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Best Jerk Chicken?

  • g

Went to a place called Peppers on Dufferin (east side) just north of Lawrence. It was $8.50 including tax for the large order of jerk chicken on rice. I felt it was a good value considering the size. The chicken was well spiced and juicy. However, I feel there must be better out there...

Anyone have any recommendations? North York area preferred.

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  1. I've had jerk all over the GTA and my nod goes to the Mr. Jerk in the Walmart Plaza at Lawrence and Keele. Perfect spicing and succulent chicken. Give it a try and please report back.

    10 Replies
    1. re: rob

      How are prices at Mr. Jerk at Walmart Plaza at Lawrence and Keele? I live pretty far from that, you see, I kinda wanna know all about it before heading that way. Is it a fast food joint, or a sitdown restaurant?

      1. re: jennjen

        Definatly take-out but worth the drive. I skip the rice and beans and just go for chicken, sometimes a bowl of chicken soup with dumplings and always a couple of patties. Chicken is about $8.00/half and $14.00/whole. Not cheap but the chickens are pretty large and the jerk can't be beat. This location is owned by a pair of asian sisters, and they really take pride in their food. They make a wicked homemade hot sauce that goes great with the chicken. Give it a try and report back.

        1. re: rob

          After reading this I decided to give Mr. Jerk a try. Nice plaza! I kept my car running.Lol.

          The chicken was so dry that I cannot understand how anyone can enjoy the jerk from this place. I will continue my search as well.

          1. re: bjinyyz

            Agreed... though the jerk chicken @ Walmart Plaza on Keele/Lawrence is passable if you have no other choices...

            the dryness of the chicken and the fact it taste like they overuse msg/preservatives doesn't help too much..

            Mr Jerk in St Jamestown (near Regent Park + Cabbagetown) is better. Especially their tangy-sweet bbq flavoured chicken.

            1. re: Mike Tyson

              The jerk pork is very good, both at the Peanut Plaza location and on Eglinton W. (whew--almost wrote EglinGton by accident). Tuesdays, at the Eg. W. location, you can get a small jerk pork dinner--rice and peas, slaw and awesome habanero peppa sauce) for $3.99. Lots of juicy, jerky pork.

              1. re: Yongeman

                I second the rec for the jerk pork at Eglinton West location. The man is so nice there too. I used to go to the Wellesley one all the time when I lived downtown. I'm so happy there's a location near my new house so I can get my jerk pork fix!

                1. re: Yongeman

                  cool.. heard the Eglinton locations have good sour dough bread to serve w/the jerk too...

          2. re: jennjen

            You wouldn't sit down there to eat unless you're starving or homeless; However, their JERK PORK is top notch, never had better. I can't comment on the chicken because the pork was to good not to order every time I go there.

            1. re: Movement

              I wouldn't totally agree with that..

              I mean sure the stool area for sit-in's might not be "date night" material but... it DOES provide you with privacy from window shopper eyes (given the fact it hides you beind the fridge that holds the beverages lol)

              kinda crampy though haha.

              Good if you just want to sit down by yourself and have a quick (or long) lunch to yourself... that is if others don't show up to crowd you lol.

        2. I want to try that place that was recently featured on restaurant makover called first class delights - the gal on the show said the jerk was top notch. Otherwise I goto Alberts or the Irie spot on queen w. I'd love to know a killer standout spot as well if anyone knows one.

          1. I will try out Mr. Jerk although I have heard mixed reviews about it. Today I tried a place called Lee's Island Flavour (756 Wilson Avenue, West of Dufferin). I would say it was slightly better than Pepper's. The chicken came with some sort of sauce on top making it more juicy - which was a plus. About the same price ($7 for small with rice). I am not sure if other places put a sauce on their chicken though.

            Anyone else with suggestions?

            4 Replies
            1. re: Gil

              Trust me Lee's Island Flavour is nasty. Not the taste but the sanitation. I bought some curry goat from them once and found a lot of hair hidden between meat and bone. I think there was spit too.

              You guys want to try good Jerk? I heard a lot of good things about "Mr. Jerk" down on Wellesley. In the heart of Regent Park. St Jamestown to be more exact. Anyone ever ate here? what you think?

              1. re: Mike Tyson

                I have had the jerk pork and its pretty good and very cheap! Same with the chicken!

