Guyana cuisine guide: what to eat, best places to visit + curry tour

History


The cuisine of Guyana is the ethnic cuisine of the state of Guyana, located on the northeast coast of South America. Guyana’s cuisine mirrors both the ethnographic makeup of the nation and its history as a colony. Although Guyana is located on the South American continent, its cuisine is in many ways comparable to that of the Caribbean islands.

Guyana’s cuisine includes ethnically diverse groups of influences and cuisines of African, Creole, East Indian, Portuguese, Indian, Chinese, and European ( mainly British) peoples.

Characteristic foods

Plant products

Virtually all of the products consumed in Guyana are produced primarily locally. The main common foods in Guyana are rice and pigeon peas, as well as sweet potatoes, cassava, and a variety of taro, eddos. Many of the fruits and vegetables grow alongside the shore.

Meat and fish

Raw food Salmon oily fish steak, beef meat and turkey breast on gray concrete background

Fresh fish and marine products are a major component of the ration of people living in the countryside and little hamlets alongside the coast. Common species of fish here by far are jalobaca, butterfish, tilapia, catfish, and haplosternum.

Dairy products

Milk and dairy products are not very common in Guyanese cuisine.

Spices

Spices are widely used in Guyanese cuisine. Dishes are usually quite spicy and savory because of Indian and Chinese influences.

Traditional Food

Bread


Roti is a typical Indian flatbread that has become popular in Guyana.

Cassava bread – flat tortillas made from cassava flour.

Cheese roll – a typical Guyanese bread and cheese roll traditionally made at home in villages. Cheese roll appeared in Guyanese cuisine under the impact of British food.

Soups


Metemji, a dense Guyanese soup of minced meat with coconut milk and big balls of gnocchi, is called Duff. Metemji is usually served with fried fish or chicken.

The border province of Berbice makes crab soups with colors reminiscent of Louisiana Creole soups, such as gumbo.

Main dishes

  • Dal bat is one of Guyana’s most famous dishes, influenced by Indian cuisine. Dal bat is steamed rice with lentil soup.
  • Guyanese pepper is one of Guyana’s ethnic foods influenced by the Indians. The pepper pot is a cinnamon and hot pepper stew stewed in a cassava root sauce. The meat chosen is beef, lamb, or pork, although sometimes pepper pot is made with chicken. It is typically fed with thick homemade bread, rice, or roti. Pepper is traditionally made for Christmas and other holidays. Continuing an authentic Native American tradition, the peppers are prepared in a large pot. Thanks to the cassava root sauce, which makes the meat last longer, the pot can be eaten for several different days.
  • Curries are highly favored in the cuisine of Guyana and are prepared with different types of meat: chicken, goat meat, lamb, marine products, and even duck.
  • Chow Mein (Chow Mein in Guyanese) is a well-known dish in Guyana in the form of Chinese noodles with vegetables and marine products.

Salads and appetizers

  • Guyanese-style Chinese meals and roast chicken are the trendiest and most typical meals of snack bars in major cities.
  • Chicken in a ruff – roasted chicken legs in dough. A popular street food in Guyana.

Desserts


Pine cake – traditional Guyanese sweet cakes (usually triangular in shape) filled with pineapple puree.
Black Cake – a traditional birthday cake made with dried fruit soaked in rum or cherry brandy. In Guyana, Black Cake is usually baked for Christmas and New Year.

Drinks


Most people take fresh fruit to prepare its own beverages, called “local liquor.”

Special home-made beverages are popular:

  • Lime Wash, which looks like lemonade,
  • Pineapple drink out of pineapple,
  • Hibiscus sorrel drink,
  • Ginger beer, made from ginger root.
  • Peanut punch is a nutritious protein drink of peanuts or peanut butter with sugar and milk.
    Sometimes spices (nutmeg and cinnamon), cornflakes or granola are also added. Less commonly, peanut punch is made alcoholic by adding Angostura bitters and rum oil. Peanut punch is often called an aphrodisiac because of the drink’s high fat, protein, and overall caloric content.
  • Maubi is a beverage prepared from tree bark with added sugar and flavors (usually anise), widely consumed in the Caribbean. Maubi was originally a fermented drink made in small batches. But nowadays, it is predominantly an unfermented non-alcoholic drink that is produced commercially. Maubi is typically bought as a ready-made syrup and then mixed with water (carbonated or non-carbonated). Maubi has a sweet taste with a bitter aftertaste.

Alcohol

  • Paracaria is an alcoholic beverage made from sour cassava, typical of the Indians of Guyana. Like other alcoholic beverages made from cassava, Paracaria is made by double fermentation with amylolytic mold.
  • Kasiri / Kaskiri is a cassava beer made by Americans in Suriname and Guyana. The cassava roots are tarted, diluted with water, and put under a press to extract the juice. The resulting juice is fermented to produce kashiri. The juice can also be boiled in a dark viscous syrup called castripo/cassarip. This syrup has antiseptic properties and is employed for flavoring.

