Want a croc and conch fritter? Kiwi
lamb? A ‘roo steak?
C’mon down to Tukka starting 8
(Some of you may not know a few of
these words. So, for clarity’s sake; Kiwi = New Zealand; ‘roo = kangaroo; Tukka
= an Australian aboriginal word meaning food of the land, or native cuisine).
Tukka native fusion restaurant is
the brainchild of owner and head chef Ron Hargrave, a long-time Cayman Islands
resident and former head chef at Seven Mile Beach institution Deckers.
The Australian-born Chef Ron’s new
digs will open next weekend on the former site of another Cayman Islands institution,
Portofino, on the waterfront in East End. Portofino closed its doors earlier
this year after 12 years.
Passersby may notice that the old
restaurant building is an entirely new orange colour on the outside, and that
work is continuing apace on the inside as Chef Ron and his mates get ready for
“The concept of Tukka is native
Caribbean and Australian fusion,” he said. “It’s Caribbean food with an
Australian blend, so you may get a jerk kangaroo; you’ll have an Aussie burger,
which is probably one of the biggest burgers you’re going to eat. We’ve got a
steak and mushroom pie, which is sort of the equivalent of a Jamaican beef
But no worries, there’s plenty of
local food on offer, and Chef Ron does mean local. “All the fishermen out
here…whenever they’ve got fresh fish, snapper, wahoo, tuna, mahi-mahi, it’s
going to come straight here, through the back door and straight onto the
plate,” Ron said.
For Islanders, think of Calypso
Grill in East End.
There are also a few other fresh
seafood options to be had at Tukka, but we’re sworn to secrecy until the opening.
Here’s a hint: Be sure to check the tanks at the front of the restaurant.
Chef Ron is also planning a
Walkabout Wednesday event (Decker’s patrons will know about this) for guests at
various Seven Mile Beach hotels.
“You’ll be able to get picked up from
the Ritz, the Westin, the Marriott or the Beach Suites on a Wednesday afternoon
(times to be determined),” he said. “It’s a one-off price package where you get
delivered out here, includes a return bus trip and a three-course meal.
“I want to open up East End to a
lot of the tourists over there, even if they don’t have a vehicle. When you
have a full moon that comes up over here, it comes up right over that (outdoor)
balcony at seven, eight, nine o’clock at night. It’s one of the most beautifullest
things you’re ever going to see in your life.”
The feel of Tukka will be a bit
more relaxed than its predecessor at the East End location, but Chef Ron said
visitors shouldn’t worry – there will be plenty of fine dining options with
wine pairings and the like. Tukka will also be family-friendly, with modern
high chairs and changing stations in the bathrooms.
Chef Ron wants to keep lunch in the
affordable range for nearby resort-goers and also for people doing Island tours
around to North Side and East End. Carb-friendly and fat-free dishes will be on
“You head to Pedro Castle, you do
the blowholes, then you’re looking for somewhere to eat,” he said. “You’re
going to come here, because it’s your halfway point.”
Tukka also plans to be open for
breakfasts, but only on Saturdays and Sundays. During the week it’s lunch and
For more details, you can contact
345-947-2700 or email [email protected]