Skip to Content

18 Best Restaurants in Jamaica to Try

We take pride in providing authentic travel recommendations based on our own experiences such as unique images and perspectives. We may earn a commission when you purchase a product or book a reservation. Learn more ›

Along with being one of the most beautiful places in the world, the Caribbean island of Jamaica can add the distinction of being a top culinary destination. Foodies will find that the choices are as diverse as the landscape itself.

Whether you’re exploring the Blue Mountains, sliding on slippery rocks at Dunn’s River Falls, or lounging along Seven Mile Beach, you’ll find a wide array of restaurants, bars, and cafés to cure a case of grumbling stomachs. The island offers endless culinary delights from Negril and Montego Bay to Ocho Rios, Kingston, and everywhere.

Traditional favorites range from fiery Jamaican jerk chicken and savory curry goat to oxtail stew, breadfruit, and fried plantains. But with so many choices, where should you start? We suggest starting with a Red Stripe or a Jamaican rum like Appleton, Wray & Nephew, or Myer’s.

But that’s entirely up to you. Let’s check out some of the best restaurants in Jamaica for a romantic dinner, casual lunch, or lively group gathering.

TL;DR

Restaurant Name Location Cuisine Average Rating
Ivan’s Bar and Restaurant Negril Jamaican, Vegan 4.5
Rick’s Café Negril Jerk Chicken, Cocktails 4
Miss T’s Kitchen Ocho Rios Vegetarian, Jamaican, Gluten-free 4.5

Best Places to Eat in Jamaica

1. Ivan’s Bar and Restaurant

Ivans Bar in Jamaica, a popular dining spot with ocean view and tropical ambiance.
Management / TripAdvisor
  • Address: 7J4P+25C, West End, Negril, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Pan-seared snapper, rasta pasta, oxtail

The most well-known and best restaurant in Jamaica might be Ivan’s Bar and Restaurant. Ivan’s is an excellent option for first-time and returning visitors since it offers modern Jamaican cuisine with a contemporary spin. The views aren’t too bad, either.

Ivan’s is located at Catcha Falling Star, a stunning cliffside resort, and serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Dine under the thatched roof or sit at a private cliffside table.

Enjoy fresh grilled lobster while gazing at the sunset. This romantic environment is ideal for a lovely dinner beneath the sky.

Ivan’s menu offers a large selection of pasta, curries, and fresh seafood. Order a plate of bamboo jerk chicken, the day’s catch, or a traditional Jamaican breakfast of ackee and saltfish. Wrap up this meal in three-tier ice cream cakes or cheesecakes for a fancy finish.

2. Rick’s Cafe

Rick's Cafe exterior in Jamaica
BAHuston3 / TripAdvisor
  • Address: 7J3P+MJP, W. End Road, Negril, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Rum BBQ spare ribs, Jamaican steamed fish, shrimp with okra

An iconic Jamaican landmark, Rick’s Cafe is one of the island’s most popular restaurants. It’s located at the top of a 35-foot high cliff on the far west end of Jamaica. The sprawling complex boasts indoor and outdoor dining and some of the best sunsets in the world.

Rick’s has been open since 1974. It’s a favorite for those who enjoy diving off those majestic cliffs.

The menu features jerk chicken, Caribbean whole lobster, and ital, a Rastafarian dish made of roasted vegetables, herbs, spices, and marinara sauce. End your meal with traditional Jamaican desserts like sweet potato pudding, banana bread, and rum cake.

The food is good but a little pricey. If you want incredible sunsets, good food, and live music, visit Rick’s Cafe. For a full and authentic Jamaican cuisine experience, other options may be more to your liking.

See Related: What to Pack for Jamaica

3. Miss T’s Kitchen

A delicious Jamaican jerk chicken dish served at Miss T's Kitchen.
jared G / TripAdvisor
  • Address: 65 Main Street, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Rundown veggies, curried goat

Miss T’s is well-known for its emphasis on Jamaican classics like oxtail stew, chickpea stacks, fresh seafood, and Jamaican jerk chicken. It’s widely recognized as a lovely choice for travelers and local Jamaicans to enjoy great local food, excellent service, and a relaxed atmosphere.

Miss T’s Kitchen features an open-air ambiance of a roof-like structure held up by tree posts, colorful decor, rattan accents, and twinkling lights overhead. No walls in this joint.

