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Inspired by the birthplace of Caribbean cuisine, Lisa Wilson and Krisna Mcgeachie are bringing authentic Jamaican flavors to South Philly with their new restaurant Ocho Rios Parrilla. Ocho Rios Parrilla is slated to open on Oct. 16 at 1710 E. Passyunk Ave. and will serve traditional Caribbean food with a modern twist.
“We’re recreating traditional Caribbean food and drink recipes with fun, fast, friendly service with a neighborhood vibe,” co-owner Mcgeachie tells What Now Philadelphia.
Mcgeachie, who was born in Jamacia, has an affinity for combining cultural cuisines and plans to incorporate her culinary curiosity into Ocho Rios Parrilla’s menu. Caribbean classics like jerk chicken, oxtail stew, and snapper will still be available but reimagined into something like a jerk chicken skewer covered in sesame seeds. Mcgeachie will be sure to survey her customers and get their feedback on her more daring dishes.
Their fresh Caribbean flavors are made from imported Jamaican spices, and dishes will be made with fresh meats, seafood, and vegetables. Ocho Rios Parrilla will serve vegetarian options, dessert, Jamacian sodas, and Jamacian Blue Mountain Coffee.
Ocho Rios, Spanish for eight rivers, is on Jamaica’s north coast and was claimed by Spain in 1494. It is known as one of the birthplaces of Caribbean cuisine. Wilson, who also has Jamaican heritage, said she and Mcgeachie wanted to name their spot Ocho Rios because would always bring up Ochos Rios when talking about Jamacia.
“Everyone knows Ocho Rios!” said Wilson. “The ambiance is going to give you those vibes, so you’re a little closer to Jamaica right here in Philadelphia.”
The restaurant’s dining room will be filled with reggae music and can seat about 15 to 20 people with additional seating at their full bar and open window ledge. Ocho Rios Parrilla’s freshly squeezed tropical drink menu will have twists on classics like triple rum punch or Hemmingway daiquiri and will be priced at $8 per cocktail.