By Peter Van Buren
The smell of chicken roasting over charcoal drew me in. I just had to find out how I could get some of that deliciousness.
The source was a barrel grill smoking away on the sidewalk, with Vibes Jamaican Restaurant’s head chef, Stephen Levy, ensuring perfection. He cooks up authentic charcoal-flamed jerk chicken that’s to die for.
Hailing from Mandeville, Jamaica, Stephen has years of experience. In fact, he’s got the medal to prove it, as winner of the Montego Bay Jerk Chicken Championship in 2000.
This is the real deal at great prices, with traditional sides like rice and peas, cabbage and plantains. A large dinner ($10.50) was more than I could finish, but the leftovers doubled the delight when I quickly polished them off for lunch the next day.
Vibes also has Jamaican country-style fried chicken, curried goat, and delicious simmer down chicken stew, as well as fish dishes and more. Whether dining in or ordering carryout or delivery, you’ll love it if you try it.
They cater too. In fact, Stephen put the idea in my head to have him cook for an upcoming family party. That is one itch that will need to be scratched.
Vibes Jamaican Restaurant, 2101 Maryland Ave. Open 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday–Saturday, closed Sundays; 667-930-3530. Their menu and delivery/carry out options are available on Yelp.
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