Jamaica is one of the largest and most popular Caribbean destinations for vacationers. Among the things visitors love about this island are its natural beauty, rich culture, exciting nightlife, unique cuisine, and restaurants. If food is an important factor in your vacation destination selection, areas like Montego Bay, Negril, and Ocho Rios might appeal to you in Jamaica. Smaller towns like Whitehouse, Mammee Bay, and Kingston also have good dining options. The restaurants in these places underscore the fact that Jamaican cuisine is truly a melting pot of influences with flavors from Africa, England, France, Portugal, India, and the Middle East.
Ocho Rios (also known as Ochi), in particular, has a wide range of restaurants, which we’ll focus on in this post. For the purpose of sharing some dining inspiration, we went ahead and created a list of some of the best restaurants in Ocho Rios. We hope this compilation will help you choose the best places to dine throughout your visit to Jamaica!
Insider tip: For the best restaurant options, you might want to consider staying at one of the luxury all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean. Dining at multiple restaurants will be included as well as a host of quality inclusions during your vacation.
Miss T’s Kitchen’s warmth will greet you as soon as you enter this Ocho Rios establishment. This is the place to go if you want to try authentic Jamaican cuisine. Miss T’s Kitchen’s most popular menu items include curried goat, fried chicken, and jerk chicken wraps. As the service is quite fast here, you’ll be biting into something tasty in no time!
Miss T's Kitchen is open daily for breakfast, lunch, and supper. Miss T has several excellent options for vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free meals. Cocktails are available and the rum punch is pretty awesome. You can also just have the fruit punch or another refreshing drink option off their menu. Customers routinely leave reviews about how great the food is here and how polite the staff always appears to be. Miss T’s Kitchen offers dine-in and takeout for guests.
Expert tip: If you are in the mood for a romantic outdoor dining experience you have to visit Vista Sky Restaurant. This beautiful and open-air eatery specializes in elevated gourmet cuisine using delicate flavors and precise presentation. The beautiful terrace makes this a must-try restaurant during your stay in Ocho Rios. Our favorite dishes from Vista Sky include Steamed Prince Edwards Island Mussels, Pan Seared Salmon Filet, Island Pan Seared Snapper, and the Pavlova for dessert.
This restaurant is only available for guests of Sandals Ochi and other Sandals resorts on the island. The best part? Vista Sky’s exceptional food and drinks are included (and unlimited) as part of Sandals’ all-inclusive vacation package.
There are many things to do in Jamaica, including eating out at fine-dining restaurants like Evita’s. Evita’s is located in St. Ann Parish and is ideal for a traditional Italian dining experience. According to Evita’s reviews, this restaurant may be one of the best in Jamaica. In addition to the great food and service, the relaxed atmosphere is something that guests of this establishment appreciate.
Set in an 1860s gingerbread house, Evita’s is an open-air restaurant with spectacular views. Traditional Italian fare with a Jamaican spin is on the menu here. Jerk Spaghetti and Carbonara with Shrimp and Lobster are among the most ordered dishes at Evita’s. You can also try the Jerk Chicken Pasta, Seafood Risotto, and Shrimp Rundown Pasta.
While at Evita’s, you may notice famous faces adorning the walls — all have dined here at one point or another. From the terrace, you can take in the most beautiful views of the city. Since this eatery is open-air, bug spray is recommended. If you don’t have any, you can ask your waiter if there is any available for use.
Good prices and service and a wide variety of tasty steaks and seafood dishes are what you’ll find at the Spring Garden Seafood & Steakhouse in Ocho Rios. This fine dining restaurant also has Caribbean-inspired cuisine, which means no matter what you’re in the mood for, you’re bound to find something that appeals to you on the menu here.
