Excited for your Barbados holiday? Of course! After all, this is a destination justifiably renowned for its stunning white silvery sand beaches, aqua blue seas and fabulous scenery. Eating out in Barbados is also equally as wonderful and here you’ll find a Smorgasbord of tastily good eateries, from the celeb-trendy to ocean-front exotic, quirky local to Bayan classic. Even if you are holidaying all-inclusive, it’s certainly worth stepping out on occasion to sample some of the best cuisines in the Caribbean, and in some cases, in the world. Barbados restaurants definitely have it all, from no-expense-spared to down-to-earth Bayan dishes at affordable prices, there is an incredible choice of places to eat and a diverse range of dishes choose from. Here is our mini insider’s guide to some of the best restaurants in Barbados.
Barbados is absolutely steeped in culture and history, all of which is fused into the eats and drinks. From locally caught fish, sweet plantains, rice and peas, and flavoursome West Indian curries and rotis, you’ll find something for everyone amongst the fine hotel dining rooms, tucked away cafes and pop-up food trucks. A couple of tips first; most of the restaurants tend to open early and most diners start their evening around 6-7pm. Also, the fine dining restaurants, in particular, tend to automatically add a 10% service charge.
Derricks, St James, Barbados
Tel: +124 643 21922
It really doesn’t get more ‘high end’ than this! Perched up on the cliff, above the cove in St James is this wonderful ‘foodie’ destination and voted one of the top 50 restaurants in the world. This is THE place to go for that very, very special, fine dining experience. We won’t lie, it’s pricey and you’re looking at around £115 per person for 2 courses and £135 for 3 courses, excluding drinks. However, if you’re celebrating or you want to mix with celebrities and enjoy the best Caribbean seafood, Mediterranean cuisine, it’s certainly worthwhile. Just south of Holetown, you’ll enjoy an incredibly theatrical setting, with torch lit decks and views across the floodlit sea illuminating stingray and tarpon swimming at dusk. Quick tip: this restaurant gets booked 2-3 months in advance, so you may want to book way ahead of your Barbados holiday. Also, there is no children’s menu.
Cin Cin by the Sea
Prospect, St James, Barbados
Tel: +124 6424 4557
Arguably, Cin Cin by the Sea is one of the most fashionable Barbados restaurants and certainly an ‘on-trend’ hotspot. The restaurant is of contemporary design and offers ‘alfresco dining’ on its amazing open-air terrace with panoramic sea views of the west coast. If you prefer, you can also dine in the air-conditioned inside and still see the views through an expansive glass wall. Cin Cin is open for both lunch and dinner daily and a 3-course meal costs around £60 per person excluding drinks. On the menu is a gorgeous range of quintessentially Mediterranean-style cuisine, with of course a Caribbean vibe.
Paynes Bay Beach, St James, Barbados
Tel: +124 6432 8501
Named as one of the Top 10 Most Popular Restaurants in the Best of Barbados Zagat Guide, Daphne’s is part of the Elegant Hotels Group and one of the Island’s long-established, upmarket eating scenes. Here you’ll find a beautifully designed restaurant with delicate coconut shell lampshades, little candles and lots of contemporary finishing touches. At its stunning oceanfront location, you could quite easily bump into one of its regular celebrity guests, including Simon Cowell, Rihanna and Gerard Butler. If you love Italian food, eating out in Barbados doesn’t get much better than this! The menu is full of choices including antipasti, homemade pasta and delicious pannacotta. Daphne’s is open 6-10pm daily and a three-course dinner is approximately £58 excluding drinks per person. The restaurant also has a children’s menu and is a big hit with families not on a tight budget.
Eat like the locals
In our guide of the best restaurants in Barbados, amazing food does not necessarily mean the most expensive. Barbados restaurants come in all shapes, sizes and guises and some of the greatest are certainly frequented by the locals. So, we’ve headed out to do as the locals do…and that’s to hunt out some typical and incredibly delicious home-grown Bayan cuisine.
