Where to Dine
Mixture of various influences that Saint-Martin has known over the centuries, French cuisine with Caribbean flavors is the specialty of the island.
The village of Grand Case which is the “gastronomic capital of the Caribbean”, located in the north-west of the island, is the undisputed place to meet the best chefs in Saint-Martin. Its main street is lined with many restaurants catering to all tastes and all desires: the traditional French cuisine mixes with Italian, Indian, fish specialties and so on. A happy and delicious culinary melting pot reigns there!
For those wishing to get closer to the Caribbean culture, they can enjoy a grilled lobster or stuffed crabs served in many lolos (cheap dining establishment) that line the beach. As they are on the seaside, the lolos really allow one to live Saint-Martin at local time.
Among the few dishes that Saint-Martin people particularly like, the visitors should not miss the stew oxtail, the Johnny Cakes (tasty fried bread), the Jacks (fried fish), pies stuffed with beef or fish and the traditional dish of the island: the Locri which is a dish of spiced rice with chicken and vegetables. This is a treat for the taste buds and a culinary discovery that is not to be missed!
Regarding seafood, the snapper is an excellent redfish that is prepared both in court-bouillon or blaff (marinated in green lime then bring to court-bouillon) or grilled. Frigate tuna (close enough to tuna), marlin and shark can be eaten rather grilled or smoked. The conch, a very large sea snail is delicious when fricassee. Acras (cod fritters with herbs or vegetables) and delicately spiced stuffed crabs are also dishes of choice in Saint-Martin.
On the beaches grows the sea grape tree which is a wild tree endemic to the island that provides delicious and acidulous fruit that one should not hesitate to taste as it is!