Intrigued by Jamaican food, you arrange a tour of Zimbali’s Mountain Cooking Studio. Greeted with freshly made juice as you step out of your transportation, you sample pineapple juice that came straight from the fruit on the farm. “Fudd,” the farm manager, then takes you on a tour of the lush grounds, where the farmers gracefully demonstrate how to crack open a coconut with a machete and give you a taste of the refreshing coconut juice.
You wander back to the cooking studio and sit down on a stool at the bar surrounding the stove. You watch the chefs prepare your meal with an appreciation for knowing exactly where the ingredients come from. You signed up for a delicious treat at the cooking studio, but didn’t realize the chefs would put on a show and entertain you too. They pride themselves on incorporating and using traditional Jamaican spices and local ingredients, such as mango and yucca. Admiring the Jamaican flare, you get a hint of the delicious scent of roasting chicken coming from the kitchen as you sip on a glass of wine and enjoy your appetizer.
Choosing between fish, shrimp, chicken, and a vegetarian option for your main course was difficult, but you opt for the seafood since you watched the fisherman bring in the morning catch earlier. The chefs carefully plate each dish right in front of you, and you’re impressed by the beautiful presentation and bright colors of each entree. You take your first bite and can’t believe how juicy and delicious it is. The chef shares his secret with you—he brines the fish in salt water before cooking so the fish retains moisture when it’s cooked.
You get to know the other company at the bar and appreciate the buzz and lively conversation. You wander out of the kitchen with your glass of wine to enjoy the gorgeous night on a colorful couch on the porch. You saved room for your final dessert course and are excited to see local fruits incorporated into the dish. The fresh mango is ripe and juicy. Impressed by the quality of the sumptuous Jamaican food you sampled tonight at this outstanding culinary studio, you’re grateful you made the trip.