June 24, 2024


Welcome to the Food

Black-owned food businesses around Evansville and Henderson areas

EVANSVILLE, Ind. — In honor of Black History Month, we’ve rounded up food businesses owned by Black entrepreneurs in the Evansville and Henderson area.

Whether you’re looking for an elegant in-home dinner, a cooking class, barbecue, fun food truck fare, a vegan entrée or dessert, pizza, exotic Caribbean cuisine, homey comfort food or an upscale appetizer and a glass of wine, you’ll find someone on this list who offers it.

If we’ve missed one, let us know. Reach out to [email protected] and we’ll add them.


John Earl’s Ice House and Fine Foods

733 Martin Luther King Blvd.; 270-854-4798

A fully-dressed triple cheeseburger from John Earl's with lettuce, pickle, tomato, onion, mayo, mustard and ketchup.

John Earl’s, owned and run by John and Carmalita McFarland, is a tiny walk-up restaurant offering casual food favorites such as fried appetizers, burgers, wings, barbecue sandwiches, tenderloins, catfish and chicken salad. The house-made cole slaw is a favorite side. Soft serve ice cream may be enjoyed in a cup, as a sundae or in a thick milkshake with add-ins. No credit or debit cards are accepted at John Earl’s.

More: Looking for a great cheeseburger? Try these four unexpected places in the Evansville area

Mama’s Pizza

1526 N. Green St.; 270-830-0101


Kentucky folks love spaghetti as a side for fried fish. Find it, alongside macaroni and cheese, baked beans, cole slaw, macaroni salad, hush puppies and more on Mama's Pizza's catfish buffet.

This pizza shop, owned by Karen and Earlie Rupert, is known for large and heavily loaded pizzas such as the 16-inch Big Daddy, the 18-inch Granddaddy and 20-inch Gutbuster with extra portions of all the house toppings. Double-decker pizzas are also offered, or, sure, you can get a regular-sized pizza with whatever you like on it. Have a stromboli or pizza oven sandwich, and, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings go by for the fried fish special. The fish is cooked fresh to order with your choice of two sides. When we’re not in the middle of a pandemic, the sides are offered on a buffet.

Taylor’s Grill on Wheels

130 N. Water St. Henderson; 270-854-4302


Smoked boneless pork loin chops at Taylor's Grill on Wheels in Henderson, Ky. on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020.

Right across the street from Henderson’s Audubon Mill Park, Carl and Maai Taylor’s carry-out barbecue spot is perfectly situated for grabbing lunch or dinner to eat at a picnic table overlooking the river. You’ll find pulled pork on sandwiches, on nachos or loaded fries, stirred into macaroni and cheese, and more. Smoked chicken breast, pork chops and occasionally ribs, brisket or mutton are on the menu. Watch for other specials such as soups and fried fish on Friday.


Caribbean Cuisine

1010 S. Kentucky Ave.; 812-303-0631


Fried pork, fried plantains, pikliz relish, macaroni and cheese and potato-beet salad at Caribbean Cuisine on Kentucky Avenue.

If you love exotic Caribbean food, this is the only place in Evansville to get it. Frensen and Lorvens Cede, Meldy Devallon and Lovelie Francois co-own the business, which features the foods of Haiti. From mild oxtail stew to fiery pikliz relish which looks like slaw but contains habanero chilies; from fried plantain bananas to mounds of seasoned rice with red beans; from whole fried red snapper with all the garnishes to Hatian-style macaroni and cheese, if you haven’t tried this food it will open new doors for your taste buds.

More: How to decipher the made-from-scratch craft cocktail from Evansville-area mixologists

Chef Adam Edwards



Adam Edwards' super-flavorful and healthful dish to make with summer eggplant was a bruschetta topping with garlic, tomatoes, basil and capers, finished with a balsamic drizzle.

If you need an elegant in-home dinner party or a cooking class right in your own kitchen, Chef Adam Edwards is the man to call. A culinary graduate of Johnson and Wales University in Miami, Edwards has many years of experience in fine dining. He’ll work out a custom menu with you, but some of his recent offerings have been chili crusted beef tenderloin with sweet potato hash and chipotle crema, shrimp ceviche with avocado and ahi tuna tartare with avocado and edamame. Edwards comes by his cooking skills naturally — find his father, wine expert Walter Edwards Jr., downtown at Entwined Wine and Cocktail bar.

Dontae’s Highland Pizza Parlor

6669 Kratzville Road; 812-777-0016


A Cluckin Pig panini sandwich with chicken, roasted tomato and pesto at Dontae's Highland Pizza Parlor on Wednesday afternoon, Aug. 27, 2020.

Chef Dontae Hines has been making some of Evansville’s favorite pizza and creative sandwiches for years, and in 2020 he finally got his own restaurant. A Dontae’s, he’s cooking up crisp crust pizzas such as the Gurg with barbecue sauce, pulled pork, candied jalapeños and pineapple and the Hot Hawaiian with ham, bacon, pineapple, brown sugar and candied jalapeños.  Have a stromboli or one of Dontae’s creative toasted paninis such as The Cluckin Pig with chicken, bacon, white cheddar, onion, roasted tomato and pesto; or have the Peachy Cow with brisket, peach reduction, cheddar cheese, pickles and onion. A second location will be opening soon.