Home CultureBlack-Owned Sweet T’s Southern Eatery: Signature Comfort Food in Montclair

Sweet T’s Southern Eatery: Signature Comfort Food in Montclair

by Taylor Duncan
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Fried chicken, short rib, mac and cheese, cornbread, and more. All of your Southern comfort favorites are now available for lunch and dinner at Sweet T’s Southern Eatery in Montclair. Located in the Montclair Center at 387 Bloomfield Avenue, Dre Perrin and Tonza Houston are the founders of Sweet T’s {which officially opened in January 2021}. Keep reading for more about the menu and inspiration behind Sweet T’s Southern Eatery.

Meet The Owners

Dre Perrin and Tonza Houston always had a dream to open a restaurant. While Dre was born in Harlem, and Tonza originally from Guyana in South America – the two live together in Fort Lee, New Jersey. No stranger to the Garden State, Dre and Tonza settled on Montclair to open up their Southern Eatery. “I lived in West Orange for 12 years, and raised my kids there,” Tonza mentioned.

Read More: Sweet T’s Southern Eatery: Signature Comfort Food in Montclair

How Sweet T’s Southern Eatery Came To Be

“While living in West Orange for so many years, I identified a void of Southern cuisine in Montclair,” Tonza told Montclair Girl. “Once I shared this with Dre we knew we had to open a Southern eatery in Montclair,” Tonza added. That’s when Sweet T’s came to fruition. Tonza and Dre partnered with a consultant, Jason Wallace, who guided them through the process of opening their new Montclair dining experience.

The Menu

Sweet T’s menu includes your traditional Southern comfort-style food. Everything from fried chicken meals, to catfish, and short ribs – to sides like mac and cheese, and cornbread with strawberry butter {yum!}. A must-try is the signature, Sweet Tea. 

The eatery prides itself on creating dishes that are “healthy, transparent, authentic, and made from scratch”. Bonus: There are gluten-free offerings for those who have dietary restrictions.

See More: Delicious Plant-Based Dishes in Montclair, According to a Local Dietitian

The Impact of COVID-19

While the restaurant was initially supposed to start serving the Montclair area in April 2020, the opening date for Sweet T’s was pushed back to January 2021. When the eatery opened a few months ago, it started at takeout only. 

Around Valentine’s Day, 2021 was when Sweet T’s started to offer indoor dining. Since then, being at 50% capacity has been tough for Sweet T’s – especially as a new business. “We have to turn away a lot of customers because we’re constantly at our 50% capacity,” Tonza noted on the current COVID-19 restrictions. 

The Future of Sweet T’s

After only a few months in business, Sweet T’s has some upcoming plans to grow the restaurant and its offerings to the Montclair community. 

“We will be adding more items to our menu and we’ll be opening an outdoor patio soon,” Tonza mentioned. “We also plan to open another Sweet T’s Southern Eatery in South Jersey next year,” Stay tuned for more information and follow Sweet T’s on Instagram for all the restaurant’s updates.

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