Go Tropical in Durham Region at these Restaurants | Ontario Culinary
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Go Tropical in Durham Region at these Restaurants

Who needs a pricey plane ticket to get that vacation glow? We’ve scoured the neighbourhood and found the crème de la crème of eateries where the vibe is as sunny as a day at the beach and the food, well, it’s like a first-class ticket to Flavor Town.

A Delicious Durham Staycation

Welcome to your staycation in Durham Region, where the tropical drinks flow, the food sings, and the only thing we can’t supply is the sand for your toes. Pack your appetite, leave your passport at home, and let’s pretend we’re somewhere exotic, shall we?

Grid of two tropical restaurants in Durham REgion

Mr. Delicious by the Beach

Where: 893 Bayly St, Pickering, ON. (View Map)

On the hunt for that real-deal Jamaican flavor and laid-back island atmosphere? Cue the music and head straight to Mr. Delicious By The Beach. Just a breezy stroll away from the Pickering waterfront at Westshore Beach, this little gem is where the vibe is always tropical, and the welcome is as warm as the Caribbean sun.

Famous for dishing out food so good it’ll make you want to dance, generous helpings that’ll challenge even the hungriest of souls, and a staff so friendly you’ll want to invite them to your next family barbecue. Chef Glen? Oh, he’s just whipping up magic with his seafood and Caribbean specialties, not to mention desserts that deserve their own fan club. When you’re itching for authentic Jamaican eats, tropical sips, and all the good vibes, Mr. Delicious is your go-to spot.

Nathan’s Jerk

Where: 1812 Simcoe St N #3, Oshawa, ON. (View Map)

grid of two photos from nathan's jerk

Ever stumbled upon a culinary love affair between the Caribbean and Mexico? Nathan’s Jerk is the saucy rendezvous of these two vibrant cuisines, serving up street food with a twist that’s as unique as a unicorn in a suit.

Imagine this: walls splashed with art that’s as modern as it is tropical, vines dangling like green chandeliers, and a fusion feast that’ll have your taste buds singing with pleasure. Dive into their menu where jerk chicken quesadillas rub shoulders with jerk shrimp burritos, and whatever you do, don’t even think about skipping their legendary jerk chicken sandwich nestled in coco bread. It’s the kind of place you wander into and never want to leave, except maybe to brag about it.

Los Cabos Cantina & Grill

Where: 1009 Dundas St E, Whitby, ON. (View Map)

interior of los cabos

Got a hankering for the real Mexican deal? Step into Los Cabos Cantina & Grill and bam—you’re no longer in Durham Region but have magically transported right off a sun-soaked resort, having spent the day lounging at Lover’s Beach, and just popped into a local Mexican spot for some eats.

With their Mucho Margarita Mondays and Fish Taco Fridays, it’s a wonder people aren’t lining up around the block daily to get a piece of this local legend. The decor? Straight-up beach resort chic meets lively fiesta vibes, complete with live entertainment that’ll whisk you away to that vacation you’ve been dreaming of, no passport required.

Surf Kitchen & Bar

Where: 116 Dundas St W, Whitby, ON. (View Map)

surf kitchen grid of two photos, bar on the left and two cocktails on the right

Snap up a cocktail that’s begging for an Instagram feature and catch the vibe waves at Surf Kitchen & Bar, nestled right in the heart of downtown Whitby. With a menu loaded with bite-sized delights, tantalizing tacos, and artisan cocktails that scream Southern California sunsets, you’ll swear you’ve teleported to the U.S. for a slice of sunny paradise.

It’s not just the neon glow and the jungle-esque decor setting the scene; the flavors here are so on point, you’ll be daydreaming about your next visit before you’ve even called it a night.

Tropical Delight Eatery

Where: 465 Bayly St W #5, Ajax, ON. (View Map)

cocktail with purple flowers

Walking into Tropical Delight Eatery is like waking up to a warm summer day. Not only will you love the food, but you’re bound to fall in love with the restaurant’s cute and colourful decor.

This Jamaican-based restaurant serves various Caribbean delights, signature desserts and drinks, and features delicious options—like oxtail, curry goat, jerk chicken and more. Try takeout or dine-in at this warm, friendly and welcoming Caribbean restaurant in the heart of Ajax.

