As owner and CEO of Exceptional Villas, I am often asked where is my favourite place in the world to go on vacation? With so many beautiful places in the world, I am unable to limit my answer to just one vacation spot. My answer to this question is always the same; Italy, The Maldives, Barbados and St Barts.
As a lover of all things gourmet, I personally think it is hard to beat St Barts which is why I decided to put pen to paper and write about all the best places to eat in St Barts.
The food in St Barts is varied and always exquisite and I hope you enjoy my list of excellent St Barts restaurants.
Located directly overlooking the Harbour in St Barts, Bagatelle is very chic with influences of the sophisticated south of France brassiere. It is a great spot to people-watch while enjoying Wahoo sashimi with yuzu and citrus confit or roasted Mahi Mahi filet with a hummus & basil cream sauce. If you like to party, then go at the weekend and ask for a table inside. The atmosphere is electric, and it is not long before everyone is dancing on the tables to the sounds of one of the best DJ’s on the island.
If you order an extravagant bottle of wine or champagne, this is what might happen!
Top Tip: Our Concierge Team would be happy to to reserve you a harbourside table. The views are fabulous. But if you like to party, the place to be is inside in the middle of the fun.
2. Bartolomeo and The Guanahani
3. Black Ginger Thai Restaurant
Bonito is without a doubt one of the St Barts hotspots, and it is not unusual to spot celebrity guests, such as Pippa Middleton who is now married to James Matthews, son of the owner of the famous Eden Rock Hotel. You are also likely to see a clatter of supermodels and film stars. The last time I had dinner in Bonito, I was lucky enough to be sitting beside Vanessa Redgrave who just happens to be one of my favourite actresses in the world. The décor is like a chic beach house, and there is even a fabulous boutique if you feel like a bit of retail therapy after dinner.
Top Tip: Bonito often has Great DJ every night. Check with our Concierge Team for the best night to book.
Top tip: Get there after 9 p.m. This is when the locals arrive and the atmosphere becomes electric!
6. Francois Plantation
Francois Plantation is an elegant French restaurant, with hints of Provence and the Mediterranean in the gourmet menu. Delicacies include a beautiful home-made foie gras and langoustes flambé, not to be missed! Open for lunch and dinner in high season, and pre-booking is highly advised.
Top Tip: Surprisingly good value
Top Tip: Make some time to have a cocktail at the bar. The atmosphere is lovely.
9. Le Ti St Barth
If you are in the mood for a party, then Le Ti is the place to be. On arrival, it feels like you are entering a very nice clubby-type restaurant. But the first appearances are quite deceptive. The food is good. My favourite thing to eat is the Angus Prime Rib. But the Tuna Tataki and the Mahi Mahi Filet with a Beure Blanc sauce are also good. First is the cabaret show which is quite sexy and wild, then there is a fashion show, and around 11pm is when the real fun begins.
My first time, I was pulled into the dress-up room and came out looking like Britney Spears! Everyone dances on the tables and the atmosphere can be pretty wild.
Top Tip: Expect the unexpected and go with the flow!
10. La Plage/Pearl Beach
There is a tiny boutique in the restaurant full of treasures including the fabulously trendy Free In St Barth brand which by the way you can get online now. But as a woman who loves fashion, the best bit for me is the fashion show. Beautiful models floating past your table wearing gorgeous clothes whilst drinking ice cold rosé wine and eating delicious Cervices is my idea of heaven! At night, the restaurant vibe changes quite a bit. There are regular themed nights with DJ’s, fire shows, live artistic pole dancing and entertainment.
Top Tip: The weekend brunch is fabulous, and the Sunday night deluxe barbecue is also great.
11. Le Repaire
Le Repaire is a fabulous spot to enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner and to watch the world go by. Facing the port, it offers great views of the yachts docked in the harbour. It has an excellent & varied menu at great prices. We had shrimp tempura with tomato chutney which was excellent. The service is good, and Le Repaire also offers excellent value. Moreover, it is also a good choice for cocktails.
12. Le Toiny Restaurant
The completely new Le Toiny Hotel has a wonderful culinary treat in store for gourmet lovers. We can go so far to say it is one of the best restaurants on St Barts! Certainly this is a great acclaim when there are so many fabulous restaurants from which to choose. The food has inspirations from France and Europe, and head chef Jarad McCarroll oversees the kitchen. The décor of the restaurant is chic with the use of white and neutral colours and with a view that overlooks the pool and the Bay at Anse d Toiny.
The food is truly delicious, and the service was excellent. We had the fish tartare and the lobster ravioli. Both were amazing. If you are staying around Gustavia or St-Jean, it is well worth the effort of driving the 10 or 15 minutes it takes to get to Le Toiny.