Serving and Etiquette

Christmas night and New Year’s Eve are Guyana’s favorite holidays, which always come with food. Preliminary preparation becomes some of the thrill of the pre-holiday rush. It begins with preparing and steeping fruit in rum or wine during the black week, if not months before the holidays. Traditional beverages such as ginger beer, Maubi, and sorrel drink are also prepared in advance.

The Georgetown 7 Curry Tour

The Georgetown 7 Curry Tour is an intimate, hands-on culinary immersion that takes visitors through the whole preparation steps of the traditional Guyanese 7 Curry dish, from purchasing core components like eggplant, edos and katagar at a native vegetable store to explorig the steps of the meal with Chef. He ispopular and called as the “Singing Chef” cause he sing serenades to the visitors while they prepare the meal.

7 Curry is a traditional dish beloved by Guyanese that is usually prepared on special occasions, such as weddings or family gatherings. The dish is perfectly presented on top of newly prepared water leafs. It’s a great beloved customary meal, but prepared in a contemporary way. And the coolest thing about it is that you can actually eat it with your bare hands!

Menu

– 7 Curries – 7 curries include pumpkin, baguette (spinach), kataga, potato/khana (chickpeas), balanj (eggplant), edo and dal.

To order tour, please visit: https://www.rutachile.com.pe/Tour-Detalle.php?t=262274P1

Best restautants and bars in Guyana

Bottle Bar and Restaurant

$$ – $$$
Cara Lodge, 294 Quamina Street, Georgetown Guyana
+592 225 5301

The place is nice. They offer native meals. The specialities are ‘Metemgee’ and ‘Pepperpot’). A bit pricey, but it worth it. Try the starters – the crab cakes and the pulled duck.  As for the drinks. Try the local beer and the nice rum drinks.

Maharaja Palace


$$ – $$$

207 Sheriff Street, Georgetown Guyana
+592 219 4346

https://www.facebook.com/Maharaja-Palace-Restaurant-181011685267791/

 

Great restaurant in the centerof the city. Menu offers many options and covers Indian, Chinese and Italian cuisine with added fusion dishes. You should visit this restaurant. Have the tandoori chicken, lamb and sweet and sour chicken.

Gravity Lounge

$$ – $$$

Floor 6th Of the United Center Mall Camp & Regent St, Georgetown Guyana

+592 227 6168

https://www.facebook.com/GravityGY

 

It’s a nice and cool atmosphere with an awesome view of the city in the evening for any event tasty food, nice staff and good spot . Great nightlife bar and many options of drinks and music.

Lily’s Cafe

$$ – $$$

87 Barrack Street Kingston, Georgetown Guyana

+592 231 9804

 

Not a luxury place, but simple and well developed. Decor is cozy and welcoming but the place is not spacy. The sandwiches are excellent, good coffee and they have amazing desserts which are good to share.

Status churrascaria e pizzaria


$$ – $$$
102/109 Sanderman Place &Croal Street, Georgetown Guyana

+592 601 5340

If you’re in Georgetown and want to try Brazilian food. This is the place you should visit. A small comfortable place run by a family. A nice atmosphere with helpful staff and tasty food. Try grilled chicken wrap. There are vegetarian choices and many other affordable little snack-type of things.

The Coffee Bean Cafe & Eatery


$$ – $$$

133 Church Street South Cummingsburg, Georgetown Guyana
+592 223 2222

http://www.thecoffeebeangy.com/

Coffee Bean is one of the best Café/ Bistro! They serve cosmopolitan food with a local flare. We recommend Coffee Bean for a quick gran and go, lunch or even business meetings! Placed near to the church. It’s not an international chain of the same name! Perfect for coffees and  meals.

Coal Pot

17 Hincks St, Robbstown, Georgetown Guyana

If you are a vegan, then this is the place for you. Cooked fresh daily,  they also serve tofu, coook-up rice, veggies in season, plantains, pastas, and fresh all natural fruit juices. Try to visit this place in the morning, can be a bit crowded.

Oasis Cafe

$$ – $$$
125 Carmichael St Cummingsburg, Georgetown Guyana
+592 226 9916
https://www.facebook.com/TheOasisCafe/

Placed in heart of Guyana. There is a buffet, a menu and a take out desk. The buffet is quite famous, many locals go there. It’s not just a coffee bar – many delicious snacks and they even have Pepper Pot on the menu! Try pine tart! Nice, calm buzzy place you should visit.

Shanta’s

$
Camp St. & New Market St., Georgetown Guyana
+592 226 4365

It’s a gem of Guyana that exists for years and is a beloved of natives. Wonderful, clean place that serves the best Dahl Puri in Georgetown Guyana. The meals are all authentic and they have a wonderful choice if you are really wish to try the traditional cuisine. It is clean and very nice.

Hibiscus Restaurant and Lounge

$$ – $$$
91 Middle Street North Cummingsburg, Georgetown Guyana
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hibiscus-Restaurant-Lounge/198214543528516
It’s great Indoors and Outdoors Restaurant. They serve the best curry king prawbs. The cost of meals depends on the choice on the Menu but can be expensive for the dish.

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