Patsy’s Coffeeshop (US$1.50-US$18, 8am-10pm Mon.\Fri. 9am-10pm Sat.\Sun) serves coffee, breakfast, lunch, cocktails, and desserts and uses the famous Blue Mountain coffee bean, the Peaberry coffee bean, which is naturally sweeter and lower in caffeine than its counterparts. It's located on the side of One Love Drive on West End Road. Some of its specialties include tasty homemade waffle cones, shakes and ganja ice-cream.
Negril and the West
Hanover and Westmoreland are Jamaica's westernmost parishes. Hanover wraps around from Montego Bay on its northeastern border to where Negril's large hotel strip overflows from Westmoreland at its western reaches. It's a picturesque parish with small mountains tapering down to the coast with rivers, lush valleys, and deep, navigable coves. Caves dot the landscape of some of Jamaica's most biologically diverse ecosystems, in the shadow of the Dolphin Head mountain range.
Negril, which straddles the Hanover\Westmoreland border, has become a mass-market destination popular among Jamaicans and foreign visitors alike. The Kingstonian phenomenon of a weekend escape to "country" often implies a trip west to kick back and adopt the beach life, which necessarily involves taking in spectacular sunsets and the enviable slow pace evoked in Tyrone Taylor's 1983 hit, "Cottage in Negril." A constant stream of new visitors also gives hustlers a chance to do their thing, and Negril has gained a reputation as a mecca for sinful indulgence as a result.
While Negril is the region's most well-known draw, there are several low-key communities farther east that are just as easily accessible from Montego Bay's international airport and worthy coastal destinations in themselves, namely Little Bay, Bluefields, Belmont, and Whitehouse. The Westmoreland interior consists of vast alluvial plains on either side of Cabarita River, still some of Jamaica's most productive sugarcane territory. The plains extend from the base of the Orange Hill, just east of Negril, to where the Roaring River rises out of the earth from its underground source in the hills above Blue Hole Garden.
Hanover exists as a parish since it was portioned off from Westmoreland in 1723 and given the name of English monarch George I of the House of Hanover. The Spanish first settled the area when New Seville was abandoned in 1534 and the capital moved to Spanish Town. Lucea became prosperous, with a busier port than Montego Bay in its heyday, which served 16 large sugar estates in the area. Remnants of many estate great houses dot the landscape to the east and west of Lucea, their abandoned ruins showing evidence of having been torched and destroyed during slave riots. Kennilworth, Barbican, and Tryall are a few of the old estates that have visible ruins; although they have been declared national heritage sites, they are not maintained.
Vinne's Colie Shop Bar N Grill (US$6-US$30, 10am-10pm daily, Norman Manley Blvd, in front of Chance Restaurant) serves seafood dishes like grilled lobster, garlic conch and steamed fish along with Jamaican dishes for lunch and dinner with drinks. Vinne's also offers catering services, waiter service, dine out options, and group reservations.
Little Negril Seafood (US$7-US$50, 10am-10pm daily) serves dishes in a cozy thatch covered, rustic, beach-front restaurant. The location is shared with Pimentoz Jerk restaurant, along with The Gallery Restaurant, Ital Island Restaurant and Beach House Sweet Eats(Devon House I-Scream) and within the Island Lux Beach Park. This is an ideal location to visit; varieties of food to try from different restaurants, fun activities to try at the Beach Park before and after eating, and great shopping experiences are just a few reasons.
Pimentoz Jerk (from JMD $200, 10am-11pm daily) is truly a great addition to the Island Lux Beach Park alongside Little Negril Seafood Restaurant. Its mantra, "Authentic Jamaican Jerk", speaks volumes about their pride in the quality of their unique jerked dishes which range from the familiar Jerk Chicken to Barbeque Jerk wings. It is a wheelchair accessible Jamaican beach bar that offers takeout, outdoor seating, wait staff and alcoholic beverages to customers.
Zest Restaurant (7am-10pm daily), located at The Cliff, is a welcome addition to Negril's food scene, showcasing the creative hand of internationally acclaimed executive chef Cindy Hutson. Try singular starters like the shrimp ceviche with fried plantain and bean dip or mains like sauteed snapper with a side of cashew and jackfruit spiced rice. The dining area is split between a chic interior and clifftop al fresco, with crashing waves as a soundtrack. Reservations are required for guests not staying on property.
Dervy's Lobster Trap (open by reservation daily, US$18\30), owned by the charismatic Dervent Wright, and operated by the whole family, including his wife Gem, daughter Tiffany, and son, Junior. Dervy's has some of the island's best lobster, plus a great view of Round Hill from its vantage point on the waterfront. Be sure to call ahead to make reservations. Reach it by taking the second right in Hopewell, heading west down Sawyer's Road to the sea's edge. A sign for Lobster Trap indicates the turnoff from the main road.
Hammond's Pastry Place (18 Great George St., 8 a.m.\6:30 p.m Mon.\Fri., closing at 8:30 p.m on Saturday) serves patties, cakes, and deli sandwiches.
Charis Restaurant (just before the entrance to Round Hill heading west, opens Mon-Sat 9 a.m.\6 p.m, US$5\10) serves jerk chicken and pork, curry chicken and goat, a variety of pasta dishes including alfredo sauce, shrimp and chicken, or Rasta pasta with ackee, in season. Steamed, grilled, or fried fish is done to order. The restaurant reopened in January 2009 under the new ownership of two local couples, Geoffrey and Jackry Harris, and Marcine and Oniel Brown.
Sea Shells (9 a.m.\9 p.m daily, US$7\21), just west of Hopewell, is run by Lorna Williams and serves chicken, pork, fish, and lobster dishes. The restaurant has a rootsy vibe, with the dining area right next to the water and a bar by the roadside.
Half Moon Beach Bar & Grill (7 a.m.-10 p.m or until the last person leaves the bar) serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner in a laid-back beach shack setting, with typical Jamaican favorites as well as creative international fusion like shrimp with pineapple, sweet pepper kabob, seafood crepes, and lobster (US$5-18).
Half Moon Beach is a great location for weddings, and the reefs offshore make for great snorkeling.
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