Anguilla is a gorgeous, teeny tiny island that thankfully hasn't been overdeveloped or taken over by the big names (Westin, Ritz, etc.). In fact, a new resort just opened up on the island - Viceroy - and the locals were commenting that it was "too fancy" for Anguilla. I'm sure it's beautiful though. I certainly wouldn't turn it down.
The island is REALLY laid back. Even at the nicer restaurants, you can wear jeans. And NO ONE pays attention to time, which was nice (even though it would come back to bite us. More on that later.).
Anyway, back to the food.
For the first few days, we were total beach bums. Laid out on the beach, walked on the beach, ate at the beach and drank at the beach. The beach bar is a little round bar - wait for it - on the beach. It has a little deck with tables set up and a grill where the chef prepares the food for the bar.
Since we wanted to take advantage of the local food, we ate there almost exclusively for the first four days of the trip. The beach bar's specialty was skewers that were grilled (right in front of you) and served with a fresh salad. (Side note: I will be posting on the hydroponic farm later - but when I say fresh, I really mean fresh. Lettuce, cherry tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, herbs - they're all picked the day you eat it. Amazing. And you can really taste the difference.)
(Photo for CuisinArt)
So Steve and I tried every single one of the skewers throughout those first few days.
They had tuna, lamb with rosemary, chicken, lobster with cherry tomatoes, shrimp with basil, beef with peppers and then a vegetable skewer. Of all of them, the tuna was my favorite. It's hard to resist fresh tuna that was delivered straight from the boat that day! Steve loved the lamb...it was really delicious.
The skewers also came with chips and a sundried tomato and olive dip. I'm pretty sure Steve could have just scarfed down the dip without the chips - every time it was brought out for us, he commented on how much he loved it and wanted to make it at home. We asked them what was in it and - surprise! It's just sundried tomatoes, olives, olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper. I'd probably take the salt down a bit since the olives are salty enough, but it was GOOD. And it'd probably keep well (although it wouldn't last long in my fridge).
At night, the beach bar served more standard fare for dinner. We ate there a couple times and it definitely did not disappoint. Each time we started with caprese salad - it was impossible to resist. The tomatoes were so fresh and the mozzarella was so yummy and the basil pesto they put on top was heaven. I commented more than once that I could have just eaten a giant plate of that. So. Good. I got the mahi mahi every time and we agreed that it was the best dish they had. It came with either rice and peas (standard island sides) or a baked potato served with the most delicious fresh sour cream ever. Steve tried the snapper with rice and peas the first visit (which was really yummy) and grilled chicken with the baked potato for the second visit. All of the food was grilled or prepared about 10 feet away at the edge of the deck.
The other beach bar plus? Bartender Sam. He was super friendly and was fun to talk to while we were eating lunch (read: Steve scarfing down the sundried tomato dip) or getting a drink. And the drinks were AWESOME. Favorite? The frozen mojito. The mint came from the hydroponic farm and Sam used real cane sugar. I had never thought to make a frozen mojito, but I'm definitely trying it now!
Honeymoon gluttony posts on the chef's table, the catamaran trip, the tasting menu and Sandy Ground coming soon...