The Early Word–The Obama Flavor


The gate is finally opened at The Obama Flavor.

A few days ago, we reported on a new Caribbean-Soul Food joint with the whimsical name of The Obama Flavor on Troy Avenue in Crown Heights. At the time, we found the gate pulled down, but Fork in the Road promised to camp out in front of the place till it opened, and give you an Early Word about the food there. Well, yesterday afternoon, we found it open.

jump to find out how we liked the food

The short answer is–the food is fantastic! We went at lunch, when a slew of specials are offered at $4.00, $4.99, and $6.50 for meal-sized soups, chicken selections, and larger-size combination meals, respectively. We still don’t fully understand the pricing structure, but everything is pleasingly cheap.

Shown at the left is the chicken meal, which includes two pieces of your choice–the skin deep brown and crackly–plus a large quantity of rice ‘n peas (over which the congenial countergal pours gravy, unless you stop her), and a salad that gets squirted with a French poppyseed dressing. Ooh-La-La!

From the Carribean side of the menu (which is mainly Jamaican, with some Bajan thrown in), we selected saltfish and ackee. It, too, was copious, with bits of salt cod (it’s really salt pollock, so don’t get worked up sustainability fans!) scrambled with ackee, the fruit that looks just like free-range eggs. Underneath we found a wealth of what are known in the Caribbean as “ground provisions”: root veggies like yuca and taro boiled with plaintain and doughy flour “dumplin'”.

The steaming saltfish and ackee at The Obama Flavor makes the perfect breakfast or lunch.

We also couldn’t resist the mac and cheese, which was cheesy as hell, with a cheddary flavor. It would have made a good lunch by itself. The interior offers plenty of seating, there is indeed a picture of the president on the wall, and the staff couldn’t be nicer. 267 Troy Avenue, Crown Heights, Brooklyn, 718-221-2202

Bright orange mac-and-cheese is one of the glories of The Obama Flavor.