Marlene’s Roti Shop Tobago: Missing Mom in Speyside
It’s been suggested to me on occasion that Uncommon Caribbean, for all its flash and flavor, is really just one big open love letter to our mom. Her name was Marlene, and as some of you may recall, she used to make the very best roti on the planet. Mom passed away just after my 16th birthday. I miss her a little bit every day no matter where I am. When I’m in her home country of Trinidad & Tobago, though, the emotions are always a touch or two stronger. At Marlene’s Roti Shop Tobago, those strong emotions are elevated even further.
It’s impossible to miss Marlene’s Roti Shop as you maneuver the marginally steep and windy road that descends into Speyside, the tiny seaside town at Tobago’s extreme northwestern edge. For me, mere sight of the sign recalls memories of mom’s magic in the kitchen.
Mom’s Roti was Simply The Best
(You can read a more detailed account of mom’s roti here.)
As kids, we often encouraged her to open her own bakery and roti shop. From our standpoint, there was no surer way for her to make millions.
For us, mom’s roti was (and remains, at least in my memory) absolutely without compare. We also had ulterior motives, though, as a shop would give us kids the opportunity to enjoy our favorite food more often than the special occasions to which our childhood roti enjoyment was confined.
Mom never opened a roti shop. If she did, though, I’d like to think it would mirror this Marlene’s in some ways. Bright, cheerful and perched at a nice elevation to benefit from the breeze, Marlene’s offers a nice view of the sea and a few smaller surrounding islands just offshore. It’s a view I’m sure mom would love.
Missing Out On Marlene’s Roti Shop Tobago
Sadly, I didn’t get a taste of the roti treats served up at Marlene’s Roti Shop Tobago. It was closed when last we happened by in 2013. Reviews I’ve read around the web, though, suggest it would be worth my while to make a return visit. I’m guessing that mom would approve of another try, even if only to have me back in her home country enjoying the world’s best food and celebrating just how special she really was…
Have you been to Marlene’s Roti Shop Tobago? If so, what did you think of it? Let us know in the comments section below.