Given rap’s obsession with food, it’s not surprising that many hop-hop stars with some money in their pockets have decided to get into the restaurant game. Some, like Ludacris, appear to do so out of a genuine love of food and a good scene; others, such as Jay-Z, are motivated by the status that investment in a buzzy hot spot can gain them; and dudes like Rick Ross seem to just want a hot-wings joint that they can shut down whenever they want.
While many endeavors have ended in complete failure, there are some notable successes in the annals of rapper-run restaurants, fast-food franchises, and juice bars. And as hip-hop’s palate expands with each passing Action Bronson mixtape, we expect to see many more entering the game in coming years.
To make sure you’re up on this odd corner of the culinary world, we present 12 restaurants that have boasted rappers as their owners or investors, along with a look at their track record, signature dishes, and references on wax.