The Caribbean Islands are rich in history. Mostly known as a haven for Pirates and their hidden treasure. Today, the Caribbean Islands are a mecca for tourism. Their majestic beauty has sprung up sailing charters where people come from all over the world to enjoy snorkeling, dining and hopping from island to island.
We have some friends who own the Jalapeno sailing boat and do Caribbean Sailing Charters that can accommodate up to six people on her beautiful fifty-two ketch style sailboat. Our friends Captain Ray and Jennifer, will give you one of the most memorable adventures of your life.
I wanted to review a few restaurants you may visit while staying on board the Jalapeno.
The Longboard in Cruz Bay is owned by Clint Gaskins and Tyler Beckstead. With over thirty-two combined years of experience, they always dreamed of opening their first restaurant together in St. John. They were fortunate to obtain Chef Kenny Claston who specializes in using local, fresh ingredients to create unique cuisines.
This restaurant is a favorite for locals and tourists alike. While they don’t take reservations, they do fill up quickly during the dinner hour. You can get there early, grab a seat on their open-air porch enjoy one of their frozen delights and people watch. When you visit the bathroom be sure to look closely at their bathroom wallpaper. They used vintage surf magazine spreads from the seventies! All spreads were had applied one at a time.
The Longboard Cruz Bay menu features refreshing options such as poke bowls, Ceviches, gourmet tacos and Baja bowls. Of course, all are spices with Caribbean spices and locally-sourced produce as well as locally-caught seafood. You might want to start with Island Guacamole with tomato, garlic, avocado, jalapeno, cilantro served with seasoned white corn tortilla chips. Their Blistered Shishito has fire roasted, sea salt, togarashi, yuzu aioli.
The Cevisches are serviced with yuca chips and tostones. You could choose their Fresh Catch, Scallops, Octopus or a combination of the three. Their Small Plates have Calamari that is flash fried and seasoned with sea salt, cayenne, lemon and roasted garlic aioli. Island Wings are spicy mango glazed wings with a char-grill finish and served with a garlic lemon aioli and siracha.
Share some of their Tacos and Bowls with your friends. Their Bowls are serviced with pico de gallo, guacamole, feta cheese, red cabbage, cilantro and fresh lime. It is served over quinoa and brown rice. Choose the Grilled Portabella or Skirt Stead. They also have the Ahi Tuna, Seared Shrimp, Roasted Cauliflower or Braised Pork Belly.
With over ninety reviews on the internet, they garner over a four star rating.
Greengos Caribbean Cantina has four locations in the Caribbean. Each location has amazing art that is focused on “calacas” or the skull and skeleton images we all relate to “the day of the dead”. Making it an ideal spot to enjoy a libation while watching your favorite sport, they have strategically placed large flat screen televisions throughout the restaurant.
Owner and chef, Elizabeth are committed to the environment. They use only recycled, biodegradable material for their take-out food and all of their glassware is from recycled glass. They are even in the process of building their own tortilla factory with the goal of serving fresh house made tortillas in all their restaurants daily. So, the Greengo in their name is a play on helping the environment.
As with most Mexican restaurants, you can expect the menu to serve typical items. You could start with their Dos Tostadas but add a twist of beef, chicken, fish, tofu, pork or shrimp. They have an amazing Taco Salad with a large crispy tortilla bowl that is filled with fresh greens, shredded cabbage, tomatoes, corn, red onions, Greengo beans, poblano peppers, cheddar cheese and their creamy avocado cilantro dressing.
Enjoy one of their Entrees like their Cantina Bowl. This features cilantro rice, Greengo beans, which are a combination of black and pinto beans, white onion, fresh garlic, green chilies and New Mexican spices, and melted cheese, topped with shredded cabbage, corn, poblano peppers, red onions, tomatoes, fresh guacamole and your choice of beef, pork, chicken or tofu that is surrounded with tortilla chips.
No wonder they get over a four-star rating on the internet with over one hundred and sixty reviews.
Mafolie Hotel and Restaurant was founded in 1952. They are located in St. Thomas eight hundred and sixty-six feel above sea level. This offers almost all rooms have a view of the Harbor. All guests are treated to a complimentary breakfast buffet.
They were severely damaged after the last hurricane and had to close down for a while. Now open for business again, they were able to add some environmental improvements. With the addition of energy efficient air conditioners and appliances, they installed low flow toilets, solar panels for hot water heating and energy efficient florescent lighting.
Caribbean Travel and Life Magazine ranked Mafolie Hotel and Restaurant as one of the top value resorts. All rooms offer air conditioning, cable television, private baths and in-room safes. You can request a refrigerator and microwave if you want those in your room.
Their restaurant features island favorites. The Kalaloo soup is a local favorite and house specialty with shrimp, crab, spinach and okra. Their Lobster Bisque has real lobster chunks!
Try an appetizer like their Sweet Potato Crab Cakes with fresh lump crab meat, Caribbean sweet potato blend and sweet pickle tartar. The Caribbean Conch Fritter sound wonderful with fresh house prepared conch, Caribbean spice and mango scotch bonnet chutney.
Their Entrees offer a wide variety with Stuffed Atlantic Salmon, Grilled Ribeye or Seafood Jambalaya to name a few. The Danish Baby Back Ribs are a hold-over from when the Island was owned by Denmark. Trade Wind BBQ sauce, St. Kitts Rub, Tempura onion rings served tender and falling off the bone. Yummmm! I see why they have over a four-point-three star rating online.