4. Rockhouse Restaurant

View of Rockhouse Restaurant in Jamaica
Matt S / TripAdvisor
  • Address: West End Road, Negril, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Curry shrimp, pesto pasta, curry vegetable stew

Rockhouse Restaurant is an excellent choice for travelers seeking a romantic evening out. After sunset, the restaurant is lit with torchlights and candlelight to create a cozy atmosphere. It’s located in the Rockhouse Hotel & Spa and is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Rockhouse is essential for travelers who appreciate delicious seafood and authentic dishes like spicy coconut snapper, grilled jerk chicken, grilled lobster, rum raisin bread pudding, and Jamaica rum cake. The views of the Jamaican coastline and cliffs are stunning.

Birdwatchers will want to stop by in the morning to check out the array of feathered friends. Sip a cup of freshly ground Blue Mountain Coffee or a sparkling bellini to start the day.

See Related: Tourist-Friendly Native Indian Reservations to Visit

5. Bamboo Blu

Bamboo Blu Restaurant interior in Jamaica
Bamboo Blu / Facebook
  • Address: Mammee Bay Road, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Grilled Caribbean spiny lobster, oxtail shepherd’s pie

Bamboo Blu, located off the coast of Mammee Bay, is an excellent option for a casual and open-air dining experience. Traditional Jamaican ingredients create dishes such as ackee and saltfish spring rolls, crispy jerk calamari, and a whole fish escovitch.

Enjoy a private table on the beach or a seat at the bar. This fun spot sits right on the beach, and there are nightly bonfires, live music, and jazz guitarists to set the mood.

6. Scotchie’s

A plate of jerk chicken and festival at Scotchies, one of the best restaurants in Jamaica.
gabez942 / TripAdvisor
  • Address: G4CP+GW7, Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Jerk wings, conch soup, rum ribs

Scotchie’s tiki hut location is a favorite place to eat in Jamaica. The food is cooked over pimento wood, which gives it a unique and authentic flavor.

The jerk dishes are considered the best in the country. Having sampled them firsthand, I’m tempted to agree.

Scotchie’s traditional spiced chicken and pork are mouth-wateringly delicious and can be ordered with fish as a less-fiery alternative. So, if you’re looking for a fantastic traditional Jamaican meal made with locally sourced ingredients and served with a laid-back attitude, you’ll want to pay them a visit. There are several Scotchie’s locations on the island.

See Related: Tips for Beating Post-Travel Blues

7. Sugar Mill Restaurant

Sugar Mill Restaurant in Jamaica, fine dining experience with tropical ambiance
Debbi B / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Spring Farm Drive, Rose Hall, Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Lemon jerk marinated chicken, crayfish bisque, pimento wood-smoked marlin

Sugar Mill is in the famed Half Moon Resort, one of Jamaica’s most luxurious hotels. It far exceeded our expectations when we stopped for a bite on our Jamaican trip. It’s an excellent option for fine dining, renowned hospitality, and delicious Jamaican cuisine.

The Sugar Mill is set in a restored 18th-century sugar plantation and mill. Choose from fantastic Jamaican specialties such as jerk pork, curried goat, callaloo, rice and peas, and plantains.

There are also plenty of international cuisine selections like pasta dishes and steak. This Jamaican restaurant is open for dinner from 6:00–10:00 p.m. daily. Reservations are required, so be sure to book early to avoid disappointment.

8. The HouseBoat Grill

All aboard for fresh food in The HouseBoat Grill, Jamiaca
littlemiss5274 / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Southern Cross Boulevard, Montego Freeport, Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Lemon caper pasta, escovitch snapper

While on island time, it’s always a good idea to be on a boat at some point. One of the best restaurants in Jamaica, the HouseBoat Grill, is just that … a boat originally built in the 1970s. It has been visited by Steve McQueen, the Beach Boys, Aretha Franklin, Sting, and The Grateful Dea.

The restaurant is on a small ferry boat in Montego Bay Marine Park Fish Sanctuary (moored at Montego Bay Freeport Village). There’s indoor dining as well as a rooftop terrace.

Diners can enjoy stunning water and sunset views while eating and sipping cocktails or Jamaican, Irish, or Italian coffee. The menu revolves with the seasons, so there’s always something new to experience, including a wide variety of seafood, chicken, pork, and beef options.

See Related: Hidden Gems in the Caribbean Sea

9. Bourbon Beach

Bourbon Beach in Jamaica, a popular tourist destination for dining and relaxation.
Management / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Norman Manley Boulevard, Negril, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Jerk chicken

Colorful and lively, Bourbon Beach is known for its fantastic jerk cuisine, local flavor, and live reggae music. The restaurant is open on Monday nights, but you can also find food vendors walking on the beach during a concert. It’s an excellent spot to grab a bite to eat and head back to your beach towel.

