Rise up, lovers of fine Caribbean food, to northwest London’s Kensal Rise (Kensal Green tube isn’t far either) and, once there, rise to the challenge and take on the galaxy of true soul food on offer at Tropikana Rise, towering up over two floors down Chamberlayne Road. This bright and vibrant eatery uses only halal meat and West Indian spices to bring you a whole host of sunkissed dishes. Tropikana Rise invites you in with open arms, but it’s also open to any invitation you might want to bounce back: the team at Tropikana are capable external caterers, too, whenever you want to bring a taste of endless summer to your doorstep.
Every locale needs a Caribbean restaurant like Tropikana Rise to let a little spice and light into life. And the lucky locals of northwest London’s ambivalently named Kensal Rise and Kensal Green are more than a little blessed to have a modern restaurant like this in their midst. With the area steadily trending – and rapidly changing – it’s great to see this stronghold of Afro-Caribbean heritage standing proud down what Vogue dubbed the hippest street in Europe, Chamberlayne Road.
Start with one of Tropikana’s delicious soups. Unlike most Caribbean restaurants in London, this Kensal Rise eatery makes its soups fresh to order – you might have to wait, but its worth it for the spiced chicken, red pea, mutton, beef or vegetable concoction that makes it to table. Other Caribbean specialties that Tropikana Rise’s chefs whip into shape in their kitchen down Chamberlayne Road include plantain rounds served with ackee, saltfish and salad, fried chicken marinated in West Indian spices, herbed, spiced and deliciously tender oxtail on the bone, and the classic escovitch, fish marinated overnight in a vinegary, spicy sauce. It’s here that Kensal Green meets authentic Caribbean cuisine.