Good restaurants in St Croix?
We will be staying in St Croix in a few months on a honeymoon. Our hotel is near Christiansted.
Now, we will be there for a week, and while we would enjoy the occasional splurge (a good steak or seafood restaurant, for instance), our main love is good hole-in-the-wall and street vendor-type scene food.
Any suggestions? All would be appreciated.
We just returned from our trip to St. Croix. Food at the Pickled Greek was great so please try it. One new thing we did this year was attend 2 cooking classes by a great French Chef, Daniel Theme. Lots of fun, great food and met nice people. I believe he is starting new sessions mid April. Classes are held in a wonderful spot, high on Seven Hills overlooking the ocean. Check out his website at Chef-Daniel.com. You can also call him or Therese at 340-778-2329. I highly recommend if the classes ar happening when you are there to give it a try. Both my husband and I really enjoyed ourselves.
We have been going to (and enjoying) Tutto Bene (Everything Good) for many years since it was downtown and owned by Tony. About 10 years ago Tony passed away and the employees purchased the restaurant. About 5 years ago they moved out of town a bit to bigger quarters. The food is always consistently good, large portions, great wine and cocktails, good bar crowd too. And after dinner, if you mention Tony they will bring you complimentary sambucca as Tony always did.
Well...we're just back from St. Croix. Didn't get a chance to read about asking for Tony at Tutto Bene before we left; however, we liked the restaurant so much the first night we went that we came back a second night! And each time we were there, we were treated to comp sambucca.
The food at Tutto Bene's was wonderful. Both times my husband had the spaghetti bolognese -- a half portion which was still pretty large. He liked the meaty and flavorful sauce. We each had an appetizer the first night -- too much food -- so the second night we just shared a salad. My entree the first night was the seafood bouillabaise over angel hair pasta. I asked for the seafood and the pasta to be served separately -- and I'm glad I did. The angel hair was so light that it would have been swamped by the overload of seafood -- shrimp, scallops, mussels, fish in a broth that I scooped up with a big spoon. As much as I liked the seafood and pasta dish the first night; I just had to try something else. Wound up with the blackened whole tilapia. If you don't mind navigating bones or get squeamish about a whole fish (head/tail) then this is definitely the dish to get. And if I ever get back to St. Croix I'm having this again and again. Probably one of the best fish dishes I'd ever eaten -- seasoned perfectly, cooked to perfection. Crusty on the outside and tender white inside. Just yummy! And their deserts are pretty good too -- loved the chocolate cake. Service, by the way, was great! Loved the personable and friendly staff.
Our other dinner at the Pickled Greek wasn't so great. In fact, I wouldn't recommend this place. It's very casual -- so no worries about dress code. No atmospher either. Very slow service as well. The only things I can say is that the greek salad (the one without lettuce) was decent. Lots of green/red peppers, cukes, two pieces of anemic tomatoes, two olives, and a bit of feta cheese; and the prices were cheap. My husband's special of the evening -- a pita pizza that came with gyro meat and feta cheese was inedible. The meat was overcooked, dry, and hard to chew. The sauce was acidic. He just couldn't eat it. My souvlaki sandwich came with 4 or 5 small chunks of lamb meat and a couple pieces of gristle swimming with tzatziki (sp?) sauce. I had asked for the meat well done -- opened up the soggy pita and found the meat fairly raw. So I picked out the few pieces of meat and sent them back to the kitchen to be cooked. The fries that came with the sandwich were decent -- crispy as requested and topped with parsley and seasoned salt. Can only imagine that you have to have a lot of beers (or ouzo) with a large group to enjoy this place. Don't go here for the food!
We thoroughly enjoyed Cheeseburgers in Paradise one day for lunch (coming back from Point Udall). Good/fast service. Large, thick, meaty and tasty burgers with all the fixings. Good fries. Reasonable prices. Many other things on their menu to choose from that looked interesting -- including a fish chowder, hot dogs, grilled chicken. They have a board with specials every day. Very close to Buccaneer Hotel if you want a tasty lunch at decent price. Definitely go here if you can.
Also -- on way back from west end sightseeing trip, we stopped by La Reina Chicken Shack. Also say if you're near here, come here! It's a bit hard to find -- no easily seen signage. But you'll recognize it by the 3 flags out front and the fifty cars in the lot and the long lines. You order from one window and pick up from another. For small eaters, you can try the chicken special -- a half chicken bbq that comes with 2 johnny cakes (slightly sweetened) for $5. My husband had the regular chicken dinner -- a half chicken that came with choice of rice (white or seasoned), beans, and a side salad for $8. You then wait in line until your order number is called. You can then go to the bar/picnic table area next door and sit out and eat. Best bargain on the island. And you'll know why they're all lined up! Other choices include everything from oxtail to pulled pork as well as salads.
We did eat breakfast every morning at the Buccaneer Hotel. Good buffet selections plus you can choose anything made in the kitchen instead of or in addition to the buffet. The dinner at the Terrace at night -- we tried the first night we were there -- was fine. Just not outstanding. Good service, gorgeous view, fairly expensive but not crazy. Just the food wasn't knock your socks off. I had a decent and very nicely prepared halibut special that came parmesan encrusted; My husband had a shrimp pasta -- which was just okay.
I'm a resident here and current places which I think are worthwhile are:
Dashi - great sushi
Savant - local fish is always a good bet
Pickled Greek - food's been good - lamb kebabs are great - sorry you had a bad experience
Top Hat - try the frickadeller - its Danish comfort food and very good
Harvey's - great local food
Cafe Christine - lunch only - awesome french cafe - all freshly made including the pate
Ono's - out west - catch the sunset and have a good dinner
Chicken shack - it has good chicken, the rice n beans are great, and it is cheap!
Vinnies - best pizza on the island by far! Even on plastic plates the food is quite good!
Congratulations on your marriage. You will love St. Croix. We have been going there for almost 20 years. Our favorite s are out of town so you would need a car. In the rainforest, The Domino Club. Everybody loves Norma and she makes the best fried chicken and johnny cakes. The beer drinking pigs there are also worth a look. Music there on Sunday afternoons.
In the St. Croix Marina area, No Bones Cafe. On the main road out east, try The Pickled Greek. It is new this year but the owner, Peter has bartended for years at The Deep End Bar (also out east) has great ocean view and always fun folks to chat with at the bar. And of course don't miss Cheeseburgers in Paradise. Enjoy the island.