Guests an gather their own fruits and vegetables at Belle Mont Farm on St. Kitts. // © 2017 Belle Mont Farm
Feature image (above): Enjoy a Rastafarian meal at Stush in the Bush, a 15-acre organic farm in Jamaica. // © 2017 Stush in the Bush
The farm-to-table movement has spread over the years, and there are now a variety of venues in the Caribbean where diners can opt for fresh and local cuisine. Some farm-to-table experiences are on-site at a working farm or plantation, while others take place in a restaurant that carefully sources its produce from nearby growers and gatherers.
Following are five spots across the Caribbean that specialize in farm-to-table dining.
Belle Mont Farm, St. Kitts
One of the fairly recent feathers in St. Kitts’ cap is Kittitian Hill, an upmarket development complete with luxe hotels; villas; a spa; and what’s referred to as the first edible 18-hole golf course with a productive ecosystem including fruit trees. The driving force at the development is sustainability and community.
Kittitian Hill also contains the 400-acre Belle Mont Farm. Throughout the farm, there are signs that read “Pick Me,” encouraging guests to gather their own fruits and vegetables. Farm-to-table dining can be enjoyed at several Belle Mont Farm venues, including The Mill Bar, Arthur’s, Rolling Mango and The Kitchen. Diners can opt for an outdoor experience at The Farm, where they’ll convene around a family-style table and enjoy dishes such as goat-cheese-and-yam ravioli or papaya-lamb stew.
Fond Doux Plantation & Resort, Saint Lucia
Fond Doux Plantation & Resort is located on the grounds of a 250-acre working plantation in Soufriere, Saint Lucia. Guests can choose from 15 Creole-style cottages in a lush tropical setting.
The resort serves locally sourced food in its two establishments, Bamboo Restaurant and Cocoa Pod Restaurant; both follow a “Plantation to Plate” theme. The French and Caribbean dishes run the gamut from Lamontagne's Cous Kaye (octopus and conch in a broth of bell peppers, garlic, spring onions and lime juice, with local seasonings and hot sauce) to a signature dish of slow-cooked chicken breast in a coconut cream sauce that’s served with carrots, pumpkin mash and vegetables.
Jakes Hotel, Villa & Spa and Dool’s Farm, Jamaica
For decades, Jakes has been a boutique bastion of cool on Jamaica’s southwest coast. When large resorts were keeping their guests confined behind gates and walls, Jakes was encouraging travelers to mingle with the locals.
They’ve carried this further with monthly lantern-lit alfresco meals at Dool’s Farm, which specializes in organic produce (note: there’s no actual farm building on the property). Guests assemble around a long table set outdoors for a country-elegant, family-style meal complete with carefully selected wines. Jakes handles the back-and-forth travel between Dool’s Farm and the hotel.
Le Soleil d’Or, Cayman Brac
Le Soleil d’Or is an upscale boutique hotel on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands. The hotel is adjacent to a 20-acre farm that provides the fresh fruit, vegetables and eggs that comprise the ultra-fresh meals served in the hotel’s restaurant.
Guests can dine on dishes such as watermelon salad with onion, mint, lemon, olives and feta cheese; or fish en papillote, which is local fish with tomato fondue, duxelles (garnish made of finely chopped sauteed mushrooms) and white rice.
To get the most from their experience, advise clients to take the farm tour prior to dinner. This will give them a greater understanding of the effort that goes into creating a farm-to-table meal.
Stush in the Bush, Jamaica
It’s a safe bet that most of your clients vacationing in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, will be staying at an all-inclusive resort. They can broaden their travel experience by getting away from the resort restaurants and heading into the Ocho Rios countryside to enjoy a Rastafarian meal at Stush in the Bush, a 15-acre organic farm.
Guests dine family-style and alfresco after ordering from a prix fixe vegetarian menu; reservations are a must. Stush in the Bush also has its own line of products, so diners can take away items such as passionfruit butter and mango-lime-ginger vinaigrette to keep the Jamaican “ital” (food that follows the Rastafari movement) vibe going once they return home.