When Guyanese-born entrepreneur Rick Chetram wanted to open a new branch of his famous Guyanese West Indian eatery, he chose a 4000 sq. ft. space at the #2 subway Nereid Avenue stop in the East Bronx, where a large enclave of West Indian nationals reside.
Kaieteur Restaurant and Bakery 2 at 4373 White Plains Rd., opened one year ago by Chetram who said he wanted to include a mix of Caribbean cuisine on his menu, and was told that this was the right spot to attract customers to a plate of his spicy Caribbean-style curry and roti, pholouri, and flakey pastry — such as pineapple tart, tennis rolls, and butter flap.
According to Chetram, Caribbean nationals love Guyanese cooking, and to attract this clientele, he also offers Jamaica food, such as oxtail and curry goat.
“I wanted to do something different because 50 percent of my customers are non-Guyanese,” said Chetram who quit his job on Wall Street, open his first restaurant in Richmond Hill, Queens after the original owners wanted to retire.
The restaurateur who jokingly said he does not know anything about cooking, but is now making and effort to learn, seized the opportunity to attract foodies who are met with the tantalizing aroma of delicious cooking the moment they walk through the door.
Like Guyana’s six races of people, the kitchen turns out a diverse menu that include, Chinese fried rice and Chow Mein, and white pudding, and all the homemade food Guyanese are accustomed to back home.
There is a special roti maker who clocks in at 4 am every morning to make roti in time for the daily rush hour of customers who pour into the eatery from 9 am, and patronize the restaurant throughout the day, until 10 pm.
“I have had a great response from the community, and I appreciate customers who love the restaurant and the food we serve. This is how I get my inspiration to do more,” said Chetram. He who converted the space into two sections to include a Caribbean bar that will provide Karaoke music.
“The moderately priced food items at the restaurant keep customers coming back,” said the businessperson who added that he shops around to ensure menu items are kept at a low price to satisfy the pocket of customers.