Spring Garden Seafood & Steakhouse is just off Main Street in Ocho Rios. A couple’s date here while in Jamaica is a great idea as the romantic ambiance is sure to be inspiring. In addition to delicious steaks and seafood, there are also options for diners looking for something vegetarian or gluten-free. The most popular dishes at Spring Garden & Steakhouse are the Lobster Ragollata, Shrimp Linguine, and the steak (naturally!). Drinks and cocktails are available as is a complimentary shuttle pick-up/drop-off service for guests in Ocho Rios and other select areas who make a reservation.
Margaritaville is the place to be, and there’s always a party! Jimmy Buffet designed this restaurant so that people can come and dine, drink, shop, play, explore, or do all of the above. You can go to the Island Village of Ocho Rios where Margaritaville is located with the intention of having a good time and, odds are, you will. A 60-foot waterslide, swim-up bar, and a wide selection of tasty food, including burgers and pizza, coconut shrimp, jerk BBQ chicken, and Jimmy’s Jammin’ Jambalaya are all available.
If you’re in Jamaica for a couples' vacation and want to venture out of your resort for a fun and relaxing day, you should check out this place. Stopping by Margaritaville is an option for those taking a catamaran cruise also as some tours include this location in their itinerary. Reggae music and dancing are a big part of the Margaritaville experience and after 10 pm, the restaurant switches gears and transforms into “Clubville”, where you can catch local musicians, DJs, and more.
If you can't resist the pull of Indian food during your Jamaica vacation, one of the restaurants you might want to visit is Passage to India. This restaurant is located in central Ocho Rios at the Fisherman’s Point Resort. Passage to India is next to the Ocho Rios Pier, which means you can enjoy a quiet dinner with a view.
Delicious and authentic Indian food is a sure possibility here and some of the most popular menu items include Bombay Shrimp, Dal Makhani, Chicken Tikka, and Goanese Conch Curry. The Garlic Naan is also a customer favorite. The menu at this restaurant also caters to diners with dietary restrictions including vegetarians and vegans. Cocktails are available here and you’re bound to find the right one to pair with your meal. Reservations are recommended for dining at Passage to India.
The name Usain Bolt is widely recognized in Jamaica and around the world. This star track athlete has a sports bar in Jamaica with several locations including in Ocho Rios and Montego Bay. If you’re into sports and want to socialize a bit and enjoy some good food, this is a great option for a local outing while in Jamaica.
Usain Bolt’s Tracks & Records serves some of the popular bar favorites as well as traditional island dishes. Some of the most delicious options here include the jerk chicken spring rolls, Red Stripe BBQ wings, and the surf & turf. For dessert, you can try the Guinness Cookies & Cream Cheesecake -- it comes highly recommended!
The staff at Tracks & Records are helpful and friendly, and the atmosphere overall is welcoming and vibrant. The drinks and the food are always flowing here and you’ll enjoy relaxing here watching the hottest sports match of the moment. Tracks & Records is a good nighttime stop as well and perfect for an introduction to Jamaica nightlife.
Jamaican patties are a crowd-pleaser all over the world. A vacation on this island can be the perfect opportunity to try the most authentic version of this treat, particularly at establishments like Juici Patties in Ocho Rios. This restaurant is a casual take-out location that serves up Jamaican patties and other casual bites. There are three Juici Patties locations in Ocho Rios, and more are available in other parts of Jamaica including Negril, Kingston, and Montego Bay.
The beef patties are the most popular option at Juici Patties but there are also other types you can try including callaloo and saltfish. If you want something different, you can try the fried chicken and chips which will probably be one of the most delicious versions of this simple fast food option you’ve ever tried. Jucci Beef Patties is known for its good service, delicious food, and for the fact that they use fresh local ingredients in all of the dishes. Enjoy your Juici Beef Patties meal with a cold and refreshing drink!
Christopher’s at Hermosa Cove is located at the Hermosa Cove Villa Hotel. Their tagline insists that they don't just feed appetites, but also souls. This restaurant serves traditional island dishes with international options available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The atmosphere at this fine dining restaurant is light and breezy and the menu is filled with delicious options. Some of the most popular include the Hermosa Smoked Bacon Pizza with Ackee, Penne Pasta, and Curried Shrimp.
