Entering Cari-Blue Café at 7 a.m. to begin preparing for the day, co-owner Margaret Lewis smells the savory aroma of chicken cooking in the back kitchen. The chef, her mother's husband, arrived an hour earlier to season their freshly-made food with Jamaican flavor.
Wanting to provide the already-vibrant restaurant scene in Hartsdale with some Caribbean zest, Cari-Blue Café opened last month to spice up Greenburgh's food scene, striving to give customers a "home away from home."
"We try to be as indigenous to Jamaica and the Caribbean as possible," said Lewis, who owns the restaurant along with her mother Gloria and sister Antoinette. "We're here to tell people about the Caribbean and about the Caribbean people."
The menu includes unique foods like curried goat, oxtail, jerk chicken (the top seller), clam chowder, fish soup, carrot cake, coconut drops and plantains. Customers have flocked to the store, eager to sample the flavorful offerings, said Lewis. The fact that it's a family affair makes the burgeoning success story that much sweeter.
"We wanted to have it family-run because it was our passion," said Lewis. "Especially my sister, Antoinette, wanted so badly to start up her natural juices. My mom wanted to have a restaurant. So everybody put their ideas together, and this is what you get. So far, so good. Everything is coming to fruition. We can see that our passion and everything that we yearn for is here. And we're here to stay."
Cari-Blue Cafe is located at 28 North Central Avenue, near the Hartsdale's Four Corners.
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