'Ants Follow Fat'... The popular Jamaican proverb seems to have taken root in the ingenious idea of the development of a 'Taste Trail' in Manchester. The parish has long been a stalwart in local culinary dishes and boasts several food hotspots that have garnered a reputation for hitting the right places in the stomach walls of people near and far. The iniative is just one of many that will be implemented by the Manchester Parish Council as part of a marketing strategy facilitated by the Caribbean Local Economic Development Project (CARILED). The aim is to highlight the strengths of the central parish and thus stimulate other areas of local economic development outside of the mundanity of bauxite. The trail is in the initial stages of development and would prospectively start for visitors coming from the Clarendon end at the Melrose Yam Park, and stretch all the way to South West Manchester in Alligator Pond. The plan is to appeal to food connoisseurs from other parishes (and even abroad) or just the average joe seeking a drive out to the country in search of the next delectable cuisine.
Rising to prominence as a must stop for food lovers of roasted ground provisions in the early to mid 2000's, the Melrose Yam Park has 12 shops which are maintained by the Manchester Parish Council. Each vendor, with his/her own style and variation, prepare roasted yellow yams, potatoes and breadfruit (among other things) that certainly beckons to the lover of indigenous Jamaican food.
JAMAICA STANDARD PRODUCTS
Just a few minutes up the road lies one of the manufacturing plants of Jamaica Standard Products (JSP). World renowned for the quality found in their 'a cup of Joe', the coffee giant is another proposed stop for the taste-bud adventurer. Here, visitors will be able to purchase their favorite JSP product, sample innovative creations such as coffee-liqueur as well as pick up small grab-n-go packages for coffee lovers.
CECIL CHARLTON PARK
The Cecil Charlton Park sits at the heart of the parish capital. A fresh, vibrant and rejuventated ambience accompanies the 10 kiosks maintained by the Parish Council. Whether it be hotdogs, frozen yogurt or even a cold coconut jelly, food lovers of all ages will find something here to whet the appetite.
LITTLE OCHI SEAFOOD
If you have not heard of Little Ochi, chances are you have been living under a rock. Located in South Manchester, the restaurant is the convergence of everything that is seafood. From fish tea to fish (fried, steam, jerk) to lobster; name it and it is there to be devoured. It is perhaps the farthest on the entire trail, but once you have had a taste there, no journey is too great to return a second time.
Other notable stops that are included on the trail:- All Seasons (Spur Tree Hill Manchester), Hills Craft Centre (New Forrest), Bunches of Grapes (Alligator Pond)