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Caribbean Pearl Catering Knows Good Fusion

By Marina I. Jokic

Caribbean Pearl Catering of Melville, New York has dared to reimagine Caribbean fusion fare by delving into the archives of family recipes and traditions and marrying them with modern favorites.

Chef and owner Urcilina Grammont, originally from Haiti, admits that she is partial to her native cuisine and gives it prominence on the menu. This doesn't stop her from experimenting with Southern, French, Italian, and Latin American dishes however, which are also core to her menu. Gluten free, kosher, nut-free, vegan, and vegetarian options are available as well.

"Being of Haitian descent and [growing up both] in New York and Haiti [are experiences that] have greatly influenced my menu," said Grammont. "I got a chance to experience all types of Caribbean cuisine, [from that of Jamaica and Trinidad to Ghana, and Barbados]."

Caribbean Pearl's menu represents an odyssey through the Caribbean and Latin American regions accented by European and North American dishes. Just looking over the appetizers, you get a sense of the sheer regional variety and experimental spirit behind Grammont's culinary creations. Brie and fig in puff pastry and grapefruit confit glazed meatballs harken to European fine dining, while jerk chicken wings and grilled fish with plantain represent Caribbean culinary roots.

The main menu is designed with sophistication in mind while staying true to Grammont's ethnic roots. Entrees such as the chicken marinated in rum and lime juice, the oxtail with lima beans and carrots, and stewed goat are tender, hearty, and delicious. Classics such as the buttermilk fried chicken and steak with mushrooms integrate recipes that are more regionally familiar.

Finish your dinner with one of Caribbean Pearl's unique desserts like the Caribbean bread pudding with coconut rum sauce, the pineapple upside down cake beignets, or the Blanc Manger served with cinnamon spice rum sauce. Pair any of these bold choices with an aperitif like a chilled Moscato or an aged port.

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