Bajan bites in Barbados
Oistins fish fry on a Friday night..
It appears the entire island descends into Oistins famous fish fry. Imagine a local market day but instead of baking in the Sun and shuffling through endless stalls of stuff you don't want to buy, you have this, the freshest fish you can imagine in a carnival of authenticity.
Oistins is not only a tourist mecca it is the locals favourite. Live music filling the air an intense atmosphere, rum punch flowing, flying fish cutlers in abundance and there is a vibe that even I cant deny is electric.
Although this is a must see place to go it was definitely not my cup of tea. If you do not like crowds or pushy servers then this might not be the place for you. There are a few bars that have queues an hour or two long so we chose to head towards the back. Possibly (definitely) wasn't my best idea as the further back you got, the pushier and more aggressive the “menu pushers” became. It appears (dont hold me to this but its the only rational we came up with) that they work on commission so if they hand you a menu and you choose to eat there they get to seat & serve you.
It was nice to see and experience this but there were definitely some better finds on the island.
The best fish I have ever ate in my life was from one of the more permanent street vendors on Sandy Lane. I have no idea of the name but Ive marked it on the map below so you know exactly where to be. Yes we had to stand in line for nearly 2 hours but my life was it worth it. The chef was an hour late and once he got those grills fired up it was a treat to our palette that we were craving so badly.
O yeh I don’t like fish btw so thats how good this stuff was! And it was so cheap compared to most other things on the island.
Lets stay on the topic of food in Barbados, its pricey and theres not an abundance of local cuisine at your fingertips like we were expecting. The best food is the street vendors but one restaurant stole our hearts and that was at Dover Beach. Irie Foods..... On a little side street the sign outside doesn't scream home cooked, epic flavoured, Caribbean delights.
Devastated doesn't cut it, whhhhyyyy o whhhyyy did we not go here on the first night instead of the last?!?! Although not technically Bajan cuisine, they class as Jamaican but the owners are from Barbados and she was the most passionate, knowledgable and caring person we met. A palliative nurse by day and front of house at night. she is a pure ray of sunshine & it is reflected in everything she does.
Once you have finished your meal grab a coconut ice lolly from the supermarket on the next block and pop across the street to Salt Ash apartments and visit Tyrone's bar. This was our favourite place on the island. The most idillic view of the beach with a warm cosy atmosphere. I can honestly say this was our Haven.