Along the south coast of Jamaica visitors will find a number of narrow beaches that attract a local crowd. Hellshire Beach is the largest and most popular of them. Located just outside of the island’s capital Kingston, this beach offers a combination of natural setting, personality and local fare not found in more secluded spots. With interesting black sands, cool waters and a host of activities there’s more than enough here to keep you entertained.
( via Varun Baker )
Hellshire is most frequented by Kingstonians and residents of the neighbouring Portmore throughout the year. On the weekdays, it is lively; on weekends, it can get a bit crowded. On Sunday night, there’s a big party on the beach that starts late so you can enjoy the thumbing sounds of the latest Jamaican music mixed with the soothing sounds of the ocean into the early hours of the morning. There’s lots to do and watch at Hellshire: horseback rides, rent-a-tubes, some of the most amazing people watching ever. And of course, the water itself, which is as spectacular in February as it is in August. Yet perhaps the best part of this beach is the tantalizing food served there and dining at Hellshire Beach is a must do for anyone staying in Kingston (or just passing through).
Jamaican jerk is world famous. Smoky, juicy, flavorful and hot, jerk has its genesis in the hilly interior of the island. Caught in the middle of an imperial struggle between the English and Spanish, Africans hiding in the wilderness consumed wild pigs roaming the island’s interior. They prepared the meat using a charcuterie technique adopted from the Tainos and created a flavor so pleasurable that by the early 1800’s, jerk was being served to guests at the governor’s table.
( via Varun Baker )
If you’re unfamiliar with the term; “Jerk” is a style of cooking native to Jamaica in which meats are dry-rubbed with a very hot spice mixture called Jamaican jerk spice. Jerked food is a must-have for visitors and locals alike and if you haven’t had it yet you don’t know what you’re missing! Jerk is both a marinade and a preparation technique. In its most authentic form, fresh poultry or pork meat is massaged with a concentrated spice rub infused with allspice (pimento), cinnamon, peppers, onion, thyme and garlic hours before cooking. After marinating, the meat is placed on raised platforms of pimento wood over hot coals to slowly roast for hours.
Well renowned as “The Jerk Capital of Jamaica” Boston Bay in Portland Jamaica is not only a tantalizing treat for the taste buds it also appeals to sun worshipers and vacationers seeking to venture into the realm of water sports. The golden sands and rough waters will tempt you to grab a surfboard and ride the waves, take a lesson in wind surfing, or venture further out to some good snorkeling sites.
Located on Jamaica’s eastern coast, 4.9 miles from Athenry Gardens. Boston Bay is close to Priestman’s River, so exploring the town is a convenient option and in fact most people come out for the food and local interaction. Vacationers who are hoping for a taste of seclusion blended in with elements of local charm in Jamaica may find that Boston Bay is just the right spot. In addition, Boston Bay is conveniently located near a number of fascinating natural attractions including the Rio Grande, Somerset Falls, and Blue Mountain-John Crow National Park. Visitors may also choose to explore the history of Jamaica with a visit to the Lighthouse at Port Antonio, just 7.8 miles west of the beach.
Travel junkies Calee and Stephen have seen so much of Jamaica, but they still want more. So far through their weekly “Pon Di Road” webisodes we’ve seen them do everything from bobsledding through a tropical rainforest to getting relaxing couple’s massages while overlooking the crystal blue waters of the Caribbean Sea. Now, on the cusp of the premiere of a brand new webisode we bring you the Pon Di Road Weekly Roundup, just in case you may have missed the latest one.
Jamaica is famous for it’s delicious “street food”. Here you can purchase anything from boiled crabs to fried chicken right on the side of the road. Middle Quarters in St. Elizabeth is a popular spot for treats like this, spicy peppered shrimp is among the list of crowd favourites. In this webisode Calee and Stephen demonstrate just how easy it is to get a well cooked, filling meal on the streets of Jamaica’s South Coast. Remember, another “Pon Di Road” webisode premieres tomorrow at 5pm on our My Jamaica YouTube Channel, be sure to tune in to see where their journey takes them next!
Jamaica’s Curry Festival offers a fascinating escape that will heat up the holidays with deliciously spiced cuisine to the beat of hot reggae rhythms. The event will be held at Turtle River Park in the resort area of Ocho Rios on Sunday, December 19, starting at 10:00 a.m.
“The Jamaica Tourist Board is happy to be a part of this festival, which showcases the cultural diversity of our destination,” said John Lynch, Jamaica’s Director of Tourism. “This is a prime example of culinary events here that truly reflect our heritage, offering visitors an authentic taste of Jamaican cuisine and influences that have shaped its richness.”
Our favourite travel couple Calee and Stephen are still on the move, sharing a plethora of their experiences in Jamaica with the world in their weekly “Pon Di Road” webisodes. So far we’ve seen them do everything from parasailing to cliff diving and swimming with dolphins and stingrays (not to mention sampling a whole lot of Jamaica’s multifaceted cuisine along the way). After a virtual shrimp fest in Middle Quarters St. Elizabeth Calee and Stephen head for ‘Little Ochie’ Seafood Restaurant in Alligator Pond Manchester – one of the most authentically unspoiled coastal spots in Jamaica.
