Tag Archives: Jamaican cuisine

New Lunch Spot with Jamaican Cuisine!

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Suga’s Ratings for The Pallet!

NB. Ratings fill 5 stars maximum

Parking: ★★★★☆

Ambience: ★★★☆☆

Décor: ★★★★☆

Comfort: ★★★☆☆

Service: ★★★★★

Speed: ★★★★★

Value for $: ★★★★☆

Suga Endorsement: ★★★★☆

Comments: Great Service in a cosy setting. Authentic Jamaican cuisine with portions to leave you satisfied and not overfed. Attentive, courteous staff that leave you wanting to return.

The Pallet, owned by Chef Shea Stewart has been tempting me with salivating Jamaican dishes on their Instagram page for some time now.

The Pallet started Lunch Orders last September 29th and I finally got to visit them while I was on vacation from work. My husband and I visited last Friday at about 2pm.

The Décor is modern-rustic, clearly influenced by their name, as most of their furniture is made of pallets. There were covered areas for seating but seating was predominantly outdoors. I hope it is in their plans to put umbrellas by the tables in the direct sun.

Lounge areas seem to also be available for rental. They can be seen upon entering the venue.

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We were greeted by their jovial and welcoming Host and Entertainment Coordinator, Keon. We then grabbed a table in the shade with the Bar in view and it was actually quite cool. The staff was attentive, our waitress was pleasant and service was quick.

We had to swat a fly or two but we still enjoyed our Lunch. Their BBQ Chicken had an authentic, smoky flavour complemented by a flavourful sauce that was not overwhelming. The Mac & Cheese to accompany it was delicious, while my healthier side option of Roasted Garlic Potatoes was tasty as well.

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BBQ Chicken with Roasted Garlic Potatoes and Sautéed Market Vegetables ($750JMD + $200JMD)
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BBQ Chicken with Mac & Cheese and Sautéed Market Vegetables ($750JMD + $300JMD)

The Pallet’s Lunch options usually include Soup ($350-$450JMD), Pork, Chicken and Fish Dishes cooked Jamaican style for prices up to $900JMD. Mac & Cheese may be a side option for $300JMD, Rice and Peas, as well as the healthier, Sweet or Roasted Garlic Potatoes for $200JMD and Sautéed Market Vegetables.

The Pallet delivers Lunches for $300JMD, but delivers to Businesses and Students for FREE with 5 or more orders.

They are still waiting on a card machine, but The Pallet is #SugaEndorsed. Give them a visit for your Lunch today!

The Pallet

Location: 5A North Avenue. Kingston (By Kings Plaza off of Constant Spring Road)

Ph: 876-576-0603

Opening Hours for Lunch: 11am – 3pm Mondays-Fridays

Instagram: @thepalletja

By: Gabrielle Burgess

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Do you have your Tickets for Jamaica Food & Drink Festival?!

The Caribbean’s No. 1 Urban Food Festival starts this Saturday!

All days should be a treat. If you must choose, check out where your favourite Chefs and Restaurants will be on http://www.jafoodanddrink.com. Picante and Crisp are stacked with Suga’s faves.

Hope you have secured your tickets! If not, here is the information you need:

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Schedule, Venues and Costs for Jamaica Food and Drink Festival (JFDF)
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JFDF Ambassadors on Instagram and JFDF Ticket Outlets

Enjoy 7 World Class Food Events at 7 Iconic Kingston Venues.

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Executive Chef Mark Cole from The Jamaica Pegasus that cooked divine dishes for President Barack Obama, Prince Harry and Princess Ann – CRISP!

There was a Sneak Taste on Tuesday at The Steak House on the Verandah, Devon House which had its opening last Sunday. Check out a few of the highlights!

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Bar B Que Pig Tails served with a Ginger Mango glaze on a Bammy Crisp topped with Crumbled Bacon by Chef Débè-Ann Lange-Chen of Cutting Edge Gourmet- PORK PALOOZA!
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A thrilling Five spiced Baked Salmon Fillet with a Sesame Chill Glaze from Chef Evrol Ebanks of Rainforest Seafoods – CHOPSTIX!
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Colin Hylton’s Malaysian Spiced Braised Beef Short Ribs with Mahogany Glaze, Toasted Shaved Coconut and Sushi Rice Balls – PICANTE!

By: Gabrielle Burgess

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Cheesy, Vegetable Casseroles for the Win from Black Orchid Restaurant!

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Two Saturdays ago, I went to Black Orchid Restaurant, upstairs in Eden Gardens to redeem my Fine Vegetarian Cuisine Special for two.

