Cheeseburger in Paradise: Eating out in the Bahamas

Typical Snack Shack, Eleuthera

"Heard about the old time sailor men, they eat the same thing again and again,
Warm beer and bread, they say it could raise the dead; it reminds me of the menu at a Holiday Inn.
Times have changed for sailors these days, when I'm in port I get what I need." - Jimmy Buffett, Cheeseburger in Paradise

Matt and I love everything about going out to eat. Someone else cooks, someone else does the dishes, and we get delicious food! We even tell ourselves we are experiencing local culture! It's a win for everyone! 

Eating out in the Bahamas is a little different from the U.S. First, service is usually really slow. Lots of staring before you get menus, 30 minutes before you place an order, absolute ages before the food shows up, surrounded by flies. They don't need a "final call" bell, they have mosquitos to chase you out! Then, this foreign country has the audacity to serve cheeseburgers with peas and rice.....and the peas aren't even "peas"! They're some sort of bean product! Kitchens and eating areas may not be up to USDA standards. Dog-friendly places are hit and miss. We really became addicted to "snack shacks" - a simple one person operation: kitchen, counter orders, outdoor picnic tables, good prices.  

Pizza and rum punches, Tiny's, Long Island
Sure, all this "going to a restaurant and ordering $13 cheeseburgers" makes us sound like real losers. We are! In the U.S., I never order burgers. But in the Bahamas, I craved them! You see, we didn't have meat on board; tomatoes, lettuce and red onions are hard to find, cheese is a luxury, and buns? you'll have to make them, and who has time for that? For us to make an honest to god cheeseburger on board would be nearly impossible, and we began to long for meat, veggies, cheese and bread all in the perfect package. 

How much did all this extravagence cost? Cheeseburgers were between $6 (Munchies Snack Shack) to $15 (Pete's Pub). Drinks were $4 for beer, $7-$8 for mixed drinks. Pastries were between $2-$5. Full entree at Pete's Pub was $26 - the most expensive meal of the trip, but also the best!  
Pete's Pub from the wade-up bar: dog, kid, fly and mosquito friendly!

Biminis: Snack shack, cracked conch, flies, outdoor picnic table.
Berry's: We attempted lunch at a recommended joint. They acted extremely offended when I asked for dog-friendly seating and mortified when I asked for take-out. Headed to the snack shack and had the best cheeseburgers of our entire trip (including fries! thats delicious, amazing, fried potatoes!) YUM. 
Exumas: We went to the much-talked about Lorraines (sans Hastings). We didn't have any propane to cook, so we were looking forward to food! I'm sure a lot of the food there is good, but my cheeseburger was very unexpectional. 
Long Island: Man, did we splurge on Long Island! Cheeseburgers and rum punches at Tinys (dog-friendly), cheeseburgers and beer at the marina (no dogs). It was all so good! 
Conception: A charter boat set up dinner on the beach, but we weren't invited. 
Cat: Coconut tarts from the local baker. The tarts were unlike anything we've had; surgar, cinnamon and coconut goo folded into a quick bread - definately worth it!
Eleuthera: We tried for pizza, but had to settle for the world's best cheese danish.
Abacos: Another splurgey chain! Cheeseburgers at Pete's Pub : pretty good, could have done without the flies. The "blaster" special drink was poured from a jug instead of mixed fresh and really went light on the booze. We returned and had the trigger fish special; the fish was amazing and the gritz were out of this world! I've never had grits before because I don't like them (yes, my logic is flawless), but this was just so delcious. See, experiencing local culture and expanding horizons; priceless. 
We had cheeseburgers at Captain Jack's in Hope Town (no dogs), met friends at Harbour's Edge for drinks. We went to Munchies snack shack for burgers and fries.  
Marsh Harbour: Snack Shack cheeseburgers and fries.
Treasure Cay: World's best cinnamon rolls: we didn't enjoy. The world is not enough (or it's boasting alternative facts). 
Cheese Danishes, Governor's Harbour, Eleuthera
Do you love to eat out while you travel, or do you prefer to put your travel dollars towards something else? 

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  1. The first time we were in the Bahamas, we ate/drank out more often this time. But, overall, the food never really wowed us, so we've chosen not to spend so much eating out on this trip. Now, if they had an Ethiopian or Indian restaurant, we'd be there so fast it would make your head spin.

    I was going thru your list trying to think of where we've eaten too. We had cheeseburgers at Capt Jack's in Hope Town - meh. I got Bahamaian mac n'cheese at that little snack shack in Hope Town - awesome. We had lunch at the Wrecking Tree in Green Turtle Cay - meh. We had goombay smash at that place whose name escapes me in Green Turtle Cay. It came from a pitcher, but certainly had a lot of liquor in it. Delish.

    This year, we got food at a church fair. Chicken dinner & conch fritters - yummy and delish. And we got snack food at Miss Ida's in Black Point. Yum and cheap.

    Now I'm hungry. Why is that?

    1. We have an amazing Indian restaurant about 5 minutes from our dock here in New Bern; we pretty much tied up the boat and ran down the street! I believe the Goombay Smash was at Emily Bee's (we didn't go, but had heard a lot about it!) The snack shacks definitely seem like the best deal - good food and good prices.


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