Chúuk Restaurant

Where: 774 Liverpool Rd, Pickering, ON. (View Map)

grid of two photos at chuuk- on eof the bar and one an overhead spread of food

Tacos and margaritas on your mind? Look no further. Chúuk in Pickering is your next stop for that authentic taste of Mexico you’ve been craving. Here, handcrafted cocktails such as the Pink Jaguar steal the show, while shareable delights like the freshest guacamole set the stage.

Dive into main dishes that will have you chanting for more—think beef tacos that pack a flavorful punch, and don’t even get me started on the churros, a sweet finale to your culinary adventure.

Stepping into Chúuk, with its eye-catching wallpaper and chic decor, is like a direct flight to Tulum. And for those grand fiestas or special gatherings, their ‘pineapple room’ offers the perfect backdrop. So, ready for a taste trip?

Caribbean Heat

Where: 985 Brock Rd, Pickering, ON. l(View Map)

close up of the food at Caribbean Heat

Feeling under the weather thanks to endless grey skies? Brighten up your day with a trip to Caribbean Heat, where the decor pops with sunny yellows and ocean blues, and tropical vibes flow as freely as the drinks. This spot is a hidden treasure for anyone craving a burst of color and a taste of the exotic, offering a unique twist with its West Indian Chinese cuisine.

Dive into a culinary adventure with standout dishes like their zesty mixed fried rice, fiery pepper shrimp, the signature Alex chicken, or wings so hot, they’ll teleport you straight to the Caribbean sun. Whether you’re in the mood to feast family-style with their all-you-can-eat option or grab a plate to go, Caribbean Heat promises to turn any gloomy day into a mini-vacation.

Starapples Restaurant

Where: 77 King St E, Bowmanville, ON. (View Map)

grid of photos at star apples: on the left, the exterior at night lit with a neon green sign, on the right a tropical cocktail

The stars aligned when Starapples Restaurant opened its doors in downtown Bowmanville. Named after the succulent Starapple fruit, this Jamaican restaurant features a range of delicious plates—from grab-and-go beef patties to jerk chicken. Although there’s no white sand to sink your feet into, Starapples prides themselves on delivering an opportunity for you to immerse yourself in Jamaicaflavours and warm hospitality.

Sea Salt Seafood Cafe

Where: 100 Westney Rd S, Ajax, ON. (View Map)

overhead shot of. plate of seafood

Shut your eyes and let the soothing symphony of waves crashing transport you as you savor the ocean’s bounty at Sea Salt Sea Food Cafe. A pioneering venture in Ontario, this café blends the charm of a seafood shack with the cozy vibe of a coffee shop, all under the caring hands of a family dedicated to delivering a one-of-a-kind dining experience.

Forget about jetting off to warmer climes for that Southern-style seafood boil. Right here in Durham Region, you can indulge in rich, buttery lobster rolls, aromatic garlic mussels, and explosively flavorful dynamite shrimp, all complemented by an array of coffees and mocktails. Sea Salt Sea Food Cafe is your seaside escape, minus the flight.

Palm Court Restaurant & Bar

Where: 2620 Simcoe St N Unit 7, Oshawa, ON. (View Map)

grid of neon sign and chicken at palm court

Envision a space where modern design meets the vivid, lively hues of the Caribbean, complete with a tropical bar brimming with fruit-laden cocktails that whisper tales of distant islands. Welcome to Palm Court Restaurant & Bar, a cherished local haunt that marries traditional culinary arts with fresh local produce for a genuine Caribbean Chinese feast.

Here, the city’s hustle fades away, replaced by the soft caress of an island breeze as you dive into their rich, savoury menu. Tempt your taste buds with their saltfish, fall-off-the-bone oxtail, mixed chow mein, aromatic duck curry, and sweet-spicy hot honey wings. It’s not just a meal; it’s a mini vacation with every bite.

Caribbean Eats Kitchen

Where: 8 Foster Hewitt St, Beaverton, ON. (View Map)

closeup of food at Caribbean eats

Even though you can’t pull up a chair and stay awhile, Caribbean Eats Kitchen in Beaverton is too good not to shout about. Whether you’re exploring the Township of Brock or making waves on Lake Simcoe, make your taste buds a priority and swing by for their takeout treasures.

This spot has a knack for turning Wednesdays into a culinary festival with their Trini Bojou and stew chicken that’ll make you forget it’s the middle of the week. Add in some fried green plantain, and you’re not just eating; you’re on a flavor voyage to the tropics. Trust us, their menu is a promise of satisfaction delivered with every bite.

Keep Discovering Delicious Durham Region

Want more tasty treats in Durham Region? Keep reading.

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