13. Le Toiny Beach Club
A hidden gem in St Barts, Le Toiny Beach Club, is a firm favourite of mine. The restaurant has an extremely quiet spot at the end of Toiny Beach and the only way to access it is by a four-wheeled drive down a very steep hill or by walking along the beach. It is the polar opposite to the fun and party atmosphere you might find in Nikki Beach.
14. Nikki Beach
There is music, dancing and entertainment. Nikki Beach is also renowned for its themed lunches and dinners – they are always a fun day out. Most importantly, the food at Nikki Beach is also off-the-charts-delicious!
Top Tip: Sunday lunch is the best time to people watch and if you are on the island in October, make sure to get a seat for the opening party!
Ociela is located in the centre of Gustavia and has a slightly elevated position. Consequently, the outdoor terrace ensures wonderful views. If you love Mediterranean cuisine, Ociela is the place to go! For instance, the menu is a perfect blend of inspirations from Lebanon, Morocco, France and Italy. In addition, Ociela is particularly great if you are vegetarian or vegan as it probably has more options on the menu than any other restaurants in St Barts. The food is healthy and delicious.
We shared one of the Mezze plates as a starter and Mahi Mahi with Ratatouille and Quinoa for the main course. They were both excellent. After dinner, you can spend some time in the Hookah Lounge before going downstairs to their night club called CASA where you can dance until dawn!
The atmosphere is lovely and very relaxed. When we went there, the service was excellent. Ask for Hayate. She is from Morocco and is delightful.
16. Santa Fe
It has a sense of history and is not as trendy as some of the newer St Barts Restaurants, but it is still one of my personal favourites. I especially love going for lunch to enjoy the view. But lunch or dinner, the food is always wonderful, and the atmosphere is always romantic. The food is a blend of traditional French and Creole cuisines. Expect to enjoy the freshest of Dover sole, spicy ocean hot pot and grilled spiny lobster straight out of the tank in the restaurant.
Top Tip: If you are going at night, take a taxi home. The road is dark, steep and narrow!
17. Shell Beach
Shellona Beach (formerly Do Brazil) is set on the fabulous shell beach. This beach restaurant is a great choice for everyone. It is very cool and trendy but also great for families as the children can play right on the beach. It opens directly onto Shell Beach in a slightly elevated position. It’s also possible to relax in the bar area right on the sand.
The food is a blend of Greek Mediterranean and French. We had the lamb kebabs which were delicious. But the Piece de resistance was the dessert! It is called Torrijas and is a mix between a French brioche and Crème Brulee. You absolutely cannot leave St Barts without it, and you need to leave room for it at the end of lunch. I would almost go back to St Bart’s just for the dessert! I am not joking!!
There is live entertainment on some evenings and a daily fashion show every lunchtime. There is a boutique on-site with gorgeous island-style clothing.
Tamarin is one of the most romantic of St Barts Restaurants. It is set in a beautiful tropical garden full of lily ponds and sweet-smelling flowers. The restaurant is located on the right side of the road on the way to Saline Beach. A beautiful tamarind tree is located at the entrance and is reputed to be over 200 years old.
The menu is very varied with everything from Pan-fried foie gras to pan-seared tuna with a satay sauce and sautéed mahi-mahi, vegetables, veggie pepper and chickpea butter.
Top Tip: The gardens are beautifully lit and very romantic at night time.
The fact that Air France flies in each day from Paris to the neighbouring island of St Martin laden with delicious French goodies, as well as sensational French wines and champagnes, is a great help. French flair is very evident in much of the cuisine, but some of the top restaurants in St Barths are Italian, Thai and Japanese. Many of the St Barts best restaurants cleverly combine influences from all over the world.
The abundance of locally caught seafood is evident and a wonderful addition to local menus.
Over the years, I have visited the island many times and, each time, I revisit my favourite St Barts restaurants. I also make sure to visit all of the new restaurants in St Barts.
To do a blog on the best places to eat in St Barts is no easy task, however, as there are more than 80 restaurants on the island. An incredible number considering the island is tiny and just 8 square miles! St Barts is my favourite of the Caribbean Islands to visit for a memorable trip!
St Barts has some of the best restaurants in the world. I have heard people comment over the years about how expensive it can be. There are a few fine dining restaurants with some eye-watering prices, but generally, most of the restaurants are well priced and offer really good value. Dining here is one of the best things to do in St Barts. The fusion of influences from all over the world, make it a very interesting place to enjoy some amazing gourmet experience.
If you want to find out more about St Barts read my Ultimate Guide to St Barts.
We love to hear from our readers so please do let us know what you think the best places to eat in St Barts are, and we will be delighted to check them out next time we visit the island.