In October, 1964 a kindly Black lady named Elizabeth White, having cooked for other restaurants all her life, decided she'd open up her own cafe.
So she located her cafe in the only location she could afford; at the urban core of old Phoenix, down on Jefferson Street...a street only Martin Luther King could love..or dare to visit.
Elizabeth wanted to enshroud her business around her own set of ethics; to treat people right, to be kindly, to give the customer their money's worth.
Her history and her ethics formed the beginnings of Mrs. White's Golden Rule Cafe. Her menu? Fried Chicken, Fried Pork Chops, Turnip Greens, Mac N Cheese, Fried Okra, Sweet potatoes, Gravy And Rice, Fried Catfish, Chicken Fried Steak, Sweet Cornbread, and for Dessert, Peach Cobbler and Banana Pudding, and all washed down with tall cool glasses of Iced Tea.
The menu is scratched out on a blackboard and folks come in and play a delightful game of "eenie meenie minie moe" as they pick and choose their entrees and sides and desserts.
So, how did Elizabeth do? Well, Elizabeth is 90 years old, can still be seen back in the kitchen, conjuring up delicious soul food/southern food/comfort food for both the mighty and the meek...her customer base includes sports stars, movie and music stars, and just plain old "folks".
This year Elizabeth will celebrate the 50th Anniversary of The Golden Rule Cafe. She's trained her grandson to do the "hard rowing" but she still keeps her hand on the stirring spoon herself...to make sure she's still giving her customers a serving of love and kindness with every bite.
Pretty nice, Elizabeth! You've proved that being nice goes a long, long way!