One of the things that I found while visiting Jamaica was that just like anywhere else you can find everything from fast food to fine dining. KFC and Burger King aside (yes, they were plentiful), there were great local spots to grab food like Jamaican patties on the run to elegant dinners – with everything in between.
For those exploring and wanting to enjoy some authentic Jamaican patties…stop into Juici Patties and choose from an assortment of patties ranging from the traditional beef to shrimp, chicken and even vegetarian options. I can attest that the beef patties are DELISH and the Conch soup was amazing.
The lines are long with locals, and the tables communal, so not only will you get wonderful food, but you just might make a friend or two while you’re there.
Go traditional and order a pineapple soda and eat it right out of the bag, just like everyone else.
For Jamaican JERK there’s one place that stands out – Scotchie’s, which has restaurants in Montego Bay, Kingston and Ocho Rios. From the minute you open your car door and SMELL the wood and meat cooking you’ll know you’ve come to the BEST in town. Cooked on an open fire in the traditional manner, you’ll find jerk chicken, fish and pork on the menu along with delicious roast breadfruit, festival and more. Come dressed casually and enjoy award winning jerk along with area residents…this is ONE stop you don’t want to miss.
If you’re yearning for home, there’s a Margaritaville available in Montego Bay, Negril and Ocho Rios. Yes, you can get your Cheeseburger in Paradise, along with loaded nachos, and your usual assortment of frozen drinks, but you’ll ALSO FIND some local specialties on the menu!
For a dinner that you won’t soon forget, that’s casual with atmosphere that’s absolutely AMAZING, head to the PushCart restaurant located at the charming Rockhouse Hotel. Head over around sunset and watch as the blazing Jamaican sun slowly sinks into the sea. PushCart is one of those places that will steal your heart.
For the ULTIMATE in dinner, you must be a guest at the absolutely gorgeous RIU Palace Tropical Bay in Negril. Since it’s an all-inclusive resort, you only have to make a reservation as a guest. You’ll be greeted at the door with a flute of champagne and from there it only gets better.
Whatever you’re in the mood for, or whatever your budget – you can find it while vacationing in Jamaica. Bon Apetit!
I visited Jamaica as a guest of the Jamaica Tourist Board for 5 days. All opinions are strictly my own.