I had the unfortunate experience of dining at Yaadbak International Eatery, located at 232 W Fred D Gray Ave in Montgomery, AL, and I must say it was a debacle from start to finish. Let’s start with the cuisine, which was, at best, a mixed bag of mediocrity.
I began my ill-fated culinary journey with the curry goat, a dish that promised so much with its delectable gravy. The Jamaican curry flavors were somewhat on point, boasting a tantalizing blend of spices and aromatic herbs. However, the dish plummeted downhill from there. The actual goat meat seemed like it had been cooked in haste, resulting in a texture that was tenderly gamey but far from satisfying. It was as if they tried to compensate for a lack of proper cooking with an overly generous application of gravy, which ultimately fell flat in creating an enjoyable dish.
The side items served alongside the curry goat were equally disappointing. The mac and cheese, which should have been a comforting delight, was inexplicably terrible. It bore no resemblance to the classic version and was so far removed from it that I won’t even bother describing it further—it simply wasn’t worth discussing. The collard greens, too, were a disaster, with an unsettling sweetness that clashed rather than harmonized with the natural bitterness of the greens. The attempt at sweet-tart collard greens was an unflattering disaster.
If it weren’t for the brown stew chicken, this meal would have been a complete disaster. The flavors of the brown stew chicken were commendable, but even this dish had its drawbacks, with a slightly scorched aftertaste that marred an otherwise tasty experience.
The rice served with each entrée was a travesty. Instead of the expected pillowy white rice or the coconut-infused salted rice and peas, we were served a mushy mess of white rice that had soaked up so much moisture that it was like eating a blimp filled with waterlogged grains. The rice and peas, on the other hand, were hard as a rock, making them virtually inedible.
And now, the final nail in the coffin: the oxtails. As someone from Miami, FL, where oxtails are practically sacred, I was appalled by the poor execution of this cherished Jamaican dish. The oxtails at Yaadbak International Eatery had a foreign flavor that was nowhere near the desired Jamaican excellence. They lacked the rich, succulent tenderness and robust flavors that are expected from a well-prepared plate of oxtails.
But wait, there’s more! The abysmal customer service was the icing on this dreadful cake. From the moment I walked in, it was evident that this establishment had a serious deficiency in its service quality. The staff seemed disinterested, inattentive, and utterly untrained in the art of customer service. It was a stark reminder that even the most mediocre food can be somewhat salvaged by good service, but when both the cuisine and service are subpar, it’s an experience best avoided.
In conclusion, Yaadbak International Eatery has a long way to go in terms of both food quality and customer service. If they don’t take immediate steps to rectify these issues, they risk alienating potential clientele. My advice: please take the time to prepare these cherished dishes in the most culturally relevant way possible, along with being nice, courteous, and patient with your customers. You are in the South, which is known for its hospitality. I look forward to returning to this establishment and trying them out in a couple weeks. I also encourage you to visit this space on your own and let us know that you think. You can reach them at (334) 356-7780.