With its famous Pitons making it one of the most visually stunning islands in the Caribbean, St. Lucia also stands apart for its innovative cuisine. As one expert explained, “from rollicking local fish fries and casual beachside meals to candlelit dinners with views of the Pitons,” it can be an authentic foodie paradise.
St Lucia Food
Before diving into a list of where to eat when staying at one our St Lucia luxury rentals, it is a good idea to first familiarize yourself with the island’s noted specialties. It is similar to other islands because of its blend of cultures, and as one enthusiast said, with its “rich history of cultures, from Amerindians to Africans to the French and British, it’s no wonder St. Lucia has an enormous melting pot of cuisines.”
Because it is an island, the star of many dishes is the seafood harvested from the waters that surround it, and the island’s “national dish” is an innovative mixture of boiled green bananas and stewed saltfish (also called salt cod). This is a snapshot of the island’s history when salted fish was a staple for the long sea voyages, and it is a good idea to always try at least one variation on this iconic dish.
What else should you eat when visiting St. Lucia, cocoa tea is a must at breakfast (alongside a good serving of deep-fried bread). Lambi is simply another word for conch and is prepared in many ways. Callaloo is a spinach-like soup you’ll see often, and accra are fish fritters that you’ll find surprisingly delicious. Float bakes are donut-like treats, and banana cake is a must as it is baked with fruits and nuts.
You will also want to sample a local langouste (spiny lobster), which will be prepared in a myriad of ways, and bouyon which is a red bean soup with ground meat and vegetables. Barbecue is also another island specialty and chicken or pork seem to be the most common meats used.
You’ll find a lot of roadside food stalls, especially chicken rotis vendors. However, one thing that any traveler has to make time for in their calendar is the Friday Fish Fry. Every single Friday, the island has a fish fry. As one travel writer said, it is a “night where locals and travelers come together for a street party and fry up, in the streets. There are a few different options,” and so you’ll want to ask around to find out about the best in your area. NOTE: If you are eager for the most casual and relaxed, most agree that the fish fry at Anse La Raye is extremely low-key.
Whichever you choose, it is likely that you will run across small, makeshift bars where you can enjoy a drink as you savor the amazing aromas that flood the streets. The fish fry is not necessarily a fry at all. There may be immense trays of langouste served with classic side dishes like macaroni and cheese or rice and peas. You may find fresh fish in broths that you can mop up with servings of flatbread.
So, those are the must-try and most common dishes. Then, there are the highly recommended eateries and destinations that you will want to try to fit into your schedule.
St Lucia Restaurants
For fine dining, here are several places to eat in St Lucia:
Residing on the grounds of what was once a cacao plantation, this incredibly scenic and open-air eatery offers some of the best views of Petit Piton and uses ingredients influenced by the cacao plantation setting…yes, there is a hint of cacao in many dishes!
With a resort setting, you might think it would be a large and crowded spot. However, it has only 14 tables and most are booked by non-resort visitors. With some of the best views of the Pitons, it is also popular for its inspired menu.
Orlando’s Restaurant and Bar
An award-winning chef focusing on sustainable food makes this restaurant a fantastic find. Set right along the coast it is all about amazing presentation and perfect balances of flavors and textures.
As the name implies, this is a waterfront eatery that is removed from the general bustle of the Rodney Bay Marina area and serves up wonderful fusion dishes inspired by Caribbean, French and Mediterranean classics.
If you are carving island specialties and spots where you can rub elbows with locals, we suggest:
The Pink Plantation
With its verandah for dining and its gorgeous gardens that run down to the water’s edge, this restaurant emphasizes only the freshest ingredients and adds a touch of home-like charm serving them in handmade ceramic plates and platters. This is also a spot where desserts are a must.
Flavours of the Grill
Home to island soul food, it is another home turned restaurant and a must-try destination if you are eager for curried goat, fresh fish, and iconic sides. Enjoy them at one of the picnic tables, and be sure to sample the rum punch and the dessert of the day.
Specializing in homecooked dishes served on the covered porch of a private home, it is the perfect choice if you are headed to the fun and beauty of Sugar Beach nearby.
If you are looking for street food or cheap eats option while out and exploring, you won’t go wrong with:
One of the island’s longest-running favorites, it is part of the Laborie Village area (a fishing village) and offers amazing grilled dishes. Also give a try to the dishes at Hardest Hard, Salt Rush Café, and Roots Beach Bar.
And for one of the most unique, the Jambe de Bois is part of Pigeon Island National Park and is all about local favorites and amazing atmosphere.
There you have a small sampling of the many amazing eateries available to you during a visit to St. Lucia. Isle Blue features the finest luxury rentals globally. For your next trip to St Lucia, plan your stay during one of St Lucia’s carnivals.