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Monday, December 11, 2023

Jamaican restaurant in east Ocala serving up authentic, homemade recipes

A son who is carrying on the tradition and recipes of his mother is serving up dishes of authentic Jamaican cuisine in east Ocala.

Little Bickle is owned and operated by Nigel Simms, who stepped up to help his mother, Christine Smart, this past February after she left the business due to health problems.

Simms told Ocala-News.com that cooking is his passion, and that he kept the business going because his mom always wanted a restaurant.

“She became ill, and I choose to quit my job and move from New York to support her and run the restaurant,” said Simms.

Little Bickle Jamaican Restaurant in Ocala
Little Bickle Jamaican Restaurant at 3331 E Silver Springs Boulevard in Ocala (September 8, 2023)

Located at 3331 E Silver Springs Boulevard in the Chelsea Square shopping mall, Little Bickle serves up a collection of classic Jamaican dishes with an added twist from Simms.

Those dishes include a variety of proteins prepared in jerk and curry styles, including jerk chicken, curry chicken, and curry goat, among others.

Jerk Tostada Bowl
Jerk Tostada Bowl at Little Bickle (Photo: Little Bickle)

The restaurant also has multiple other favorites, like oxtail, brown stew chicken, and djon djon rice, which is made from mushroom.

Curry chicken and white rice
Curry chicken and white rice (Photo: Little Bickle)

In addition to its savory offering, the restaurant features Seamoss lemonade, smoothies, and specialized, hand-crafted ice cream. That ice cream comes in flavors like sweet potato, pumpkin, carrot, and even spicy.

Pumpkin ice cream at Little Bickle
Pumpkin ice cream is one of many exotic flavors at Little Bickle (Photo: Little Bickle)

Simms says he is “big on wellness” and tries to ensure that his dishes are as nourishing as they are delicious. He also donates food regularly to Brother’s Keeper and homeless individuals around the community.

Little Bickle is currently open Tuesday through Friday, from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. It is closed on Sunday and Monday.

For more information on the restaurant or its menu, visit the Little Bickle restaurant online, or drop in and let Chef Nigel know we sent you.