Forbes Magazine article by Roger Sands, February 2022
Mawa McQueen: The Entrepreneur Behind Aspen’s Only Black-Owned Restaurants
In this February 2022 article from Forbes Online, Forbes travel writer Roger Sands presents us with an in-depth profile of Mawa McQueen, the chef-owner of Mawa’s Kitchen and The Crepe Shack, Aspen, Colorado’s only black-owned restaurants. Chef Mawa also owns GrainFreeNola, an all-natural, grain free granola company that ships nationwide.
Mawa McQueen wears many hats. As the proprietor and chef of two popular restaurants in tony Aspen, Colorado, Mawa’s Kitchen and The Crepe Shack, with another location of the creperie on the way, McQueen also owns a granola factory where she produces her own variation of granola.
With a culinary background spanning across three continents, McQueen is the definition of a globally inspired chef. Growing up in Africa’s Ivory Coast, she learned the basics of cooking while taking care of her ten younger siblings. Later, Mawa lived in Paris and cooked in and around the city as well as the French Alps, learning cooking styles from her Moroccan, Tunisian and Algerian neighbors. She now has created a name for herself in the Aspen culinary community as the chef/owner of Aspen’s only black-owned restaurants.
McQueen paved her path at culinary school in Paris. Shortly after she moved to London to learn English… always with a goal of coming to America and becoming a successful entrepreneur.
In 2004, she started a catering company in Aspen as a side business. When her catering business took off, she moved to Aspen full-time, where she became famous for fresh, house-made and locally-sourced cuisine. In 2006, she expanded her business and created Mawa’s Kitchen, a full-service restaurant and catering company.