If Levi Roots’ Caribbean Smokehouse was a football club it would be Arsenal. Substitute a fancy new restaurant with a shiny new stadium. Replace slick table service with sexy football and treat waiting to tuck into the food served on your plate as the same way Arsenal fans religiously wait to see if they will win the Premier League at the end of the season. Will it be another season of disappointment for Arsenal, will Levi Roots be another disappointing Caribbean food outlet, are all the negative reviews on social media justified? Read the Man Dem V Food’s experience.
Uh oh we’re off to a bad start! They haven’t even got record of our reservation and we only booked this afternoon! If you can’t even take a phone call properly how you gonna get our food right? Luckily the friendly waitress turned our frowns upside down with some banter when we asked for some advice about the menu. Ok, things can only get better.
Well drinks first, actually, or should we say Sky Juice Snow Cones, which are shaven ice with your choice of flavouring, syrup and/or juice. Although their serving size was small, they were tasty and refreshing!
Now onto the starters, the Man Dem ordered two portions of jerk chicken wings and the Bajan Fish Cakes. Let’s start with the wings… Shocking! The chicken was tough, man had to tooth wrestle with the bone to get the meat off! The sauce was ok but no match for other Caribbean eateries. Talking of the sauce it was very minimal like Levi was scared he’d run out or something!
However, the Man Dem must say that the Bajan Fish Cakes saved the starters… light and fluffy with an authentic taste, the chef did Barbados proud.
For mains we ordered 2x jerk chicken, 1x boneless chicken thighs and 1x boneless leg of lamb, with a mixture of sides – potato skin fries, sweet potato fries and plantain. Again the chicken was a major let down like Giroud’s end of season scoring stats. Low grade of chicken, average sauce, not much more to say apart from never again! We are sure Levi was taught to cook better than this!
The lamb did pass the test, cooked well and flavoursome, although slightly dry (that might be because we ordered the sauce separate) but definitely the best main of our meal! Those who ordered the dead chicken (dead as in rubbish, yes we know the chicken died on the farm…) looked on with envy, just like Arsenal fans looked on in envy at Leicester winning the Premier League.
In despair the Man Dem decided to order dessert hoping to leave Levi’s Caribbean Smokehouse with a sugar rush and on a positive note. So out came the credit cards and we ordered 2 x brownies, 1 x meringue and 1 x rum cake. Only the meringue was worth this months credit card interest payments, the rest of the Man Dem were cussing and will be cursing until the credit card is paid off.
Lizzette from Portugal was our lovely waitress with the banter mentioned earlier. Friendly, knowledgeable about the menu and had plenty of jokes. This made us feel welcomed and not just another table the waitress is turning over to get another set of punters in. However in hindsight we wish we were rushed to eat because of the Westfield car parking charges, £6.50!!!
Levi Roots’ Caribbean Smokehouse feels like Levi was advised by Peter Jones to put his name to a restaurant in an excellent location and make money. The taste of the food bares no resemblance to Caribbean style cooking, bland food, one of the worst jerk chicken dishes we have ever tasted, corny menu names and decor almost identical to Turtle Bay .
This was a major let down and all the negative reviews on social media are accurate. Levi’s name and the restaurant location might give this venture a few years of life, but social media doesn’t lie and soon will start to spread how bad the food is.
Special mention for the toilets where Levi gives you a free guide on how to speak Jamaican patios whilst you do your business!
Man Dem V Food plead with Levi to get in that kitchen and teach the chefs how to cook Caribbean style, or just drop ‘Caribbean’ from the name and call it Levi Roots’ Smokehouse. Maybe next season we mean next year things will get better… Errr, where have you heard that before?
1.5 man dems out of 6