Our restaurant is available for private events: weddings, business lunches, dinners, cocktail receptions, and more. We would love to discuss how to be a part of your next event.
Ema Haq, born in Dhaka, Bangladesh, arrived in Lafayette in 1983 at 19 years old seeking a degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Southwestern Louisiana, now UL. Haq financed his education by working in Louisiana’s thriving food industry, wearing many aprons as a dishwasher, busboy, waiter, cook, and manager. As he made his way through college, he found himself falling in love with South Louisiana and Cajun culture. Since earning his degree from USL, Haq has found home in Acadiana, a community that has allowed him to combine his passions of engineering, cooking, and community service.
Passionate about the food and restaurant industry, Haq opened Bailey’s Restaurant in 1993. Following his passions, he eventually opened Bailey’s Offshore Catering in 1999 to provide hospitality services to the oil and gas industry in offshore and remote locations in the US and Internationally. As a man who was passionate about Lafayette’s success and the local economy, he later opened Ema’s Café in 2006 and Emaco Food Services in 2010, a broadline land and marine food distributor.
Haq was raised by a family who valued community service. He recalls, even the time of difficulties, his parents found a way to help and put the wellbeing of others before themselves. An advocate of assisting those in need, Haq has contributed to many charitable organizations and hosted the Annual Bailey’s Thanksgiving Dinner at his restaurant to feed the needy and less fortunate for the past 26 years. Haq also adopted seven local schools since 1994, to work as a Partner in Education Program, has made it a priority to encourage children to do well academically from an early age.
Haq is a graduate of Leadership Lafayette XVIII and has served on multiple boards such as United of Acadiana, Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce, Kiwanis Club of Lafayette, Lafayette General Health, SLLCC Foundation, Lafayette Parish Convention & Visitors Commission, Louisiana Restaurant Association, University of Louisiana Alumni Council, and many others. He has received numerous awards including Jefferson Award for Public Service in 2007, Kiwanian of the Year, Louisiana Public Citizen of the year, Chef of the Year in 2001, State Restaurateur of the Year in 2007. In 2017, Haq was awarded the first recipient of the UL Outstanding International Alumni award, Haq was inducted to UL’s College of Engineering Hall of Fame in 2018.
Haq and his wife Zakia, have three children, Zadid, Tamim, and Sabriah. With persistent support from his wife, he has raised his children to value community service to the Acadiana community. Haq fondly recollects, “When I gave my children options for college, I told them UL, UL, and UL!”
In addition to reaching out to people in need, Haq enjoys cooking, spending time with his family, traveling, and cheering on the Saints and Ragin’ Cajuns.