Known for excellent food and service, here's the cream of the crop from Bermuda's restaurant scene.
For such a small island, Bermuda has a surprisingly varied number of restaurants, many with menus focusing heavily on fresh seafood. This is an island where things can get pricey, so picking the right place to eat is as important for your stomach as your wallet. Fodor’s has rounded up the best options, including several that won’t break the bank.
For romantics and foodies alike, Ascots can’t be beat. Inside the Royal Palms Hotel, the restaurant has an old-world feel but delivers a modern take on Mediterranean cuisine infused with Bermudian flavors. Chef Edmund Smith focuses on preparing seasonal ingredients with an emphasis on fresh seafood, but you can also get classics including veal chops and roast duck. Not only is the food delicious, but each plate is artfully presented. The staff are attentive without being intrusive, making this the perfect spot for a romantic dinner or anniversary. And a private dining room inside the restaurant’s wine cellar is the ideal spot to celebrate a special occasion.
Named to honor the Cox family’s patriarch, Harry’s is first and foremost a fantastic steak house, something that Harry Cox, who died in 1997, would have appreciated. You can enjoy his favorite meal straight from the Mad Men era, the Harry’s Classic—a shrimp cocktail, iceberg wedge salad, 14-ounce New York strip steak, and a slice of cheesecake. Aside from the expertly aged steaks, the menu also features Asian influences, including the fresh catch cooked in a green curry and spicy tomato sauce, as well as inventive daily specials. The space is elegant, with tall ceilings, dim lighting, and comfortable leather chairs offering the perfect setting for a romantic dinner–but it’s equally suited for and often hosts power lunches.
Tom Moore’s Tavern
Originally built as a private home in 1652, Tom Moore’s Tavern became a restaurant almost 100 years ago, making it the oldest surviving eating establishment on Bermuda. Within the Walsingham Nature Reserve, the restaurant feels like taking a step back in time as it still retains much of its historical architecture, including casement windows, wood beams, and original fireplaces that add to the cozy romantic feel. The food is much more upscale than the name would imply, and you’ll find a menu filled with foie gras, grilled steaks and fish, and house-made pastas. Save room for dessert, as Tom Moore’s is well known for its take on sweet classics, including crêpes Suzette prepared tableside and a daily soufflé that’s worth the wait.
Wait to hear the daily specials for both lunch and dinner before deciding on your meal at the harborside Tempest Bistro. The food is inventive and the specials are usually the highlight since the menu’s focus is on whatever fresh seafood might be available that day. But don’t overlook the daily burger, which may be topped with decadent additions like brie and onion jam. The regular menu is heavy on bistro fare, and all dinner entrees are served with a family-style helping of vegetables and potatoes. Desserts are also part of the allure, including banana bread pudding and a homemade fudge brownie served with house-made ice cream. Although the restaurant only offers indoor dining, the floor-to-ceiling windows in this former carriage house allow for great views of St. George’s Harbour.
The Waterlot continues to be one of Bermuda’s best steak houses, offering great food in a refined and elegant setting. People tend to make an evening of it by starting at the dockside bar, where you can select from a creative menu of craft cocktails and watch the sunset. Inside, the 350-year-old former manor house has retained many historical features like the low cedar-beam roof and fireplaces that give the space a warm, intimate atmosphere. Service is attentive, and the wait staff are personable and knowledgeable. The steak choices include an 8-ounce Wagyu strip loin, but you can create your own tasting trio with several options from both land and sea. Don’t skip the restaurant’s signature Caesar salad, which is prepared tableside, old-school style.
While this popular hotel restaurant has a celebrity chef, the menu includes not only Marcus Samuelsson’s signature dishes (including chicken and waffles) but also some Bermudian cuisine and ingredients. Sample fish chowder bites served with Gosling’s Black Seal Rum aioli or jerk chicken rubbed with spice leaves that grow along the island’s Railway Trail. Inside the stylish Hamilton Princess & Beach Club, the former ballroom was renovated in 2017 with a fresh island vibe highlighting the views of Hamilton Harbour through large arched windows. A central bar utilizes hanging open shelves to ensure unobstructed views, and the ambience is buzzy, especially on Sunday during the popular Champagne Brunch.
Tucked away above Hamilton’s bustling Front Street, Bolero Brasserie is an intimate restaurant dimly lit with walls painted deep red and lined with quirky artwork. The balcony overlooking the hubbub makes this restaurant the perfect spot to people watch, especially during the Harbour Nights street festival, held during the summer months. Chef Jonny Roberts takes a minimal approach to his constantly changing, European-influenced menu. Fresh ingredients are expertly paired in a salad of watermelon and duck confit or with pan-roasted cod topped by house-made smoked chorizo. Vegetarians and vegans will also find inspired dishes, including a butternut squash curry with cashew nut quinoa. Dessert is usually worth the calories: try local Alex and Pete’s honeycomb ice cream topped with waffle cone and Crunchie Bar, made especially for the restaurant.
Devil’s Isle is a small, contemporary café offering a communal table perfect for hosting larger parties or mingling with other guests. The menu focuses on fresh, locally sourced and mostly organic ingredients. Salads are particularly tasty, especially the Harvest Bowls, including the Burrito Bowl that’s chock full of organic greens with black beans, raw cacao, mango, corn, and guacamole. You can also build your own with a base of mixed grains or rice, one of eight tasty dressings (including Thai almond coconut curry), or add a protein to bulk it up. Entrees include burgers, salmon, or grilled chicken. A deli next door offers grab-and-go sandwiches prepared on home-baked breads, such as a delicious pumpkin focaccia or paleo bread, as well as a cup of the company’s locally roasted coffee.
The fish sandwich has become an iconic Bermudian staple—piles of freshly caught, crispy fish between thick-cut homemade bread, spread with tartar sauce. It’s not only delicious but is one of the island’s Instagram-worthy meals. Seaside Grill is a simple take-out counter situated just off the road on the north shore, but it makes one of the best fish sandwiches on the island (it also offers the perfect backdrop of the turquoise blue ocean for the sandwich’s beauty shot). Try one made from either mahimahi or wahoo on raisin bread with lettuce and tomato and a dash of hot sauce. But fresh fish, including turbot, snapper, and red hind, arrives daily and doesn’t have to be served as a sandwich. You can have it prepared as a meal (grilled or fried) with two different sides, including Bermuda-style peas and rice.
Port O’ Call
The sophisticated Port O’ Call on Hamilton’s busy Front Street offers a menu focused on fresh, local seafood, which is delivered daily, though not always from Bermudian waters. Try the lemon sole with lemon caper butter, or a surf and turf with grilled tiger shrimp and filet mignon. Leave room for the restaurant’s creamy, light cheesecake for dessert. You can sit inside with water views or on a street-side patio, which tends to have better views for people-watching than the harbor. The patio has a decided advantage on Friday, when the bar and patio turn into a happy hour hot spot. But the restaurant remains the perfect locale for a business lunch or a romantic dinner.