Review: Kingston II Reggae Café

Don’t worry about the name – you don’t have to have dreadlocks to get served here (although you’d probably get a discount). I’m not sure about the reggae part, but as far as a Jamaican food café, this place is out of this world.

The Menu

The choices are constantly changing, and as such there is no set menu. Everything for order is written up on a chalk board behind the counter. Prices are around $12 for a regular and $15 for a (super-massive) large. Everything is a meat and sauce over rice type dish, with salad on the side.

If it’s on the menu, you want to try the goat curry or the oxtail. Yes, you do. Despite being based around main ingredients not normally found on the North American menu, these two dishes are absolutely unreal.

The People

The food gives this place its quality, but the owner, Prince, gives Kingston II its charm. He is undoubtedly one of the biggest men you will ever meet. He looks like the kinda guy you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley – until he cracks a smile that is as big as he is.

If you have any kind of a conversation with him about the food, his passion for it comes through clearly. Just try asking him what spices he uses for a dish and he’ll go into a tirade about marinating, slow cooking and finishing sauces (no, he won’t tell you exactly what he does). Clearly his passion is what makes the food so good, and gives the café its character and life.

Good Excuse to go on the Seabus

More than worth the trip from downtown for a late lunch/early dinner (it’s enough to be both, and if you get the large, it might be enough for lunch tomorrow too). Extra bonus – if you haven’t been on the seabus, this is a good excuse.

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