Best Jamaican

Top Picks:

Fi Real

St Mary’s Kitchen

Calypso Kitchen

Discover more of Bristol’s best Jamaican Takeways

Jamaican Takeaway

For many, Jamaican food might not be the first thing that comes to mind when a friend or family member suggests a takeaway. Mostly enjoyed by Jamaican emigrants or second and third generations, more and more people or switching on to the delights of Caribbean cooking. Robust in flavour, Jamican cuisine is influenced by Amerindian, African, Irish, English, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Indian, Chinese and Middle Eastern people who had originally inhabited the island, but also by the produce available there. We’re talking a variety of seafood and sun-ripened tropical fruits, meats and the crops that were first introduced from Southeast Asia. Out of a melting pot of cultural influence, a wonderful cuisine was born and brought to our shores. Whether you already enjoy Jamaican food, or you’re eager to try, here’s a number of contestants for the best Jamaican takeaway in Bristol.

Fi Real

With famous past visits including the likes of author and dub poet, Benjamin Zephaniah and rapper, author and activist, Akala, Fi Real is the port of call for delicious vegan and vegetarian Caribbean food. Situated only minutes away from Bristol Cabot Circus, this restaurant definitely has a no-frills interior apart from a beautifully painted sign above the cash register, but they still manage to pull off an atmosphere that’s playful with pops of colour in the red of the benches and splashes of green and yellow. 

Of course if you’re deliveroo’ing (did we just make a new thing?) then you won’t get to experience the friendly atmosphere in the restaurant, but you definitely will still get the punch of flavour that their food packs.  

Apparently something Bob Marley himself would’ve eaten, their Ital Stew is a naturally delicious stew that requires very little seasoning for it to taste as robust as it does. Made from red kidney beans, yams, potatoes and a creamy coconut base, it’s a popular option alongside the Jamaican Curry Chunks, which is their take on curried goat. Soya chunks are cooked in an authentic Jamaican curry sauce with potatoes, carrots and butterbeans. There is a lentil stew consisting of seasoned lentils that are cooked in a sweet potato stew with a hint of coconut milk that sounds gorgeous – and is also gluten free – that sadly isn’t on the takeaway menu, but the sweet and sour strips are and if you’re a fan of fruit in savoury dishes, then the pineapple chunks in this makes it a clear winner

Operating since 2014, this Caribbean husband and wife team, Marie and William, has created a taste of home and made it accessible to everyone without once compromising on the taste. It’s home cooking at it’s finest and we can’t wait to dig in.

St Mary’s Kitchen

With a sign proclaiming St. Mary’s to be the ‘Flava of Jamaica’ in red green and yellow, you’d be foolish not to believe them as you head into this modest restaurant. There isn’t much in the way of extravagant decor, but that’s okay, because the paintings that are hanging on the walls make enough of an impact. 

Besides, we all know it’s about the food, and food… and that they have in abundance. Cooking fresh, authentic Jamaican food, the team here want to encapsulate the heart and soul of St. Mary’s Parish so that when you’re eating it, you’re no longer in Bristol, but on the white sandy beaches of Jamaica. 

For mains, choose between classics like Curried Goat, Jerk Chicken, Ackee and Saltfish or take advantage of their succulent boneless snapper that’s cooked to order for ultimate freshness. Vegetarians and vegans, there’s a yummy mixed vegetable curry or garlic, spinach and butternut dish for you to enjoy. 

Sides, as we’ve stated many times before, are almost just as important as the side and here at St. Mary’s they have a good variety. Fried dumpling, fried plantain, coleslaw, mac and cheese and more with a range of sodas, like pineapple and ginger, sorrel and ginger and fruit punch, to really drive the flavours of the Caribbean home. 

For after, St Mary’s Kitchen also does cakes that have in the past included rum and raisin – ideal for those rum & raisin ice cream lovers – marble cake, and a whimsical homemade sprinkle cake. Freshly baked and ever changing, you can rely on St Mary’s to have a gorgeous offering whenever you’re in the mood for something a little sweet. 

The jerk is sticky and glossy, the curries deep and rich and the portions generous. If you’re looking for comfort food, look no further than St Mary’s Kitchen.

Calypso Kitchen

William Clarke and Ariel Czaczkes – the same duo behind Biblos – set up in Wapping Wharf with their new concept, Calypso Kitchen and it’s gorgeous. Playing into their surroundings, they’ve kitted their space out with industrial light fixtures, mismatched metal and wooden tables and chairs and a mix of concrete and blue walls, upcycled pallets and a ton of plants to really remind you you’re restaurant district filled with shipping containers, but with a touch of chic. 

And yet, this super Instagrammable space isn’t the main attraction at Calypso Kitchen. As with Biblos, Clarke and Czaczkes combine their Middle Eastern and Caribbean roots to create incredibly tasty and healthy fusion food that’s been successful in Biblos for the past decade. 

Delivery from Calypso includes multiple mouth watering options including slow cooked goat meat with butter beans, carib slaw and rice’n’peas, jerk chicken on the bone, marinated for forty-eight hours before being slapped on the grill and served with slaw and rice’n’peas. There’s also plantain gumbo, which is caramelised plantain, chickpeas and aubergine slow cooked in a subtle spicy tomato sauce and or another option which replaces the plantain with sweet potato. And if you’re in the mood for something a little closer to junk food, opt for their sticky chicken wings with triple cooked fries and slaw. 

