By Jaedee S.K. Caines
Whether it’s the Department of Agriculture’s Fruit Festival or the highly anticipated Art, Craft and Food Fair during Culturama or even July’s exhilarating Mango Festival, there is always something cooking on the tiny Caribbean island of Nevis.
For many locals, the day begins with buffet breakfast at the recently renovated Boddie’s Café. There, Nevisians tend to gravitate to the scrambled eggs, pancakes, sausages, toast, fruits and good ole bush tea…or hot chocolate, if they’re “feeling fancy.”
If it’s too busy at Boddie’s, then the locals will journey along Happy Hill Drive where they can grab a sandwich…to go…at The Nevis Bakery.
“One egg and cheese sandwich, please!” “A turkey sandwich over here!” Or “Tuna for me, please!” These are just some of the popular orders being shouted over the counter as customers try to get their morning breakfast and return to work in and around the capital city, Charlestown.
Tourists, on the other hand, can’t seem to get enough of the old school charm coupled with delectable dishes that Café des Arts offers for breakfast. Set in a garden along the Samuel Hunkins Drive, just steps away from the historic Alexander Hamilton Museum (birthplace of Alexander Hamilton), the Nevis Island Assembly Chambers and the M.V. Christena Memorial, Café des Arts is another highly recommended spot to sample some of Nevis’ best early morning dishes.
Lunch on Nevis typically begins at 11a.m. and runs until about 2 p.m. – to accommodate late eaters. While the options are endless, one can enjoy the ultimate lunch experience on the popular Pinney’s Beach where visitors and residents alike can dine at any of five bars: Double Deuce, Lime Beach Bar, Turtle Time, Weekendz Bar and Grill or Sunshine’s Beach Bar. Ladies, there’s no need to search for the perfect outfit…go as you are! The locals there are more concerned with serving up mouthwatering dishes and making sure patrons leave satisfied.
Seafood is always high on the menu…but that’s a given, considering the bars are along the beautiful Pinney’s Beach. Despite their close location to each other, they each offer something unique. Sunshine’s Beach Bar, for example, is known for its lip-smacking lobster meals and the laudable Killer Bee – which is rumoured to have an extra-special ingredient, only available on the island.
Relatively new to the site is Weekendz Bar and Grill which, despite its “juvenility,” is surely creating a name for itself. Besides offering tasty dishes and a stress-free environment, Weekendz is known for supplying customers with ridiculously large portions of food, which very few can savour in one sitting. Imagine ordering a lobster meal for lunch on Sunday and having enough to eat for lunch on Monday. That’s Weekendz for you!
When the sun sets and the day nears its end, some visitors dine at one of several hotel restaurants on island while others indulge in the breathtaking ambiance of Bananas – a shingled, plantation-styled restaurant that’s surrounded by colourful fauna at Hamilton Estate. Dinner at Bananas is a experience one should not miss, especially when it’s your birthday! The staff goes above and beyond to make you feel special – from singing Happy Birthday to presenting you with a slice of cake that’s topped with a sparkler candle. They may even top it all off with a silly dance – whatever it takes to make you smile!
For an island so small in size – just 36 square miles – Nevis is surely big on tantalizing taste buds and awakening appetites. Whether you’re in Nevis for a day or an extended vacation, be sure to sample what’s cooking in some of Nevis’ famous kitchens.