Sunday, February 22, 2015

Cruising to the Culinary Capital of the Caribbean

There are many reasons why St. Martin / St. Maarten is a favorite port of call on a Caribbean cruise…pristine beaches, warm crystal clear water, and glorious weather. But did you know that this picturesque island is also considered the culinary capital of the Caribbean? On your next visit, how about heading out for a gourmet lunch?

The most popular types of cuisine in St. Martin are traditional French and spicy West Indian Créole. Traditional French culinary items such as escargot, foie gras and bouillabaisse are as delectable as that served in any served in Parisian restaurant.

Créole cuisine is a mouthwatering medley of European, African and Indian influences. Fresh seafood appears on just about every menu, sometimes prepared in Créole style with spices, sometimes in the classic French manner with herbs. It’s not surprising that Creole spices have infiltrated French dishes, and in many restaurants it’s these creative fusion dishes that guests repeatedly return to devour.

There are over 500 restaurants on this tiny island, though many Caribbean cruise ship passengers looking for an authentic island lunch will hail a cab and head out to Grand Case, on the French side of the island. Its mile-long main street is saturated with more than two dozen delightful eateries. Should you want to stay closer to the port, eateries in Cupecoy, Simpson Bay and Philipsburg are just as good.

So on your next Caribbean cruise, if you need a break from all that fun in that sun consider going out to lunch in St. Martin / St. Maarten. Both the French and Dutch sides offer gastronomic experiences galore and I guarantee the diverse cuisine will delight your taste buds!

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