Updated: Nov 11, 2019
The British Virgin Islands are a boater’s paradise. Whether you prefer sailing or power boating, navigation is mostly line of sight. The normally steady, trade winds power your sails and keep you cool in the tropical climate. The unpack once, move at your own pace, and wake up to a new adventure everyday style of travel is very appealing. The sapphire blue water is clear and teeming with wildlife. The locals are friendly and welcoming. AND the food is delicious. No wonder, US News & World Report just named it the best Caribbean destination of 2019 and two of Travel & Leisure’s 2019 top 15 islands in the Caribbean were Virgin Gorda and Jost Van Dyke, both in the BVI.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, the BVI restaurants have come back better than ever. I have listed my favorites by location, as well as some I have not yet visited but they are on my list to try when we visit again in November. All of these locations can be reached by Ferry or Water Taxi and offer accommodations for land lovers.
Coffee in Paradise
Road Town, Tortola, BVI
Charley’s is an open air restaurant in the middle of the Mooring’s Marina. It is the first restaurant where I had a meal in the BVI and it was love at first bite. They have a wood fired pizza oven. from which they create delicious “Naples” style thin crust pizza. Sharing a salad, a pizza and a bottle of red wine is one of my favorite meals. Their menus are diverse with steak, seafood, pasta, and chicken dishes. When not getting pizza, I love their shrimp risotto and Capt K is a fan of their seafood pasta. They have a nice wine and cocktail list including a mean Painkiller.
The Dove had been on my list since I saw it featured on Below Decks Season 4. We arrived for lunch at noon during our February 2019 visit. They were superb. Located in a historic West Indian cottage downtown Road Town, the surroundings are sleek and tropical with multiple level indoor and outdoor dining and a large bar area. I enjoyed a Banh Mi (Vietnamese spicy pork sandwich) and a glass of Sauvignon Blanc off their extensive wine list. Capt K went traditional with a beef tenderloin sandwich topped with a batter fried onion ring and a local beer. The Dove is open for lunch, happy hour and dinner. Reservations are accepted through their website, so you can add them to your itinerary before you travel. https://thedovebvi.com
The Dove, Banh Mi sandwich
On my List….
There are several places near Road Town I would like to try. Brandywine Estates and The Rooftop by Brandywine top my list. We enjoyed several delicious dinners at Brandywine Estates before Irma and are looking forward to enjoying their unique Island fare with a French twist on our next visit in November. The Rooftop by Brandywine is a new venue located on the 4th Floor of the Cutlass Tower in downtown Road Town. It is causal with a focus on smaller plates and craft cocktails. Brandywine Estates is open for dinner and Sunday lunch. Reservations are accepted via email, firstname.lastname@example.org . The Rooftop by Brandywine is open for lunch and dinner. Reservations are accepted via email at email@example.com
Brandywine Estates, Tortola, BVI Lobster Paella pre-Irma
Cooper Island, BVI
Cooper Island is one of my favorite moorings in the BVI. You can snorkel Cistern Point, watch for turtles in the seagrass bottomed mooring field, delight in a tropical sunset and savor the food and beverage options at Cooper Island Beach Club. This eco friendly resort is a food and beverage lovers Caribbean dream. Start your day off with a handcrafted latte and gelato from their Coffee and Ice Cream shop. Enjoy a mid day beach cocktail or craft beer, from the on island, solar powered brewery. Feast on the delectable offerings from the dinner menu that includes land, sea, and vegan options with an island flair. Select a night cap from the Caribbean’s largest rum selection at the Rum Bar. The first time I visited Cooper Island Resort was eight years ago on our first charter experience, I return every time I visit the Virgin Islands. I have eaten off their lunch and dinner menus and they never disappoint! The restaurant is open for lunch on a first come, first serve basis and reservations are highly recommended for dinner. https://cooperislandbeachclub.com 1 284 547-2002.
