For the second instalment in our new feature 'Dining after 6pm', we continue to look at dining options for those too restless to whip up their own meals at home. This week, we head to Island Grill.
Island Grill in Cross Roads is teeming with after-work patrons on a Friday evening. As eager to feed their appetites as they are to enjoy the weekend off from work, the customers convey an urgent, bustling energy to the restaurant. The snaking line inside the eatery, painted in tropical shades of yellow, orange and green, has a colourful mix of personalities. There's a thirty-something Rastafarian whose super-long locks are neatly tucked beneath a tam, male and female singletons aplenty, a no-nonsense seemin mother holding her toddler's hands and a father cradling his young daughter in his arms while staring up at the menu board. Tasty options featured on the colourful board include barbecued and jerked chicken combos, soups (red peas and chicken are literally hot favourites), popular lower-cost 'Yabba' combos (brown-stewed and curried chicken and vegetable chunk meals), and escoveitched and brown-stewed snapper meals, which are perfect alternatives for those swearing off meat during the current Lenten season.
Shift manager Kenecia Smith-Brown says it's commonplace for the eatery, located on the corner of Retirement and Half Way Tree Roads, to serve scores of customers until well after nightfall. The Island Grill manager attributes the restaurant's popularity to quality food and great service. "Our food isn't greasy," Smith-Brown says in a friendly jab at no establishment in particular. "Customers consider our food more healthy than elsewhere and they like the variety of our offerings," she adds.
Open until pm on Fridays and Saturdays, and closing at 10 pm on weekdays and 9 pm on Sundays, Island Grill does more take-out business on the weekend.
Take-out business is clearly favoured than dne
If the quickly disappearing food we take note of (those who opt to dine in) and the steady stream of customers are anything to go by, Island Grill's rep as the healthier fast food alternative is all but secure. Her grilled chicken order packed and ready to go, receptionist Andrea Millwood says, "The taste is always excellent and I appreciate that the environment is always clean...I'm here at least twice a week." Thursday Food heard similar sentiments expressed by others we interviewed. We share scenes from our late evening at the restaurant.