                1. re: Mike Tyson

                  I love Mr Jerk in st jamestown. I recently moved from the area and it's what I miss most. Just found out though, that they deliver to my area. Just made my day. Love them. Never had anything but their jerk chicken, rice, beans and plantain. I've heard their patties are good too, but I can never order anything but the chicken, so damn gooooooood. Best to leave the gracy for the rice, if you don't want the spice heat turned down. I find the gravy interferes with the heat of the chicken which is perfect for me.

                  1. re: jerkBoi

                    yeah not a fan of gravy either..

                    whenever I order curry chicken/goat or oxtail from a Caribbean restaurant, I often order it with white rice, veggies and with little gravy as possible.

                    Notice how oxtail or curry dishes taste great white rice also?

                    Rice and peas taste very good with jerk I noticed... Meh it probably taste good with white rice too.

                    Hell anything and everything can taste good with either white rice or rice/peas.

              2. Soul Food, north of Bloor on the west side of Lansdowne, across from the big empty lot that used to be the TTC barns. An unlikely location, to be sure. But it's been received pretty well critically, four starts from Now mag (for what that's worth) if I recall. Best jerk I've had in awhile... ever since that perfect jerk I got (but only once) from the OLD Irie on College east of Ossington. Really nice fella runs the joint, too.


                1. The jerk chicken at Scarlet Ibis is my favourite. On O'Connor just west of Victoria Park in Scarborough. Buffet lunch during the weekdays, jerk chicken in the buffet on Tuesdays and Thursdays, or you can order it straight from the menu.

                  Report back!


                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Omar

                    that's funny - i drive past Scarlet Ibis twice a day, 3 days a week. never ever would i have thought to stop off there. i should check it out on my way home one day (probably a wednesday)

                  2. Mr. Jerk @ peanut plaza, don mills has excellent jerk chicken / and in my opinion the jerk pork is just amazing!

                    I work close to M. Jerk , Morningside/401 and it pales in comparison

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Jason

                      I went to Mr. Jerk @ the Peanut today for the first time and it's every bit as good as advertised. Had the jerk chicken lunch special. $5 for a good amount of chicken and rice. Well worth it.


                      1. re: Davwud

                        Imogine Caribbean Restaurant gets my vote. Bev cooks at 773 Warden Ave. south of Eglinton (416) 751-7771 She makes everything homemade style. There's a 2nd location at 3227 Eglinton E east of Markham. (416) 913-2697

                        1. re: Davwud

                          re:peanut Mr Jerk, Yup the pork is good too and you get a good amount for your $5.

                      2. Anyone ever at at the Wellesley Mr Jerk downtown Toronto? St. Jamestown, aka Regent Park??? What you think?

                        1. I'm hoping somebody here can help me. I used to eat at MR. JERK's near Ryerson University at Yonge/Dundas years ago before they demolished that whole corner for other purposes.

                          Does anyone know if the owners relocated to another spot in the GTA? There appear to be several MR. JERK franchises spread throughout the city. I'm trying to find the original people from the Yonge/Dundas location because I swear they had the best jerk chicken, oxtail, etc. and you name it...

                          I really wanna have their food again if these people are still in business!!!

                          1. ^^^
                            Mr Jerk

                            8 Dundas St E, Toronto, ON M5B 2G9
                            Phone: 416.596.7782

                            This was their old information as far back as 1998. Does anyone know which franchise they relocated to? Please tell me they are still around because I really miss their food!!!

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: YummyYummy

                              There is a Mr. Jerk in the peanut plaza. I'm not sure if it's the same people but their jerk is fantastic.


                              1. re: YummyYummy

                                Hey Yummy,

                                I whole heartedly agree!

                                I too would love to find out where they relocated to (if they did) . . . I used to go in at least weekly for years . . . Their oxtail was the best I've had as well were their stews (at least that's what they called them) and their jerk . . . I was really dissappointed when they closed and I never noticed a sign saying they were relocating . . . If you find them let us know . . . It was a sad day when they closed!


                              2. I noticed the Peanut Plaza jerk pork was quite reminiscent of cha siu (Chinese bbq pork), and not all that spicy. It was still delicious and plentiful though.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: Chester Eleganté

                                  Where exactly is the Mr Jerk in Peanut Plaza? I take the Don Mill's bus coming from Finch everyday from school towards Don Mills Station and....

