Taxi man stop - Serving up scrumptious Jamaican meals

Published: Thursday | February 12, 2009

Latoya Grindley, Gleaner Writer

Baldwin Rodney serves lunch. - Norman Grindley/Chief Photographer

It has no official name but Baldwin Rodney, owner of the food stall located just across from the National Stadium in Kingston says he prefers to call it the 'Taxi-man stop'. Situated on a dirt track, the stall has the support of taxi drivers as well as passersby who just want a quick food fix. "This was really set up because of the taxi drivers enuh, they come here and have something to eat and cool out. They really encourage this thing and also the people who driving and see the set-up, just come check it out", said the owner.

Taking a break

Quite noticeable during the visit to the food shop, were the number of motor vehicles parked in the empty lot in close proximity to the shop. Many of them were taxi drivers just taking a break in their vehicles, as the same dirt track is used as a base for the drivers.

To the front of the makeshift kitchen and counter where all the cooking is done, are two tables with chairs, giving patrons the option of dining on the spot. In the kitchen are pots on coal stoves for preparing the meals for the day. And, no worries about the pelting sun or possible rain as customers are sheltered by a tarpaulin.

With a staff of three men, breakfast and lunch are prepared daily. To prepare the breakfast in time, work begins as early as 5 a.m. "For breakfast we have steamed fish which is a favourite; men love those things, then, you have calalloo, which we have every day, and curried and stewed chicken every other day. We also have ackee and saltfish".

Fried chicken

For lunch, fried chicken is the preferred item. "You know, is fried chicken people love, but we offer peppered steak, stewed chicken and curried goat. We have a decent lunch special," said Rodney. The work-day ends at 4 p.m.

Rodney is not new to running a food joint as he operated one in the Swallowfield community for some time before venturing out to his current location. The establishment was opened in October of last year, which makes it relatively new but so far the owner says it has been going smoothly. "It started off slow but it pick up now. It's been good so far," said Rodney who had to break from the interview to tend to a customer requesting a lunch special.

Rice and gungo peas with calalloo and a hearty serving of meat.

Baldwin Rodney packages a lunch special at the Taxi-man stop.