*Atlanta has always had lots of great restaurants and eateries around town. Now, Johnny’s Chicken & Waffles can officially be added to the list. Since its grand opening in January of this year in College Park, the restaurant, owned by Crystal Smith; her husband, recording artist Ne-Yo; and hip-hop artist Karlie Redd, has been a must-eat destination.
While chicken and waffles are the main items on the menu, the restaurant also gets thumbs up for its jumbo chicken wings, chicken tenders, Buffalo wings, and salmon and lamb chop dishes. Salads, numerous sides, breakfast items, and sandwiches are also on the menu.
Crystal is more than a co-owner; she is also the chef and has created signature entrees for the restaurant’s patrons. Interestingly, cooking hasn’t always been first place in Crystal’s life.
“Honestly, as a child, I never liked to cook,” she said in a recent interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Then, when I got engaged and pregnant, I got more into it. You know how social media is, the whole hate train with relationships. I got really depressed, so I started cooking.”
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Crystal said that she began looking up recipes and changing them to her taste. She posted her dishes on social media platforms, and people wanted to know more about the dishes and how to make them.
“It just started blowing up,” she said. “People were requesting videos and recipes, and it just kind of created itself, so I formed Crystal Creations.”
The success of Johnny’s Chicken and Waffles has been so impressive that Crystal Smith, Ne-Yo, and Karlie Redd plan to expand to other locations. With her and Ne-Yo’s third child together on the way, Crystal is optimistically happy about the couple’s future as restaurateurs.
“You will see Johnny’s Chicken and Waffles doing some big things with the Smith Family Foundation,” said Crystal, who revealed that she was in foster care as a child and wants to help other foster care children.
“We want to try to bring awareness and provide help to these kids, to show them that they’re not alone.”
3725 Main Street
College Park, GA 30337
Open Sunday through Thursday 8am-11pm
Open Friday & Saturday 8am-3am