Star chef Tanya Holland operated Brown Sugar Kitchen’s original Oakland location for over a decade, serving up fresh home-style southern cuisine to the West Oakland community. Known for its hour-plus wait and a last-meal worthy fried chicken and cornmeal waffle with apple cider butter syrup, it was a favorite of regulars Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, and Draymond Green. At a time when few restaurateurs would dare to open in the neighborhood, Holland’s famous chicken and waffles, gumbo, and shrimp and grits brought customers from all over the Bay.
Despite the closure of its original location in 2018, Brown Sugar Kitchen remains an institution in the Bay Area. Holland opened a fast-casual expansion of the beloved spot in two locations in 2019 – one in Downtown Oakland and another in San Francisco’s Ferry Building – with an outpost in Oakland Airport hot on their heels.