It’s no secret that black folks love brunch. That’s why owner of Urban Brunch Co. and brunch enthusiast, Deah Mitchell, is bringing the Southwest Brunch Festival to the Lone Star State on June 24th. But it wasn’t exactly a piece of cake…
Black Foodie: What made you want to do a brunch festival?
Deah Mitchell: I previously owned a pop-up restaurant in Dallas, and I wanted to take a trip to become inspired for other menu items for brunch – because I specialize in brunch. I visited a brunch festival in California, and saw some things I wanted to incorporate, but do something different and bring it to Texas. I thought Dallas would be a good market for it because we love brunch here.
BF: Why do you think people are so obsessed with brunch?
DM: I think brunch is an excuse for people to getaway, it’s like a form of escapism. It’s a casual way to dine out with friends, but still feel like you’re kind of doing big things.
BF: When it came to planning and executing the festival, what obstacles did you run into along the way; especially being a black founder.
DM: I’m no stranger to planning events, but since this was my first time in the food festival arena – and we didn’t have a big following – it was difficult to get people to take us seriously. As a result, we ran into issues with people of more notoriety and money pushing their brunch festival out earlier than ours. Another challenge was running into the issue of not knowing if people are declining your offer because you’re black, or because they’re really not interested. Because this event is being run by minorities, it was really important that we brought in restaurants that had images that we wanted to partner with. Black people brunch, that’s what we do. So I wanted vendors to respect that.
BF: What’s going to make this festival different from the rest?
DM: After attending the festival in California, I knew there were somethings I wanted to do differently. I was an out of town guest, but I feel like I didn’t have any help when it came to where to stay, where to go afterwards, and what to do. So we partnered with a hotel and they’re offering a special discount code for the weekend of the festival. And the neighborhood where we’re having it is within walking distance with lots of restaurants and shops. And I wanted to have a varied menu of samples available; everyone does chicken and waffles. We’re also gonna have interactive workshops and a DJ.
BF: Where can people find more information about the Southwest Brunch Festival including how to snag tickets?
DM: The event takes place Saturday, June 24th at the Addison Conference Center from 11:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. If you need tix or hotel info, or just want to learn more about it, visit our website: southwestbrunchfest.com You can also follow us on social media:
Twitter: @ swbrunchfest
BF: Just out of curiosity, what’s your favorite brunch item?
DM: Classic eggs benedict with a really good hollandaise sauce. Gets me every time!