Som Tam (Papaya Salad)
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What: You’ll hear the word “water” used to describe many a local dish—conch water, cockle (clam) water, goat water—but fear not: Watery broths these are not. Preparations vary, but chances are, you’ll receive a very flavorful soup or even stew highlighting the featured ingredient. Goat water, a hearty stew with notes of clove and cinnamon, was one of our favorites, and difficult to find outside of a Saturday. Try it if you can!
Where: In Dickenson Bay, a popular day trip for cruise shippers pulling into nearby St. John’s, Tony’s (268-462-6326, Dickenson Bay) offers this and other local specialties on Saturdays, in addition to your standard burgers and other continental options. The area gets a bit hectic and crowded with beach chairs and roaming hawkers, but the restaurant, a beach bar-café hybrid, is super friendly. Expect loud music.
When: Daily, 7:30am-11pm
Order: Goat water (25 EC) is offered on Saturdays here—you might want to call ahead to confirm when it’s available, or else try to sweet-talk Esther, the chef, into serving it for you on, say, a Tuesday (yes, we begged). It’s worth the effort: Esther’s take is a meaty mess of tender goat and little dumplings in a rich, flavorful gravy, served with salad and a hunk of fungee (a mild corn polenta; see also Antiguan breakfast).
Alternatively: The Epicurean Fine Foods grocery store (multiple locations including Epicurean Dr., off Friars Hill Rd., map) has a nice little selection of prepared foods for takeaway; however the local dishes—including pepperpot, okra fungee, and goat water, often–are available Thursday through Sunday only.
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