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In His Own Words: Chef Russell Jackson of Reverence

Cover Image for In His Own Words:  Chef Russell Jackson of Reverence
By Russell Jackson
Categories:FeaturedIn Their Own Words

Russell Jackson
Chef/Owner, Reverence
Harlem, NYC

After owning different restaurants and having some success, failures, and notoriety, I launched my underground concept, SubCulture Dining (SCD), which was a way for me to hide who I was was a way for me to hide who I was as a black chef and allow my food and hospitality to do the talking. I am proud of what we achieved but disappointed I couldn’t have led with the clear reality of who and what we were.

Reverence is based on me telling and honoring the stories and influences of my upbringing. It’s inspired by my time in the kitchens, my love of my hometown, and the chefs, art, and experiences in California. And more than that, it’s about bringing people together in a way that allows them to reconnect in a meaningful way.

Going forward we will lean into some of the more difficult stories of my experiences in a meaningful way. These stories are important to share now.

Harlem is and has always been one of the most influential artistic, business, and cultural demographics in the world for modern African-American expression. Building Reverence in an underserved community was important for the improvement of the community and building in a predominately African American community was personally important for me.

Transparency, visceral, tangible, and intimate experiences are now giving people an opportunity to reconnect over food. This is the way we will change the world.

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