Oistins, Christ Church, Barbados.
Tel: +124 6428 3838
Particularly on a Friday night, you’ll find queues of locals waiting to order some of the best Creole and Bayan cuisine on the Island. No one makes it like Granny! This wonderful local haunt was started by a Barbadian matriarch, Granny Walcott, more than 30 years’ ago and her food is legendary throughout the length and breadth of Barbados. Granny is not here anymore, but her recipes continue. What to order? Well we recommend one of Barbados’s national dishes – Coucou and Flying Fish – a combo of Okra and cornmeal mixed with pepper, salt and Baja hot sauce. There’s also a whole range of Oistins fish available, steamed or fried. Located in the heart of the Oistins Fish Market, it truly doesn’t come much fresher than this!
Sandra’s (little food van)
Down the road from the Sandy Lane Hotel, St James, Barbados
We just couldn’t write this guide without mentioning the street food and this is certainly the place to come for a wonderful gastronomical adventure and the heart of Barbados. Sandra’s is a tiny food van that parks down the road, south of the Sandy Lane Hotel in Holetown. It offers wonderful street-cooked lamb curry and macaroni pie, with a buffet-style set up. The prices are a fraction of what you’d normally pay, but because it’s so good, it’s very popular and the food often sells out – so do as the locals do and come early.
Cuz’s Fish Shack
Needham Point, Pebbles Beach, Bridgetown, Barbados
Tel: +124 6254 8928
Another fabulous home-grown destination in our list of Barbados restaurants, this colourful, ram shack food truck has become increasingly popular by divers and surfers frequenting nearby Pebbles Beach. Open until 3pm daily, it’s a great choice for lunch and offers freshly made ‘Cutters’ – a local term for any sandwich made using a bun known as ‘salt bread’. Choose ‘cooked to order’ fried fish fillings with tomato, lettuce, Bajan pepper sauce and mayonnaise, add a Banks Beer or a Plus, and you’ve got a true Barbados beach-side meal for between £2-5 per person.
The Good Life
Rockley Terrace, Rockley, St Michael, Barbados
Tel: +124 6240 9483
Described on TripAdvisor as “A little vegan gem behind Rockley Beach”, the Good Life offers a chilled, friendly vibe and offers indoor and outdoor relaxed dining. On the menu is an array of vegetarian and vegan-friendly Caribbean food and great children’s options. Try the Lentil Burger, Veggie Grill Wraps or the SXSW Black Bean and Pineapple Burrito. The Café is open Tuesday to Saturday 11am – 8pm and is a great place to just get a refreshing shake, smoothie and a lovely slice of walnut and banana bread. Please note they only take cash payments.
The Crane Resort, St Philip, Barbados
Tel: +124 6423 6220
If you’re looking for a more formal, or special occasion restaurant, then Zen offers a great choice for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians. Formal attire is required at this Asian-inspired designed venue which offers spectacular views of Crane Beach with its all-glass frontage. The menu is Japanese and Thai cuisine, with vegetable and tofu versions available for each dish. Get there early to watch the moon rise and enjoy a Pad Thai, something from the Wok, one of the Chef’s specials or a delicious Tempura. A 3-course dinner is approximately £55 per person excluding drinks.
The Tides Restaurant
Balmore House, Holetown, St James, Barbados
Tel: +124 6432 8356
Another higher end option and the final in our compilation of Barbados restaurants is The Tides, as its name suggests, its right by the sea. It is a tropical paradise, with trees growing through the roof of the building and its waterfront outlook and outdoor garden gazebo dining area. This family-run restaurant has a Trip Advisor Award of Excellence and is open every evening for dinner and Sunday to Friday for lunch. It has an extensive and dedicated vegetarian menu offering delights such as Thai Green Curry with rice, or Mushroom and White Truffle Oil Risotto.