There is a misconception among many visitors to Bermuda that the island’s dining scene is limited to expensive, white-table-cloth resort restaurants. It’s possible to enjoy a $50 Bermudian lobster at one of those establishments—and you wouldn’t be disappointed—but there’s so much more to Bermudian cuisine (and much cheaper options) if you’re willing to get outside your hotel and off the main strips.
What exactly can you expect from Bermudian food? Since the island was truly discovered in the 1500s, meaning there was no indigenous culture when European sailors first crashed on the island, the local cuisine is purely derived from a mix of British, Spanish, and Caribbean flavor profiles. But a unique Bermudian taste has evolved over the years, and these are the five best places to experience it.
Bermudians have a unique palate, insisting that when there is savory there must also be sweet. The Art Mel’s fried fish sandwich is the epitome of this maxim—homemade cinnamon raisin bread encloses fried whitefish and tartar sauce made from an old family recipe. You’ll want to split one (or take a nap post-consumption) and take it to go, as there's not much seating at this outpost. Pair it with a sweet Barritt's Ginger Beer, also made locally.
Fresh produce is hard to come by, but Devil’s Isle more than makes the effort with their seasonal menu. Go here for a rejuvenating, nutritious brunch—including a turmeric latte—after a night out on Front Street, home to Bermuda’s club scene.
If you get sick of seafood, Tempest Bistro is a great lunch or dinner spot on the water in St. George's, serving homestyle French and Italian food. Start with the scarpetta—baked garlic bread with an assortment of flavorful dips and seasonings.
Wahoo’s offers a dependable variety of seafood staples on the waterfront in historic St. George’s. According to local Bermudians, not all swizzles—the national rum cocktail of Bermuda—are created equal, and the Wahoo’s version is not to be missed. Pair it with their ceviche, conch fritters, and fish chowder (another Bermudian staple).
Located in a bungalow-style structure right off the beach, Woody’s is Bermuda’s take on pub food. This unassuming dive will make you feel like a local Bermudian in no time, and has a fried fish sandwich excellent enough to compete with Art Mel's. Grab a beer and hang out on the porch with locals and tourists alike.