Some of the main draws on St. Martin are the beautiful beaches (no surprise there), but what did surprise me was there are excellent food options to be had at many of the more well-trafficked beaches. Not just your typical concession stands, these beach-front restaurants churn out reasonably-priced and well-executed food ranging from simple sandwiches to extravagant seafood dishes.
Islet Pinel (Orange Umbrellas)
Pinel island is a beach eats mecca. On the beach there are three different colors of umbrellas – orange, yellow and blue – each corresponding to a different restaurant. If you are feeling so inclined, you can have your food delivered right to your umbrella on the beach! On our visit we ate at the Key – the place with orange umbrellas. The platters at the Key (ranging from €16-18) include classic fare like hamburgers, BBQ Chicken and fresh grilled fish. Though simple, the food was excellent. We all ordered burgers, which were generously proportioned and charcoal-grilled. Alongside the entrees there were fries and a rather impressive salad of carrots, grapes, sprouts and carrots with a sesame vinaigrette, which was cool and refreshing in the hot weather.
Le Galion Beach
Tropical Wave, on the beautiful Galion Beach was this was the first outdoor dining experience we had in St. Martin. There is an open air dining area, with long wooden picnic tables under a canopy. The menu is classic fare like sandwiches, sodas and ice cream, along with an array of cold beverages (most important). We ordered the grilled chicken (€7.50) and a shrimp salad (€13.50). This was definitely a casual place, and was mostly full of beach-bound families grabbing a quick bite.
In keeping with the upscale feel of St. Barths, this restaurant is more expensive than any of the others we had been to. More than a simple grill with a few benches and an awning, Do Brazil is a full-fledged, multi-story restaurant with a bar, with a more casual al fresco seating area right on the beach. We were impressed by the extensive interantionally-flavored menu (sashimi, Brazilian pomelo salad and foie gras were among the offerings).We ordered a Lobster Club Salad (€22) and a Thai Chicken sandwich (€19). Though expensive, it turned out the food was quite good, and more sophisticated than a typical beachside lolo.