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Chef Natasha Allicock is one of the most versatile chefs in D.C., and chances are you haven’t tried her food. The private chef was born in Guyana, a Caribbean nation in South America that is a cultural and culinary melting pot. Her father’s Chinese roots and mother’s Indian roots heavily influenced her cooking career. Through her company, iChef LLC, Allicock has inked contracts working for everyone from celebrities and military generals to the Saudi Arabian embassy.
This upcoming Saturday, Jan. 18, Allicock will pop-up at Valor Brewpub inside The Ugly Mug at 723 8th St. SE serving a “Carib Vybz” brunch menu from 12 to 3 p.m. The brunch will be followed by what Allicock is calling a “Grown Up Day Party” from 3 to 5 p.m.
Allicock isn’t afraid to mash flavors from different continents. She’s serving a shumai-style burger whose dumpling-like patty combines pork shoulder and shrimp. It’s dressed up with pickled slaw and Sriracha-lime mayo on a brioche bun.
Her take on chicken and waffles combines fried jerk chicken and a plantain waffle. She folds a plantain and citrus puree into the buttermilk waffle batter, which yields an especially fluffy texture.
She also encourages diners to try her breakfast poutine featuring fries topped with roasted garlic beer cheese, umami beef gravy, jerk oxtail, an egg, and bonito flakes.
The Asian jerk oxtail is available as an entrée. “I tried to include something from my childhood,” she says. “This was something that was really popular in my household. I added my Asian twist.”
A handful of dishes are vegan or vegetarian. Allicock was a vegan for eight years and was determined to give the vegan brunch crowd something substantial. The roasted veggies, greens, and grains bowl is made with an array of vegetables and a Japanese omelette topped with a vegan gravy, vegan garlic cashew aioli, fried shallots, and microgreens. See the full menu below.
Brunch desserts come with ice cream from local, woman-owned company Ruby Scoops. And the afternoon’s entertainment will be provided by steelpan performer Josanne Francis. “My whole thing is to always uplift, and bring people up around me,” Allicock says. “The women I’ve encountered throughout my career have been phenomenal.”
DJ Bimshire will keep the party going.
Allicock says the Carib Vybz brunch likely won’t be a one-off event. She has four other dates already in the works. “If it turns into something, maybe someone will get on board and back me to open a restaurant.”
Reservations can be made here.