"The Experience with Bilal" was held at the elegant Salaam Restaurant and Bakery on Chicago's South Side. Yes, the Nation of Islam-built "Jewel of 79th street" is back...and open! Calvin Hollins, the new executive director said the $5 million Salaam Restaurant officially reopened back in July. The "reborn" Salaam includes three restaurants under one roof: A bakery, the Crescent Café and Fine Dining. That means a choice of coffee and pastries, casual dining, or a special night on the town in the upstairs dining room. “I think anyone off the street who comes into this facility will find something palatable to their needs and their likes”, said Mr. Hollins. "The facility is for everyone, but springs from the mission of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, and is rooted in the hallmarks of healthy eating, economic self-sufficiency and community building". "Many of the products offered will be from farms owned by the Nation and from Black farmers around the country", explained Mr. Hollins. The menu will include longtime favorites such as Bean Pie and Bean soup to go alongside special choices for vegetarians and lovers of fine cuisine.
During "The Experience with Bilal", which was held in the grand ballroom, food was served as well as non-alcoholic beverages. In this more relaxed atmosphere, people were able to get their eat and drink on while listening to Bilal talk about the early part of his music career growing up in Philadelphia. Throughout the interview, Bilal would crack jokes, get in serious mode, or "strange" mode as some would put it. But nevertheless, all would agree that Bilal is a very entertaining young man. After the interview, Bilal performed 3 songs from his new cd, IN ANOTHER LIFE. After his performance, Bilal met his fans, took photos and signed copies of his cd.