Ruthie’s Caribbean Kitchen

Ruthies Caribbean Kitchen opened in early 2018, offering classic dishes like Jerk Chicken, Plantains, Red Beans and Rice, but also many dishes folks may be less familiar with such as Goat Curry (Caribbean style), Oxtail and juices such as Sorrel, Sour Sop and Sea Moss. On my first visit I opted for Gingerade, which tastes like a gingery lemonade.

We ordered the Goat and Oxtail that first time, and a few minutes later, after we placed our order, in walks the owner/butcher of Mi Ranchito Carniceria (practically next door), with two bags of Oxtail!

The Oxtail Platter was unctuous, tender, fall off the bone meat, with a sauce that tastes of Caribbean spices, though nowhere close to the aggressively spiced Chettinad Indian restaurants we’ve been to recently. It seemed like I could detect the faintest flavor of Allspice.

Roasted vegetables were perfectly done—a soft saute, but not hammered, very flavorful. Red Beans and rice done just right too. I recommend this dish to sop up the delicious flavors from the Oxtail sauce.

Robin got the Goat Curry, Plantains and Red Beans and Rice. Once I tried these, I knew this place wasn’t based on the cuisine of any of the usual suspects. I’ve never had plantains done this way by Dominicans, Cubans or Puerto Ricans. The Goat Curry was similar to the cuisine from Trinidad, but not quite spiced that much. This wasn’t Jamaican cuisine either (though the menu does feature a sort of “Jerk” Chicken).

So once we were done and I was paying for our scrumptious meal, I had to ask our hostess: where does this cuisine originate? St. Lucia?! Where the late great Poet Derek Walcott hailed from?

On our next visit, we ordered three dishes, and all 3 were superb. We started with Roti with Goat. Big juicy chunks of boneless goat with potatoes, seasoned with curry. One of these Rotis is a meal in and of itself, roughly comparable to a burrito, but with Island spices. We also ordered Jerk Chicken Wings, with Sweet Potato and Plantain. Very spicy chicken wings, a tad on the salty side, but even though there’s a lot of spice to the Mild Jerk, it isn’t spicy hot. The sweet potato side was spiced with some nutmeg & allspice, really nice that way, and the plantains were spot on. If you want jerk, Chicken Wings is definitely the way to go at Ruthie’s.

I ordered Spicy Jerk Shrimp with vegetables and red beans and rice. This version of the Jerk sauce is incendiary, I was all sweaty from the liberal use of scotch bonnet in this dish, so good, permeating the shrimp and vegetables. Red beans and rice were solid, and a nice plain carb side to offset the heat of the Spicy Jerk.


George Leake writes about culinary and other matters on his blog Cakes and Ale


Ruthie’s Caribbean Kitchen

Ruthie’s Facebook Page
(707) 731-0452
$-$$

2632 Sonoma Blvd
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