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A Small Caribbean Kitchen with Universal Appeal

Jun 20, 2023

A Small Caribbean Kitchen with Universal Appeal

Tonight’s episode of Kolcha Tuesday takes us to Ladyville, along a busy backstreet where one enterprising young chef has set up shop to cater to the palettes of customers from across the community.  You may not have heard of Kevin’s Caribbean Kitchen, but it’s a little takeout with big taste.  News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Kevin’s Caribbean Kitchen is a small business that was established on Perez Road a little over a year ago.  Since then, the takeout has grown in popularity among residents in Ladyville.  Kevin Dawson made a name for himself in Belize City as a head chef at Dibary, before taking a leap of faith in 2022.

Kevin Dawson

Kevin Dawson, Business Owner

“I always wanted, from I was a baby, to become my own boss and have my own business.  And finally, last year this time, I asked God to help me with my own business.  My birthday was on Sunday and finally, I had this gift.”

As a young entrepreneur, Kevin knew the risk he was taking.  A business of his own meant investing significant time, money, and effort into ensuring that the menu offers cuisines from across the region.

Kevin Dawson

“We present cuisines from all over the Caribbean; food from Barbados, Trinidad, Guyana.  We have roti, we have jerk chicken, we have jerk pork.  We have roast chicken, we have stew deer, we have stew lamb and so we try to mix up the flavors.”

Just before midday, customers from various corners, including those who work in the area, make their way over to the kitchen.  Today’s menu, as Kevin mentioned, is packed with several options.  First to arrive is Sheree Gillett, she’s a regular.

Sheree Gillett

Sheree Gillett, Customer

“First of all, the location is a good spot because Perez Road, as you can see, is very busy and secondly, I love coming here because there’s something in the food that he puts, I don’t know what it is but it’s addicting.”

Secret ingredients and recipes aside, food is important to understanding people and culture because it is a reflection of a region’s history, traditions and values.

Kevin Dawson

“We are all part of the Caribbean and that is why I decided to mix the cuisines.”

What people consume and how they prepare it can communicate a lot about their culture, geography, and socioeconomic status.

Sheree Gillett

“The wings, the chicken wings, the chicken wings with vegetables on the side.  Sometimes I get mashed potato, I change it up.  Sometimes it’s rice, I change it up and I get fries.  So yes, I have my options as his special customer, I guess.”

Kevin Dawson

“That is my passion.  You see how they have an art how people draw?  Well the passion of cooking is my art and that was given to me by God, a gift.  So I’m different from anybody that cooks because my food you actually taste it and customers come from all over to taste this food, all over.”

Isani Cayetano for News Five.