If you aren’t aware that Nicollet Avenue in Minneapolis is also known as Eat Street, then you really haven’t found the heart of MSP’s international food scene. Today we venture down the sidewalk of Eat Street to Pimento Jamaican Kitchen to take on some authentic Jamaican heat!
Between 25th and 26th on Nicollet sits plenty of options to choose from on Eat Street, but when you hear the reggae music coming out of the big garage door on the West side of the street, you’ll know where to find this authentic Jamaican restaurant. Bright yellow walls covered with the Jamaican flag colors and sayings from the culture transport you right to the island. Pimento has order at the counter service, which has the line form through the left side of the building with tables scattered throughout the rest of the area. The staff are extra friendly and have a laid back vibe that fits in perfect with the rest of the atmosphere! Once you’ve ordered, grab your drink and your number and it will only be a short while until your food arrives.
Pimento’s menu is easy to navigate: you start with your main meat or veggies, then you can add a side, and last but especially not least comes your choice of sauce. Their specialties are the jerk chicken and pork, both come out hot, juicy, and fall apart with ease and sit on top of a bed of jasmine rice and with two sweet plantains. The flavors are prevalent and the authentic jerk taste really makes it feel like a one of a kind option. For those who like trying something new, you can get their Braised Oxtail or maybe try some Curry Goat! On the side you have plenty of options, but we love their Sweet Plantains that are glazed with a vanilla spice or the Jamaican Patties, which are a basically a Jamaican empanada. Finally, you can make your sauce choice, starting with their Neutralizer, which is considered no heat, all flavor, bump it up to their Jerk Ranch or MN Nice at a medium heat, or really get after it with the Kingston Kick or Kill Dom Wid It if you love pain via heat. For first timers and people who aren’t crazy about heat, we highly recommend you stay towards the bottom of the spectrum, even the MN Nice can create that runny nose feeling for the untrained palette. For drinks they have classic island sodas in a variety of flavors as well as Red Stripe and Guinness if you want to enjoy a real cold one!
There aren’t many Jamaican spots around MSP and we don’t think there are any that do it quite like Pimento does. From the variety of flavor and spices to the whole atmosphere, Pimento is one of a kind!
For more on Pimento, check them out here: https://pimentokitchen.com/