La Chaîne Brunch at Konoko Falls

Thursday, November 22, 2018

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To close out a four-day weekend of fine food and wine, the Jamaican chapter of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs hosted a brunch at Kokono Falls in St Ann. Culinary Federation of Jamaica Executive Chef Dennis McIntosh put together Jamaican classics and modern menu items under the theme “Xaymaca — Land of Wood and Water”. Chef McIntosh and the Culinary Federation of Jamaica partnered with Miss T's Kitchen, Seaside Dutchie and Rainforest Seafoods to serve guests the tasty brunch.

Rainforest Seafoods served curry fish with water crackers, “peppa” shrimps, Jamaican-style steamed fish and fried bammy and festival. Rainforest Seafoods Corporate Chef Evrol Ebanks's flavours and technique were appreciated by all. The fact that attendees could add as many water crackers as they wanted to their portion of curry fish was a nice touch.

Miss T's Kitchen was not intimidated by the international contingent in attendance and stayed true to its Jamaican roots. The popular Ocho Rios restaurant served mackerel rundown, steamed callaloo, ackee and salt fish, and rice and peas. It's always a pleasure to see visitors to the island embrace traditional cuisine and Miss T's made of a heck of a rundown that pleased first-timers and those accustomed to the dish.

Seaside Dutchie had chafing dishes of crispy fried chicken, curry goat, grilled corn in coconut sauce and callaloo rice. The corn was a standout due to its unusual preparation, but also you can't go wrong with a coconut cream sauce. Did we mention that the fried chicken was crispy?

Chef McIntosh brought the heat with jerk chicken and jerk pork which were served with roast yam and breadfruit. He also prepared a succulent roast leg of pork topped with a diving June plum chutney that had attendees clamouring for the crackling. There was also a lovely salad of local lettuces and piquant pepperpot soup for those who cared for lighter fare.

The dessert table was a Jamaican grandmother's dream. Plantain tarts, blue drawers aka duckanoo aka tie-a-leaf, fruitcake, cornmeal pudding, coconut macaroons and coffee mousse all played a starring role and did not upstage each other. Thursday Food was partial to the blue drawers mainly due to nostalgia. Regardless, each dessert was worthy of its own table.

Guests dined under a tent on the lawns of the property. In between the lilts of laughter you could hear the waterfall and tropical birdsong — the kind of playlist that you can't find on Spotify. Guests discussed upcoming holiday plans and ate a delicious brunch: the perfect way to end a weekend of memorable meals and moments.

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