Brown stew chicken was another zesty option, with shreds of white meat in a rich, tangy sauce jazzed up with ginger, scallions, thyme, and garlic. Even punchier was the escovitch fish — the moist fillet of tilapia was plenty spicy, but a small bowl of clear, innocent-looking escovitch dipping sauce turned out to be a real shocker. A moment after I tasted it, the intensity of jalapeño-infused vinegar caught me so completely off-guard that I could only burst into laughter — before immediately eating a doughy festival to quell the heat.

It's funny, but the soda I was drinking that night was spicy, too, a bottle of imported Jamaican ginger beer that made my lips tingle — hey, it's a lazy girl's lip plumper. I loved it, though. There were some other interesting drinks as well, including cola champagne, Ting (puckery grapefruit soda), and Pink Ting.

And although there was a day's worth of cane sugar in each of those drinks, I still couldn't resist The Breadfruit's desserts. There were only two of them, after all. Ginger sweet potato pudding was a narrow slice of rich, thick pie studded with raisins and topped with a bit of coconut. Unlike the ginger beer, which was the beverage equivalent of a red-hot, this had the mellow flavor of gingerbread. And Gret's Grapenut Ice Cream & Jell-O was a sundae of Häagen-Dazs vanilla mixed with raisins and crunchy Grape-Nuts, with some cherry Jell-O thrown in for good measure. I liked the flavor, but the texture — by turns creamy, crunchy, and chewy — was most addicting.

Stir it up: The Breadfruit brings fresh new flavors to the downtown dining scene.
Jackie Mercandetti
Stir it up: The Breadfruit brings fresh new flavors to the downtown dining scene.

Location Info

Map

The Breadfruit

108 E. Pierce St.
Phoenix, AZ 85004

Category: Restaurant > Caribbean

Region: Central Phoenix

Details

Rice and peas: $2.50
Spicy beef patty: $2
Jerk chicken: $8.50
Curried tofu: $7.50
602-267-1266, »web link
Hours: Lunch, Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; dinner, Monday through Thursday, 5 to 9 p.m., and Friday, 5 to 10 p.m. Open Saturday from noon to 10 p.m.
The Breadfruit, 108 East Pierce Street

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It was unexpectedly scrumptious, like a lot of things at The Breadfruit. Now I can't wait until they get a liquor license, so I can propose a toast to urban pioneers.

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3 comments
Tina
Tina

Aaah, Carribean food... so delicious and always with the music that makes you want to eat and be festive. Please also try HOT POT on Arizona Avenue in Chandler just north of Warner Rd. Oxtail, curried goat, beans and rice, Jamaican soft drinks, festivals, its all so good... thank these cooks for brining this cuisine to Phoenix. Love ya,

Josh
Josh

I have to start by saying I was very excited to see this place open in the central Phoenix area. I was recently in Colombia, and spent time at several coastal towns. I came to enjoy a staple for the locals: pan fried snapper (locals call it "Pargo"), breadfruit and coconut rice. They served the snapper whole (eyeballs and all, minus the inside of the fish), which at first is a bit intimidating on your plate, but was actually delicious. So when Breadfruit opened, I was hoping to recreate that experience. Although their cuisine is very good, and healthy, it is not what I came to know in the Carribean. First of all, they don't even serve breadfruit, apparently it is too difficult to get fresh in Phoenix. None of the dishes come with coconut rice, you have to order a side dish- and although good, does not have much of a coconut flavor. I was hoping the breadfruit was at least replaced with plantains, but that was not the case for most dishes. I ordered the escovitch fish meal, and enjoyed the fresh coleslaw, as well as the vinegar and habanero that can be poured on your fish. The tilapia was very good and the plate also came with a slice of grilled pineapple. Overall, Breadfruit is a refreshing change from the standard Phoenix restaurant, but may not be what you are expecting if you have been out of the country- so I'm guessing Jamaican food differs from South American.

Vanessa
Vanessa

My husband and I took our 4 and 8 year old daughters to try this restaurant. We are firm believers in giving our kids opportunities to try new things and they loved it. We had a variety of things starting with the Spicy Jamaican soda, it was delicious and had a kick. My husband and I had shrimp and jerk chicken which was very good. Though spicy, the grilled pineapple provided a nice contrast. Our daughters had the curry tofu and loved it, especially the festivals. The atmosphere is very quaint and the restaurant very clean.

We will definitely keep the restaurant on our regular rotation.

 
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