So on the advice of KirkK - who is like the major food authority who I listen to in SD, we went to Caribbean Taste. It's always fun to go to a new area of town and explore - but pulling up to this place was very exciting. There were all these people with dreds there - so they're either from Jamaica or they wish they were. Which means they probably like good Jamaican food. Of course, let's not sterotype. Nah, lets. Already did. Oh sorry. That's some dumb saying that the FP and his funny friends at Vega (when he was there the second time as chef, not the first) used to say and they would laugh their asses off over it.
Anyway, there is this brick oven in the place. A brick oven. How cool is that? And then there was just one lady running the whole show. Seems pretty authentic to me.
So we ordered. I was going to get the jerk chicken to compare to the last jerk chicken at Island Spice, but I ended up getting the curry goat. The FP got the oxtail, of course. So then I noticed the patties, so I ordered veggie pattie, but she only had beef and chicken, so I got chicken - to the FP's relief, he didn't want veggie.
So the pattie came first. It was orange. Paprika or other spices?
It was delicious. Flaky pastry, yet tender. The meat was nicely spiced. Meat in pastry. Yum yum. Every culture has one- pattie, empanada, brik, samosa, some other names I can't think of.....
Then the food came. It was pretty big. We like big.
The curry goat.
Wow, it was little pieces - which is accompanied by little bone fragments. The danger of eating goat is that you want to shovel it into your mouth because it's so delicious, but you have to be careful. These teeny bones are in there. Anyhoo, the goat was...I have to say light. Okay, not light like egg white scramble, but for goat it was light. The sauce wasn't as heavy and murky and greasy as goat sauce can be. Weird. I'm not saying I don't like the heavy murky grease. I love that stuff. It's great. But this was just different. It had that great yellow green curry look. It had a lot going on. The rice was kind of overcooked. That didn't bother me - it was just a vehicle to soak up the sauce. The veggies were the same mix as at Island Spice, (is there a blend of caribbean veggie mix that is being sold to these places?) but the veggies were cooked more than they were at Island Spice. Still good, but not as delicious. The plantains were perfect. Big plump slices cut on the bias. They were ripe, but a little crispy sear on them. Oh how I love plantains. But I don't eat them much here. The stores don't sell the black ones here. So sometimes I buy them not yet ripe, and then I forget about them until they are swarming with fruit flies.
It was with the same sides. It was in a nice sauce. Oxtail sauce. There were whole allspice berries in the sauce. It was oxtail. It was not quite as tender as one could hope for, but it was still cooked. I guess after having that perfectly cooked oxtail at Island Spice, there was a lot to live up to at Caribbean Taste. If one could have the sauce from Caribbean Taste and put the oxtail the way it was cooked at Island Spice it would be perfect. Yum. Oxtail. Who doesn't love oxtail. It's just kind of pricier than it used to be.
I don't know when we'll be back to Caribbean Taste, but I can't wait to give them a rating. Maybe it will change, we'll see. But in the meantime, I think they deserve \/\/\/\ 7 chopstick. They have Ting! That definitely helps with the rating. Ting is a Jamaican grapefruit soda. It's like Squirt, except no vegetable oil.
I don't know how these places can serve so much for what they charge. I guess they don't really have employees, so they don't pay out much on labor. I'm not complaining, just marvelling. I get so much more satisfaction out of meals like these, that don't cost that much, than meals at fine dining places where it costs 2 or 3 times as much. Soul food. That's the shit. The bomb. Off the hook. Off the chain. That's what kind of place I would like to open. The Food Ho's Soul Food Cafe. I have a great space in mind - just don't have the money.