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Cheap Eats: LC's Roti Shop

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Where: LC’s Roti Shop, 19505 NW 2nd Ave, Miami Gardens.

What $15 Gets You: A chicken roti, a sugar cake, a doubles, and a Coke.

Caribbean cuisine is hard to define because of the mixing of cultures that exist in the area generally referred to as the Caribbean. When a friend suggested that we go get roti, I didn’t know what to expect (think of a giant burrito stuffed with meat and curry and you’ll have a good idea of what it is).

We entered the dimly lit, mostly empty establishment smack in the middle of the Caribbean shopping plaza on NW 2nd Ave. A neon sign on the wall read, “LC’s Roti Shop.” A hand scribbled sign under the menu read, “No credit cards. Only cash.”

The place had that real neighborhood restaurant feel to it, it was a little intimidating however. Here’s a tip: don’t hesitate to order your food or wait there looking mystified as it will be a long while before you get anything.

I ordered the chicken roti. There are no side dishes with the meal although you can order some, like the doubles, which is like a small sandwich with chickpeas and other ingredients, but there is hardly a need for them. I suggest that you don’t come to this place looking for an expansive menu; it’s strictly all roti.

The chicken roti was spicy, but not to the point of having you reaching for the water after every bite. The curry and pepper blended well to give the chicken a well-seasoned taste; in fact, I’m sure that the chicken was also spiced beforehand. It sounds like overkill and it might very well be, but all I know is that it was satisfying. My only qualm is that the chicken roti was not boneless. It was kind of hard to enjoy it thoroughly when I had to stop after every second bite to avoid choking to death on a chicken bone.

Here’s another tip: don’t expect a knife and fork, roti is meant to be eaten with your hands, so bring some hand sanitizer if you have a fear of germs. I don’t know if it just fed my baser instinct, but it was quite fun digging into the meal with my bare hands. It’s not the cleanliest of meals, but I left full and satisfied.

As my friend sat in my car 20 minutes after we left the place, she simply blurted out “I’m full.” She napped shortly thereafter.

Final Verdict: I recommend LC’s Roti Shop. The atmosphere is great, once you get used to it. The food is more than enough for what you are paying for. And it’s twenty times better than a burger or any other fast food, but it’s just as quick. The only down side is that it is messy to the point that I don’t think anyone can eat it properly and look prim so make sure you take a whole stack of napkins with you. -- Elvis Ramirez

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