My husband, Randy and I had the Fine Dining Restaurant to ourselves that night at 8:45pm.

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Décor at The Black Orchid Restaurant

Our host/waiter for the night that emerged from the Tulips Restaurant downstairs was quite hospitable.

He took our order of Moussaka and Vegan Pasta, then realised instantly that they did not have Eggplant for the Special we already paid for.

Moussaka is a layered eggplant or potato-based dish that sometimes includes ground meat. Many versions have a top layer made like a custard. In Greece, the dish is layered and typically served hot. In Turkey, it is served warm or at room temperature after being sautéed and served like a casserole. The Arabs usually eat it cold.

Our host reassured us that they had a competent Chef who had experience working with the Cruiselines and that he would come to speak with us shortly. Chef Xavier got an idea about what we expected, i.e. the layered eggplant casserole and the Vegan Pasta, also with Eggplant and Parmesan. He told us that he knew what he would do for us even though he didn’t have Eggplant or Squash, but other vegetables.

To our surprise, about half an hour later, our host arrived with not two, but three dishes! I got both the Vegan Pasta and the Eggplant Parmesan Casserole. Randy had a Cheesy Eggplant Casserole as well, but his was a combination of other Cheeses since he told the Chef he didn’t mind which Cheese was used. Chef Xavier looked like he also found a small amount of Eggplant stashed away and had just enough to put in the Casseroles, but not the Vegan Pasta.

The Casseroles had a mixture of eggplant, other vegetables and potatoes in a freshly made tomato sauce layered with cheese. While the Vegan Pasta had a mixture of vegetables as well, topped of with grated parmesan cheese. All dishes had distinct flavours that pleased us both.

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R-L (Top row): Piña Colada; Vegetable Pasta; (Bottom row) – Vegetable and Cheese Casseroles

I just planned on having the Vegan Pasta and tasting the Casserole but as I had a little of both, I had a lot of both. Chef Xaver did an exceptional job. Cheat Day times two!

I really appreciated them extending such a courtesy when they saw we were not going to get what we expected. They actually exceeded our expectations.

Our Blended Drinks were delish as well!

I can’t speak to other items on their menu, but if you are ever feeling for Cheesy Casserole Dishes, go to Black Orchid and pray that Chef Xavier didn’t sail away in a Cruiseline Kitchen.

Black Orchid Restaurant

Location: Eden Gardens Wellness Resort & Spa @ 39 Lady Musgrave Road, Kingston

Ph: 876-946-9977

By: Gabrielle Burgess

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Hidden Spot for Jamaican and Vegetarian Cuisine Lunches!

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Photo credit: Stephen Greig

Healthy Bites is located at a house in Trafalgar Park, close to NCB Atrium where you can pick up your Lunch.

Vegetarian meals such as Lentil Stew and General meals, typically of Jamaican cuisine such as Ackee and Saltfish, usually range in cost from $450-$650JMD. I love when places don’t drench your Ackee in oil. Healthy Bites is definitely a clean eating option. I am promoting healthy food today but if Fried Bammy is your choice for a side option, go for it.

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Photo credit: Stephen Greig

The Menu varies each day and they offer large enough portions that are tasty.

You can customize your Lunch based on the sides you desire and they are open to suggestions. They are also considering Delivery.

Healthy Bites

Location: 3 Circle Close (Trafalgar Park, close to NCB Atrium)

Ph: 876-296-4119 (Ruby Porter)

By: Gabrielle Burgess

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Food and Service at Jamaica Liquor Warehouse’s Deli is still up to Scratch

It was a pleasure to return to Jamaica Liquor Warehouse for Lunch 2 Saturdays ago and still experience good quality food and service.

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Crushed Green Plantain Bruschetta with Feta Cheese – $700JMD

Their tasty, Plantain Bruschetta is a delightful starter that can be shared.

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Lentil Stew with Pumpkin rice pilaf and Garlic sautéed vegetables – $1350JMD

The healthy, Lentil Stew was delish. The Pumpkin rice pilaf was dry though.

They altered the Crispy Fried Boneless Chicken Breast ($1750JMD) on the menu to a Grilled Chicken Breast for my other half, which he was satisfied with. It was served with Garlic mashed potato and sautéed vegetables.

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Frozen Mint Lemonade with White Rum

Their Mint Lemonade was a Refreshing Creeper!

The Bread pudding was no Fromage Bread pudding. It was missing that gastronomic crumble on top. But it’s texture was phenomenal and it went down even smoother with the ice cream on the side. Two thumbs up!

