mama jamaica grill & cafe / kearny mesa – san diego, ca

Update: Mama Jamaica’s  closed at this location last week! According to a Yelper, they lost their lease and they are moving to join with another restaurant soon. On with my review:

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I was doing all that Easter posting last week so I’m all out of order with my postings.

Not that you know this or anything. But I’m telling it to you anyway.

This is a co-worker lunch from recent times that I didn’t get around to it.

Everyone was feeling that we needed to try new things. New things are shiny! And new! And possibly better! So my suggestion of Mama Jamaica Grill & Cafe was met with enthusiasm since it wasn’t Asian food!

We’re branching out here, people.

This is going to be a short and sweet post though, because I only ate my food. As such, I can really only comment on what went into my own belly, which was this:


BBQ Chicken!

I know. I didn’t even get the usual thing most people would probably get, which is jerk-something. But I didn’t want to eat anything spicy that day and this was one of the non-spicy things that they had. It was darn tasty, too, so I had no regrets. No regrets!

The chicken was skinless, bone in chicken thighs. Most of the chicken was quite good though there were a few “dry” parts, but since the whole thing was drenched in this lusciously sweet BBQ sauce, I didn’t really mind. If you like sweet sauce like I do, then this will be right up your alley. No tangy carolina-like sauce here.

The other thing I really loved… was the potato salad! Good, homemade potato salad is really hard to find for some reason. A lot of places seems to use that store bought crap and it’s SO EASY to tell store bought crap from the good stuff. This was the good stuff. Very creamy and the potatoes were cooked just right. It had an interesting mix of veggies in it, too: corn, carrots and peas! Plus lots of hard boiled egg. Very important if you ask me.

I even ate the coleslaw… which is weird for me to do since I normally can’t stand coleslaw. But the slaw here had a nice sweetness to it that wasn’t overpowering or cloyingly sweet. I also had other “stuff” like red cabbage and carrots in it. The rice & beans was also another good side dish – nice and fluffy rice with a mixture of beans.

All of the sides were excellent and I seriously would come back here just for the potato salad.

I’m hardcore about potato salad.


This is Lauren’s dish. She got the Jerk Chicken which came with coleslaw, rice & beans and a plantain.

I remember she liked it and said by the end of the meal you could really feel all of the spices swimming around in your mouth.

I don’t think those were her exact words though.


This is Matt’s dish. He got the Jerk Pork since he had already been here and tried the Jerk Chicken! He’s just ahead of the curve. He liked it. I don’t remember if he said anything else about it. I could make up something, but I won’t. This time.


David broke free of the Jerk-ness (har har) and went for the Curry Chicken. It’s green. That’s neat. I know he liked his food, too.

I’m sorry I didn’t take any notes this time. Can you tell?

Anyway. The food here it awesome. I really want to try their other sides (like the macaroni and cheese) and all of the other non-spicy dishes. Maybe if I bring Jake sometime he’ll get one of those spicy things and I’ll take a bite.

Mama Jamaica Grill & Cafe
5447 Kearny Villa Rd, Ste B
San Diego, CA 92123
(858) 279-5375

Mama Jamaica Cafe & Grill on Urbanspoon

5 thoughts on “mama jamaica grill & cafe / kearny mesa – san diego, ca

  1. Hi Mary, nice round up! I’ve visited the place a few times since the new year. I found the mac and cheese quite mushy and won’t really recommend actually. I enjoyed the Jerk Chicken though, but the Curry Chicken I had most recent was still frozen. 🙁 Maybe I caught them on a off day. It’s been a while but curious to try Island Spice again soon. At least the service at Mama’s is way friendlier, haha.

    1. Hi Dennis – Good to know. I still really loved that potato salad… and I did find the service was quite friendly and inviting. I hope it was just that you caught them on an off day! I was hoping the mac n cheese would be good since I enjoyed the potato salad so much.

  2. Hey Mary, really love what your doing here. Im going to be in San Diego from April 19-21 and have been reading your blog to take some notes on where to eat! If your ever down in the Fullerton area, check out the food places that me and my school group recommend!

    1. Hi Kirk! Yes, my co-worker told me on Monday. I forgot to put a little note on my post. I heard they were moving down the street to join with a Greek restaurant (thanks to Yelp). Thanks for reminding me though!

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