Every now and then a new restaurant opens in town and Reggae times is always on top of the latest happenings in Jamaica. For this issue we highlight the Firelite Restaurant. The restaurant opened on June 13 and specializing in “live” food, i.e., uncooked food, consisting of various vegetarian delights.It offers a variety of vegan raw food in Kingston.
The business is a family business, which is run by Ben Tsedek and Ben Yahudo. When asked what inspired the business, Ben answered, “We as a community of people have restaurants in the United States and in Africa and in Israel, so what we are doing is a continuation in Jamaica. The real inspiration is the health of our people on a whole…we provide food that is nourishing to the soul… while the majority of restaurants only care about profit and not about health”.
It is not your typical everyday restaurant either as there are only two “live” food restaurants in Jamaica, both of them having been opened recently. It brings a quite interesting menu lineup to the table that will be hard for many to compete with. Ben gave us an idea of some of the food served there and he lists “ Raw foods such as Sushi, Cous Cous, Tabooli, coconut spaghetti, raw Ackee dishes, many more. And we also do fresh juices and smoothies”. When asked about the competition between the two only live food restaurants, Ben said “we not competitors… but we complement each other, we do different dishes.”
To differentiate themselves from other businesses “when you support Firelite. You actually support a repatriation activity. You support food for the soul of people and non-profit organizations that will operate in Africa. You also support a cultural movement in the way we look at food. You support well-water drilling in areas in Kenya. You support the teaching of indigenous people in West Africa to manufacture their food and teach them how to adjust and manufacture soy and we taught people in Zimbabwe how to become more profitable and get food. So we are supporting Africa and self-sustainability because you have people out there that don’t want Africa to be fed.
Located on 11 Maeven avenue, Hope Road, Kingston 10, Firelite is open Monday to Thursdays between 12 and 7 p.m and between 12-6 p.m on a Friday. They are currently not open on weekends but “will be at some point”. When asked what the future holds for the business say in 5 years, Ben replied” we want to be the supreme authority on healthy lifestyle and vegetarianism and the cultures of healthy lifestyle in Jamaica and as well as in the Caribbean and business forming a link with Africa”.
By: Dax Vernon