MIAMI GARDENS (CBSMiami) – A South Florida entrepreneur’s southern food eatery is set to feed thousands of hungry fans during America’s biggest game, right in their backyard.
Ernisha Randolph celebrated with coworkers, fans and family for the one year anniversary of her restaurant, Shuckin & Jivin.
“Our theme is 60s and 70s, we just remind everyone of a time period when everything was groovy and food was something that you experienced and not just something that you ate. Everything from the name to the menu to the décor on the wall is like a blast from the past,” Randolph said.
This busy take-out restaurant is the Randolph’s first permanent store front, but its roots go back four generations.
“I come from a really big foodie family and everyone cooks, not just cooks, they ‘throw down’ as we like to call it,” said Randolph.
From her great-grandmother’s mac and cheese recipe, which was featured in Indulge Magazine, to grandmother Juanita who is her partner and the namesake of her first catering business, family is front and center.
“All the way from my daughter, who is just 19-years-old, Shaunee she’s in training to be our CEO and she’s actually really, really good,” said Randolph. “I try not to blow her head up too much. And my son AJ too, lots of our customers know him because he works here behind the front desk. He has that natural love and passion for customer service, just like me.”
A fierce businesswoman, Randolph was among Miami’s ‘Top 40 Under 40,’ Legacy Magazine’s ‘Trailblazer of the Year’ in 2016 and one of ‘The 50 Most Powerful & Influential People in Miami.’
But again, family is the key ingredient to this story’s success.
“There was a really, really terrible period where my mother and great-grandmother died one month apart from each other. While my mom was going through cancer, great-grandma was going through Alzheimer’s,” she said.
Hard times caused her grandmother to just about throw in the towel and move away, but Randolph had a brainstorm.
“We can’t lose our mom and our grandma, so I’m like, grandma how bout we start a catering business, we’ve been cooking forever, doing dinner sales for the church, let’s start a catering business,” Randolph said.
That superb combination of heritage, throwback and throw downs eventually led to Shuckin & Jivin.
Among the celebrations, came recognition from the Miami-Dade Mayor’s Office and one more big announcement.
“I’m grateful for us making it to Super Bowl LIV 2020!” said Randolph.
Rashad Thomas is Vice President of Miami Super Bowl Host Committee, in addition to providing the proclamation on behalf of the county, he shared her other accomplishments.
“She’s helped the local community see how you can grow from just a small entrepreneur to someone that now has a brick and mortar restaurant located right here in Miami Gardens,” said Thomas. “Shuckin & Jivin is one of 275 diverse suppliers to make the Super Bowl LIV Business Connect Resource Guide.”
About the food, she’s not giving any secrets away, but Randolph does share a little info.
“I have to say my favorite is the jivin shrimp, hands down, we southern dip it, fry it, toss it and then jive it. That’s all I can say,” Randolph said.
Check out the Super Bowl LIV Business Connect Resource Guide.