                                  Never seem to see any signs for the Mr Jerk. Is it INSIDE the Peanut Plaza Mall?
                                  And what about Allans? Is there a Caribbean restaurant called Allans in the Peanut Plaza too???

                                  1. re: Mike Tyson

                                    Mr. Jerk is on the southbound side of Don Mills, just a few doors north of Pizza Pizza. In the past, I have found the portions pretty small, and the chicken dry. Allan's is mostly a patty stand inside the mall. My friends used to like their assorted Carribean beverages.

                                    1. re: Mike Tyson

                                      It's beside the Beckers or Macs or whatever it is they have there. I found it to be good value and very tasty.


                                  2. I was under the impression that Soul Food was (?temporarily) closed. I'd love some good jerk in the west end - any ideas?

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: DDD

                                      The best Oxtail is at Tippers on Westin Rd. I'm not sure how to get there but there is a KFC across from it. The THE BEST JERK CHICKEN with rice and peas is at Jamaica Jamaica on St. Clair west in a small plaza on the south side of the street half a block east of Runnymede. This is truth, real talk! I bring all my friends there, cater it for parties and beg them for cooking tips.

                                      32" LCD, free pool table and plenty of seating.

                                    2. WHERE (what's the address please) of where this first class delight jamaican (caribbean) resturant is at please. I am always in for great food while in the T.O. area. Many thanks,

                                      1. I'd like to know about first class delights as well (it was a repeat on food tv's restaurant makeover show last week).
                                        Also, just went to Soul Food for lunch today (just reopened yesterday) and was quite good and simple

                                        1. I am of Jamaican heritage and the best Jerk Chicken is cooked at home! But when I lived in Toronto I agree that Mr. Jerk @ Peanut Plaza was the best I tasted in the city. Please stay away from the Location in Malvern though (401 and Morningside) That is probably the worst Jamaican food I have tasted in my life.

                                          Another recommendation as well is on Friday and Saturday nights there is a guy who has a smoker set out on the street on Eglington Avenue West (close to Marlee) If you can catch him he makes some of the best Jerk you will ever taste in TO. Look for him you will not be disappointed.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: Matt H

                                            Is it the one in front of Spence restaurant? I haven't tried it, but want to.

                                            1. re: Yongeman

                                              Yes I believe that is the same one. Just drive down Eglinton West on a weekend evening and follow the smoke! It is definitely a must try.

                                          2. radica's hot & Spicy boy. best jerk and curry I ever eat.. I think they doubles better than trinidad too.. 905-487-0888 I have a card right here. but they in brampton.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: rickky

                                              that was one of the best sandwiches I've had in a long time. Ackee Tree was where I had my first Jerk Chicken and was so taken by the brilliance of the meal..I just zoned out, my friend worried kept asking me what was wrong and the manager came worried asking me if I was o.k. After a few seconds I replied..thats the best chicken I have ever had. True story.

                                            2. anybody try the jerk chicken sandwich from Ackee Tree? They put a thin slice of grilled squash on the sandwich, nice addition to off set the spice. Is this the way its suppose to be, or there own little spin?

                                              1. I don't have enough breadth of experience to say it's the BEST but I really enjoy the Jerk Chicken at Caribbean Palms in the Flemingdon plaza on Don Mills Road between Eglinton and Overlea. Nice blend of spices and very satisfying.

                                                1. Ackee Tree, Queen and spadina is great, i agree, the jerk chicken sandwich is crazy good, i think its a slice of sweet potato, and a slice of tomato on it, served on coco bread... try it with the jerk fries or sweet potato fries, with jerk mayo..
                                                  come to think of it, i'm going there now!

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: ryanrmx

                                                    Definitely agree, the sandwich is great, and not that expensive either. The thing about Ackee Tree is that you often have to ask for the coleslaw; it comes with a lot of the dishes, and is definitely my favourite coleslaw anywhere, but they have a habit of not including it with your order. They're totally happy to give you some when you ask for it though; it's definitely worth it.

                                                  2. Not in North York, but there's a place called Mr. Tastee on Dennison in between Warden and Woodbine in Markham. It's a bakery that makes great patties and for lunch they will always have jerk chicken or pork, oxtail and curry mutton. Good home cooking!

