It's not just Deerfield Beach residents. Travelers venture from Delray and Hollywood to get a taste of authentic Jamaican fare, according to Winston himself. So what took us so long to get to him?
For one, he's sandwiched his 1,000 sq. ft. restaurants in between a barber shop and convenience store. For another, the wrath of Hurricane Sandy ruined the sign of Winston Henry's beloved take out shop in October. He said he hasn't had the money to replace it, but that doesn't stop the regulars from finding him.
"You'll have the oxtail, and you'll have the curry goat," he told my friend and I upon our first visit. After a bit of negotiation, I ended up with the jerk chicken. A large order is $8.50 and could feed me three times over. "You won't have to cook tonight," he laughed, ensuring the meal would last more than once.
The restaurant seats six. Most visitors come for takeout knowing what they want, or they browse the dry-erase board menu. There are only a dozen or so items to choose from, but patrons don't feel limited. One man left with a combo order of oxtail and curry goat ($10.50) served with homemade red beans and rice and cabbage. All meals are served to go, whether guests dine in or not.
"I cook every morning," Sir Winston said. "I don't like leftovers." Occasionally, he runs out of food and closes up shop early. "If I don't have any more food, why should I stay open?" But he says it doesn't happen that often.
Henry preps the jerk chicken by marinating it in his Walkerswood jerk seasoning overnight and cooks it slow in the morning. While the seasoning may be commercial, it's the preparation that makes all the difference. There isn't a single piece of meat he serves that doesn't fall right off the bone.
Grab a Jamaican soda - ginger beer or pineapple flavor - instead of the American options ($1.35). It does, in fact, get imported from the homeland.
While his Delray and Hollywood visitors may try to encourage him to expand, Sir Winston doesn't have the means. For now, we'll take our oxtails and jerk chicken when we can get it.
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