Reviewers Rating: Good
We had five nites to pick and choose but one nite had to be at CuisinArt as it was included in the "package." Oliver's was the first pick. Service and staff were warm and friendly and what a great way to start our initial visit to Anguilla! The crayfish was grilled altho a bit dry and dh's steak had to do a rerun to get it done right, but the coconut pie outshone any and all other desserts on Angulla!
CuisinArt was choice for nite #2. A very lackluster unimaginative bouillabaisse was my choice and the Vegetarian Selection (at $45) was a lovely presentation! The chocolate "souffle" was not a wonderful souffle but more like a warm pudding with a crust - but then I didn't expect a real one since I had asked and been told that it took just 20 minutes to prepare!
Mango's was an unfortuante third choice! The "owner" should have stayed in the Bagel Store in NJ that he ran. Wonder if he walked around there with a cig hanging out of his mouth as the evening wound down? Food was okay. I did try the "local" Trigger fish but was admonished for ordering it "grilled" despite my unfamiliarity with it and the server explaining that it was an option! I felt grilled! Not a pleasant evening especially when the charge came to $184.88 instead of the $104.00 and the "host" was not very pleasant when we questioned it! Not somewhere I would return to EVER!
Straw Hat was absolutely fantastic and have to admit I would have eaten there every nite if it had been a choice! Excellent ... food, ambience, staff, view! It should be a must!
Our last nite was at the infamous Blanchard's. Now I do not enjoy Pacific Rim fusion food and had not done enuf homework! The Mahi Mahi was done perfectly but rather unimaginative ... but then I didn't want hot, hot, hot .. I happen to like the taste of what I am eating. My dh had the Ya Ya Gumbo ( or Ya Ya Something ... on the menu by "popular request" it stated) but it would have made a lovely appetizer sized dish! Lovely setting and I know the "smell" that permerated everything was probably to chase the bugs (why else?) but it entirely wiped out the smells of the food ... and all I did was sneeze! Reminded me of those college years with the insense burning - not pleasant! Dessert was interesting ... but nothing to write home about ... but then they did have a pile of their books for sale there where they did write about home!
Lunches were fabulous at Hydroponic Cafe at CuisinArt (What a view! And the tomatoes grown in the hydroponic garden actually tasted like tomatoes - and were sooo juicy not like the box-ripened variety that you get, even in NJ!!!), Cap Juluca and Malliouhana and I wish I had gone with my "instincts" to dine at Cap and Malli instead of listening to the hype about some of the "in" places. But, next time will choose differently - and there will be a next time! What a lovely island!! Love the French butter and creme - really stuck to the arteries!!! But some of the pricier restaurants should work on bringing the food up to par with the prices in stead of resting on their laurels of the past!