Last week I posted about a food initiative called African Heritage and Health week. It had been a while since I’d had any decent Caribbean food, so my junior dining companion and I ventured over to Island Frydays on Short Vine for some takeout this past weekend. While it’s not the only Caribbean carryout on the strip, it is the one painted bright yellow and green, and piping out a fun mix of reggae and Michael Jackson standards. For $7.99, we split a small jerk chicken dinner, which was plenty for both of us. We opted for the boneless chicken pieces (in the interest of tiny hands), red beans and rice, braised cabbage, and fried plantains. The chicken wasn’t terribly spicy and was still moist, despite the off-the-bone presentation. The gravy-soaked beans and rice were rich and savory, and the plantains were crisp, not greasy. A larger portion, with double the meat and sides, is also available for $12.99. Pro tip: Spring for some Ting. Ting is a Caribbean grapefruit flavored soda that is corn-syrup free. Its bright fizziness lacks the bitter bite of grapefruit juice and is a perfect pairing for the deeply flavorful food.
Island Frydays, 2826 Vine Street, Corryville, (513) 498-0680, islandfrydays.com