Ocean Blue Caribbean Restaurant & Bar owner says consistency is key to keeping customers coming back
Dean Scott said he has worked hard his whole life—working for his parents at a restaurant, working in retail and working as a truck driver. He worked hard, he said, so he could one day have his dream job: a restaurant owner. (Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)
Scott opened Ocean Blue Caribbean Restaurant & Bar nearly 12 years ago in Chandler, and since then the restaurant has kept a loyal following with its menu inspired by traditional Caribbean food, Mexican food and American food.
“I was born in Jamaica, so naturally I am going to have Jamaican food,” Scott said. “I grew up in California ... so I was surrounded by a lot of Hispanic culture. I like diversity. I like food, and it doesn’t have to just be stuff that I was brought up on. I like to say, ‘If you can have a party in my mouth, come in.’ I want to confuse your culinary norm.”
The menu features classics such as jerk chicken, curry chicken and oxtail, but it also features sandwiches, wraps and a vegetarian section. Scott said over the years, the restaurant has accrued a loyal customer base. He said it is the quality of the food that keeps them coming back—noting that he is willing to lose some money to preserve the quality of his food. The quality, he said, and the consistency are what he believes keeps people returning.
“I taste everything before it goes out to a customer,” he said. “I want to know that what we are serving is the best. It may take a little longer, but it will be the best. I don’t want to serve something to you that I would not eat myself or something that I would not enjoy.”
Scott said he is glad to have opened his business in Chandler and is thankful the community has kept coming back. He said loyal customers are what have allowed him to keep his business open during the coronavirus pandemic.
“This is my dream; I always wanted this,” Scott said. “I am so grateful that we have been here 12 years, and I would love to be open 25 years. Maybe my kids will take over after that.”