Omar’s Kitchen – The New Hotspot for Jamaican Cuisine in New York | Food
New York’s hungry Jamaican food palates have found their fix at Omar’s Kitchen.
Opened just before the pandemic hit in January 2020, the restaurant buzz for good Jamaican food in New York City has been around, with celebrities including Shenseea, Nick Cannon, Jhene Aiko, Fabolous, Junior Reid and d ‘ others. Don their food inspired by Jam Rock.
Located on the Lower East Side (LES), owner and chef Omar Walters says of its prime location, “I call it the fun, hip side of Manhattan because there’s always something going on.
Walters, who was born in the Bronx but moved to Jamaica as a child and lived in Mandeville for many years before returning to the United States, explains that while Omar’s Kitchen’s cuisine is Jamaican, it also merges aspects of other cultures, taking diners on a cuisine journey every time they set foot in the restaurant.
A JAMAICACAN TWIST ON DISHES
Top sellers include plantain gnocchi, a local version of the famous Italian pasta dish, lamb sliders with coconut bread. Double shrimp tacos, which are doubles, a Trinidadian staple, but with the addition of shrimp, they take on a Jamaican twist and are eaten like a Mexican taco. Lamb lacquered with sorrel. Chicken and Waffles with a red striped batter that includes Guinness Spicy Buns or Baileys Rum and Raisin Waffles. Then there’s the biggest of all, the curry oxtail – yes curry – the oxtail. “When we first put this on the menu, people were like ‘you can’t do this oxtail’, but we were like you know what we’re going to focus on, the people who are up for it. to try it out, “Walters said. with a laugh. Trying this new thing has paid off for Omar’s Kitchen, as every night they’re almost always sold from oxtail curry. The cocktails on offer are no slouch with their strong family members, which include, among others, an Appleton mule, rum punch and everyone’s favorite, sorrel. “We’re always running out of sorrel – it’s so good,” says Walters, a systems and data analyst by profession who has now made his dream of opening Omar’s Kitchen, the restaurant, come true.
Another draw of the location is the island’s decor, and with walls painted with the names of Jamaica’s notable parishes and attractions, Project Runway alum and designer Sammy B recently photographed and released his latest. “Small but we Tallawah” collection at the restaurant.
As Omar’s Kitchen becomes more and more popular, Walters reflects and tells Food the ideal hope is to have more restaurants and to expand to other major cities in the United States. He would even like to open a branch in Jamaica. Helping other up-and-coming restaurants with advice is also important to Walters. “I like helping people who are new to the business and showing them that there are different ways you can do things. You don’t always have to do it the traditional way. Do it the way you want to.
Find Omar’s Kitchen at 29 A Clinton Street, New York, and on IG at @omarkitchennyc.