Sylvia Woods succumbs to Alzheimer’s disease

Keywords: sylvia woods, harlem, food news, nyc, soul food


Sylvia Woods, founder of the historic and famed soul food restaurant Sylvia’s, has passed away at 86 years old.  This past Thursday, at her home in Mount Vernon NY, her fight against Alzheimer’s disease was lost.  She leaves behind a small restaurant that has become a fixture of the predominantly black neighborhood in Harlem.



Sylvia’s Restaurant, which opened in 1962, was well known for their Southern comfort dishes like cornbread, ribs, collard greens, and fried chicken.  A must-stop spot for politicians, including President Barak Obama, Rep. Charles Rangel told reporters that he celebrated his recent victory at Sylvia’s and that ”nothing can replace its founder, but her legacy will live on in the memories she helped make.”  Sylvia’s has played host to scores of influential members of all communities – but the African American community most…  Aretha Franklin, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, James Brown and Denzel Washington have all feasted on Sylvia’s belly-warming dishes.



Sylvia “The Queen of Soul Food” Woods is survived by four children, 18 grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and two great-great-grandchildren.  Mayor Michael Bloomberg released a statement saying, “We lost a legend today. For more than 50 years, New Yorkers have enjoyed Sylvia’s and visitors have flocked to Harlem to get a table. In her words, the food was made with `a whole lot of love’ and generations of family and friends have come together at what became a New York institution.”