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Miss Robbie Montgomery is the owner and resident matriarch of Sweetie Pie's and Sweetie Pie's at the Mangrove, the nationally acclaimed restaurants she founded in her hometown of St. Louis, Missouri, documented in the OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network docu-series “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s.”
Known for her made-from-scratch favorites like macaroni & cheese, smothered pork, baked chicken and peach cobbler, Miss Robbie’s restaurants have attracted a popular following among both local St. Louis residents and celebrities alike. Prior to running her own restaurants, Miss Robbie toured the U.S. singing backup for Ike and Tina Turner during the 1960s. Her stint as an Ikette launched a singing career that spanned over 20 years, including gigs as a background singer for The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Pattie LaBelle and The Rolling Stones, among others. Because finding a welcoming restaurant could be difficult for African-Americans during the '60s, Miss Robbie often ended up cooking for the group while on the road, honing her mother's recipes along the way.
When a collapsed lung ended Miss Robbie's singing career, she returned to St. Louis to reinvent herself utilizing her other formidable talent – cooking. With the help of her son Tim, she opened the first Sweetie Pie’s in 1996. Eight years later, her second location, Sweetie Pie's at the Mangrove, opened its doors as well.
Now 72, Miss Robbie is only picking up speed with plans for her biggest and most ambitious endeavor yet -- Sweetie Pie's: The Upper Crust. At this location, she hopes to fulfill her lifelong dream of opening a restaurant, banquet hall, cooking school and performing arts space in one. While Miss Robbie and Tim are now busy overseeing the construction of the new restaurant, she remains devoted to both her other Sweetie Pie's locations and serving her community. Active in charity outreach programs, Miss Robbie helps provide job training to formerly incarcerated men and women and food to those in need.