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A Q&A With Seattle’s Paseo Caribbean

Excellent Caribbean food in Seattle? You bet. The city is abuzz about Paseo’s Caribbean food right now — and as luck would have it, you can get their award-winning corn and mouthwatering sandwiches delivered! We sat down with the owner, Ryan, to ask some questions about their beginnings, offerings, and how to order the perfect meal. Watch the video, and then read below for more.

There’s a pretty great story behind Paseo and its existence today. Tell us about it.

Paseo has been around since 1994 and has become a legendary establishment in Seattle. With all the love from Seattleites (and the love is mutual), we have become quite famous nationally and even internationally, with people coming from all over the world to get their fix.

In late 2014, the former owners closed the doors to the business, leaving Seattleites without Paseo and many employees without jobs during the holiday season. As a lover of Paseo and grieving for the loss, I engaged with the former employees. Even without anything locked down for a lease or with the overall assets of the business, we put the staff back to work.

How did you maintain the integrity of the original menu items?

We locked down the assets of the business and put the crew back to work in the kitchen. We used their expertise to right the ship and started making the same food Paseo was known for all these years. There was info out that we didn’t have the recipes, which were not written down. Lucky for us, the crew members had stashed away the famous marinade and thanks to freezers, we were able to reproduce it. From there, we turned the lights back on, spun all of the food up and opened the doors.

What are the key ingredients to mastering Caribbean cooking?

Nutmeg, allspice, ginger, cloves, paprika, nutmeg and some secret spices we keep in place. Lots of comfort flavors, tastes that warm the mind and soul.

Where do you get your ingredients from?

The majority of items come from local distributors, as it is important to get everything fresh and local. Certain items come from special distributors and those are some of our secret weapons when it comes to flavors.

If you’re trying Paseo for the first time, what should you order?

One of those amazing sandwiches and the roasted corn. Get the black beans as well, since they are classic and tasty.

Tell us about your famous sandwich and why it is so darn good.

It has bread that is toasted to perfection, our famous garlic aioli, caramelized onions that melt in your mouth, marinated meat, seasoned protein or tofu, combined with cilantro, jalapeños and romaine lettuce layered in. All of the flavors come together in true harmony and we’re told, there is nothing quite like it.

The Steak sandwich at Paseo in Seattle, which you can order on Grubhub.

What is the best menu item for delivery?

The sandwiches are our most famous items (Caribbean Roast is the most popular, but the Chicken, Prawn and the Press are all HUGE hits). Beyond our sandwiches, our meals are very understated and have an excellent following. Our new Steak Sandwich and Calamari Sandwich has been a HUGE hit and really is a MUST try. If you are a vegan or prefer not to eat meat, our Tofu sandwich is tremendously popular.

When ordering delivery, you sometimes order extra for leftovers. What dish is just as good the next day?

The Steak Sandwich rocks the next day. The Caribbean bowl heats up nicely in the microwave and the beans are always good the next day.

The Cuban sandwich at Paseo in Seattle, which you can order on Grubhub.

Any secret special instructions we can leave for the chefs to get a little something extra?

Our new Jambalaya can be dialed up with lots of spice, as can many of our dishes. So if you like heat, just ask the crew and we can go up or down. We also like to throw banana peppers on the Chicken Sandwich, Caribbean Roast and Steak Sandwich, so ask the crew.

Order from Paseo today!

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