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Best of 2000: Best Jamaican Food

Fargo's Bar-B-Q/Jamaican Cuisine
6171 Imperial Avenue, Encanto
(619) 262-0201

It's in a drab row of shops against a clay cliff with a trailer park on top. Inside, with the spicy meaty smells and the huge brick and iron fire pit, is Jacinth Williams. Jacinth says he was a friend of Bob Marley's and of just about all the "royalty" from the island whose name -- Jamaica -- means "hibiscus flower." Ask for national dishes like curried goat and yam ($7.50 for a "small" serving, $9.50 for a large). Or the "jerk chicken," which is as Jamaican as it gets, roasted, flipped ("jerked"), spiced, and chopped up. Also $8 and $9.50. Or "escoveitched" fish, deep-fried, drained of its fat, then simmered in a lemon-based fish sauce (same prices). For drinks, seek out Jamaican Irish Moss, Cream Soda, ginger beer, sorrel (a hibiscus drink), Cola Champagne, or "Ting," the number-one drink in Jamaica. Or Roots Drink. "It's an aphrodisiac. Lion roots, sarsaparilla, strongback, ginseng," Williams says. "And this Irish Moss? Oh, brother! It's made from roots from the bottom of the ocean. Jamaican men drink that to help them make babies."

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Fargo's Bar-B-Q/Jamaican Cuisine
6171 Imperial Avenue, Encanto
(619) 262-0201

It's in a drab row of shops against a clay cliff with a trailer park on top. Inside, with the spicy meaty smells and the huge brick and iron fire pit, is Jacinth Williams. Jacinth says he was a friend of Bob Marley's and of just about all the "royalty" from the island whose name -- Jamaica -- means "hibiscus flower." Ask for national dishes like curried goat and yam ($7.50 for a "small" serving, $9.50 for a large). Or the "jerk chicken," which is as Jamaican as it gets, roasted, flipped ("jerked"), spiced, and chopped up. Also $8 and $9.50. Or "escoveitched" fish, deep-fried, drained of its fat, then simmered in a lemon-based fish sauce (same prices). For drinks, seek out Jamaican Irish Moss, Cream Soda, ginger beer, sorrel (a hibiscus drink), Cola Champagne, or "Ting," the number-one drink in Jamaica. Or Roots Drink. "It's an aphrodisiac. Lion roots, sarsaparilla, strongback, ginseng," Williams says. "And this Irish Moss? Oh, brother! It's made from roots from the bottom of the ocean. Jamaican men drink that to help them make babies."

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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