Jerk hub ‘Fiahs’ up innovation with authentic pan jerk drive-through
During the throes of the global pandemic, many restaurants are grappling with the harsh realities placed before them, closing their doors for good. One jerk restaurant is ‘fiah-ing’ up the innovation with an authentic pan jerk fast-food drive-through.
The Food team pulled up to a safari at the Jungle Fiyah Jerk Hub on Brunswick Avenue in Spanish Town one Friday afternoon. Loyal and novice foodies approached the business and remained parked in line, patiently waiting for their turn to place and receive their orders. Fresh from the ‘fiah’, the jerk hub sizzles with seasoned-to-the-bone jerk chicken and succulent jerk pork, available in halves and quarters, a sandwich of the pork, chicken and fish, as well as chicken or pork wraps, accompanied by a wide variety of sides, like fries, festival, basmati rice, coleslaw, potato salad and rolls.
The establishment was the brainchild of Franklyn Mason Jr, who was inspired by the master of jerk flavour, his father. Although COVID-19 weighed heavily on the decision to create this one-of-a-kind drive-through initiative, both he and his father always had this vision of bringing this dining difference and convenience to the restaurant. On August 19, the co-owners officially opened the doors to tremendous support from the public.
The reason for their favourable outcome can be found in the captivating flavour, exciting eager palates from start to finish. “All of our dishes stand out because of quality, distinctive taste, freshness, along with the presentation and creativity that we add to our freshly seasoned Jamaican jerk food served hot off the ‘fiah’. We appreciate the fact the customers came out in their numbers to try this new, unusual venture,” Mason told Food.
OPERATING BY FAITH
But the journey, especially during this time, isn’t always easy. Operating solely by faith, they went back to the drawing board on many occasions, pushing through tough times with other locations while setting sights on building something new. This latest addition brings a fresh spin to pan jerk, standing in savoury stride alongside jungle Fiah Restaurant and Lounge in Bayside, Portmore, and the Jungle Fiah Buffet, which consists of four locations in St Catherine.
As a proud native of St Catherine, Mason is elated to be giving back to the community in such a unique and groundbreaking way. And he hopes that the drive-through will continue on its path of success, achieving smooth operations and growth in the process.
COVID is still a huge plague to our nation and many of us livelihoods, he lamented, but he remains optimistic that it will only be for a time. “We are looking into the possibility of turning this brand into a franchise. In fact, by 2023, we are expecting to start doing franchises in Jamaica and the wider Caribbean. We have some more infrastructure to put in place before branching out into that, but it is definitely a goal of ours,” he added.