19 May 2024

Fabulous, fresh local island produce
Is Barbados the new foodie hotspot?
After blackened shrimp, zingy mango sorbet and pan-fried foie gras, Sanchez Manning would say it is
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arbados may have beautiful beaches, but it also has plenty to offer for those seeking an epicurean experience. It has an annual food, wine and (of course) rum festival which attracts celebrity chefs from around the world. Cobbler’s Cove, the colonial-style luxury hotel where I stayed in the spacious ‘garden suite’, also has one of the island's best restaurants. The Camelot, which overlooks expanses of crystal-clear ocean, is run by executive chef Michael Harrison, who trained under Michel Roux Jr in London. I’m greeted warmly by a waiter, who suggests I start with a glass of full-bodied red wine rather than the customary rum punch.
The gorgeous gardens of Cobblers Cove
Experience Oistins Friday Night Fish Fry
cooked slivers of soft white fish piled daintily on zingy mango salsa. My next offering was refreshing mango sorbet. Mains included herb-marinated lamb and linguine in tomato vodka sauce - I chose mahi mahi with asparagus and cauliflower. Next was lunch at the Lonestar restaurant, in a boutique hotel down the coast. With an English owner, the menu offered a quirky mix of gazpacho, sushi and prawn cocktail.

For novelty I ordered cod and chips, and a posh version of our national dish arrived. Accompanied by a gin and tonic, it was excellent, the batter light and crispy, the cod melt-in-the-mouth. The little pot of mushy peas made me smile. The Lonestar also has Bajan options such as flying fish and ‘blackened’ shrimp. Another great culinary experience was Oistin’s fish market, where half the island converges on Friday evenings. The al fresco restaurants soon fill up and soca music blares out. On finding a spare seat I was served battered shrimps, macaroni, salad, plantain and a cold beer.

The simplicity seemed appropriate for the surroundings and the meal was faultless for sheer tastiness - and cost just £10.. To properly sample the national drink, rum, I took the Mount Gay Rum tour. Guide Dwayne knowledgeably took us through the history of the world's oldest brand. The tour ended with a cocktail of cranberry, lime and rum, named ‘blood, sweat and tears'. It slipped down nicely. Barbados is not afraid to pull a few culinary surprises - if you visit, eat, drink and be merry.

Original article published in Jan 2016. All info and prices correct at time of publication.
The menu has a strong foreign influence as well as Barbadian touches. Starters range from roasted root vegetable soup and pan-fried foie gras to duck breast. I opted for the more Bajan choice of blackened flying fish. This proved to be delicately
"Barbados is not afraid to pull a few culinary surprises."
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