Aliya Huey and Scotley Innis are melding Caribbean and Asian cuisines

A fine-dining experience with authentic food from the Caribbean
Aliya Huey and Scotley Innis are melding Caribbean and Asian cuisines
(Photo credit: C. Alexandra for rolling out)

Originally from New York City, Aliya Huey and chef Scotley Innis are bringing authentic Caribbean cuisine to the Atlanta area with their restaurant Continent Restaurant & Cigar Lounge. The lounge has a red roped entrance, lavish wall paintings, crystal light fixtures, and velvet red booths. Visitors can always expect a fine-dining experience each time.

Rolling out spoke with the restaurateur, Aliya Huey, to learn more about how they navigated through the pandemic, and what foodies need to try on the menu.

“The chef and I opened this restaurant in April of last year. We started construction during the pandemic, which was the hardest thing ever, but we had a lot of faith. We are both New Yorkers and we wanted to come together to open this as a space for people to enjoy some good Caribbean food,” said Huey.

They also gave a history lesson on why their customized menu is a blend of both Caribbean and Asian cultures.

“When we started to put this menu together we wanted it to be comfy, cozy, and feel like you’re at home. A lot of the Caribbean cuisines have a lot of Asian influence and we wanted to make sure people understand that. A lot of times you go to Jamaica and see so many Chinese people or even Trinidad and you see so many Indian people. A lot of people don’t know that there is so much Asia in the Caribbean. We wanted to use that to inspire a lot of our dishes,” Huey shared.

Guests can expect a couple of menu favorites such as the tamarind wings, spiced lamb chops, and the escovitch lobster. Each dish can be described as comfort food with a unique flavor. Chef Scotley Innis shared what dishes guests need to try and how Continent Restaurant is adding to the culture.

“My favorite dish would have to be the oxtail lo mein which came from a Jamaican background. Sunday dinners always consist of some braised oxtail which you have once a week. We wanted this to be a family-oriented setting where it’s comforting. With me and my love for Asian flavor and traveling around the world, I wanted to execute a dish that was different from everyone else. No one can say they came up with an oxtail lo mein besides me. I just wanted to represent my style of cooking in developing that dish. So that’s one of my favorite dishes right there.

“Continent is adding to the culture by elevating the Caribbean and African food in general,” Innis added.

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