Cooper Island Beach Resort, BVI
Virgin Gorda, BVI
After Irma, Leverick Bay was able to rebound quicker than the rest of North Sound. We have eaten a couple of times at Jumbies Beach Bar (the downstairs restaurant ). They serve casual pub food, with a fun vibe including live music and a swimming pool. On our most recent visit, we moored at Leverick Bay on Valentine’s Day. We decided on The Restaurant (upstairs), a more elegant option for dinner that night. It was our first visit but it will not be our last. With many seafood options and Capt K’s favorite lamb chops, the menu is diverse enough to please everyone. Their wine list is varied and interesting. The views of North Sound are spectacular. The Restaurant at Leverick Bay one of the best restaurants in the BVI to savor Caribbean cuisine at its best. They are open for dinner every night but Sunday. Reservations are recommended. https://leverickbayvg.com 1 284 541-8879
The Restaurant, Leverick Bay, BVI Smoked Salmon Starter
On my list….
I have heard great things about CocoMaya an upscale beachfront restaurant in Spanish Town. They are open everyday but for lunch and dinner. Reservations for dinner recommended and appreciated. http://cocomayarestaurant.com
The Baths, Virgin Gorda, BVI
Anegada is the lobster capital of the Caribbean and chargrilled on the beach is the way to eat them. The Lobster Trap on the south side of the island overlooking the mooring field is the place to eat them. The best Caribbean lobster I have ever eaten was on the beach, at the Lobster Trap, this February!! Reservations are required and you order your meal when you make your reservation. Dining is on their beautiful outdoor deck, watching the sun set and the stars twinkle. It is a dining experience you do not want to miss. Their menu includes other deliciousness from land and sea. If you have non lobster lovers in your party there is plenty for them to choose. 1 284 346-5055.
The Lobster Trap, Anegada, BVI Grilled Lobster
Jost Van Dyke, BVI
Unfortunately, we never ate at Hendo’s Hideout before Irma. They opened about18 months before Irma hit. Located next to the Soggy Dollar Bar in White Bay, Hendo’s has alway gotten great reviews on their food. Our first visit was in March 2018. At that time, they were open for lunch only and doing “Fish Fry Sundays.” We returned again in February 2019. They were at the top of my list of places to eat. Both our visits were for lunch, I hope to get there for dinner this fall.The Rum & Coke Pulled Pork Sandwich and the Fish Tacos, along with the Conch Fritters are my favorite. Add a glass of Sauvignon Blanc with the breeze and the view, it makes for an enchanting afternoon on one of the world’s most beautiful beaches. http://hendoshideout.com
Hendo’s Hideout, White Bay, JVD
The first time I walked the sandy ”streets” of Great Harbor, JVD, I felt like I was Blackbeard walking the streets of Nassau, in the 1700’s. Great Harbor is a true old world Caribbean experience and in the heart of it is Corsair’s. I never miss a chance to sit at the bar, sip a tropical concoction and be entertained by the colorful Colorado biker turned Caribbean pirate/restauranteur Vinnie and his crew. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, pouring drinks and cooking up the best food in Great Harbor. The menu varies, some days Vinnie is slow cooking ribs or serving fresh seafood but do not miss the pizza. Prepared by “Pizza Dave”, they serve some of the best pizza I have ever eaten. How can they miss, when it is eaten under the stars, toes in the sand, and the ghosts of pirates swirling about.
Corsair’s, JVD Pizza Dave
Just down the beach is the World Famous, Foxy’s. Open since 1968. they are know for their New Year’s Eve and lately Full Moon parties. The music and libations are outstanding and Foxy himself is often there playing guitar and posing for pictures. My ideal Great Harbor evening is dinner at Corsair’s, music and nightcap at Foxy’s. Check their websites for menus and special events. http://foxysbvi.com and http://cosairsbvi.com Reservations for dinner are a must at Corsair’s. Call 1 303 990-2420.
Bubbly Pool, Jost Van Dyke,BVI
On my list…
On the Eastern end of Jost Van Dyke is a the delightful mooring at Diamond Cay, best enjoyed when there are no North swells and the winds are not out of the southeast. Ashore is Foxy’s Taboo, owned by Foxy’s older daughter. We enjoyed a wonderful lunch before hiking to the Bubbly Pool, a must see natural “jacuzzi”. They have recently reopened with a complete rebuild after Irma. I am looking forward to visiting on our next visit. http://foxysbvi.com
We make several trips to the BVI every year. If you have a beloved restaurant I did not mention, please leave it for me in the comments. We love trying new places!!!