Reputed to be one of the best places to get seafood in Jamaica, ‘Little Ochie’ is a prime spot for weekend or holiday getaways. The destination is famous for its food, as much as for its beach. Patrons can enjoy over 75 freshly caught seafood dishes including curried or jerked shark, conch fritters, conch salad, jerk, curried, grilled or barbecued lobster, conch, eel, squid and seaweed soup, fried or steamed fish and festival and bammy to name a few. Or simply play in the rough waters and silver-sand beach of the south coast location. The lumber and thatched structures of his restaurant hug a silver sand beach where the sea breaks with playful ferocity along the shore giving it a tremendous atmosphere.
Thousands of foodies flocked towards numerous Jamaican eateries during Restaurant Week 2010 (November 13-20) and Island Buzz was there to capture just a portion of the treats served up on the menus for your viewing pleasure. Jamaica is already well known for its own unique brand of spices and savory dishes but it might be a lesser known fact that the island is also home to a number of restaurants boasting cuisines ranging from Greek to Italian, Asian and Mediterranean.
It is for this purpose that once a year restauranteurs offer discounted meals to the public to introduce those who haven’t yet had the pleasure of tasting it to the many cuisines available on the island. We visited Gimbilyn Restaurant at Alhambra Inn in Kingston for a peek at a superb twist on classic Jamaican food. From there it was on to The Grog Shoppe at Devon House to meet up with local and international travel and food bloggers, radio personalities and print media journalists invited by the Jamaica Tourist Board just to sample the collection of scrumptious cuisine available during restaurant week.
Calee and Stephen are an eccentric pair of travel enthusiasts hell bent on uncovering just about every Jamaican travel treasure and sharing their adventures with the whole world. With so many wonderful things to experience on this deceptively small island we can’t say that we blame them (or that we mind). The “Pon Di Road” webisodes keep rolling in and a new one premiere’s tomorrow! Just in case you missed their last adventure, here is the roundup of “Pon Di Road #17 – In Junction”:
Fresh from parasailing at Cosmo’s Beach and a relaxing couple’s massage atop the limestone cliffs of Negril’s scenic west end at The Caves Resort. Calee and Stephen head for Junction in St. Elizabeth, on Jamaica’s South Coast. A more laid back, eco-friendly environment the South Coast is a haven for travelers looking for a blissful off the beaten path vacation. Junction in particular is known for its tasty roadside peppered shrimp (crayfish) caught in Jamaica’s longest river, the Black River; home to numerous wildlife including the endangered American Crocodile.
Jamaica’s sixth annual Restaurant Week ends tomorrow, which means there’s still time to get out and enjoy some spectacular deals on some special, savory menu items. If you’re in Jamaica’s highly popular second city Montego Bay then you’re in luck. In addition to its magnificent beaches, colourful marine life and amazing scenery “Mobay” is also home to a number of excellent eateries featuring cuisines ranging from Jamaican to Irish and even Italian. Just to help you find some of the best of these, here’s a list of 5 Places to Eat in Montego Bay, Jamaica:
The Houseboat Grill
Located on Southern Cross Boulevard just on the outskirts of Montego Bay, The Houseboat Grill is a unique dining experience combining intimacy and entertainment with a fabulous setting for a one of a kind dining experience. Moored in the calm waters of the Montego Bay Marine Park the restaurant is a converted houseboat, with tables inside, on the roof and around the decking. Meals can be enjoyed downstairs in their cozy dining room, upstairs on the upper deck under the stars, or waterside to be soothed by the sound of snook & tarpon occasionally splashing in the surrounding water. The HouseBoat Grill features a constantly evolving Caribbean fusion menu and promises an exquisite package for this year’s Restaurant Week.
The humble porridge began its life as a savory dish in Northern Europe. Introduced to the West Indies by British colonizers, Jamaicans have transformed it into bowls of creamy, sweet and spicy heaven. The soft food is one of an infant’s first encounters with Jamaican cuisine but it is a breakfast favorite among islanders of all ages. Very inexpensive ingredients go into this flavourful and filling meal; naturally making it popular among Jamaica’s industrious working class.
Humble grains, like rice and oatmeal are transformed into a satisfying treat with the addition of sugar, milk, cinnamon and nutmeg. Warm and hearty, porridge fueled the hard physical labor that defined centuries of Jamaican history. Cornmeal Porridge is the most popular variety of the dish on the island. From country wood fires to six-burner stoves in the suburbs, thick spoonfuls satisfy the taste buds and warm the stomach. Other popular porridges in Jamaica are hominy corn, peanut, oats, rice and plantain.
November 19, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Jamaican Food | No comment