In addition to the guest's favorite menu items, you’ll find Jamaican cuisine with a unique fusion of European, Asian, and Indian flavors that are most apparent in the braised oxtail, steamed calaloo with Scotch bonnet peppers, and jerk chicken. You’ll enjoy your meal all the more as the service here is known for being friendly and fast. There’s also a beautiful open-air patio with poolside dining options.
Reservations are recommended for dining at Christopher’s at Hermosa Cove, particularly during peak season when things tend to get quite busy.
Scotchie’s restaurant may be exactly what you’re looking for if you prefer casual dining. This open-air restaurant is in the St. Ann area. It is one of those places where you can go expecting to eat good food and leave satisfied. Scotchie’s offers pleasant, quick service and a relaxed, welcoming atmosphere. This restaurant is located just off the coast of the Caribbean Sea.
Scotchie’s uses locally sourced ingredients and a wood fire to prepare all their dishes. Diner favorites at Scotchie’s include rum ribs, jerk chicken, and grilled pork. There are plenty of options for side dishes available and you can also try the jerk chicken or jerk pork wraps, which are popular. Other Scotchie’s customer favorites include conch soup, festival corn, hog sausage, chicken sausage, and more. Enjoy your lunch and drinks in one of this location’s lovely tiki huts.
If you order one of the spicier dishes at Scotchie’s, you’ll want to make sure you have coconut water, local juice, or even a local Red Stripe Beer handy. Fish is prepared to order, and the soup of the day is usually delicious. At Scotchie’s, you can also try conch soup, festival, hog sausage, chicken sausage, and other tasty options. Scotchie’s also has a Montego Bay location.
Almost Tree Restaurant is located at the Hibiscus Lodge in the Kingston area of Ocho Rios. This is a fine-dining restaurant and the offerings here are quite delicious. The Almond Tree Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. On the menu here, you can expect to find a combination of traditional Jamaican flavors and other familiar international favorites.
Breakfast at the Almost Tree Restaurant is served à la carte in the Fish Market overlooking the bay. If you go there for lunch, you can have your meal on the bar deck or out on the terrace that overlooks the bay. Lunch guests have the option of selecting options from their à la carte menu or something a bit lighter from the sandwich menu. Dinner is open-air out on the terrace. Local and international cuisine, fine service, and an à la carte menu are what you can expect if you choose to visit at dinnertime. Some of the most popular options at this restaurant include Chicken Scallopini, Prime Fillet Mignon, and Jerk Salmon Steak.
Couples will enjoy dining at the Almond Tree because it offers a romantic atmosphere that is ideal for a date night. Cocktails are fun here from the swinging bar that overlooks the ocean. There are lots of options on the cocktail menu and amazing views from the bar. Reservations are recommended as traffic here picks up during the peak season.
The Bamboo Blu beach bar and restaurant is just off the coast of Mammee Bay in Ocho Rios. This spot is ideal for a dining experience with a view. This restaurant is a good option if you’re looking for authentic Jamaican cuisine including options like the Grilled Caribbean Spiny Lobster, Oxtail Shepherd’s Pie, and the Ackee & Saltfish Spring rolls. You can also try unique daily specials like the Crispy Jerk Baby Calamari or the Saltfish Bammy Bruschetta. The menu at this establishment also includes soups, salads, sandwiches, and more.
Open-air and mellow, this restaurant offers a variety of seating options including the bar area for a quick bite and cocktails, and private tables set on the beach. Bamboo Blu also has nightly bonfires and you can relax on the private beach before or after dining. Reservations are recommended for Bamboo Blu especially if you plan on going for dinner around peak season.
