Two daughters of slain hip-hop icons have partnered to open a restaurant together — and it has been going strong for over a year. T’yanna Wallace, the daughter of Notorious B.I.G, and Jam Master Jay’s daughter Tyra Myricks, opened Los Angeles-based Juicy Pizza.
“The more I thought about how to bring that New York theme to Los Angeles, I felt, who represents New York more than Biggie Smalls?” Myricks told Business Insider on why she partnered with Wallace. “She loved it.”
Two Big Apple Hip-Hop Legends
Wallace’s father, B.I.G., was a native of Brooklyn. He launched his career as a hip-hop artist when he signed with Sean “P Diddy” Combs’ Bad Boy Records in 1993. His debut album was released in 1994 and included the hit songs such as “Juicy” and “Big Poppa.” Just before the officially release of his second album, “Life After Death,” B.I.G. was gunned down in Los Angeles in 1997. The album went on to be certified diamond, and in 2020, B.I.G. was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. According to Celebrity Net Worth, his estate is currently worth $10 million.
Jam Master Jay was a member of the legendary group Run-DMC, which was formed in Queens in 1981. The trio would bring hip-hop culture to mainstream popularity with their fashion style and crossover hits such as “Walk This Way,” “King of Rock,” and “Raising Hell.” Jam Master Jay was murdered in 2002 at a recording studio in New York City. According to Celebrity Net Worth, his estate is valued at -$1 million due to IRS and other financial debts.
A Pizza Partnership
Myricks believed a New York-style pizza shop in Los Angeles would honor their fathers’ legacy. And she wanted Wallace as a full-on partner, not just an investor.
“I was like, ‘I don’t want you to invest anything,’” Myricks told Business Insider of sharing the venture with Wallace. “‘Let’s just make money together. Let’s make moves.’”
The pizza business is a good move to make.
Pizza restaurant sales in the U.S. surpassed $55 billion in 2021. Since 2012, the number of pizza restaurants in the U.S. has been on the increase, although the impact of the coronavirus pandemic upset this trend as the number of pizza restaurants nationwide fell by nearly 3,000 from 2020 to 2021, according to Statista. But the industry is making a bounce back this year. The segment saw a 2.7 percent increase in growth in 2022, according to market research firm IBISWorld reported.
About Juicy Pizza
Juicy Pizza, named after B.I.G.’s 1994 hit, “Juicy,” opened in June 2021. The restaurant’s decor is influenced heavily by New York, with subway car details and images of bodegas. There’s also a large mural of the two rap icons.
The menu features classic New York-style pizza, such as pepperoni and cheese, while also introducing new choices, such as beef and broccoli pizza.
Myricks developed the idea to launch a New York-inspired pizza shop because there is “no good pizza in Los Angeles.”
The restaurant also features merchandise designed by Myricks and shares a space with Presidential Suite, a members-only cannabis lounge hosted by Presidential Cannabis, a Black-owned brand.
Living Out Notorious B.I.G.’s Legacy
Before his death in 1997, B.I.G. dreamed of owning a restaurant. The hip-hop artist, who once rapped about his love of T-bone steaks, cheese and eggs, and Welch’s grape soda on the song “Juicy,” wanted to launch Big Poppa’s Chicken & Waffles.
While his dream never came to fruition, Wallace’s partnership with Myricks continues the legacy.