The Spice Is Right: Jerk Chicken in Crown Heights


On a weekend afternoon in Prospect Heights, you can follow your nose to The Spice Is Right’s oil drum grill, set outside on the sidewalk in front of the small Jamaican restaurant on Franklin Avenue. During the week, the grill moves into the backyard and out of sight, but the chicken is the same good bird–emerging from the smoke blackened with spice and succulent, tasting of allspice, thyme, garlic, and chiles.

Plates of chicken range from $6 for a small to $10 for a large, but the size differential is mostly made up of an increasingly heaping amount of peas and rice. If it’s the chicken you’re after, get a small (or two). Ask for the chicken extra spicy so that the woman behind the counter will squirt on a dark, habanero-ish sauce.

Although you can eat in the restaurant, the best way to do it is to gather a group of friends at a picnic table at Franklin Park (a bar just around the corner), bring in your feast of jerk chicken, and go at it with beer. Pretend it’s still summer even though it’s dark out.

Click through to behold The Spice is Right’s macaroni and cheese and curry goat.

This is some very fine curry goat. Don’t forget to suck the marrow.

If you are the sort of person who relishes macaroni and cheese when it’s slightly congealed and crusty at the top, the pasta underneath overcooked and mushing deliciously with salty, bright yellow cheese, then you will like this rendition. (And we really, really did.)

The Spice Is Right
781 Franklin Avenue, Brooklyn