First-ever National Caribbean American Restaurant Week kicks off in New York

[Brooklyn, NY] The Caribbean American Restaurant Association (CARA) is delighted to announce the launch of the in-person celebration of its first National Caribbean American Restaurant Week. This historic event is the first of its kind. Taking place from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 13, 2021 at the Suede Restaurant (outdoor garden area). CARA has hosted participating restaurants in more than 17 states and 30 cities across the United States, including New York City.

The upcoming event to kick off the celebration of National Caribbean American Restaurant Week will feature exceptional Caribbean foods, premium Caribbean drink blends and a unique experience for our important guests and clients. This celebration will kick off the extended Restaurant Week. This helps as many restaurants as possible to recover and restore their businesses to financial health. Particularly because of the devastating losses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The slogan “Taste the Culture, Savor the Vibes” is indicative of the exceptional cultural experience that awaits guests.

The pandemic has disproportionately led to Caribbean American restaurants closing three times more than other communities. Companies that fought and struggled to stay open found themselves in a deeper financial hole. One of the goals of National Caribbean American Restaurant Week is to help generate local support for restaurants. Mainly those affected by the pandemic in New York and across the country. CARA achieves this through aggressive local marketing. In addition to promotions that will encourage old and new patrons to participate in this event.

Oliver Samuels, host of the celebration launch event

Legendary Jamaican actor, performer, comedian, director and producer who recently celebrated his 50e year in cultural animation.

Oliver Samuel’s talent and passion for performing have propelled him to international success. This has earned him the title of “King of Jamaican Comedy” and a dedicated fan base that spans the globe.

New York First Lady Chirlane McCray

“I am proud of my Caribbean heritage. Along with thousands of New Yorkers, I am delighted to support the first-ever National Caribbean American Restaurant Week, ”said New York First Lady Chirlane McCray. “Caribbean restaurants are the heart and soul of New York City neighborhoods and the country. They bring the warmth of a culture that celebrates family and community. Especially with mouth-watering traditional dishes and the familiar flavors of the house. Like so many other small businesses – especially in communities of color – our Caribbean restaurants have been devastated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Now, as we focus on a fair and inclusive recovery, it is up to all of us to support these companies in their recovery. “

Mackie Holder President of CARICOM Corp and Consul General of Barbados

As President of CARCOM Corp and current Consul General of Barbados, I truly applaud the essential support the Caribbean American Restaurant Association is providing to restaurants in the Caribbean after suffering the devastating financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The first-ever National Caribbean American Restaurant Week will provide critical short- and long-term support to American Caribbean restaurants, not only in New York City but across the United States as well.

“Much of the ingenuity of the Caribbean people is reflected in Caribbean cuisine, in all its depth, breadth and pure taste. There is an amazing range, from Barbados pudding and souse to Jamaican jerk sauces, and all kinds of combinations indicating the diversity of the peoples that make up the nations of the Caribbean. While there is an ongoing discovery of Caribbean cuisine, there is plenty of room to showcase the amazing food and drink creations.

Let’s continue to educate, share and defend culture in this Caribbean American Heritage Month ”.

MP Yvette Clarke

“Each year, I look forward to the world-renowned Caribbean cuisine that will be showcased during the Caribbean American Restaurant Association’s Caribbean Restaurant Week. Not only will there be a myriad of delicious dishes to choose from. But it’s also an opportunity to shine the spotlight on Caribbean small businesses and support their economic recovery from the devastating effects of COVID-19, ”said Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke (NY-09).

As a Jamaican-American woman, I am very proud of my heritage. Additionally, I understand the illustrious legacy of how Black and Caribbean culture has contributed and continues to contribute to this country’s culinary identity. Our people have taken the leftovers and the unwanted and created delicacies. We created art from ugly food and cultivated from deprivation. This is why weeks like this are so important; we must not only support our Caribbean restaurants, but also preserve the rich cultural heritage that is our food. Happy Caribbean American Heritage Month and Happy Caribbean Restaurant Week. Make sure you save me a plate! “

Nick Perry, Member of the New York State Assembly

“As we hope to approach the end of this pandemic that has affected so many small businesses in our community, especially restaurants, I urge all vaccinated New Yorkers to celebrate American Caribbean Heritage Month by participating in the National Caribbean American Restaurant Week. This celebration is the perfect opportunity to support local Caribbean-American entrepreneurs in their endeavors. And we are doing our part to help rebuild our local economy by frequenting one of the many great restaurants in our neighborhoods ”.


Suede restaurant elegantly fuses all aspects of traditional Caribbean flavors with a modern ambience to create a one-of-a-kind dining experience. Tasty food is more than a meal, it is an expression of the Caribbean lifestyle and experience. Launched in 2015, the restaurant quickly became a staple in the Brooklyn community, attracting local and national celebrities. Since its opening, Suede has established itself as a staple within the community. During COVID-19, they delivered thousands of meals to first responders and CBOs. Suede will continue to associate and participate in efforts to foster the positive development of our community.

Restaurant Suede as host

“As one of the premier Caribbean dining and social experiences in the United States, Restaurant Suede is honored to host the very first launch of National Caribbean American Restaurant Week. Our beautiful outdoor garden ambiance will be a perfect complement to this historic celebration which aims to help Caribbean restaurants here and around the country in their efforts to recover from the financial losses of COVID-19.


CARA is a trusted community organization whose objectives are to defend the interests of Caribbean hotel businesses. Including, reversing current government policies that disproportionately target small Caribbean restaurant and hospitality businesses.

CARA seeks to transform the Caribbean American restaurant and hospitality industry. In particular through company structuring and information sharing. In addition to programs that educate business owners on financial planning and management, and technology upgrades. Our organization wishes to partner with government to achieve its organizational goals.

We are the ONLY city-wide Caribbean-American organization with an interactive online business platform. This makes the information easily accessible, where members and participants can view and share information that affects their business. Serving the Caribbean-American restaurants and nightlife businesses in New York City is what we do.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, CARA has been up to the task. Help restaurants in the Caribbean that have been devastated by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. CARA members have participated in numerous zoom meetings with the mayor’s office and small business services. In addition, several other elected officials from NYC and NYS ensured that our concerns were heard. We are a trusted community organization that understands the cultural challenges facing restaurants and hospitality businesses in New York City.

the Caribbean American Restaurant Association will continue to highlight the problems its members face and remain committed to finding a fair solution.

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