Woodfire Nyammings : Sheffield's top eating spot

August 29, 2017
Greg 'Five Star' Thompson hard at work at Woodfire Nyammings. In the background is his assistant, Demoy Davis.
Five Star is known for balancing up top seven food containers on his arms, a spectacle which hos customers love to watch. Here he balances four.
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The first thing you notice when you arrive at Woodfire Nyammings in Sheffield square in Westmoreland, particularly during lunch hours, is how busy the place is.

The second thing is how warmly customers are greeted by the proprietor, 43-year-old Greg 'Five Star' Thompson.

According to Five Star, Woodfire Nyammings was so named because all meals are prepared using only wood as fuel. The popular eatery is the place of choice for lunch and breakfast for people from across Sheffield and its environs, and serves a wide range of dishes with seafood, chicken, beef and pork being among the specialities.

"My first restaurant was in Hartford, so I gave it the name Five Star restaurant. I operated two businesses in Hartford and then I came to Sheffield and started to operate Woodfire Nyammings, which I opened for a gentleman for a while, before taking it over. It will be six years old in September," Five Star told Western STAR.

"I get this cooking thing from my grandparents. They taught me that everything tek time and bunjay, that means you crack your fire low and mek it chune een, so it smooth and nice. If the fire high, you naw get di real flavour," he explained.

Five Star said he honed his cooking skills at the Home Sweet Home hotel in Negril, after leaving high school, and initially worked in the kitchen as a scullion, doing menial tasks such as washing dishes.

 

COOKING SKILLS

 

However, his proven cooking skills resulted in him moving up the ranks to chef within two years.

"From that, mi learn everything. I can do conch creole, pan fried conch, conch steak; anything inna lobster, shrimp - butter-fried shrimp, garlic shrimp. I can do a lot of styles with chicken breast," he said.

"I was at Home Sweet Home for about 10 years ... I can bake cake, patty, coco bread. Mi can do blended juice, pina colada, dirty banana," he said.

"At Woodfire Nyammings, we also do like cow head, cow tongue, goat head and belly. We do a lot of things here. In the mornings, you can get yam, banana, dumplings, and in the evenings we do festival."

He said his dedication to his restaurant does not stop at just preparing meals, but he extends himself to sourcing wood for cooking, in order for his eatery to live up to its name.

"A just straight logwood mi burn. Mi go a bush go look dem same way, wid mi chain saw. Mi split dem myself same way. A my likkle gym dat; a so mi exercise and build mi muscles. Mi dedicate myself to it, because anything weh you a do, you haffi love it," Five Star said.

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