Thu | Dec 1, 2022

The Neaths ignite flavour with Jerk Tavern

Published:Thursday | November 10, 2022 | 3:27 AMKrysta Anderson / Staff reporter
Married couple Rackesh and Brithany Neath took their passion for food and created Jerk Tavern.
Married couple Rackesh and Brithany Neath took their passion for food and created Jerk Tavern.
What is stew peas without the inclusion of the staple, ‘spinnas’?
What is stew peas without the inclusion of the staple, ‘spinnas’?
It is only fitting that oxtail would make the list of must-try Jamaica recipes, because it is a national delicacy and Rackesh’s favourite.
It is only fitting that oxtail would make the list of must-try Jamaica recipes, because it is a national delicacy and Rackesh’s favourite.
The Neaths brought the Jamaican flavour to a traditional, international dish, by making a jerked chicken pot pie.
The Neaths brought the Jamaican flavour to a traditional, international dish, by making a jerked chicken pot pie.
Imagine the endlessly sweet possibilities of making Jamaican rum and raisin ice cream, whenever you want, from the comfort of your home.
Imagine the endlessly sweet possibilities of making Jamaican rum and raisin ice cream, whenever you want, from the comfort of your home.
Jerk Tavern won a Pinterest Golden Recipe award for this crispy salt fish fritters.
Jerk Tavern won a Pinterest Golden Recipe award for this crispy salt fish fritters.
The plantain-and-banana oats porridge, topped with biscuits, is an ideal option for breakfast.
The plantain-and-banana oats porridge, topped with biscuits, is an ideal option for breakfast.
The couple is happy to bring the charcoal flavour of this jerked chicken to please palates both near and far.
The couple is happy to bring the charcoal flavour of this jerked chicken to please palates both near and far.
These jerked lamp chops, served on a bed of rice and peas, screams bon appétit!
These jerked lamp chops, served on a bed of rice and peas, screams bon appétit!
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Rackesh and Brithany Neath have always been passionate about each other, so they took their love of spice and flavour to the kitchen. These days, this married couple dishes out an exciting and enticing menu with a unique jerk motif in every mouthful.

“Food is definitely our love language. What made us gravitate towards jerk food specifically is our love for spicy foods. The jerk seasoning flavour can be added to many dishes. We even tip a little jerk seasoning in our curry goat and curry chicken. Honestly, everything, and that sets our dishes apart. Hence why our name is Jerk Tavern,” Brithany told Food.

The journey to Jerk Tavern began as a food blog over a year ago. It was there that the dynamic duo shared delicious recipes for others to try. Since then, they have racked up several fans who have enjoyed their take on island favourites. Those include, but are certainly not limited to, Jamaican oxtail, honey jerk salmon Rasta pasta, Jamaican salt fish fritters, home-made Jamaican ice cream (grape nut, and rum and raisin flavours), jerked lamb chops, and jerked chicken.

“The reception has been amazing. So many people have messaged us that they have tried our recipes, and let us know how much they love them. We have also won a Pinterest Golden Recipe award for our Jamaican salt fish fritters,” she shared.

Both self-taught chefs, the Neaths explained that they inherited their interest in cooking from their parents, honing their skills along the way with the experiences garnered through jobs.

“The moment I was able to reach over the kitchen counter and help my dad cater for parties, there was no turning back,” Rackesh admitted.

The budding chef, who is of Jamaican parentage and living in the United States, took a hands-on approach to the culinary world. Brithany, however, who was born and raised on Jamaican soil and then migrated to the States, went the visual route. She tuned in to Food Network at an early age, and this inspired her to take the pastime a step further.

FAVOURITES

“Kesh has always been a fan of oxtail. The texture of the meat and the gumminess, he says, are out of this world. All the different flavours and spices that it holds when slow-cooked cannot be described. For me, it has always been curried chicken. The flavour of curry and a nice Scotch bonnet pepper is my ultimate comfort food,” she added.

The pair always discussed opening a restaurant someday, but when the global pandemic hit, the team pivoted to starting a food blog instead. A major part of its growth has a lot to do with recipe development.

“Our recipe creation and development came about with us just sitting down and brainstorming ideas on foods we have tried in our life. One time, we went to a restaurant, but we were not satisfied with the dish we tried. So, we tried making it ourselves, but more out-of-the-box and unique,” she said.

Ever since, they have kept the momentum going, working on the kinks of dishes that would be the signature of the Jerk Tavern.

“People love Jerk Tavern so much because our food leaves a lasting impression on others. The Jamaican flavours that we add to a dish, like a pot pie that we would turn into a jerk chicken pot pie; or adding a tip of browning to salt fish fritters to give it a golden colour are different; and our followers respond well to our differences in a traditional dish, whether it is from Jamaica or other cultures in the world.

The goal is to continue on the palate-pleasing path, make food blogging a full-time job, and create their very own cook book.

“We hope to bring back cooking into homes by developing recipes that are easy to follow; that are delicious, fun, and most importantly, spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ through food. We do this by writing wisdom on every single blog post that we hope will touch someone, brighten someone’s day, and let them know that there is a God and He loves us all,” Brithany added.

krysta.anderson@gleanerjm.com