“Dem sell out! Don’t come,” boomed a voice into a mobile phone. “But me a carry pork fi you”, the voice went on to console. Such was the scene at the 2018 Jamaica Food & Drink Festival (JFDF) Meet Street & The Market event. Four thousand people flocked to the Kingston Waterfront on Saturday, October 27 to meet-up and purchase food and crafts from 29 vendors. The family event had live entertainment, a Kids’ Zone with face painting and video games presented by National Bakery, a marketplace with Made In Jamaica products and, of course, lots of food.
The lines were long and at some points during the evening it seemed as if getting food was as lofty an aspiration as a child saying that they will marry royalty when they grow up. However, give it to the chefs, caterers and restaurants present, they pressed on and served until there were just utensils left. The event which began at 3:00 pm saw a number of booths run out of food before 10:00 pm, two hours before the event was scheduled to wrap. Copperwood Pork, Chilitos Jamexican Food, Pink Apron, Street Food Saturdays, Bad Dawg and Fish Pot had some on the longest lines.
It seemed that everybody was at Meet Street. Every few feet patrons stopped and emitted screams of delight as friends who hadn’t seen each other in years embraced. Mayor of Kingston & St Andrew Delroy Williams supported the event and spoke of the positive impact that the JFDF has had on downtown. The festival organisers really attempted to create a free-flowing space; however, the popular booths were placed side-by-side and this unfortunately created a bottleneck. Parking, on the other hand was painless. There were a number of places to have a seat and the complimentary snow cones from Yello Media were a nice touch on such a hot evening.
Meet Street & The Market offered families an opportunity to participate in the 2018 JFDF for a nominal fee compared to the other events in the festival’s line-up. And from the turnout, we reckon, they were very appreciative. Thursday Food has highlights.