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Bread Pudding with Vanilla Ice Cream

Jamaica Liquor Warehouse, Deli & Bar

Location: 17 Lindsay Crescent, Kingston

Ph: 876-925-9427

Opening hours for Deli & Warehouse:  Fridays: 11am – 12 midnight;

Saturdays: 9am – 12 midnight;

N.B. Kitchen closes an hour before 12 midnight

Tuesdays to Thursdays: 11am-10:30pm

Sundays: 11am-8pm

***Closed on Mondays***

By: Gabrielle Burgess

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Suga’s Visit to another Uptown Spot for Jamaican Cuisine, 8 Spices Restaurant & Bar

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Last Thursday night at 9pm, I finally got around to checking out 8 Spices Restaurant and Bar on Grosvenor Terrace. It has been opened for a few months now at a spot where I have seen many Restaurants come and go.

I went with my partner in crime, Randy and we had the Restaurant all to ourselves.

They definitely went all out with the Jamaican décor, branding the walls, columns and furniture with Jamaican colours and sayings, but it was tastefully and creatively done. Just one small thing and it didn’t come from me. The Jamaican flag probably should have been ironed before it was hung up. Other than that, everyone should visit and guess the amount of ‘red money’ on the bar counter for a chance to get your meal free!

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We chose to sit at the most creative table of all, the one with the glass tabletop and Jerk drum beneath.

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We ordered everything at 9:15 because we knew the Fish was done to order and would take some time. We were told 20 minutes.

We had the Jerk Chicken Breast Skewers marinated in their Signature 8 Spices Jerk Marinade as a starter. It came to the table in reasonable time. The Chicken Breast was well cooked, tender and juicy and went well with their sauce. I was most interested in the sauce since they seem to market their sauces heavily that have been made in-house. The sauce did not have a particularly unique flavour, but it was a fine mix between sweet and mildly spicy.

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8 Spices Jerk Chicken Skewers – $700JMD

We had a long wait for the Roasted Fish. I do not think establishments should tell diners that the Fish that is done to order will take 20 minutes if they know they can’t deliver. Most of them do that but usually get their other main dishes out in 15 to 20 minutes. Then the wait for the Fish is usually half hour or more. The wait for this Fish was close to 45 minutes. We appreciated the update at 25 minutes that it was taking longer than expected.

They had a special on the Fish that night. It was a 2lb Fish so costed $500JMD more than the usual cost of $1700JMD quoted on the menu. The Roasted Fish was a fleshy, whole red Snapper marinated in the 8 spices marinade giving it a spicy flavour. It was stuffed with pumpkin and okra. Mad props to the Fish but the big winner on the plate was the Steamed Bammy. Randy was mesmerized and could not stop talking about it. When proprietor, Melissa Dukharan-Constantine came over to check that everything was ok, he was raving about its rich, creamy sauce and she smiled and said it was their secret recipe.

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8 Spices Roast Fish (2lb) – $2400JMD

I had the Ginger Garlic Shrimp with fried green plantains. The plantains were steaming hot but the Shrimps were cold. I called our pleasant hostess/server’s attention and she took it back immediately and was genuinely apologetic. It came back out steaming in no time to make me a happy diner.

The Shrimp was sautéed in ginger and garlic stir fried onions, sweet peppers and carrots. So I found the salad to be unnecessary, as I did with the Skewers. It’s my personal opinion but I think the veggies could be used more economically for dishes that do not already contain cooked or steamed vegetables.

I enjoyed my dish. The Shrimp was savoury and I loved that the essence of ginger was present without being overpowering.

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Key Lime Pie

We topped things off with Dessert. We shared a slice of Key Lime Pie. It was flavourful but had a consistency closer to a Cheesecake than a Pie.

After our Entrées, we were both sniffling in a good way from all those spices. So I am looking forward to returning and trying their Curry Goat and Stamp & Go served with spiced Papaya Chutney. Randy is looking forward to trying their Blood Fiah Wings to see if their ‘Killa Peppa’ Hot Sauce is as hot as they say it is.

There are many other Jamaican favourites with their own twist on the menu to pick, choose and refuse. I hear they have some interesting Cocktails too.

Our Hostess/Server, who I understand is the Supervisor, Robyn was a sweetheart. I am sure we gave her a few jokes but she was so hospitable that she felt like a friend to us and she was quite attentive. Thanks Robyn! We enjoyed and will return. #sugaendorsed

8 Spices Restaurant and Bar

Location: 7 Grosvenor Terrace. Kgn. 8

Ph: 876-581-3427; 876-668-7656

Instagram: 8spicesrestaurantandbar

By: Gabrielle Burgess

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