Jamaican Cafe

If you're looking to wake up your taste buds with a little island flavor, keep Jamaican Cafe on Azalea Road in Mobile in mind.  For such a small place, I was surprise by the wide menu selection. It has everything from your typical jerk chicken to curry and even something called Jamaican patties.

Oxtails $13.99
I went to another Jamaican restaurant not too long ago and fell in love with the stewed ox tails.  They're much different than what we make at home and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  I wanted to try it at Jamaican Cafe because it came highly recommended (Thanks, Micheal) and it didn't disappoint.   I liked that the oxtails were cooked down just enough for all of the tendons to be soft but not mushy.  My brother thought it could have gone for a little more though.  The sauce is absolutely amazing.  It's very flavorful and was great with the rice.  This was on of the pricier items on the menu, but it was well worth it. SN:  I do like Jamaican Vibes' oxtails just a smidgen more.

Curry goat $10.49
My brother was excited to see curry goat on the menu.  He has always been a big fan of goat meat. I like it too but not as much. I think goat can taste gamey if there isn't enough spice to get rid of that.  Although Jamaican Cafe's goat was cooked perfectly, I thought the dish could have handled more curry  spices and heat in general.  My brother did not like it so much.  I wish they had jerk goat on the menu.  That would have hit the spot.

Dinner items are served with two sides along with corn pudding; in this case greens and rice.  The pudding is a mixture of a regular cornbread recipe and a casserole.  There's real corn kernels in it and it's more moist than your regular cornbread.  Delicious stuff I tell you.  I make it very similar dish, click here for the recipe.

Jerk Wings
You can't go to a Jamaican restaurant without trying something with the word "jerk" in front of it.  In this case, we had a small order of jerk chicken wings to taste.  I was in heaven after the first bite.  The wing is so juicy and tender.  The sauce had just enough spices and the heat kinda hits you right at the back of the mouth.  It was very tolerable for me but some may find it too spicy.  This may be strange but the tips of the wings are my favorite.  It was probably stewed in the sauce for a  while so the tips kind of "melted" into the sauce.  It's almost as good as bone marrow.

Jamaican beef patties
I was told to get the Jamaican patties when I went to JC.  At first, I was like really?  In my mind, I'm thinking why does this man want me to go try out a hamburger patty anywhere.  It turns out that's what these little pastries are called.  They're like an empanada. They come with beef, jerk chicken or spinach and cheese.  At first, I was sure I had to come back and try these out because I just had way too much to eat.  However, while we were having lunch several people came through and that's all they ordered.  I got to talking to one woman and she says the patties are her favorite item to get at JC.  I just couldn't pass it up.  I ordered a beef patty to share with my brother.  Think of it as hot pocket filled with much more deliciousness.  It looks like an egg based dough that been rolled out, filled with a beef mixture and baked.  The crust is slightly chewy but the filling is where it's at.  There's not a lot of it but it's plenty flavorful.   

Brown stewed Chicken
I wanted to mention the brown stewed chicken even though I didn't get a chance to taste.  Usually, my friends have no problem giving me a bite but I'm feeling under the weather so I didn't want to risk getting anyone sick.  However, my friend and her mother both ordered brown stewed chicken and LOVED it.  My friend's mother wanted to play it safe and this looked to be the least "exotic" item on the menu.  Both were very happy with their choice.  My friend, Z, was already full but she just had to eat the last few bites.  That should tell you how delicious it was.  I am definitely going to try this out the next time I come.

I have a bit of a warning for anyone trying out Jamaican Cafe.  It is on the small side.  There may be four tables total inside.  Three of those six tops and I think one two or four top next to the door. The tables are covered by cloth that I swear have not seen the inside of a washer for a minute.  I think it would have been a better idea to have bare tables.  I was a little confused how JC handle the orders.  I didn't know if I was suppose to order at the counter or will someone take my order at the table.  We ended up ordering at the table. I have to admit our food came out rather quickly.  It was nearly simultaneously.  I was worried we would have to eat in stages because it typically takes a long time for a small operation to churn out a lot of dishes at one time.  There were two young girls bringing out our food and taking the dirty dishes away.  They were very nice and courteous.  The owner also tried to help us decide what to order.  All she kept saying so this is good and that's good, nothing was bad to her.  If you like fruit juices, you have to try her own concoction.  We did and it was delicious however it's pretty sweet so it may not best thing to eat with your meal.  You may want some water or soda for that.  

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