KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It's been a difficult year for the restaurant industry during the pandemic, but one new establishment is finding the recipe for success in the 18th and Vine District.
It starts with a young chef who is looking to leave an impact, especially on people's taste buds.
The Corner Bar and Grill opened in August, during the pandemic. The man behind the menu is 21-year old Jamar Griddine.
"Having a 21-year old chef in the back is a lot a lot of fun, him being able to be back there to help me find the orders and get them out on proper timing. We love it," owner Shawniece Nicholson said.
Jamar went to culinary school and has been a chef in training since he was a teenager, learning along the way.
"Sometimes, you know, through the trials and tribulations, you have to have mentors and teachers," Griddine said. "And so that's what they are to me they are my mentors and teachers."
One of his teachers was his late grandmother, who gave him a valuable gift before she died.
"Last year she gave me her recipes to her, her yams, her mac and cheese her peach cobbler," Griddine said. "And you know what, I want people to feel what she taught me, which is the love of cooking."
Now, Griddine hopes to share it with his neighbors and the generation behind him.
"We have to give back. It's not something that we have to do but it's something that if we want to inspire and reach our community, we have to give back and inspire and motivate young people," he said.
In the future, he hopes to own a restaurant. For now, he's making breakfast favorites like chicken and waffles and shrimp and grits.
"I’m proud to have Chef Jamar in our kitchen," Nicholson said
"Cooking is art, it is an art," Griddine said.
Editor's note: This article has been updated to reflect the correct spelling of Jamar Griddine's last name.
We've created a Facebook group, We're Open Kansas City, where members of the community can post businesses serving their community.