                                                    1. What about Albert's? I've always enjoyed it. Their rice and peas is just delicious. Normally, the sides disappoint, but not in this case?
                                                      I live near Mr. Jerk in St. Jamestown . Is it still good?

                                                      4 Replies
                                                      1. re: grandgourmand

                                                        I went out of my way to try Albert's based on rave reviews, and I have to say I was thoroughly disappointed! Dry, Bland. Completely forgettable.

                                                        1. re: Connoisseur

                                                          I admit not having been for close to 2 years now. If it was dry and bland, then it's gone downhill. To be honest, I found the rice and peas were their biggest attraction.

                                                          Oh, and to update my question on Mr. Jerk in St. Jamestown, jerk chicken is nothing special. The jerk pork is where it's at there.

                                                          1. re: grandgourmand

                                                            Or when in Cabbagetown, you could hit St Jamestown Steak & Chops and pick-up their jerk pork. Then grill it slowly at home with a blend of hickory and cherry wood smoke.

                                                            1. re: Googs

                                                              Thanks for the tip. I'll definitely check that out.

                                                      2. I keep returning for the $4.59 jerk chicken takeout special at JJJ Jerk Restaurant at 2478 Kingston Rd. north side, half a block west of Midland. It's available every weekday with other specials changing daily. The portions so large I have enough for dinner. The chicken is tender, flavorful, and comes with aki rice, a side of cole slaw and a soft drink. Real value for the price. (416) 266-3584.

                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: Bob Catt

                                                          JJJ Jerk maybe value for the money but not quality... Peanut plaza is out of the way but good jerk chicken and amazing jerk pork...

                                                          1. re: Connoisseur

                                                            Mr. Jerk at the Peanut Plaza has good curried goat, too.

                                                            1. re: Connoisseur

                                                              I guess I'm not a so-called "connoisseur", but I find JJJ Jerk's food of good quality. I wouldn't keep ordering it merely because it's inexpensive.

                                                          2. I've been to Mr. Jerk on Wellesley and it's ok but no big deal. Kinda boney last few times I ate there. Kinda sparse takeout atmosphere isn't exciting.

                                                            I prefer Ritz Caribbean on Yonge near Carlton. $3.99 Jerk chicken lunch is great value and there's a lineup at lunchtime. At least I can sit down and enjoy.

                                                            3 Replies
                                                            1. re: lonestartor

                                                              I find the Mr. Jerk locations vary in quality. The one at Peanut Plaza is my favorite. The only thing I ever get from them is Jerk Pork though.

                                                              1. re: kwong

                                                                Love the jerk pork at the Peanut Mr. Jerk. It's also great at the Mr. Jerk on Eglinton and Oakwood.

                                                              2. re: lonestartor

                                                                Hate to disagree, but Mr. Jerk on Wellesley is way better than Ritz. Had it yesterday. Was concerned that maybe the meat would be dry or whatever. Nope, it was moist and very well flavoured. I just got it at around a quarter to noon..maybe if you go later in the day, it's drier. Anyhow, good flavour, definitely going back. Rice and peas not as tasty as at Albert's on St. Clair and the coleslaw is a bit weak. Overall, like the place for the chicken.

                                                                Oh, and the jerk pork is worth a special mention. I got a sample and it's very tasty.

                                                              3. I was at the Mr Jerk Peanut Plaza location about a month and a half ago. I remembered reading positive reviews from this thread and took out a jerk chicken special. It was terrible! Barely any meat on the bones and what there was of it was dry, dry, dry.

                                                                It looks like I ordered the wrong thing, next time I'm at Allan's I will try the pork. The chicken was totally passable.

                                                                1. There is a couple of places I have seen but haven't tried. Caribbean Delight in Parkway Mall, Alwyn's in Parkway Plaza and Nicey's. All around the Victoria Park and Ellesmere area.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: Rickshaw

                                                                    Nicey's have less locations and I wonder if there is but one left, the combination of grocery and take out should have been a succes!! Anyone, please list the present Nicey's outlets aned sewrvice provided, please!

                                                                  2. I can't believe nobody mentioned SUNRISE.... multiple locations, they have drive thru and the jerk chicken with the stew chicken gravy is the best hands down! So juicy, comes with amazing cole slaw on rice and peas.. add a rum and coke and I am in heaven!

