St. Barthélemy Restaurants

Dining on St. Barth compares favorably to almost anywhere in the world. Varied and exquisite cuisine, a French flair in the decor, sensational wine, and attentive service make for a wonderful epicurean experience in almost any of the more than 80 restaurants. On most menus, freshly caught local seafood mingles on the plate with
Dining on St. Barth compares favorably to almost anywhere in the world. Varied and exquisite cuisine, a French flair in the decor, sensational wine, and attentive service make for a wonderful epicurean experience in almost any of the more than 80 restaurants. On most me
Dining on St. Barth compares favorably to almost anywhere in the world. Varied and exquisite cuisine, a French flair in

Dining on St. Barth compares favorably to almost anywhere in the world. Varied and exquisite cuisine, a French flair in the decor, sensational wine, and attentive service make for a wonderful epicurean experience in almost any of the more than 80 restaurants. On most menus, freshly caught local seafood mingles on the plate with top-quality provisions that arrive regularly from Paris. Interesting selections on the Cartes de Vins are no surprise, but don’t miss the sophisticated cocktails whipped up by island bartenders. They are worlds away from cliché Caribbean rum punches with paper umbrellas. The signature drink of St. Barth is called "’ti punch," a rum concoction similar to a Brazilian caipirinha. It’s also fun to sit at a bar and ask the attractive bartender for his or her own signature cocktail.

Most restaurants offer a chalkboard of daily specials, usually a good bet. But even the pickiest eaters will find something on every menu. Some level of compliance will be paid to dietary restrictions, especially if explained in French; just be aware that French people generally let the chef work his or her magic. Vegetarians will find many options on every menu. Expect meals to be costly, but you can dine superbly and somewhat economically if you limit pricey cocktails, watch wine selections, share appetizers or desserts, and pick up snacks and picnics from one of the well-stocked markets. Or you can follow the locals to small crêperies, cafés, sandwich shops, and pizzerias in the main shopping areas. Lunch is usually less costly than dinner. Ti creux means "snack" or "small bite."

Lavish publications feature restaurant menus and contacts. Ask at your hotel or look on the racks at the airport. Reservations are strongly recommended and, in high season, essential. Lots of restaurants now accept reservations on their website or by email. Check social media. Except during the Christmas–New Year's season it's not usually necessary to book far in advance. A day's—or even a few hours'—notice is usually sufficient. At the end of the meal, as in France, you must request the bill. Until you do, you can feel free to linger at the table and enjoy the complimentary vanilla rum that's likely to appear.

Check restaurant bills carefully. A service compris (service charge) is always added by law, but you should leave the server 5% to 10% extra in cash. You'll usually come out ahead if you charge restaurant meals on a credit card in euros instead of paying with American currency, as your credit card might offer a better exchange rate than the restaurant (unless your credit card charges a conversion surcharge). Many restaurants serve locally caught langouste (lobster); priced by weight, it's usually the most expensive item on a menu and, depending on its size and the restaurant, will range in price from $40 to $60.

What to Wear: A bathing suit and gauzy top or shift is acceptable at beachside lunch spots, but not really in Gustavia. Jackets are never required and are rarely worn by men, but most people do dress fashionably for dinner. St. Barth is for fashionistas; women wear whatever is hip, current, and sexy. You can't go wrong in a tank dress or a sexy top with white jeans, high sandals, and flashy accessories. The sky is the limit for high fashion at nightclubs and lounges in high season, when you might (correctly) think everyone in sight is a model. Leave some space in your suitcase; you can buy the perfect outfit here on the island. Nice shorts (not beachy ones) at the dinner table may label a man américain, but many locals have adopted the habit, and nobody cares much. Wear them with a pastel shirt to really fit in (never tucked in). Pack a light sweater or shawl for the occasional breezy night.

