Are you a foodie? Do you love to tantalize your palate with some of the most piquant tastes known to humankind? Your search is over! Nanalyn Jerk, in the heart of Downsview, might just be your answer. Nestled in a small strip mall just north of Sheppard Avenue West, on Wilson Heights, it is one of the newest and most welcomed restaurants to the neighbourhood.
I have patronized the restaurant more than 30 times since its inception into the neighbourhood. I once spoke with a pregnant Asian woman who purchased the same take-out dinner as I did -she was salivating that finally we had an authentic Caribbean restaurant in the neighbourhood.
If you’ve been on the foodie scene, or are an avid restaurant-goer in the city, you are probably know that The Real Jerk is one of the best in the city. Albert’s, on St. Clair Ave. West also has its adherents.
Whenever you enter the restaurant – which is also a sit-down establishment for those wishing to dine in – your ears will be greeted by some reggae. It adds a nice touch when you’re ordering your entrees, whether from the menu, or from the counter.
Some of the dine-in options offered include jerk/ BBQ/fried/ curried/ and stewed chicken -all mouth-wateringly delicious. If you’re more of the adventurous type there is jerk pork, oxtail, curried goat, and escovitch fish (one I will have to put on my hit list as that has escaped my order preference). For a more traditional choice they serve, callaloo and saltfish. Ackee, curried chicken, curried goat roti are great tasting as well. If you’ve never tried a roti in all your life you are missing something that is manna from heaven.
Before Nanalyn Jerk entered the Downsview scene three other restaurants occupied its current location. One was a falafel house, the second was an Italian resto, followed by a diner. All did not fair well. It appears Nanalyn is a winner since it has been around for almost two years now.
It is LCBO licensed and lunch seems to be their busiest -when the 9 to 5-ers and students from William Lyon Mackenzie queue up to place their orders.
I would recommend the fried plantains. You may also wish to indulge in their steamed snapper fish and cow foot. I usually purchase their curried or stew chicken with rice and peas augmented with cole slaw. It is always served with a smile.
Nanalyn Jerk caters for events, as well, should you be so inclined. This restaurant is an oasis in Downsview. If you’re driving, there is parking out front.