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Joseph “JJ” Johnson is a James Beard-Nominated chef best known for cooking food of the African diaspora at the beloved Harlem restaurants, The Cecil and Minton’s. Chef JJ is now widely known for cooking his culture at his joint venture The Henry by JJ and soon taking his cooking back to Harlem opening his new restaurant Fieldtrip a quick casual rice concept featuring global- inspired flavors

Chef JJ' s signature style of transforming simple cuisine with bold flavors and unexpected ingredients was inspired by the Caribbean flavors he grew up with, combined with African and Asian tastes acquired from his travels around the world.

Finding inspiration from music o develop profiles. Chef JJ is best known for curating the vibe of his restaurant by creating nostalgic dining experiences with 90’s R&B/Hip Hop Playlist.

Chef JJ is a firm believer in sharing health & culture through food and experience and is the newest host of “Just Eats with Chef JJ”, a cooking and lifestyle show that debuts in 2019 on TV One’s new CLEO network. He is also a renowned author of his cookbook, “Between Harlem and Heaven”




During Fall 2017, Chef JJ previewed new dishes and flavors from his latest culinary ventures at Chefs Club, a restaurant located in New York City’s NoLiTa neighborhood, where he serves as the first chef in residence. Having cooked a completely sold- out three-night dinner series at Chefs Club’s fast casual concept, Chefs Club Counter, this past summer, JJ continues to preview dishes from his forthcoming solo venture to New Yorkers.

At Chefs Club, JJ cooked a menu of “Afro-Asian” cuisine, something he feels is tangible evidence of the migration of people, and the creativity that it begets. Dish highlights, inspired by a melting pot borne of the diaspora, include Con’Con – Jollof sticky rice with eggplant curry, coconut and basil, and Short Rib for Two with Carolina gold rice, hoisin and house-made roti.




In two of the most renowned and historic venues in Harlem, Alexander Smalls and JJ Johnson created a unique take on the Afro-Asian-American flavor profile. Their foundation was a collective three decades of traveling the African diaspora, meeting and eating with chefs of color, and researching the wide reach of a truly global cuisine; their inspiration was how African, Asian, and African-American influences cuisines all around the world. They present here for the first time over 100 recipes that go beyond just one place, taking you, as noted by The New Yorker, “somewhere between Harlem and heaven.”



FieldTrip is a quick casual rice bowl shop set to open in Harlem in Spring 2019. FieldTrip is a celebration of rice and culture showcasing global flavors through bowls of freshly milled, unbleached, and un-enriched rices. They are the “granddaddy” heirloom grains of rices we commonly know today and each has its own history.

FieldTrip’s mantra, Rice is Culture, was born out of a realization that rice can be found at the center of tables of so many cultures around the world. Rice connects people. The cuisine is influenced by global flavors from Asia to Africa to America and the Caribbean.




TV One launched Cleo TV in Jan 2019, a lifestyle and entertainment channel offering a diverse mix of lifestyle and entertainment content through the unique lens of millennial and Gen X women. The network’s original programming lineup includes ”Just Eats With Chef JJ” where JJ creates signature dishes with his celebrity friends and social influencers.



Buzzfeed Tasty platform marks a crucial next step in the evolution of the brand. In today’s competitive media landscape, a lasting digital brand needs four key elements to realize its full potential: scale, brand recognition, ad effectiveness and talent. After turning an innovative video recipe format into a global food brand, Tasty is expanding further into episodic shows with a exciting group of chefs who will bring diverse, fresh, and often underrepresented points of view to the food world,”

Tasty currently reaches over 500 million people per month worldwide and attracts more than 2.1 Billion average monthly video views. JJ has the ability to create custom content to be distributed on Tasty’s platform.




Other press includes:

  • Food & Wine Magazine
  • Forbes
  • Gotham
  • Eater
  • Medium
  • Food Republic
  • Fine Dining Lovers
  • Grub Street
  • The Wine Odyssey
  • Potluck with Ali

Other press includes:

  • Guest Judge Chopped
  • Esquire Next Great Burger
  • Somebody Feed Phil (Netflix)
  • Panna Cooking
  • The Harry Connick Jr. Show
  • Pickler and Ben
  • Hallmark


  • Robb Report Best Young Chef (2018)

  • James Beard Rising Star Nominee (2014)

  • Star Chefs Rising Star (2014)

  • Eater Young Guns (2014)

  • Esquire Best New Restaurant (2014)

  • Forbes 30 Under 30 (2013)

  • The New Yorker Magazine 40 Under 40

  • New York African Restaurant Week Chef of the Year (2015)

  • James Beard Best Chef NYC Nominee (2019)


Not only has Chef JJ worked at top-rated restaurants, owns (2) restaurants and demonstrated his skills on various television broadcasts, he has also partnered with some of the world’s leading consumer brands. Partnerships have included creating exclusive menus for influencer events, and curating educational culinary experiences for Brand Executives. Brands partnered with include:

  • Buzzfeed Tasty
  • Infiniti
  • Food & Wine Classic in Aspen
  • Grammy
  • JetBlue Airways
  • New York Fashion Week
  • Mastercard
  • Wine n Dine
  • Cadillac
  • Coca Cola