Where to go now: BIG MIKE’S Big Mike’s Calypso Kitchen

As summer is coming to an end and bank holiday weekend draws closer there is a certain aroma that we’re used to smelling in the air. This is usually the time of year where London is bursting with colour, amazing music and a million people smiling from ear to ear. With Notting Hill Carnival being put on hold this year due to Covid-19 concerns, we found another way to brighten up our summertime sadness and reminisce about how different things are from this time last year.

After spending a big chunk of his childhood in Barbados, Michael Springer aka Big Mike discovered from an early age that his life was food, and his family became very aware of how particular he was when it came to the kitchen. As time progressed his passion for culinary goodness flourished and he put all of his hard-earned skills to the test in his own restaurant, Big Mike’s Calypso Kitchen.

From his first store located in the heart of Purley, Big Mike has always had a mission to spread the word of Caribbean cooking all over the country. He did just that by appearing on X-Factor’s Chef Factor in partnership with JustEat, where he dazzled the UK with his grooves and moves whilst preparing some of his tastiest dishes.

After relocating early this year to Boxpark, which is fastly becoming Croydon’s latest grub hub, the Calypso Kitchen has done nothing but grow and become a local community favourite. We were lucky enough to be invited down to sample some of his delicious dishes which left us keen to come back very soon.

We were spoiled with award-winning Bajan style fishcakes, sticky pork ribs, juicy jerk chicken and the most succulent fried chicken you could imagine. We even managed to get a great taste of the amazing dhal puri roti and curry goat which immediately transports you to the islands. But if you’re not a meat-lover or fancy switching it up for a change, Big Mikes Calypso Kitchen also offers vegan and vegetarian options that will make you jump up and dance just as much!

With all food being served with a huge smile, Big Mikes feels just like home and is a cosy piece of Caribbean culture that should be embraced. If you find yourself in Croydon anytime soon, make sure the first stop on your list is Big Mikes Calypso Kitchen, and tell them that Verge sent you!