Divine Kuizine is a manufacturer of sauces, marinades, and a line of all-natural frozen foods. They only use fresh, natural, and organic ingredients in our products. Their flavors come from all herbs and spices from around the world, allowing them to create their delicious sauces, marinades, and flavors. Divine Kuizine was founded by Chef Shay.
Shay has a deep appreciation for cooking. Her style is a mixture of the international soul, taking spices from all around the world and touching the person’s soul through food. She has been cooking since she was two years of age. Shay started her own catering business in 2000 and has catered for several businesses; Delta Airlines, Charles Schwab, and Coca Cola to name a few. Food has always been her passion. She eventually opened Atlanta Fish Cafe in 2007. The experience of being a restaurant owner helped her to discover her product line Divine Kuizine. While she no longer operates the restaurant, her seasoning and sauce line has taken off, and her products can be found online at Buford Farmer’s Market.
Christina: What is your SwagHer? What makes Shay, Shay?
Shay: Shay is a strong, determined, and entrepreneurial woman, but she is also sassy, sweet, spiritual, calming, and loving exterior. I love to go out. I love to dress up and feel beautiful. I love to put beautiful clothes on. I love to feel and look beautiful, and I love to empower other women.
Christina: Why did you decide to start Divine Kuizine?
Shay: I decided to start Divine Kuisine because I owned my own restaurant called Atlanta Fish Cafe, a seafood and chicken restaurant. That’s where Divine Kuizine began. I created my first product there, Divine Kuizine remoulade sauce, one of the products I used as a tartar sauce. Atlanta Fish Cafe was a seafood and chicken restaurant. Everyone loved the sauce and would always say we should package it, so I decided to do that when Atlanta Fish Cafe closed. Being a restaurant owner was not something I wanted to do long-term. Divine Kuizine was my long-term.
Christina: How old were you when you began cooking? Who or what inspired that passion?
Shay: I’ve been in the kitchen ever since I could remember, really. Probably two or three years old with my grandma. She would show me how to make little things, make my own toast, or help me make my own eggs. So I began cooking at two to three years old, and I have even pictures of that, and I’m like, wow, this is what I was doing, learning how to use the mixer, the hand mixer to help mix up stuff. My grandmother and mother were my biggest inspirations.
Christina: What are some of your best-selling products?
Shay: My best-selling products would be my remoulade sauce, jerk sauce, and the gluten-free pancake mix. The remoulade sauce has been a hit since the beginning. It is what started my business. You can use it on everything.
Christina: Where can readers go to purchase from you?
Shay: They can purchase my products from my website and Amazon. If you are in the ATL area, our products can be purchased at Buford Farmers Market.
Christina: Do you ever miss running your restaurant?
Shay: No, I do not. It was a dream of mine. I was blessed to be able to have that experience of it. It taught me the ups and downs and how to be an entrepreneur, leader, and good marketer. I don’t miss the hustle and bustle of it. The restaurant made me start thinking of longevity. I didn’t want to be standing in front of a stove running a kitchen at 60. So it changed my perspective, but it was a blessing.
Christina: You are also a CPA. How do you manage your time regarding your business and your CPA work?
Shay: It’s difficult. I’m not going to sugarcoat it at all. Me being a CPA and running and managing my own business can be tiring. It can be mentally, physically, and creatively draining. I’m still learning how to prioritize my time. I can’t do everything on my own, so I learned that help is essential. If you want your business to grow, put people in place who can help you in the areas where you fall short. I also learned recently that it’s important to complete the task in front of you before moving on to another one.
Christina: What are three things you would tell an aspiring entrepreneur?
Shay: Keep going, have faith, keep pushing, be flexible, and have good people around you. It’s a journey. Some people have overnight success, but it takes time for a lot of people. You have to have perseverance. If you need to take a break at that time, take a break. Get in tune with God and ask for guidance. Start writing stuff down. Sometimes something comes to me, and I have to write it down. Know when to go this way and go that way. Know when to pull back and know when you need help, and you need other people to help you on your way.
Christina: What does self-care mean to you?
Shay: I’m still working on that because I have a problem of being work, work, work, work. This year, a goal I have is to refresh and reset daily. So my self-care is when I can just rest, turn off everything, don’t think about work, don’t think about anything, and just be in a calming place. This may look like eating good food, washing my hair, spending time with my partner, going outside, or meditating.
Christina: Is there anything else you would like to share?
Shay: Hi, My name is Shay, and I am an entrepreneur and CPA. I’m determined to have the next national brand out there as a Black woman. Be on the lookout for more things Divine Kuizine.
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