Shabazz Fish Supreme
By Eric Campbell
The Michigan Citizen
Norman Thrasher is an entrepreneur who likes to keep his hands in several different ventures. It’s the restaurant business, however, that allows him to practice his belief that visible restoration and the healing provided by good food can reinvigorate a community. Located on Detroit’s west side, Thrasher’s Shabazz Fish Supreme is due to open on the first of May and will join a number of eateries in the Greenfield and Seven Mile area.
Having opened and run a successful clothing store in the neighborhood, Thrasher was aware of the vacant property that had been a Little Caesars. When it became available he created a restaurant he had developed in Augusta, Georgia in 1975.
“I used to do the cooking myself,” Thrasher told the Michigan Citizen. When he was young he’d been inspired by the style and charm of the counter guy at Tip Top Hamburgers on Hastings Street. “There was a fella’ behind the counter named Charles, and he would dance up and down the aisle flippin’ hamburgers, and everybody was happy. So that concept is still with me today, being able to fix food for people. Now I don’t do all the cooking, but I have fun with it.”
Thrasher’s many years operating a variety of businesses have kept him in touch with the struggle for economic empowerment. Once he suggested that Detroit pastors invest in food markets—stores that would provide fresh and healthy food to the inner city. No one took it up. Opening Shabazz Fish was a direct result of his desire to connect with the neighborhood and offer a healthy product.
The menu revolves freshly cooked side dishes such as spinach, macaroni and cheese and coleslaw and fresh fish, including red snapper, orange roughy, whiting and perch. Thrasher is proud of the bean pies and navy bean soup that will be staples on the menu at Shabazz Fish which opens May 1.
“The navy bean, we find, is helpful to the stomach, to the digestive system,” Thrasher explains. He sights teachings by Elijah Muhammed, and other research done revealing the benefits of certain foods as a way of “eating to live”.
Thrasher says he is determined to keep prices affordable and he is proud of the fact that his eatery will replace a neglected corner.
“We decided to feed the people in the community with good food,” says Thrasher. “Feed [people] good and be kind to them. We want to be able to serve soup, fish and vegetables that are good for the people.”
Shabazz Fish Supreme is located at 15351 W. Seven Mile one block east of Greenfield and is scheduled to open May 1st. Call for more information at 313.717.8333