A taste of the tropics at Things Caribbean

By Rob Young  Special to The Post and Courier – Thursday, January 10, 2013

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Rob Young
Jerk wings and brown stew chicken.
  • Oxtail and lima beans, and curry chicken.
    ( Rob Young )
    Oxtail and lima beans, and curry chicken.

If you go

What: Things Caribbean

Where: 1644 Ashley Hall Road

For more info: 469-1228

At Things Caribbean, the shop does indeed live up to its name, selling all manner of things Caribbean, including Jamaican D&G soft drinks like Ting Soda and Ginger Beer, saltfish and salt mackerel, Bissy Tea, Mauby drinks, jerk seasonings, curry powder and other provisions.

Still, its location is far removed from tropical waters.

The grocery and restaurant rests in a modest strip mall near the Klipper Kings Barber Shop on Ashley Hall Road, just across from the Save-A Lot grocery store on Sam Rittenberg Boulevard.

A weathered banner hangs overhead, serving as the storeís only signage.

Itís a small enterprise. The kitchen, so to speak, conjures up its foods from not much more than Crock-Pots.

The offerings are mostly relegated to Fridays and Saturdays, including several curry dishes, rice and peas, roti bread and a wonderful curried potato salad.

But the message is true, the Caribbean flavors steady, the dishes mainly extracted from Jamaican heritage.

On Fridays, the menu is rich with oxtail and lima beans, jerk ribs, curry chicken, as well as escovitch, a fish that is first fried and then pickled or marinated with a mixture of vinegar, onions and Scotch bonnet peppers.

Saturday brings curry goat, curry chicken and brown stew chicken.

The entrees and extras cost $10 each, and in keeping with tradition, these curried-spiced dishes maintain earthy, savory flavorings.

Remember, too, the opportunities to sample Things Caribbean extend beyond Friday and Saturday. Daily choices include jerk wings, jerk pork, roti and golden-crusted pastries stuffed with beef, spinach or cheese.