Photo Credit: Facebook Merci Maman
Merci Maman: The Black-Owned Brunch Spot In Paris Open By This 28-Year-Old
This Black-Owned brunch spot has a very interesting concept of embracing what she called a ‘fast food’, which combines modern cuisine with the feeling of eating at your mom’s kitchen. The restaurant is located at t 68 of the Roissy route in Tremblay-en-France.
As Egountley told Nofi Media, it is a place where people eat good homemade meals with love and leave satisfied as if they were leaving mom’s house.
“When we think of a cozy place to eat well, we think of our mom’s house and meals, which are synonymous with convivial, sharing and love. But for me, it’s more than that. This is a sentence that is not being fully said. Many times we don’t thank our parents for the good they do us, and we should before it’s too late. We don’t thank our parents enough for the good they do us” the Merci Maman told Nofi Media.
She also said that the name symbolizes the gratitude she has to her parents for the education, values and principles they were able to give her.
“Basically, it all started with a silly joke. When I was a kid, I had to help my mother with the housework, something I felt was unfair because when my friends called me to go play with them, I had to stay and help Mom. I wasn’t allowed to leave, and I didn’t really understand why. I wanted to have fun. What was the reason for learning to cook a chicken?! That’s what I was thinking. One day I exploded, and my mom just said, “You’ll thank me one day.” So when I decided to open my business, I thought it would be fun calling my restaurant ‘Merci Maman’ (Thanks mom).”
The journey of becoming an entrepreneur as a Black woman was not easy. However, Annie Sophie has always been aware of her role as a woman.
“I wanted to exist because of my ideas, my skills and my abilities. No matter the time and sacrifices, I know I would have done it because I was raised to be stronger than all the goals that stand in my way.” Egountley said.
“Yes, it’s hard. We cry, and on some mornings it seems impossible to get up. But in the end, I wouldn’t trade the life I have today for nothing! It is exhausting. You have to be resilient and always in harmony with yourself. Even more so in African culture, where you are brought up in the spirit that you have to do twice as much to succeed.
With diverse and educational experiences in France and abroad, the young Afro-French entrepreneur, who also studied political science and international trade, worked for other companies before she decided to open her own business.
“I traveled, learned, worked. I ended up working in a bank. My parents were happy. I was not. I needed action, to move, to discover, to fall, to learn again. So I gave up everything to start a business. Today, I still have a hard time understanding all this, which forced me to develop my versatility and my passion for entrepreneurship. I opened a restaurant that I wanted. Actually, I wanted more than a restaurant. I wanted a place where life is good. Good music, good food, good vibes. In fact, it’s a place where every day I feel like I invite each of my customers to eat. I want them to leave happy. It’s like we’re at home, and you can feel it.”