In this installment of the Sit Down series, we’re speaking with Marchet Sparks, Founder and Owner of Kirkwood’s “Le Petit Marche”.

This week I had the opportunity to spend some time with Marchet & learn more about her life, her business & our community through her eyes. Marchet owns Le Petit Marche (which translates to “The Little Market”) just a few blocks away from us in the heart of Kirkwood. Marchet’s market was inspired by a trip she took to France in 2004. “There were little markets everywhere,” she said. The direct translation of the word “market” in French is “marche” (pronounced exactly like Sparks’ first name – Marchet). Originally from LA, Marchet was formerly in the real estate industry & had no culinary background other than being fondly known to her friends as “The Taco Queen”… hosting parties with tacos & margaritas.

“My real culinary career began in 2008” she told me, referring to the housing market crash. “My retail was hurting, but what was selling were my sandwiches”. Back in those days, Marchet’s business was primarily retail, with just a small kitchenette for prepared items. Her ability to transform Le Petit Marche to meet the needs of her community during a struggling economy created new opportunities for her business. In remembering those days, Sparks said, “I owe Kirkwood… Kirkwood stepped up for me”. Ultimately, Marchet would continue to grow & evolve; moving her operation into a larger space across the street where she would be running a full kitchen & dining room.

Le Petite Marche Sandwich

Le Petite Marche

Her story is an inspiring one in so many ways… the fact that she thrived during recession & that she continually thrives in the face of adversity. When I asked her about what adversity looked like at work, she offered the example of “guests asking me if they could speak to the manager or the owner and being surprised when it was me”. Marchet is proud to be “setting the example for what black people can do”, and in speaking of her staff she told me “my staff sets the example…we are shattering the stereotypes”.

When we spoke of the recent protests here in Atlanta, Marchet shared her optimism with me, “there is plenty to be angry about [but] if we don’t unify and have hope, we’re done… we’re lost”. Around here is when the conversation became a little teary for me… I will say that our neighborhood (Kirkwood) and our city are lucky to have such an inspiring leader among us.

Marchet’s voice is kind & her words are powerful. She leads by example, her message is love and her cafe is ADORABLE! The next time you’re in the neighborhood, make sure you visit Le Petit Marche & order a beignet (they buy them directly from the infamous Cafe Du Monde in New Orleans).

Love always,
Matt from Sun in my Belly

Le Petit Marche
1984 Hosea L Williams Dr NE, Atlanta, GA 30317
(404) 371-9888

Home – Where community thrives!

Le Petit Marche in Atlanta, GA. Family-owned little gem in Kirkwood serving breakfast and lunch daily from 8-3pm.