                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                    1. re: gastrojunkie

                                                                      diner's corner on yonge/gloucester has hands down the best fried chicken and curry goat in town. get it as a combo w rice and peas and festivals. i always go there for my carribean meals if i am in the mood for site down. jerk chicken there is decent but i prefer mr.jerk on wellesley better.

                                                                        1. re: gastrojunkie

                                                                          There is a Sunrise near me in Brampton, but I've never gone there because I'm not familiar with caribbean food.. what else do they have?

                                                                        2. For Authentic Jerk Chicken... head to Rap's - http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/543199

                                                                          "When the drum is smokin out front (usually in the evenings), be sure to pull over a buy one of the best jerk chickens you'll have outside of Jamaica... from *Rap's* up on Eglington West a couple blocks west of the Allen.

                                                                          Some tips:
                                                                          - Be sure to get it fresh off the grill.
                                                                          - Definitely sign up for a splash of the secret sauce.
                                                                          - Eat with care, there are some small bones you need to pick around.
                                                                          - Drink a bottle of Grace Grapefruit Soda, lots of zing and not overly sweet.

                                                                          This place is a gem."

                                                                          1541 Eglinton Ave W, Toronto, ON M6E, CA

                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                          1. re: JonasBrand

                                                                            I love the sound of picking up some jerk there. I couldn't find anything on the web regarding Rap's hours of operation. Anyone know when it is open? Is it weather dependant?


                                                                            1. re: Amac

                                                                              it is open laaaaaaate. I drive by sometimes at 2am and it along w/ Spencer's and Hotpot all have their oil drum grills smoking away.

                                                                              1. re: aser

                                                                                Thanks. I think I will check it out this weekend.

                                                                            2. re: JonasBrand

                                                                              Where can I eat jerk chicken without worrying about tiny, shattered chicken bones?

                                                                              1. re: Negaduck

                                                                                Probably a chain restaurant offering a jerk chicken dish. Authentic places all cook chicken bone in, tastes juicier that way.

                                                                                1. re: aser

                                                                                  Yeah, West Indians kind of relish the bones. My aunts and uncles go as far as cracking them with their teeth then sucking out the marrow. True story.

                                                                                  1. re: aser

                                                                                    That's all well and good but can't they serve me, say, an entire leg without hacking it up to pieces?

                                                                              2. tried Gem's Jerk in Brampton today www.gemsjerk.ca at Main & Bovaird

                                                                                there are lots of places popping up advertising jerk chicken so I figure I will try them out

                                                                                very good chicken. spicy but also a bit sweet. the way it was chopped up doesn't make sense to me, but i guess its "authentic". all dark meat, but still very tasty (i'd prefer some white too though


                                                                                rice and peas were good, seasoned well, coleslaw was dry for me though

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: duckdown

                                                                                  Hey Duckdown. I posted this a while ago under it's own thread but got not action... If you are in Brampton Portland Jerk is off the chain.

                                                                                  Location is hwy 7 & Torbram I'm in love with the Jerk pork, it’s moist and tender, cooked to perfection and the portions are huge. The Ox was black! Again substantial portion and it is fall off the bone tender and flavorful. Also had the Curry goat, Amazing, flavorful, soft and tender.... I'm a big Jerk chicken fan but I haven't even tried it yet because the Pork and Ox are orgasmic!!!! Although based on a quick survey of the others in line the chicken is out of this world too... Every time I've been, it's busy... and the food has been wonderful. Sometimes I find West Indian can be hit or miss. This place is Jamaican and so far it's been a home run every time.

                                                                                  I have since had the jerk chicken and can report it is as good as everything else on the menu.

                                                                                  If this place was in the city it would be all over this board.

                                                                                  1. re: Connoisseur

                                                                                    BTW - Based on the the reviews I've just noticed about "Rap's" on Eglington West That has to be my next spot to check.

                                                                                2. I really like the one at Sunrise on Yonge between Wellesley and College. It has this slow heat and the chicken is very moist.

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: TOchowgal

                                                                                    Thanks Chowgal. That's right by my work. I'll have to check it out. Since they closed Roy square I've been walking down to Ritz's for my lunch time jerk fix.