This bustling beach bar is situated on Negril’s Seven Mile Beach as part of the Bourbon Beach Hotel. The venue was inspired by the bars and clubs of New Orleans’ famous Bourbon Street. Enjoy barside seating or choose a picnic table on the sand.

10. Kenny’s Italian Cafe

Kenny's Italian Cafe entrance in Jamaica
FIT4TravelNow / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Norman Manley Boulevard, Negril, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Grilled snapper, pizza, spaghetti

Kenny’s Italian Cafe is the perfect place to have a great time while enjoying some of the best Italian food on the island. The cafe offers a variety of delicious Italian dishes in a relaxed atmosphere that’s perfect for chatting and enjoying the evening. Diners can enjoy coconut shrimp, specialty cocktails, and grilled snapper, along with pizza and other Italian fare.

Enjoy a setting of thatched roofs and open-air dining. During the evening hours, Kenny’s becomes an attractive venue for a romantic dinner with its candlelight, tropical plants, and twinkling string lights.

See Related: Bizarre Foods To Try Before You Die

11. The Pelican Grill

The Pelican Grill restaurant in Jamaica.
Klaus A / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Gloucester Avenue, Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Lobster thermidor, ackee and codfish, stew peas with rice

Friendly and welcoming, the Pelican Grill is a family-owned and managed restaurant serving locals for more than 50 years. It offers some of the freshest Jamaican home cuisine in Montego Bay and is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The Pelican Grill serves a variety of authentic Jamaican cuisine such as jerk chicken, oxtail, and curried goat, as well as soups like red peas, pumpkin, and pepper pot.

The Pelican Grill is one of the best restaurants to visit if you want a real Jamaican culture and authentic dishes. The Old Hospital Park, the Aqua Sol Theme Park, and Doctor’s Cave Beach are nearby. It’s a convenient spot for a casual lunch on the go or a night out.

12. Evita’s Italian Restaurant

Evita's Italian Restaurant in Jamaica, Authentic Italian Cuisine and Atmosphere
Alysha H / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Eden Bower Road, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Jerk spaghetti, carbonara with shrimp and lobster, seafood risotto

Evita’s is perfect for a fine dining experience. This charming Jamaican restaurant is located in an authentic 1860s gingerbread house.

It delivers a warm and welcoming ambiance. Enjoy lunch or dinner indoors or outdoors on the veranda, which offers excellent views of the cruise ship piers.

The menu specializes in hearty Northern Italian food, but there’s also an extensive selection of Jamaican-Italian fusion dishes. Think: Jamaican jerk combined with pasta or rigatoni with callaloo and market vegetables. Check out the wall of famous guests, including Jimmy Buffett, Jamaican rapper Sean Paul, Shakira, Brad Pitt, Dennis Hopper, and many others.

See Related: Best Vacation Dresses for Summer & Beach Trips

13. Zimbali’s Mountain Cooking Studio

Zimbalis Mountain Cooking Studio in Jamaica offering traditional Jamaican cuisine experience.
Management / TripAdvisor
  • Address: 7QXC+7JX, Grange Hill, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Pumpkin soup, fish wrapped in banana leaves

Are you interested in learning how to cook traditional Jamaican food? Zimbali’s Mountain Cooking Studio is the perfect destination for discerning gourmets seeking an immersive dining experience. Located in the stunning mountains outside Negril, the studio offers breathtaking island land and seascape views.

This prix fixe dining experience starts with a tour of the seven-acre organic farm. Next, you’ll watch a cooking demonstration given by a gourmet chef.

The meal consists of a salad, a soup, a main course, and a dessert. Main course options include fish, chicken, shrimp, or vegetarian options.

The menu features a range of Caribbean, Jamaican, and international dishes such as jerk shrimp, pumpkin soup, and other great food. If you’re traveling with children or vegetarians, don’t worry, Zimbali’s has a diverse menu for all tastes and dietary requirements.

14. Lorna’s Jamaican Cooking

Lorna's Jamaican Cooking, Authentic Jamaican Cuisine at Lorna's Restaurant
Lorna’s Jamaican Cooking / Facebook
  • Address: 189 Mountain View Avenue, Kingston 6, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Fried chicken, oxtail and beans

Situated on the south coast of Kingston, Lorna’s is one of Kingston’s most popular restaurants for catering and takeout. The dishes are hearty and flavorful, ranging from curry goat, ackee and saltfish, and fish filets to macaroni salad, authentic Jamaican jerk chicken, and oxtail and beans. The stir-fried pakchoi is an excellent choice for those looking for a healthy option.