What’s a vacation in Jamaica without enjoying some of the most popular local favorites? Still a vacation, most definitely, but you’d certainly be missing out. If you want to try authentic Jamaican food while on the island, the Mongoose Restaurant & Lounge is a good place to go. This restaurant is located on the popular Ocho Rios Main Street, so it won’t be hard to find.
Mongoose Restaurant & Lounge serves up traditional Jamaican specialties like Curry Goat, Jerk Chicken, Oxtail, and Fried Plantains — all of these are top-rated items on this restaurant’s menu. Visitors who go to Mongoose Restaurant rave about the flavor-packed dishes and the large serving portions.
The owners of Mongoose Restaurant & Lounge describe it as “more than a restaurant, it's an experience”. If you choose to dine here during your vacation, expect an environment that’s lively and fun. The service is attentive and welcoming and you’ll find some good cocktails on offer. This is a cool option in Jamaica if you’re looking for some good nightlife.
Expert tip: To enjoy the finest restaurants in Ocho Rios, it's a good idea to stay at one of Ocho Rios' best all-inclusive resorts. If you stay in this area, you'll also be near some of the best beaches and attractions in Jamaica!
There's so much to love about Jamaica cuisine including how much love goes into the food, and how each dish is just filled with so much flavor. Here are some of the signature dishes we recommend trying during your vacation:
Jamaican patties - This tasty treat is available with your choice of ground beef, lobster, or shrimp as a filling. Even though you can get Jamaican patties just about anywhere on the island, one of the best places to get them is at Juici Patties or Miss Sonia’s in Negril.
Oxtail - Before being fried and slow-cooked, oxtail (meat from an ox’s tail) is seasoned with herbs and spices. On low heat or in a pressure cooker, this meat can be cooked for several hours. This is one of Jamaica’s heartiest and most delectable dinners and it is typically served with rice and peas.
Breadfruit - Breadfruit is a Micronesian fruit that can be boiled, fried, or roasted. Breadfruit and jackfruit are closely related. Breadfruit with steamed callaloo or ackee and saltfish is often served for breakfast in Jamaica.
Fried plantains - Fried plantains are a common accompaniment to a wide variety of main courses in Jamaica including stewed chicken and oxtail, fried fish, and curried meats. Order this dish and enjoy tender, caramelized plantains cut into thin slices.
Coco bread - This dish is made from coconut milk and has a somewhat sweet flavor. Coco bread is typically served alongside Jamaican patties.
Jerk chicken - The pimento wood used in making jerk chicken gives it a unique flavor. This is one of those dishes you won’t want to miss out on during your vacation in Jamaica. Jerk sauces are typically quite spicy, but you can request less sauce if you prefer a milder experience.
Curried goat - Curry goat is a hearty Jamaican favorite that is made with goat meat, carrots, potatoes, and coconut milk. This stew is usually served with rice and peas.
Expert tip: Want to take some Jamaican food home with you? Here’s an authentic Jamaican oxtails recipe and the best ackee and saltfish recipe. We also managed to get the Sandals’ secret jerk marinade recipe from the Jerk Shack!
Ocho Rios, Jamaica is one of those places you’ll definitely want to visit if you want to take your taste buds for a ride. There’s just so much variety in Jamaican cuisine and you can taste it all for yourself in this part of Jamaica. The list of Jamaican restaurants available in this area is quite extensive, as described above, so you’ll really need to make up your mind about what you’re looking for before heading out on the town.
If you want multiple dining options in the Ocho Rios area without having to leave your resort, staying at an all-inclusive resort in Ocho Rios is highly recommended. Sandals Resorts have multiple restaurants including gourmet options that are available to guests. If you stay at any Sandals all-inclusive resorts in Jamaica, you’ll be able to enjoy unlimited dining which will ensure you get to taste the best of Jamaica during your vacation!
Insider tip: Not only are Sandals Resorts a good option because of the wide range of restaurants and amenities available, but these resorts are also great for couples looking to enjoy a world of entertainment. Themed parties and exciting live shows are part of the day and night entertainment offerings at these resorts.