It took less than two years for Kingston, Jamaica native Kern Dixon to expand his modest Caribbean-style food truck into a successful restaurant. Manager Amber Thomas said Dixon was inspired by his grandmother, a Jamaican cook. Dixon crafted an extensive menu of authentic Caribbean dishes for the 2019 opening of his Burlington restaurant, Dixon’s Jamaican Taste — the Elon community’s pick for “Best Black-owned Business.”
“He followed his grandmother’s dreams and used family recipes,” Thomas said.
Dixon was unavailable for comment.
The phrase “Health over wealth” is printed around Dixon’s colorful dining room, a nod to both the laid-back environment and Jamaica’s diverse food culture. The menu mirrors the blend of African, European and Indian influences found in traditional Jamaican cuisine.
Thomas said the restaurant is popular with Elon students, the majority of whom order the classic jerk chicken. The Caribbean dish is heavily associated with Jamaica, but for anyone looking for a less routine meal, Thomas had several suggestions.
“Ox tails — give it a shot!” she said. “I like the curry goat, if you’re looking for something with a kick.”
In addition to pastries, Jamaican sodas and alcoholic beverages, Dixon’s offers a variety of specials for hungry or indecisive eaters. Thomas suggested pairing meals with a cup of housemade soursop juice, a Caribbean drink made from the soursop fruit and, she said, known for its health benefits.
“We appreciate everyone who comes out,” Thomas said.