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Dining Tidbits

Chef Ryan McCaskey, Jamaica Jamaica, Eve, and Farmerie 58

(page 2 of 4)

BUDGET BEAT
Jamaica Jamaica

With winter about to make its move, this Evanston newcomer offers the ideal refuge. Cozy yet stylish, with a welcoming staff and reggae beat, it’s got the laid-back island vibe down pat. Chalk this up to the owner and Negril native Tony Levy, who got his start helping his mom cook for a family of 11 kids. Instead of getting soured on saucepans, he couldn’t wait to open his own restaurant and launched Good To Go Jamaican Cuisine on Howard Street in 2003. At Jamaica Jamaica, Evanstonians can feast on smoky, tender hunks of jerk chicken ($12) and crackly-skinned, sweet-fleshed jerk pork ($14) punched up with a feisty homemade sauce. There’s also humble, but splendid, flavor-soaked stew beef and homey-tasting, fall-apart-tender brown stew chicken. Rounding out the menu are oxtails, curried chicken and goat, a handful of fish, and more splurgy shrimp dishes including one bathed in a delectably mellow coconut-scented sauce ($16). All entrées share a plate with kidney-bean-dotted rice, strips of sautéed sweet plantain, and a steamed cabbage and carrot duo. For sipping, there’s a wealth of slushy, fruit-laden smoothies, fresh veggie combos, and rum cocktails. With names like Paradise Punch and Island Breeze, who can resist? 1512 Sherman Ave., Evanston; 847-328-1000. –Jill Rohde

 

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