Brooklyn is thought to have the largest Caribbean population outside the West Indies itself, and every summer, the sound of steel drums, colorful carnival costumes, and the smell of beef patties signal the start of many celebrations of Caribbean heritage. In 2017 caribBeing spearheaded the naming of Little Caribbean to recognize, celebrate and foster the contributions of Caribbean-Americans in New York City and the neighborhood of Flatbush as a center for culture, community and commerce. Yelp Brooklyn was thrilled to officially partner with caribBeing to curate a list of amazing Caribbean-owned businesses throughout the borough, many of which hosted Elite Experiences or offered discounts everyone was welcome to redeem.
The star event that headlined our Caribbean Heritage Month festivities was a three-course meal at one of the trendiest restaurants in Brooklyn– KOKOMO NYC. Black & Gold Badge Elite Squad members were invited to experience KOKOMO’s menu, which builds on familiar island ingredients with an elevated, modern flair. Non-Elite Squad members could visit the restaurant in the month of June and receive a complimentary dessert with the purchase of an entree.
Other Elite Experience partners include Allan’s Bakery, a third-generation family-owned and operated Caribbean bakery serving pastries like currant and coconut rolls to perpetual lines at their busy storefront, and a floral themed cafe called Hibiscus Cafe, who treated Elites to refreshing Hibiscus smoothies. Trendy rum bar the Rogers Garden sold discounted Little Caribbean mojitos, local flower shop Les’ Blooms gave customers 15% off their bill, and plant based cafe Aunts et Uncles allowed patrons to also redeem a 15% discount.
The festivities culminated in a press conference and ribbon cutting ceremony hosted by NYC public advocate Jumaane Williams, New York State Assemblywoman Diana Richardson and caribBeing founder Shelley Worrell where local leaders, business owners, politicians, and press gathered for One Love Little Caribbean Day. The day is dedicated to honoring the rich legacy and diverse cultural contributions of people of the Caribbean Latin-X Diaspora. Yelp Brooklyn Community Manager Morlene C. briefly spoke about the need to support local business owners of color and for unity among marginalized racial groups. A list of participating vendors and events is on the event page. You can visit caribBeing house, a multipurpose mobile art + cultural + market space that reflects the cultural heritage of Brooklyn’s Caribbean Diaspora in Prospect Park all summer long.