A big part of any Caribbean vacation is sampling the native cuisine. Here's our picks for the top restaurants in Nevis, from seafood shacks loved by the locals to fine dining in restored plantation houses.
If you're looking to splurge one night, try the buffet at "Coconuts" at the Nisbet Plantation Beach Club. Dine in the open air with the Caribbean shore at your back under a breathtaking canopy of stars. The food is top notch, and the buffet features two open grills and a sumptuous choice of local fish, from salmon to tuna to mahi, shrimp and wahoo (a kind of kingfish), all gently grilled to sear in the juices. The club is pretty and modern; food is served on the pool patio overlooking the water. Service was overwhelmingly friendly. Try visiting on a Thursday night for live reggae/calypso music on the beach. The buffet costs around US$50 a head (prices vary).
The Double Deuce Restaurant
A narrow wooden bridge leads the way to the Double Deuce, a beach hangout/bar/restaurant that sits right at the end of Pinney's Beach, one the finest beaches on Nevis. The restaurant portion is open mainly for lunch, with food that is solid, but not exceptional, and slightly overpriced. The location is phenomenal, however (it has a great view of St. Kitts), with a full bar and karaoke every Thursday night. The Double Deuce is a good spot to relax in the afternoon and a very nice place to have a drink when the sun goes down.
It's worth having lunch at the Oualie Beach Club just to lie on their beach afterward. That said, the food is solid local fare, and not a greasy spoon, but definitely mid-range dining that feels more comfortable (and therefore less exciting) than Sunshine's or Double Deuce's. Still, a pleasant place to catch a midday meal. Try the seafood paella or the conch creole for a little more spice. Entrees run around US$20.
The Sunset Beach Club
A nondescript building hides a pleasant interior, with some of the better pizza available on Nevis, and US$1.85 for a beer. As with many dining options, the Sunset Beach Club is just a short distance from the water, although those who came to the restaurant seemed to favor the menu over any possible sightseeing. The pizzas are cheap (around US$10, depending on the size), and range from simple cheese to a full-marine seafood pizza with all the fixings. It has the feel of a real local venue, and there is, of course, karoake on Thursday nights.
1787 Bar and Bistro
Fine dining on Nevis cannot be fully experienced without a visit to 1787, a restaurant owned by the Montpelier Plantation on the premises of Nevis' Botanical Gardens. For a refreshing cocktail, try the 1787 Sangria, made with white wine, peach schnapps, rum, apple juice, and assorted fruit. Although the dinners are a la carte, 1787 will rarely cost more than US$30 for an entrée and a side, and there's always a daily special priced at US$17.87. With good service and the quality and variety of the starters, cocktails, and full meals, the 1787 Bar and Bistro is one of the necessary stops for a night out on Nevis.
It's hard to google 'Nevis' without coming across something about restaurant owner Sunshine or his famous "Killer Bee" rum punch (US$5). The seafood-oriented restaurant is an attraction unto itself. Bedecked in flags from all corners of the world (it's rumored Sunshine buys one from wherever he's traveled – if so he's an exceedingly well-traveled fellow), with a full bar, and picnic table and closed-canopy seating along the shore, this is an absolute must-stop for anyone traveling to the island. The food is authentic, light, fresh, and grilled to perfection. In the afternoon it is a place that does not ask, but demands you relax. Food is around US$15.
The Gallipot feels like an expat hangout, similar to a New England seafood restaurant in décor and service, and while this is comfortable it in no way diminishes the quality and affordability of the food. The fish is terrific, it is one of the few places on Nevis where you can get a mashed potato, and entrees go for approximately US$11. Very friendly, if not the most prompt, service. All-in-all, a great deal.