Tequanna’s Soul Foods gets warm welcome on Key Street

TORRINGTON — Consumers have been lining at recently opened Tequanna’s Soul Food and Sweets, clamoring for the restaurant’s barbecued rooster, collard greens, potato salad, string beans and ribs.

“I realized there would be a good deal of people today on opening day, but not from Waterbury, Danbury, New Haven and New York,” claimed owner Tequanna Tyson. “People read about it on Facebook. We experienced a line out the door and down the block.

“Some folks were so satisfied, crying, even,” she reported. “I was not expecting that at all.”

But even following that effective opening on Aug. 7,she still was apprehensive. Just after all, Tyson, a Queens, N.Y., indigenous, moved herself and her family to Winsted to full the opening of Tequanna’s. “I was so happy it went very well, but then I wondered what would come about later on,” she said. “But past 7 days, we offered out of food stuff. People were just craving it.”

She reminded prospects that “if anything operates out, really don’t be upset. We get our meat and period and prepare dinner it all day, just like at dwelling. So factors run out at times.”


Tequanna’s, which opens at 11 a.m. and closes about 7 p.m., has ongoing to welcome the identical constant stream of hungry diners in look for of soul meals.

This previous Tuesday, the little menu board behind the dollars sign up available barbecued or baked rooster, string beans, ribs, potato salad, macaroni and cheese, collard greens and rice and greens, together with desserts which includes banana pudding and chocolate cake. That menu variations every day, and is posted on Tequanna’s Facebook web page.

A steam table, safeguarded guiding Plexiglas, keeps the foodstuff scorching until it is dished into a container by Tyson or her mother, Regina Tyson, or her sister Tiara. A tiny selection of chilly beverages stand in a close by cooler. The partitions are coated with small paintings and plaques, and Tyson extra a tree mural on the wall of the dining area. In the background, soul new music plays. It’s a comfortable atmosphere, warmed by the smiles of the Tysons as they greet each and every customer.

“Me and my mother do the cooking,” Tyson reported. “We’ve bought our specified recipes that we like to use, and we discuss about what we’re heading to do for the day. I realized to cook dinner from my mom and my grandmother it’s just great, very good food stuff.”

The cafe has a collection of tables for dining in, and provides takeout. The enormous kitchen, just previous the foods counter, is stuffed the aroma of simmering meat on a gas range. Extra equipment is coming, which includes one more stove. “We surely need to have much more oven place, as well,” Tyson claimed. “That stove’s coming.”

The family plans to cater events, and will continue to expand the menu based on what men and women like.

“I’m pondering of accomplishing a fish fry, just for a person working day,” Tyson explained. “I’m also acquiring my liquor license, so we can market specific Body fat Tuesday slushie beverages, and issues like that. I want to have distinctive issues, that possibly nobody else has.”

Before the pandemic, Tyson, her husband, Tymel, and her two youngsters, 6 and 8, had been living in Queens, where Tyson was doing the job as a bus driver.

“We moved in June, since we experienced to get out of there,” she recalled. “The bus drivers were being pressured to function, and so several men and women ended up dying of COVID-19. It was just ridiculous.”

She turned to close by Connecticut, and a Real estate agent good friend confirmed her houses in a variety of metropolitan areas: Bridgeport, Stamford and Waterbury.

“I said, ‘No, acquire me more in,’” Tyson stated. The Real estate agent took her to Winsted. They observed a household there.

“It’s so silent and tranquil there,” she said, introducing that she enrolled her small children in the area school technique, in which they are extremely delighted.

“The colleges are wonderful, and the young children enjoy it,” she claimed. “We continue to go to Queens on the weekends, and it is so loud. I just can’t hold out to get back again household.”

When Tyson first moved, she drove a bus for the Northwest Transit District when she prepared to open her restaurant, and she’s manufactured new good friends in the neighborhood. “Most of the people I meet are very awesome up in this article,” she stated. “A ton of my passengers are my clients now.”

To make her chicken, pork and beef dishes, Tyson and her mother hand-decide their cuts of meat from a source in New York, and get the relaxation of their elements locally.

“We have to see it, know what we want, and choose it home,” she spelled out. “It’s the way we’ve constantly carried out it. I don’t use a massive distributor. It is better that way.”

The meals appeals to men and women, she reported, for the reason that it preferences good and it’s not also high-priced. Individuals can decide up a lunch with two aspect dishes for under $10, such as a sq. of home made cornbread, wrapped in waxed paper and stored in a warming basket by the steam table. A guy ordered $5 value of ribs, and Tyson obliged him.

“I’ve experienced a ton of people thanking me, crying, even, simply because they have been so excited by the food,” she stated.

The other day a shopper arrived in to Tequanna’s and asked her whether or not she’d be fascinated in opening a second cafe in nearby Washington. “I don’t even know in which that is,” Tyson stated. “It was sort of a surprise.”

She was flattered, too, but proper now she’s centered on Key Road and her new residence in Winsted.

“Moving right here was just greater for me,” she claimed. “I’ve began conference a lot of various people today.

“I also want to be distinctive,” Tyson said.

For facts, check out www.fb.com/Tysonfamilysweets
. The restaurant is located at 21 Main St., following to the Howard making.

Previous post Why some dining places are transferring absent from foodstuff supply giants
Next post Little Desk (House) Concert : NPR