Tuesday, August 16, 2022

St. John Food and Drink

st. john, st. john travel guide, nc blogger, virgin islands

Hey y'all! I hope your week is off to a great start! I am back to share the second part of my St. John series. Today is all about food and drink! First and foremost, food is extremely expensive in St. John, especially compared to where I live in North Carolina. This honestly came as a shock to me and I definitely didn't budget enough for food. So, I'm going to break down what I learned and give you some tips to be better prepared than I was!

1. Check a bag of all (or at least mostly) non-perishable items. My husband was convinced that we needed to do this and I'm glad we did bring some of our own food. On St. John, there aren't any large grocery stores, just small markets. Everything is imported into St. John so that makes everything so much more expensive. For example, a bag of chips would be at least eight dollars, a box of cereal almost ten dollars, and a load of bread would cost you around six dollars. We definitely had sticker shock the night we arrived and went to the local market to pick up some groceries. I'm so thankful we packed tons of snack foods, including breakfast bars, meat sticks, veggie straws, nuts, and more.

2. Our original plan was to cook as many of our meals as possible to save money but we found that buying groceries was really more expensive than just going out to dinner eat night. We prepared our own breakfasts at our Airbnb (cereal, eggs, oatmeal), made sandwiches to take to go for lunch while we adventured, and then we went out to dinner each evening, sometimes sharing a plate to avoid waste and save money. I'll be sharing some of our favorite places to eat in the second half of this post.

3. Skip buying bottled water and buy gallons of filtered water instead. We brought our own reusable water cups from home and just refilled those. We also kept a gallon frozen and used it as "ice" in our cooler each day to keep the items inside cold. The water on tap in St. John is collected rain water so that water isn't for drinking;  it's only for bathing, brushing teeth, and washing dishes.

The food and drink scene in St. John is amazing! I had my first painkiller in St. Thomas while we waited for our ferry and it was delicious. The Virgin Islands are known for the painkiller; it's a mix of orange juice, pineapple juice, rum, and cream of coconut. It's topped with nutmeg! You can find a painkiller at any bar or restaurant. The seltzer above was my drink of choice during our trip. I especially loved this hibiscus pomegranate but it also comes in several other great flavors!

Our favorite bar was Paddle-In which was at Maho Crossroads, it's just across the street from Maho Bay (which was our very favorite beach that I will be sharing more about tomorrow). On the first day, we bought these reusable cups because every time you get it refilled, you get a discount on your drink. My personal favorite drink from there was the Pink Taco and Josh loved the Banana Hammock.

We also made quite a few trips to a place called Colombo's. It was on the way to some of our favorite beaches and they had the best smoothies! I also loved their cold brew. They also serve some other breakfast food options and smoothie bowls as well. Be sure to try the Maho Bay smoothie!

Ok, now let's talk food. Like I mentioned above, we went out to dinner each night that we were at St. John. Here's a roundup of where we ate...

1. Skinny Legs was our personal favorite! We went here on our first night in St. John and I think we went back at least three more times. It was laid back, great food (the salad picture from the top of this post is from there), excellent drinks, and good prices. It was also so fun seeing the little chickens walking around. We loved it!

2. Shambles was also delicious! The girls got cheese pizza to share and we got the BBQ. I would highly recommend it and be sure to try out the coleslaw!

3. Lime Out is an experience in itself! We technically had Lime Out for a late lunch when we took a boat excursion for Josh's birthday (I'll share more about the boat tomorrow). Lime Out is only accessible by boat so you'll have to book a boat to take you there to experience it but honestly, it's a must if you are visiting St. John! The tacos are incredible. Such great and unique flavors!

4. The Windmill is a spot you must go but not really for the food, you go for the view! The food was mediocre but the view was incredible. It's also a fun spot for the kids because there's plenty of things for them to do, including a swing and cornhole.

5. Salty Mongoose was awesome and their staff is incredible! So the first time we went there, a goat literally tried to steal our entire pizza. I had to hold the hot pan of pizza up in order to save it but the goat still managed to swipe Josh's slice of pizza straight from his plate! The goat grabbed the pizza and ran away with it as fast as he could. It was quite the experience! The staff took care of our check and even gave us free drinks when we got stuck here due to our Jeep needing a new battery. It was definitely an eventful night out!

6. Wok on the Beach is right next to Salty Mongoose and they have excellent Asian food! The girls got pizza from Salty Mongoose and we tried a few entrees from Wok on the Beach. Everyone was happy!

And, last but certainly not least, we made a couple visits to Irie Pops and it's a must if you are ever visiting St. John. It's located right near the dock in Cruz Bay. They have ice cream and homemade (amazing) popsicles. I got the jumbie juice with a poptail (passion fruit) and it was so amazing! (This is an alcoholic beverage and you're able to walk around with drinks in St. John.)

Revisiting all our favorite food and drink stops was fun but now I'm hungry, lol. I'll be back tomorrow for the third part of this series where I cover the beaches and more in St. John. Thank you so much for visiting! Have a great day!

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