Grill masters taking seafood to another dimension
Five years ago, two timeshare salesmen barely surviving during the timeshare "slow season" embarked on an innovative idea using local seafood and fresh produce to transform their lackluster financial standings.
Gregory Rodgers and Noel Quant partnered with Detrick Smith in an effort to survive the "slow season," taking their lives in their hands to develop a business that would thrive year round and maintain financial stability all while doing something they enjoy.
The men, who love cooking, wanted to present seafood dishes to the public that are uniquely prepared, palate pleasing and pay homage to their Bahamian roots, hence Grill Masters Restaurant was born.
Grill Masters, located on Polaris Drive, is a seafood enthusiast's dream serving up seafood dishes that are prepared one of three ways, grilled, fried or sautéed in garlic.
Both men have no formal culinary training but one glance or sample of their signature seafood dishes would completely fool Food Network chefs from Iron chef Masaharu Morimoto to Guy Fieri of Diners, Drive-ins and Drives.
"We were tired of not having work during the 'slow season'" so one day we sat down and decided that we needed to come up with something to sustain us in the interim.
"Noel and I got together and partnered with Detrick and that is how this business came about.
"This is something we like doing and we don't mind cooking for people," Rodgers said.
Crediting both his paternal and maternal grandmothers for his advancement in cooking skills Rodgers declared: "I learnt a great deal in the kitchen from my father's mother Adline Mackey who was a pastry chef and my mother's mom Ralla Jane Stuart who sold hot lunch and I thank them for what they shared."
Quant's culinary journey began under the tutelage of Andrew "Conch-a-la" Rolle at his conch salad stand on Queens Highway.
"Mr. Rolle taught me some of his secrets and I expanded upon them and moved forward from there to where I am today," Quant declared.
Grill Masters stands out due to innovation and the masters' top-secret recipes.
"First and foremost we wanted to bring something healthy to the public and we knew that seafood depending on how you fix it, it can be presented in many healthy ways," said Quant.
Both men said they could have taken an easier route and prepared chicken or ribs but they wanted to step outside the box.
"There are more than enough people selling chicken and ribs and there are just as much selling seafood but unlike the majority that choose to sell their seafood fried with a side of fries, we sought to do something different.
"We prepare our seafood three signature ways, grilled, garlicked or fried.
"Our shrimp, conch and fish that are all prepared either way and the preparation is the same for our lobster and stone crab (seasonal) as well," said Quant.
Additionally Grill Masters serves up conch salad, scorched conch, lobster salad (in season) and combination salads (conch and lobster) as well.
"Our cracked conch is different because we serve it with a fresh micro salad.
"Everyone serves their conch with fries, and people really are tired of that.
"You can get conch with fries from any Bahamian restaurant, you can get fries with chicken and fish fingers anywhere and at any fast food restaurant around town. Therefore we had to put our unique spin on it.
"In fact, our micro salad is made fresh with bell peppers, onions and tomatoes.
"We place this along with a fresh marinade on the conch as opposed to using your regular ketchup, hot sauce or mayonnaise dressing," Rodgers promulgated.
The Grill Masters cater to all, serving up specially grilled veggies for those that do not eat seafood for one reason or another.
The masters are working on a conch fritter recipe unlike any other that is sure to leave the public salivating for more.
"We also cater three, four and five course meals for any venue or event it all depends on what you need and your budget," Rodgers said.
Persons wishing to know more about the Grill Masters can look them up on Facebook, call them at 441-6006 or visit their Polaris Drive location (Brittania Plaza/Stop n' Shop) Tuesday to Sunday from 4 p.m. and put the masters' food to the test.
"Our motto is 'Jesus saves, we sell' and we have food for everyone from the Christians to the Pagans, Rastas and Vegetarians," the masters said in unison.
© 2012 The Freeport News