Somewhat famous for their wraps over at Biblos, you might want to take advantage of your opportunity to try them at Calypso. There’s everything from jerk chicken filling to falafel, BBQ jerk pulled pork and a phenomenal caramelised sweet potato and beetroot wrap with mayo and chilli salsa. 

They also do sides of corn, halloumi fries, fish cakes and korean fried wings, sharing platters that sound super tasty and to put the cherry on this huge, delicious cake, salted caramel and double chocolate brownie. 

More BEST Jamaican Takeaway in Bristol:

Rice & Things

With a review calling their food ‘mind bogglingly tasty’, who wouldn’t want to jump head first into the Rice & Things menu? On it you’ll find best sellers like fried chicken, curry goat, oxtail and ackee and saltfish, as well as customer favourites that include jerk chicken, pepper steak and brown stew chicken, all served with rice and peas, white rice or boiled food (boiled banana, dumpling and yam) and a crispy salad or hot steamed vegetables. Serving both lunch and dinner, Rice & Things have a couple of different menus for you to really take full advantage of what’s on offer. Aside from their lunch and standard menu, they also have an a la carte menu (which includes really delicious starters of fritters, crispy prawns, sweet and sour chicken bits and more) and set menus for any indecisive diners or those that just aren’t sure where to start. There’s one for three people, one for five and another vegetarian option for three. What’s really special about Rice & Things, is their own range of Jamaican wines. Using traditional recipes, Chef Neufville hasused Jamaican produce to craft three variations. The first, sorrel wine, is traditionally a Christmas wine that’s dry and fruity, a perfect compliment to fish. For when you’re onto dessert, the carrot wine is rich and warm tasty - sort of like a sherry - and then there’s also a pumpkin wine that’s very similar to a semi-sweet with a twist. What Chef Neufville has created with Rice & Things isn’t just a restaurant, it’s a port of call for true Jamaican produce, hospitality and flavour. Since arriving in the UK twenty years ago with only $8 to his name, he has continually worked hard to grow his business from a small catering company to a takeaway and now an award-winning restaurant. Stop by on Cheltenham Road or order in to experience a true taste of Jamaica.
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Cafe Conscious

When Jamaican born chef Wayne Dixon grew up watching his family cook traditional dishes, he probably didn’t imagine that he’d grow up owning a cafe in Bristol honouring those very recipes. With a focus on authentic flavours, he cooks tasty, healthy and ethical food alongside vegan and vegetarian dishes. The takeaway menu has an equal amount of both and on the meat side you’ll find favourites like jerk chicken, brown stew chicken, fried chicken, curry goat, curry chicken, ackee and saltfish and fried fish. Vegetarian friends, there’s Ital stew made from red kidney beans, yams, potatoes, all cooked in a creamy coconut base. Also ackee and tofu, tofu and mixed veg, tofu Callaloo and peppers and veg chunks. All mains come served with rice and peas, but if you’re after that something extra, get a side of delicious dumplings, steamed veg, fried plantain, coleslaw or hard food (boiled banana, dumpling and yam). It’s a humble little cafe on Avondale with lovely palms and plants to really cosy it up. There’s not too much in the way of decor, but for Wayne and co-owner Deniece Dixon, it’s all about friendly service, a happy relaxed environment and beautiful food. All three of which they’ve been achieving since opening the doors back in 2013. Wayne gets to share the recipes passed down to him by his family with the community and for Deniece, it’s just as personal. After losing her grandmother and having her son diagnosed with autism, this cafe has been dedicated to organising support groups for people with autism through her business initiative Cafe In The Hill C.I.C. There’s a great spirit here, a lot of heart too, which is why Cafe Conscious is an essential inclusion on our list. And yeah, the food’s pretty darn good too.
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Turtle Bay

With a number of restaurants dotted across the country, Turtle Bay has decorated each to feel bright, happy and give you a real sipping-cocktails-on-the-beach feel. And once you’ve been to visit, it’ll easily become the place you go back to for happy hour cocktails, especially during the summer months. However, cocktails aren’t the only thing you’ll be going back for. Yup, that’s right, their food menu is always gorgeous and pretty sizable. They’ve had to cut it down slightly for takeaway service, but it still includes popular dishes like jerk chicken and pork ribs that come in multiple and are finished with different sauces. There’s also chicken and burgers alongside starters of wings, ribs, Caribbean dumplings, sweet potato fries, coconut rice and peas, sunshine salad, sweet plantain and much more. If it’s comforting soul food you’re after, they recommend curry goat hash (spicy goat, potato, curry sauce, onion and egg) or Mo’Bay chicken (grilled breast, creamy jerk sauce, coconut rice and peas and sunshine salad) or for a West Indian experience, try one of the fiery curries on offer. Option one is a Curry Aubergine made from sweet potato, blistered tomato, fresh aubergine, coconut cream in a Jamaican curry sauce. Option two, a Trini Curry Chicken consisting of coconut and mango spiced sauce and curried chicken breast. Saving the best for last, option three; a Curry Goat, all served with coconut rice and peas. If you can’t decide or would just like to sample a little bit of everything, it’s worth giving their Bay Bundles a go. It’s a great way to enjoy a little buffet of Caribbean food. The One Love Bundle for One, as an example, will give you a taste of the starter jerk pit BBQ ribs, curry goat and coconut rice and peas. If it’s the best Jamaican takeaway in Bristol you’re after, we’re not authorised to make such a bold claim, but Turtle Bay definitely come close.
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