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Caribbean Flavors Report--Jamaica

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Caribbean Flavors Report--Jamaica

Denis | Jun 15, 2005 04:38 PM

I had to go to the Queens Supreme Court this morning, and had a little time to check out some of the food options around there. There were a few Latin places (Dominican maybe?) that looked like they had potential, but I ended up popping into Caribbean Flavors Roti Shop, on 90-63 Sutphin. It's a somewhat dingy storefront with a few tables, a video slot machine (marked For Amusement Only), and a couple display cases at the back with steam table offerings and breads. They may be able to make other stuff too. No menu at present, but a number of Caribbean dishes advertised in the window. The cook is from Trinidad and Tobago, and the proprietor is from Guyana, and likes to play Indian music on the stereo.

I got the saltfish bake, which is fish (presumably salt cod or the like) with little bits of red and green pepper and scallion mixed in and hot sauce on top inside a sliced flat-ish bread (the bake). It was pretty solidly enjoyable--the bread had a bit of chewiness that I liked, and the saltfish had a nice clean flavor and pleasant, not-too-mushy texture. I asked for extra hot sauce, which I think was a mistake, since this flavor dominated more than I think it should have. The saltfish itself may have had some heat to it as well. One negative is that the whole thing had been nuked, but this didn't bug me. It may have caused the bread to be chewier than it would have, but I was OK with it the way it was. The bread was a touch oily. It wasn't a mind blowing experience, and I haven't had any other saltfish bakes to compare it to, but it was pretty good eating in my book.

The other stuff--curry-looking chicken, some kind of meat stew, beans--on the steam table looked appealing. They also had a nice variety of Caribbean and other unusual beverages.

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