One of the interesting aspects of the West End is the way that the death of one restaurant so often means the birth of a new one. Gladys Caribbean Kitchen, started by two friends, both with grandmothers named Gladys, is one such new restaurant.
Gladys occupies a store front just east of Beverley, on Sargent Avenue. Prior to the opening of Gladys Caribbean Kitchen, the space was home to, in reverse order: Suba Cuisine, Candle Light Indian Restaurant, and Nou Eul Tor Korean Restaurant. It may have history prior to that, but those are the ones I remember.
Caribbean cuisine is one of my favourites. I first discovered it when I joined Holy Trinity Anglican, the parish where I am now a priest. There is a large Caribbean presence in the parish, and church dinners are rarely complete without some rice and peas, or perhaps some jerk chicken.
Given the outside appearance of the row of storefronts that Gladys Caribbean Kitchen is part of, you might be tempted just to pass it by. Don’t. The inside is much more pleasant, and the food is incredible.
The restaurant is a cozy little space divided into two sections. Both times I visited there weren’t people dining in, but the place is doing a brisk take out and delivery business.
Over the space of a couple of visits I’ve tried the Jerk Wings, Curried Goat, Samosas, Oxtail Bowl, and the Jerk Portobello Mushrooms. I’ve even tried one of the desserts, the Sweetie Come Brush Mi Cornmeal Pudding.
I really enjoyed each of the items that I ordered. Two of them really stood out for me. The first is the Jerk Portobello Mushrooms. This dish features the mushrooms as the centerpiece, and they are meaty and spicy.
They are accompanied by a selection of crisp mixed vegetables. In addition, there are two plantain croquettes that are crispy-crunchy on the outside and creamy smooth inside. The coconut cream sauce perks up the vegetable mix quite nicely.
A Delightful Pudding From Gladys Caribbean Kitchen.
Beyond the Mushrooms, there are a couple of other plant-based items on the menu.
The second dish that really catches my attention is the cornmeal pudding. When I opened the container, I looked at the size of the piece and figured that there was no way I would finish it after eating the Curried Goat and Jerk Wings.
One bite, though, and I realized that this pudding was quite a bit lighter than I expected it to be. The flavour was rich, but not overpowering, and the pudding went down really smooth and easy. Make sure you order some if you get a meal from Gladys Caribbean Kitchen.
This is a place where you need to make sure you bring your appetite along with you. The portion sizes are quite hefty.
Gladys Caribbean Kitchen does offer delivery through Skip the Dishes. You can also order from them through their website, rather than using Skip. Both times I chose to order through their website and was very pleased with the results.
The orders went smoothly, and were ready for pickup at the requested time. When you do go in to pickup your order, you are met and served by friendly and outgoing staff.
The last couple of restaurants in this location did not stick around for very long. I hope that Gladys Caribbean kitchen will have a long and prosperous run.