Food at Aqua Pazza, Harbour Island, Caribbean


This restaurant on a marina outside of town is unpretentious and laid-back. The Italian-inspired seafood menu is very good, and the restaurant, on the island’s southwestern coast, is a nice spot for watching the sunset.

Food at Arthur's Bakery, Harbour Island, Caribbean

Arthur’s Bakery

Owned by Harbour Island transplant Robert Arthur, this bakery is where locals come for breakfast. Arthur’s signatures include jalapeño loaf, frozen Key lime pie, lattes, pineapple muffins, lobster sandwiches and banana nut bread.

Exterior View - Bahamas Coffee Roasters, Harbour Island, Caribbean

Bahamas Coffee Roasters

Although it only opened in 2013, Bahamas Coffee Roasters quickly became an island institution. For starters, the coffee is seriously good. Owner Kirk Aulin sources his beans from 36 different farms around the world and then roasts them himself (he is the only roaster in the Bahamas). Spend the morning in his shop and you will see a steady flow of regulars, along with the occasional celebrity. (When I was there, Ron Wood of the Rolling Stones was at the next table). Newcomers to the island love Kirk because he knows everyone, will happily share his tips on the top fishing guides or best restaurants, and will remember your name the next time you come in. You’ll feel like an old friend in no time. Stick around for lunch and order one of the gourmet sandwiches. Top pick: the organic chicken served on grilled ciabatta with roasted garlic mayo, Brie, sliced pear, fig jam and a pile of fresh arugula. It’s sublime.

Exterior View - Blue Bar, Island, Caribbean

Blue Bar

This beachfront restaurant has been one of the prettiest spots for lunch on the island for years. Set on the dunes with a view of the pink sands and turquoise waters, the restaurant has a menu that’s a mix of typical Bahamian and international lunch favorites (stone crab claws and coconut crusted shrimp, as well as thin-crust pizza, wraps and burgers).

Ma Ruby’s

Ma Ruby’s is rumored to be the place where Jimmy Buffett had his “cheeseburger in paradise” (but then so is Le Sélect in St. Barth’s). No matter, the down-home Bahamian cuisine and the laid-back vibe make the restaurant a great place to grab a bite and relax.

Food at Queen Conch, Harbour Island, Caribbean

Queen Conch

Any Briland regular will insist that you cannot leave the island without sampling the local specialty: conch ceviche. This is the place to do it. Queen Conch is a tiny shack on Bay Street that opens at noon for lunch. You sidle up to the counter, write your name and order down on a yellow legal pad, then head to the back deck overlooking the harbor to hang out while you wait. The signature dish is the “conch salad”: a dice of just-caught raw conch, green peppers, tomatoes and onions with a dash of salt, a dollop of hot sauce and a big squeeze of fresh lime juice and sour orange. Order one for the table, along with traditional beach shack fare like conch fritters and grouper sandwiches. It’s all super casual and BYOB.

Exterior View : Seaview Take-Away, Harbour Island, Caribbean

Seaview Take-Away

For a quick meal, stop at this dockside shack for fresh conch salad and burgers.

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The Ocean View Club

Formerly Pip’s place, Ocean View is a wonderful small inn and restaurant that sits above the beach. Pip, the stylish owner of Miss Mae’s, has passed the reins to her son Ben who still hosts many of the models and photographers who have been staying here for years. The restaurant has become a little more traditional (it used to be that you joined a dinner party) with individual tables but there is still a laid-back, at-home feeling to the place. Favorite dishes are the ribs and lobster curry. If you are looking for somewhere to hold a special dinner or party on the island, the beach parties here are fabulous. Reservations are essential.

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