Derrick Turton, aka “Chef Teach,” of World Famous House of Mac
Derrick Turton’s World Famous House of Mac has gone from food truck to restaurant chain in a few quick years, elevating the humble mac and cheese into a gourmet specialty with over 17 decadent variations. At his three Miami locations, Chef Teach pairs his mac and cheese with lobster, buffalo chicken, jerk chicken, fried chicken, turkey bacon, crabmeat, shrimp, filet mignon and cheeses spanning cheddar, jack, ricotta and mozzarella. It’s a savory success story as the former music man left behind a lucrative career as the manager for superstars like Pitbull in order to pursue his dream of becoming a restaurateur in Miami.
Despite graduating from culinary school in 1998, Teach began his professional career in the music industry under the tutelage of Luther “Uncle Luke” Campbell. Touring with a then unknown Pitbull was one of Teach’s first assignments, which became a 13-year relationship as the breakout rapper’s manager. As the Vice President of Polo Grounds Music, Teach also worked with hip-hop royalty like A$AP Rocky, Yo Gotti, Hurricane Chris, Lil Jon and Lil Scrappy. However, food was still his passion and he would often cook his Trinidadian-inspired cuisine for his artists and friends including N.O.R.E., Fat Joe and Bun B, who all encouraged him to pursue his culinary calling.
After his father’s passing in 2013, Teach felt an urge to do something more meaningful with his life, inspiring him to take his friends’ advice, circle back to his foodie roots and build his legacy as “Chef Teach.” In honor of his beloved father, Teach designed a caricature of his father’s face and afro, which is now the renowned World Famous Mac and Cheese logo. The first iteration of the business was a mobile food truck, which allowed him to experiment with different dishes and build a grassroot following as he visited all of Miami’s neighborhoods, winning over audiences one bowl of mac and cheese at a time. Catering gigs followed, allowing Teach to bring his party-friendly fare to events big and small, including the Venus and Serena Williams Invitational.
In 2018, Teach opened his first brick and mortar location in Overtown, which has been supported by friends like Dwyane Wade, Gabrielle Union, Nate Robinson, Daymond John, Anthony Hamilton, Fab 5 Freddy, Christian Combs, Diddy and, of course, Pitbull and Uncle Luke. A second spot at Virgin Miami Central Station debuted in 2018, followed by one in North Miami Beach in late 2019. All three eateries serve up his 17 mac and cheese offerings, plus dishes like Buttermilk Fried Chicken & Waffles, Jerk Salmon Pasta, Buffalo Chicken Alfredo, Thin Crust Pizza, Blackened Turkey Burger and Creamy Caesar Salad. Vegetarians and vegans will adore the veggie burger and dairy-free mac and cheese. And the brand continues to operate the food truck for events and catering gigs.
With appearances on The Today Show and Rachael Ray, Teach is spreading his gospel far beyond Miami. “I approach the business in a non-traditional way,” he says. “I market it like the music business and I’m successful because of this. I built my fans and foundation with the food truck and people resonate with my story and entrepreneurship. Now, I have the opportunity to give back to communities like Overtown by putting jobs back into the neighborhood and creating change.” Teach hopes to hit the “Top 40” soon with more locations, franchises and authentic growth.