Irie Jamaican Kitchen to Open Second Location, This One by the Zoo

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A year and a half ago, chef Omar McKay traded in his modest spot at the Richmond Town Square food court for a sunny brick-and-mortar on East 185th Street. At Irie Jamaican Kitchen (621 East 185th St., 216-350-6112), he offers diners heaping plates of fiery jerk chicken, supple braised oxtails and sweet shrimp curry alongside the customary warm cabbage slaw, rice and beans.

But he also offers contemporary takes too, like "Jah-potle" style items that serve up those same delicious stews in the now-familiar bowl or wrap form.

"Some people might be uncomfortable trying Jamaican food for the first time, but if you put it in a wrap or bowl, everybody gets it," McKay explained during an interview.

Next up for McKay is a west-side spot near the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. Construction is under way at 4162 Pearl Road, with a projected early to mid-summer opening. When it does, it will be the first Jamaican eatery on Cleveland’s west side (as far as we know).

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About The Author

Douglas Trattner

For 20 years, Douglas Trattner has worked as a full-time freelance writer, editor and author. His work on Michael Symon's "Carnivore," "5 in 5" and “Fix it With Food” have earned him three New York Times Best-Selling Author honors, while his longstanding role as Scene dining editor garnered the award of “Best...
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