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Food and Drink

Bermuda - Food and Drink


Food

Two relatively unique Bermudian dishes are salted codfish, boiled with potatoes, the traditional Sunday breakfast, and Hop n' John, a simple dish of boiled rice and beans. Shark hash was made, fish cakes were traditional on Fridays, hotcross buns at Easter, and casava or farine pies at Christmas. With the high-end tourist market, great effort has been expended by hotel and restaurant chefs in developing an ostensibly 'traditional Bermudian cuisine', although this has usually meant adapting other cuisines, from West Indian to Californian, in line with the expectations of visiting clientele. Most pubs serve a typical British Pub fare, although the number of these establishments has diminished as premises are lost to development, or establishments are redeveloped to target the tourist market (note the loss of the Ram's Head, the White Heron, the Rum Runner, and the Cock and Feather (redeveloped into the Pickled Onion, with a nouveau menu)). On the other hand, over the same period Bermuda gained its first and only Irish pub, Flannagan's. While lobster and other seafoods are often featured on the menu, virtually everything is imported from the US or Canada. Although this shows in the price of even casual dining and groceries, it should be noted that locally produced foodstuffs are typically less varied, poorer quality, produced in smaller quantities, and more expensive. Most bananas, for instance, will have a 'Chiquita' sticker, and are larger than those grown locally (which do have the advantage of ripening on the plant).

Restaurants can be found all over the island, with the largest concentration in the city of Hamilton and St George town. Also, there are several at some of the hotels which are outstanding, although pricey. At Elbow Beach Hotel, Cafe lido is excellent, and Southampton Fairmont Waterlot Inn, although sometimes crowded and noisy, has excellent dining.

Remember that with most restaurants, the closer you are to the cruise ship docks, the more expensive the menu will be. Most cruise ship passengers have a short time in which to experience Bermuda, and if they don't eat on the ship, most will be reluctant to leave the town to eat. The restaurants in close proximity to the cruise ship docks in, say, St. George's can be as much as three times as expensive as a comparable one in, say, Somerset Village.

Local specialties include:

- Cassava pie. Farine is an alternate base. Normally only eaten at Christmas.
- Bay grape jelly. Bay grapes were introduced as a wind break. Although, like Surinam cherries and loquats, they are found throughout Bermuda, and produce edible fruit, none of these plants are cultivated for agriculture in Bermuda, and their fruits are normally eaten from the tree, primarily by school children.
- Bananas are often eaten on Sunday mornings with codfish and potatoes.


Drink

Bermuda has two popular drinks:

- Rum Swizzle which is a rum cocktail made of Demerera Rum (amber rum) and Jamaican Rum (dark rum) along with an assortment of citrus juices. Note, it is quite strong. According to local lore, it was named after the Swizzle Inn (although swizzle] is a term that originated in England, possibly in the 18th Century) where it was said to be devloped.
- Dark n' Stormy is a highball of Gosling's Black Seal, a dark blend of imported rums, mixed with Barritt's Bermuda Stone Ginger Beer.

Both drinks are comparatively very sweet.


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