, and trusted, and stood behind me to make this happen. I cannot be more thankful to not only see a dream realized but to be able to work with my family and to just see what we were able to build together and to also offer this to the community. Where it was seriously lacking establishments like this to bring class and to bring pride to Bedstuy, as it’s ever so changing.”

While on the show sharing her sentiments, Clayton and her family were joined by Chef Marcus Samuelsson and Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks Founder Derrick Hayes, both with a special surprise.

Samuelsson extended a one-year mentorship to Clayton, who responded with immediate praise. What’s more, Hayes supported Cheri’s Bedstuy with a $40,000 check, bringing her to tears.

“I was a fried cook. I was the grill cook. I was everything in my business. I had to do everything I had to do,” Hayes told Clayton on “Good Morning America.” “But being an African-American, starting out, we have to be everything because we don’t have the resources. So today, I have a big surprise for you. Are you ready? I want to, on behalf of Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks, I want to donate you a $40,000 check.”

As AFROTECH™ previously reported in January 2024, Hayes signed an agreement with Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks’ first franchisee.

Former PepsiCo Executive Derek Lewis signed a franchise agreement with Hayes to build 10 restaurants across central Florida.

Although the founder may be gearing up to disrupt the food industry, it’s clear he’s not leaving his fellow Black business owners behind.