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Jan 18, 2012 04:39 PM

St. Martin: Marie Antoinette does Lunch at "Bacchus"

Here is my review of Bacchus in St. Martin (in Hope Estate outside of Grand Case- it is only open for lunch)

Marie Antoinette does Lunch

Here, Oh Best Beloved is the story of how Marie Antoinette, her head still securely fastened to her neck, had lunch today. Her place of choice: Bacchus, a fabulous restaurant, cum wine cave, cum provisioner of delicacies, delightful to both the mouth and eye. At 1:00 sharp, dressed in her finest white shorts, pretty yellow (fairly revealing) yellow cotton tunic shirt, hair up (but still curling charmingly around her face) and decked out in some tasteful jewelry, she sauntered into Bacchus with her regal Mami in tow. They were respectfully ushered to a table where they were immediately served a special, complimentary elixir comprised of champagne, a dash of jerez and a basil infusion. Yummy! I mean, delightful. Menus proffered, they perused the offerings with great enthusiasm and anticipation. Should Marie choose the scallops seared to perfection and topped with fois gras? No, she worried, they might not be dry packed scallops and that would offend her fussy palate. Should she select the filet mignon with morels imported from Paris? No, her Mami opted for that and besides she thought it best to stay away from mother cow- at least for the day. How about the house made raviolis stuffed with fois gras topped with shaved truffles, also directly imported from France. “No,” she said, wrinkling her nose, “I just had lobster pasta last night and how much pasta can I eat?” Instead, she settled on sharing an assiette of antipasti (escargot, blini with caviar, white asparagus, fresh anchovies, olives, iberico ham with melon and all manner of delicacies) followed by pig’s trotter stuffed with fois gras (the bones conveniently removed) served on a bed of wild mushrooms with beautiful pillows of potatoes that strangely resembled tater tots but whose taste bore no resemblance to an item Marie would never permit pass her lips. The Mami’s meal was accompanied by a glass of rose champagne, but Marie opted for a glass of excellent Bordeaux. The meal was so stupendous that Marie ate it all. When the waiter, after inquiring solicitously if all had met their expectations (“Oh yes,” they cried in unison) had cleared away their plates, he quickly returned with a tray of pastries. Now up until that point Marie had convinced herself she could not eat another bite, but at the sight of those delectable morsels she quickly changed her mind. Her eyes lit upon a charmingly presented raspberry mousse confection. “An excellent choice, your Majesty,” assured the waiter. “Two spoons,” if you don’t mind, I will share this with my Mami.” “Your wish is my command,” intoned the waiter, “coffee after?” “Why, of course,” agreed Marie, “How else to end such a sumptuous meal?” With that the waiter respectfully left the two ladies to twiddle their thumbs for no more than a few minutes and returned with the dessert and even an extra confection, on the house! After blissfully devouring what Marie’s Mami declared to be one of the yummiest desserts ever, coffee was served and the meal was complete by 3:12 in the afternoon: a mere 2 hours and 12 minutes from when they sat down. The check was placed on the table, a credit card swiftly whipped out of Marie’s bag and accepted and the bill was settled. I won’t tell you Oh Best Beloved, how much this cost because you might choke. But what I can reveal is the answer to the mystery that has haunted historians for hundred of years. When Marie Antoinette was brought to the scaffold, her head placed on the block waiting for the guillotine to fall, a small smile crossed her face and it seemed to the crowd that she licked her lips. And here, Oh My Best Beloved, is what she was thinking: she was remembering that meal at Bacchus!

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  1. Mangita: What a great "review"!! Off to St Martin this Tuesday, staying in Cul de Sac....close to Bacchus.....since we seem to have similar taste, where else in SM does Ms Marie love to eat on this culinary island?

    7 Replies
    1. re: sockster


      I like Estimanet (creative) and Bistro Carib (classic and reliably French and comforting) in Grande Case. I really enjoy Ti Bouchon in Cul de Sac run by the eccentric but fun and dedicated to his cuisine "Mo Mo", Le Sucrier bakeries in Cole Bay and Marigot and Hilma's Windsor Castle in Simpson Bay (it is a trailer) for Johnny cakes and codfish cakes. I also enjoy Palm Beach (one of the beaches that's on Orient) where if you buy lunch, the chairs and umbrellas are "free." The food is quite good and the beach area a bit less crowded than the rest of Orient. I wanted to, but did not get to the Karakter Beach Bar in Simpson Bay- go towards Mary Boon's. I hear good things about it for lunch and also heard Sol e Lune in Cul de Sac is very good too (dinner). Here is something Marie and I really love: Dutch yogurt. It is fabulous. Buy and try any and all Dutch yogurt - it is a revelation. You can find these in the Grand Marche on the Dutch side near Port de Plasaince so not too far outside of Marigot. But I will be honest: I go to SXM all the time but I NEED to find some new places! That was why I was so excited by Bacchus. Let me know if you find anything new. I am glad you enjoyed my little story about Bacchus- it really was fabulous! Will you be returning to Bacchus on this trip? Enjoy!

      1. re: Mangita

        Our tastes are very similar! I am going to Estimanet Tuesday night for our first night..I really love it there. Going to Bistro Carib our last night next Monday. In between I've booked: La Villa, L'Astrolabe in Orient (Friday night, lobster night- ask for a table by the pool- quite good!), Le Pressoir for Saturday night and La Cigale. I am definatly going to try Hilma's, and I have Karakter beach as a place for lunch. We'll also try the Dutch yogurt..sounds awesome.. So how much appx was your visit to Bacchus??? My guess is $500!! I'll keep you posted to where else we go....Also, the pizza place in Cul de Sac is amazing!!! Can't wait to leave NY on Tuesday and get to my favorite place in the Caribbean!!

        1. re: sockster

          Looks like nothing but rancho del Sol between Cul de Sac and Orient bay is great for lunch and the name of the Pizza Place in Cul de Sac is Villa Pizza very good, very good! Will surely try dutch yogourt!

          1. re: madamebatignolles

            Oh, I see the name of the pizza place now. I will try it next time I am there. Is it open at night?

          2. re: sockster

            Actually, the lunch was about $178 (with a tip)- not bad! Where is this pizza place in Cul de Sac?

            1. re: Mangita

              Oh that's not too bad...we're going tomorrow. Villa Pizza is about a block past Ti Bouchon in the corner, right by the left turn to the Radisson....BTW, our best meal so far has been at Ti Bouchon....they are cooking outstanding right now....I'll do a whole report when we get home next week. Today, Pinel for sun and lobster, and tonight, L'Astrolabe for lobster night....should be amazing...

              1. re: sockster

                Sounds yummy! Looking forward to your report. Yes, Ti Bouchon's cooking has elevated itself since last year