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  • 1. Bonito

    $$$$ | Latin American

    Decorated like a chic beach house, Bonito features big white canvas couches for lounging, in the center; tables around the sides; an open kitchen...Read More

  • 2. L' Esprit

    $$$$ | French

    Renowned chef Jean-Claude Dufour (formerly of Eden Rock) brings innovative dishes to a romantic terrace close to Saline Beach. The menu has...Read More

  • 3. L'Isola

    $$$$ | Italian

    The chic sister of Santa Monica, California's Via Veneto packs in happy guests for classic Italian dishes, dozens of house-made pasta dishes...Read More

  • 4. La Case de L'Isle

    $$$$ | French

    You can't top the view or the service at this waterfront restaurant at the renowned Cheval Blanc St-Barth Isle de France, and at night there...Read More

  • 5. Le Tamarin

    $$$ | International

    A leisurely lunch here en route to Grande Saline beach is a St. Barth must, but this spot is also tops for dinner or an after-beach snack...Read More

  • 6. Le Ti St. Barth Caribbean Tavern

    $$$$ | Eclectic

    Chef-owner Carole Gruson captures the island's funky, sexy spirit in her wildly popular hilltop spot. Come to dance to great music with the...Read More

  • 7. On the Rocks

    $$$$ | International

    Settle into your table perched high above St-Jean beach at the gleaming, wood-framed terrace restaurant at the Eden Rock Hotel...Read More

  • 8. The Sand Bar

    $$$$ | Eclectic

    At this Eden Rock hotel eatery, lunch on the terrace with the beautiful blue water sparkling beyond is incomparable. Star chef Jean Georges...Read More

  • 9. Bagatelle St Barth

    $$$$ | French

    The sophisticated St-Tropez–inspired eatery, right on the harbor, is a scene-y place to watch big boats and enjoy pizzas (try the truffle one...Read More

  • 10. Bartolomeo

    $$$$ | Eclectic

    Locavores will like the refined cuisine at this pretty restaurant in the gardens of the Guanahani hotel. Influenced by Provence and Italy,...Read More

  • 11. Dõ Brazil

    $$$ | Eclectic

    In addition to lunch and dinner, this restaurant on Shell Beach has live music for sundown cocktail hour Thursday–Saturday as well as top DJs...Read More

  • 12. Eddy's

    $$$ | Asian

    By local standards, dinner in the pretty, open-air, tropical garden here is reasonably priced. The cooking is French-creole-Asian. Fish specialties...Read More

  • 13. L'Ardoise

    $$ | French

    Sit at a shaded communal table at this lively, modern gastropub/wine bar in St-Jean's Villa Creole shopping enclave any time of the day. Come...Read More

  • 14. L'Isoletta

    $ | Pizza

    This casual Roman-style pizzeria run by the popular L'Isola restaurant is a lively, chic lounge-style gastropub serving delicious thin-crust...Read More

  • 15. La Gloriette

    $$ | Caribbean

    Everyone has a great time eating a beachside lunch at shady picnic tables under coccoloba trees. Those who remember the original creole restaurant...Read More

  • 16. La Guérite

    $$$$ | Mediterranean

    This stylish restaurant, a sister of a well-beloved Cannes hot spot, has taken the place formerly occupied by the Wall House restaurant at the...Read More

  • 17. La Langouste

    $$$ | French

    This small but friendly beachside restaurant in the pool courtyard of Hôtel Baie des Anges lives up to its name by serving fresh-grilled local...Read More

  • 18. La Plage

    $$$$ | International

    Dining in St. Barth–style is spot-on at this eatery in Le Tom Beach Hôtel, a prime place to watch people and the action on St. Jean Beach. Passion...Read More

  • 19. Le Palace

    $$$ | Caribbean

    Tucked into a tropical garden, this popular restaurant, also known as Pipiri Palace, is famous for its barbecued ribs, beef fillet, and rack...Read More

  • 20. Le Repaire

    $$ | French

    Overlooking the harbor, this friendly classic French brasserie is busy from its early-morning opening to its late-night closing. The flexible...Read More

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