What differentiates Lorna’s from other restaurants is its quick service and traditional Jamaican recipes. Lorna’s is the perfect spot whether you’re looking for a quick lunch, a large meal for a group gathering, or a casual dinner for two.

See Related: Best Credit Cards With Lounge Access

15. The Restaurant at Strawberry Hill Hotel

Strawberry Hill Hotel in Jamaica, luxury mountain resort with stunning views.
Management / TripAdvisor
  • Address: New Castle Road B1, St. Andrew, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Lamb curry, fish stew, Creole chicken and shrimp jambalaya

If you’re looking for luxurious accommodations in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica, look no further than Strawberry Hill Hotel. This lovely 11-bedroom hotel is perfect for travelers who want to experience Jamaican culture and cuisine. The hotel also offers live music and a bar for pre or post-dinner drinks.

The restaurant at Strawberry Hill Hotel is renowned for its fresh local ingredients and delicious dishes. Whether you’re looking for a light breakfast, a laid-back lunch, or a hearty dinner, you’ll find something to satisfy your appetite. Choose from selections such as escovitch shrimp, vegetable spring rolls, potato-wrapped snapper, and coconut curry prawn linguini.

Enjoy Sunday brunch with a mug of Blue Mountain Coffee, a fresh mimosa, and an omelet filled with fragrant herbs and callaloo, a traditional Jamaican spinach-like vegetable. For dessert, Blackwell-glazed rum cake or banana fritters are excellent choices.

16. Summerhouse

Summerhouse Restaurant in Jamaica
Andrew Walcott / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Harmony Hall, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Market vegetable tian, Lamb kofta, East Indian mezze platter

Summerhouse is a great place to enjoy a romantic dinner with your significant other. This upscale restaurant is in a 19th-century pastel palace with a wing where you can enjoy a unique dining experience.

Summerhouse specializes in Caribbean Island and European and Jamaican cuisine with a menu featuring various seafood and grilled options.

The main menu includes selections like saltfish fritters, lobster frites, and Mediterranean-style kebabs. Enjoy Sunday brunch with ackee and saltfish, waffles, and salmon cakes with plantain salsa.

17. Usain Bolt’s Tracks and Records

Food served at Usain Bolt's Tracks and Records
Usain Bolt’s Tracks and Records / Facebook
  • Address: St. James Place, Plaza 7, Gloucester Avenue, Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Red Stripe BBQ wings, Jamaican jerk chicken, Guinness cookies and cream cheesecake

World-famous track star and eight-time Olympic Gold Medalist Usain Bolt – from Sherwin Content, Jamaica in Trelawny Parish – has opened a popular sports bar. If there’s any kind of televised sporting event, this is the place for a casual dining experience. There’s also a location in Kingston.

Bolt’s mixes traditional Jamaican food and flavors with a modern touch in traditional soups, oxtail-crusted mac and cheese, burgers, gourmet flatbread pizza, and curried mutton. Remember to take a selfie with the statue out front, signature Usain Bolt pose and all.

18. Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville

Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville restaurant in Jamaica
Management / TripAdvisor
  • Address: Turtle Beach Road, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
  • Featured Dishes: Cheeseburger in paradise, Jimmy’s jumpin’ jambalaya, coconut shrimp

When in paradise, why not live the Margaritaville life? This colorful complex is located at the Island Village, near the cruise ship pier, and offers shopping, dining, playing, and entertainment. There’s a water slide, a swim-up bar, and a private beach.

Food-wise, you’ll find the same great burgers, wraps, and Cajun-inspired dishes as the rest of the tropical chain. Drink-wise, don’t pass up a frozen daiquiri, margarita, pina colada, or other umbrella-adorned beverage.

The atmosphere is one of the best parts of any Margaritaville restaurant, bar, or café. Ocho Rios has it covered with reggae music, dancing, and more. Local bands and DJs provide the sound waves when the sun goes down.

FAQ

What are some of the best places to eat in Jamaica?

Jamaica has many great places to eat, but some of our favorites include the jerk cuisine at Scotchie’s and the Caribbean specialties at Summerhouse.

What is the most famous restaurant in Jamaica?

Ivan’s is Jamaica’s most famous restaurant for foodie travelers looking to check the world’s famous beach bars off their list.

What is the most popular food in Kingston?

The most popular food in Kingston is ackee and saltfish, which just so happens to be the national food of Jamaica.

Related Resources

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *