Thu | Sep 21, 2017

Delectable hideaway of Strawberry Hill

Published:Thursday | November 6, 2014 | 11:00 AM
Strawberry Hill's Chef Schmied's culinary creation: escoveitched shrimp. Winston Sill/Freelance Photographer

Krysta Anderson, Gleaner Writer

Just picture a paradise of rest and relaxation coupled with sweet and savoury-dished selections. Well, this is the reality at Strawberry Hill.

Nestled in cool Irish Town, the delectable oasis has once again joined the Gleaner-sponsored Restaurant Week (RW) family to provide food lovers with the complete five-star dining experience.

Last Monday, actress and RW ambassador, Camille Davis, and her guest, good friend, Dorasan Williams, ventured with Food to higher ground for a taste of what Strawberry Hill had to offer for this year's food event.

Once the journey was complete, we were greeted by event manager, Claire Osman, who took us on a tour of the gorgeous property. Both Davis and Williams marvelled at the fresh, crisp air topped with sprinkles of light, calming rain, against the backdrop of a breathtaking view of trees, hills, blue skies, and the sun, enhanced by a beautiful rainbow.

From there, heels of sophistication made their strut down the pathway to a table overlooking the mountain side. The semi-indoor dining area gave Davis and Williams the opportunity to become one with nature.

Osman explained that year after year they return to RW because: "Since people are always blown by our view and international cuisine spiced with local goodness, we think it's a great platform to welcome persons to Strawberry Hill."

Strawberry Hill's top chef, Martin Schmied, was born in Austria and raised in France, where he developed his culinary skill, and gained a world of experience. When he came to Jamaica, he discovered real flavour more so than what would be found in Europe. For this RW, he will be preparing dishes influenced by both Jamaica and Europe. He particularly likes fusing seafood with the bursts of sweet fruit as well as spices of sweet pepper and Scotch bonnet pepper (non-existent in Europe). It gives the meal an interesting twist.

For their flavourful indulgence, they were presented with a three-course meal of smoked marlin cannelloni and escoveitched shrimp for appetisers, fillet of snapper in a red sweet chilli sauce served with sweet potato, parsley dasheen gnocchi and beef stroganoff stuffed potato in a mushroom sauce for the main course and millefeuille with white and dark chocolate mousse and banana crêpe and passion fruit creme for dessert.

Both remarked that the meal was absolutely delicious, with Davis making special mention that Chef Schmied had really tapped into the seafood lover in her. Williams, who is allergic to shellfish, enjoyed her beef stroganoff and dessert. And as for cocktails, they were treated Strawberry Hill's signature drink, Strawberry Bliss, which definitely placed them both in a happy place.

Davis basked in what she called the perfect weather, and Williams, along with Davis, personally thanked the chef for a job well done. As the spectacular sunset gave way to the sparkling city lights, they wrapped up what was a wonderfully quaint evening of great food, fresh air, and fun.

krysta.anderson@gleanerjm.com