Mama’s Kitchen is here to stay: Re-opened restaurant gives back to the community

Published 5:03 pm Saturday, August 12, 2023

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LAPLACE — Mama’s Kitchen had only been open for 10 days when Hurricane Ida tore through LaPlace in August 2021, destroying the restaurant and putting an extended pause on operations.

In the weeks that followed, the Mama’s Kitchen crew provided relief to the storm-battered community by serving hundreds of hot meals in the parking lot. As people grabbed to-go plates, many asked if the restaurant was coming back. Owner Steve Bridges assured them, “We are going to rebuild just like y’all will.”

Mama’s Kitchen has come back stronger than ever since reopening in March 2023 at 1721 W. Airline Highway in LaPlace. While the business is still new to St. John the Baptist Parish, Bridges is committed to giving back to the community that supports him.

This past week, Mama’s Kitchen hosted a customer appreciation event that featured giveaways of air fryers, Ring doorbell cameras, VIP tailgate tickets, and hotel stays.

Bridges also operates Woodmere Café in Harvey. His friends in the St. John Parish area convinced him to bring a soul food restaurant to LaPlace.

Bridges remembers how his grandmother could always be found in the kitchen, cooking for the entire family. The Mama’s Kitchen name was inspired by family matriarchs who know how to cook a little bit of everything.

“You can get anything out of your Mama’s kitchen,” Bridges said. “That’s why we offer everything under one roof.”

Mama’s Kitchen is known for soul food dishes, fried chicken, and seafood plates, including chargrilled oysters. However, the most popular item on the menu is gumbo.

Since reopening, Mama’s Kitchen has offered daily specials and Taco Tuesdays. Every table was reserved this past Thursday for the first Steak Night featuring a live band. This fall, Mama’s Kitchen plans to host a Halloween party with door prizes.

Bridges said Mama’s Kitchen is here to stay.

“Ida might have knocked us off the map for a little while, but we came back strong. We are still new here and we haven’t gotten our feet all the way wet, so we are seeing what we can do,” Bridges said. “The business has been good. People come out and support, and we want to show them that we support them as well.”

Business hours are from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. Mama’s Kitchen will also be open during the Saints games on Sundays.

The restaurant is always hiring locally. For more information, call 985-233-4000.