Tropical Paradise Restaurant in Berkeley - report
Went to Tropical Paradise last night for Ghanaian food. There was only one other person in there but I'm not sure why - I thoroughly enjoyed the meal and would definitely return.
I had the Grilled Jumbo Prawns, which came with a seasoned rice, black-eyed peas, stewed spinach, fried plantains, and a few pieces of lettuce as a bed for the prawns. Although a little too salty for me, the prawns were immensely flavorful and cooked perfectly. The rice was nothing special on its own but was delicious with the black eyed peas and spinach. Both of those were cooked with tomatoes and some delicious combination of spices. The menu said that the spinach had melon seeds in it but I couldn't find those. The dark fried plantains were the perfect complement to the rest of the dish. My dining partner got the same thing as me, minus the prawns. We both left with empty plates and happy bellies.
Tropical Paradise Restaurant
2021 University Ave.
We enjoyed dinner here a few months ago.
The food was very good, the prices were very low, the service was so bad as to be amusing.
The waiter had no experience whatsoever. He was very sweet, very polite, and completely confused. The cook had to continually remind him of what to do. He brought the food to the wrong table, and then when we asked for the check he gave us the check for the other table. We straightened it out with the other diners. He was really very nice, just out of his element.
The food had a nice contrast of sweet, savory and spicy. There are many vegetarian options.
I would definitely go back -- just haven't had the opportunity.
Review from SF Chronicle:
Tropical Paradise is one of my favorite vegetarians meals. I love the black-eyed peas and spinach equally and can enjoy them both - one as the main and one as the side. This also comes with jollof rice (kind of like spanish rice), plantains, and mixed greens + balsamic on the table. All of this for a low price around $7. It's a lot of food too and could work as 2 small lunches for me. I used to have the shrimp kabobs, but they were consistently overcooked, so maybe I'll give them another shot. Not as budget friendly though at $12. The varieties of hot sauces seems to grow everytime I'm there, so it's nice to try new ones, although I'm very loyal to plantains + sriracha.
Yes, service is very slow...even when you order the veggie dishes, which I believe are always pre-made and ready in the steam table (since they're sides for all the entrees), but the workers are kind. Just don't go if you're in a rush. To-go options are a good idea though. I'll call before I leave work and they usually have it ready when I get there 15 minutes later.