Fri | Dec 14, 2018

A Taste of Italy With Kenny

Published:Wednesday | August 1, 2018 | 11:17 PMLatara Boodie/Gleaner Writer
Simplicity meets perfection with each bite of Kenny's savoury Hawaiian pizza.
Enjoy a chilled Appleton Sunrise made with Appleton Special and a splash of pineapple juice.
Have a taste of tropical bliss with each sip of Blue Hawaii.
Devon ‘Kenny’ Johnson, owner of Kenny’s Italian Café, displays his bartending skills, which gave him his start in the culinary world.
Tiny morsels of shrimp and chicken are found in the delightful chicken and seafood pasta.
For those who love cheese and fresh organic herbs, the caprese salad is just for you.
Exploring Italian cuisine for the first time? Try a traditional bruschetta at Kenny’s Italian Café.
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Producing gourmet Italian cuisine has been a speciality of Devon 'Kenny' Johnson, owner of Kenny's Italian CafÈ for over seven years. The swanky establishment located along the main road of Norman Manley Boulevard also known as the hip strip of Negril features a wide array of Italian delights that will surely leave you saying "Mama mia".

"Growing up I always heard no," said Johnson who started off in the tourism industry as a lifeguard. He was then given the opportunity to transition into the food and beverage section of the industry as a bartender and has been working his way up the totem pole ever since. The grade 9 high school dropout decided to not allow his circumstances to deter him from greatness and opted to play the cards he was given by life with wits and precision. After many years within the industry, Johnson was able to visit Italy and fell in love with the cuisine of the land. "I learned all I could while I was there and came back to Jamaica with the mission of opening up my very own Italian restaurant," said Johnson.

Kenny's Italian CafÈ is a combination of indoor and outdoor dining. It's suave and sophisticated all-white decor gives an air of prestige and elegance which pairs nicely with the homely Italian dishes prepared by chef's trained by Johnson himself. At the entrance of the establishment expect to be greeted by a warm and vibrant staff that is eagerly waiting to serve you a taste of Italy.

The establishment's partnership with Appleton Estate is one that was developed from its inception. "Appleton is interested in businesses that have potential. It has been seven years and I am grateful for their involvement with the establishment of my restaurant," said Johnson. At Kenny's Italian Cafe be sure to try their trademark Appleton Estate cocktails which include their Appleton Sunrise, Blue Hawaii and the crowd favourite Pink Passion.

Their creamy and flavorful seafood chicken alfredo consists of age-old spices and secret ingredients that Johnson brought with him from Italy. Every tantalizing morsel will not only leave you satisfied but want more with each bite. For those who are not versed in Italian cuisine, Kenny's Italian Cafe is the perfect place to become acquainted with their style of cooking. Many would not try tomato, cheese with a drizzle of olive oil, but their caprese is a delightful appetiser which opens your appetite for their savoury Italian entrees. Two other must-try meals include their Bruschetta and the Spaghetti Alla Scoglio.

For more details visit @italiancafejamaica on Instagram or call (876) 957-4032.

latara.boodie@gleanerjm.com