just got back from five days in Paradise, May 17-21.
i'm not the type of poster who recreates every dish in loving detail, so here's a brief rundown of where we were:
Monday: checked into the Cuisinart, where the most amazing bowl of hydroponically grown cherry tomatoes awaited us in our room. dinner at Straw Hat, where i had goat for the first time!
Tuesday: a tour of the hotel's hydroponic greenhouse where they grow lettuces, those gorgeous tomatoes, peppers, eggplant & herbs. worth checking out. lunch at Tasty's and dinner at Blanchard's. i know that Blanchard's has taken some knocks for inconsistency but we must have hit a good night; service was prompt and attentive and food was delicious. i will say, however, that i ordered mahi for both lunch and dinner, and the mahi at Tasty's was perfectly cooked while the piece i got at Blanchard's was maybe 45 seconds past that point.
Wednesday: lunch at Mediterraneo, the hotel restaurant. they have a nice feature on the menu where you can mix and match ingredients to create your own salads or pastas. dinner was at Veya, which was just beautiful. interesting combinations of ingredients, a great wine list and warm service. DH had a huge plate of crayfish (a little scary-looking but delicious) and i had snapper.
Thursday: lunch at the Dune Preserve. so nice to walk up the beach and have lunch in bare feet. dinner at Barrel Stay, where we were given a table right next to the water. we arrived a little after a large and raucous party of eight (the chef actually came out after our meal and said "our restaurant isn't usually this noisy," which i thought was sweet), but the yelling and picture-taking didn't detract from our meal. DH had wahoo and i had more mahi.
Friday: lunch at the hotel again, and dinner at Pimm's. we'd gone to Pimm's on our first trip to Anguilla seven years ago, and i swear we got seated at the same table, right on the water again. DH had grouper and i had lobster ravioli which was actually an app but was enough to keep me happy.
a food note about Cuisinart: if you're lying on the beach at 3 pm, they bring you sorbet and biscotti. 'nuff said.
so which restaurant was the winner? we couldn't decide. Pimm's has the most elegant setting, plus we got kissed on the head by our hostess. Veya has the most intriguing menu.
Barrel Stay felt the most homey. Blanchard's has the feel of a totally smooth operation. Straw Hat is lower down just because i found our dishes to be a little too salty for my taste.
and there were all the places we DIDN'T get to! next time, i guess!