Black-Owned Businesses, Raleigh

Black-Owned Businesses Are Helping Expand On Raleigh’s Economic Development

Let's pack up and move to Raleigh!

Business in North Carolina is finally bouncing back after taking a hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that’s in large part due to the growth of Black-owned businesses in Raleigh.  

According to a report from the Office of the North Carolina Secretary of State, NC has added nearly 15,000 new businesses in 2024. The Flavor Hills Restaurant and Bar is one of almost 40 Black-owned businesses in the capital city’s downtown area and is slowly becoming a visitor favorite.

Owner Chef Morgan Teianne and her three partners opened their second location in the heart of the home of Shaw University, a local HBCU. Their packed menu includes Southern cuisine favorites, including salmon croquettes, fried green tomatoes, and catfish & grits. Starting in Jacksonville, North Carolina, Teianne said she didn’t realize how much larger the new location was until she got inside. “It was very big for us, and we didn’t realize until after we signed our lease how big it was,” Chef Teianne said.

“I really admire how many people enjoy the food.”

Open five days a week, the restaurant has already appeared in the reels of influencers and hosted events, including open mic night and Greek night for historically Black fraternities and sororities since opening in January 2024. They recently hosted Dream Hill Weekend at Flavor Hills as a tribute to J.Cole’s Dreamville Festival, which welcomed fans and celebrities to the city in early April 2024. “People are loving what we brought to the table, they were excited for us to open,” Teianne said.

Starting her culinary journey in Washington, D.C., the chef pays homage to her father and late grandmother, who inspired her to perfect the craft of Southern cuisine. She left the nation’s capital behind to bring her talents to the Tar Heel state. Making the capital city her home, she encourages other Black business owners to join her. Teianne said her company caters to all demographics and thinks others can be just as successful. “I love to support other Black businesses,” she said.

Raleigh was named the second-best-performing city in the U.S. economically in February 2024 by a report from the Milken Institute, according to Axios. A step up from third place in 2023, the city fits the criteria as a top-ranked metropolitan area that offers high wages, an overflow of job opportunities and a seemingly low cost of living, “making them economic models for the rest of the nation.”

The report reviewed over 400 metropolitan areas in the U.S. using 13 economic metrics. Cities were then divided into large metros — with more than 275,000 residents — and smaller ones. Raleigh fell into the top 20 rank for the last 12 years.

For Flavor Hills, Raleigh isn’t their last stop. Teianne is considering a third location in Charlotte, adding to approximately 3,000 new business creations in Mecklenburg County in 2024. “We wanted everyone to be able to come here to eat, laugh and drink,” she said.