Jamaican fusion: New tastes from a multicultural cuisine
A handful of East Coast young chefs are “charting the future of Jamaican cuisine,” and their innovations appear ready for a breakout, said Natelegé Whaley in Eater.com. Not content to dole out only jerk chicken with plantains and rice and peas, the new breed is mixing the traditional flavors of the island with the foods of other ethnic cultures, often ones they’ve been raised in. You can sample the promising results from Miami to New York City, and from food trucks to one of the most highly anticipated new restaurants in Washington, D.C.’s new Wharf district.
Food Dude Miami • A native of Jamaica, chef Alex Torres was born to create the Latin- Jamaican fusion cuisine he and his Puerto Rican wife serve from their food trucks. “Think jerk burgers, arroz con jerk,” and a jerk chicken unlike any other, thanks to a citrusy, Puerto Rican–inspired mojo marinade. fooddudellc.com
The Spicy Belly Philadelphia • Jimmy and Jason Mills grew up on fusion food their Korean mother made for their Jamaican father, and the two brothers couldn’t resist trying to spread the love in food-mad Philly. Their mo-bay bimbap heaps bulgogi, kimchi, and egg over coconut rice and peas; their jerk mandu packs jerk chicken in Korean dumplings. 3847 Terrace St., (215) 482-2095
Kith and Kin Washington, D.C. • Still just 27, Top Chef alum Kwame Onwuachi has D.C. buzzing about his new venture, where the food draws almost equally from his Caribbean, Nigerian, and Creole heritages. He’s serving a Jamaica-inspired salmon escovitch, Trinidadian doubles (a street-food sandwich), and, yes, jerk bacon, jerk duck prosciutto, and jerk broccoli. 801 Wharf St. SW, (202) 878-8566 ■