Pakington Street restaurant Taste Jamaica has closed its doors

Subscribe to Forte Magazine


Pakington Street restaurant Taste Jamaica has closed its doors

The Jamaican-style café will host a farewell party on 25 June with a lineup of live music.

Loved amongst locals for its Jamaican-style meals and bright rooftop bar, Pakington Street’s iconic Jamaican-style café Taste Jamaica has permanently closed its doors.

The business announced the news on social media on Sunday, 18 June, after originally announcing the news in April, citing a focus on imports and catering at festivals and events going forward.

“Taste Jamaica restaurant is now permanently closed. Time for some well deserved relaxation,” the post read.

“Everyone that has supported us during this time, we really do appreciate your support. We will never forget you all.

“Festivals and Events that’s what we are about and that’s what we will be focusing on moving forward.”

Keep up with the latest food and booze news across the region here.

Taste Jamaica will host a farewell party on 25 June 2023 with a brilliant day of live music. Titled ‘Reggae on Pako’, the farewell event will kick off at 12pm and feature the likes of DJ Dazz, Wild Gloriosa, Sole Sister Swing, Mpress Kandance, Flames Eye, Ras Jahknow band and Nicky Bomba.

Entry is free with food and drinks at bar prices.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Taste Jamaica (@tastejamaicaa)

Gracing Geelong’s revered foodie strip in August in 2020, Taste Jamaica was the result of a pivoted business model from Damian Rosevelt. Earning himself a strong reputation for serving traditional chicken, jerk pork, fine beer and Caribbean food products beneath a pop-up marquee across events in the region and Australia, the arrival of the pandemic brought his business to a halt, forcing Damian to adapt and bring his dreams of a café to life.

Offering Jamaican-style meals, alongside the sweetest of treats and Jamaica Blue Mountain Blend coffee, this contemporary café was all about bringing the Caribbean to you, with flavours transporting you to the lush topography of mountains, rainforests and reef-lined beaches of Jamaica.

Serving takeaway and dine-in, this was the place to go to fill up on hearty meals like Jerk Chicken, Jerk Port and a goat curry, fried Plantain and soup of the day, or keep it light with a selection of scrolls and cakes. A favourite was the traditional Jamaican rum cake, expertly created by their Jamaican pastry chef.

A year after its arrival, Taste Jamaica expanded to open a new rooftop area, giving the business more space to deliver that escape to the Island of Jamaica we all desperately needed. The bar boasted heaters, marquees, cocktails, reggae music, live music and so much more.

Last year though, saw Rosevelt return to his passion for festivals and events, hosting Geelong’s first-ever Reggae festival, celebrating the Caribbean culture through music and food in an epic one-day event. Joining forces with a group of like-minded mates (three of who are Caribbean nationals), Rosevelt curated a huge one-day event in October offering an immersive escape to the island of Jamaica right in the heart of Geelong.

Now with a second iteration of the Reggae Festival slated for November 2023, and a renewed focus on import and catering they were known for pre-Covid, this just marks the beginning for what’s to come from Taste Jamaica.

You can keep up with the latest from Taste Jamaica here