Marshall’s Restaurant, Frigate Bay, St Kitts

This man is a magician.

Verral Marshall came to St. Kitts, got a job as a personal chef, and started a poolside cafe that morphed, as below,

and expanded it into the Marshall’s of today. Well may you ask, just what is that? I’ll tell you.

Sit back. Relax. Grab a beverage. Put your feet up. Imagine that you are high on a hill, in a beautifully decorated, softly lit room. You’re looking out over the Caribbean as the sun is just beginning to set,

listening to soothing jazz, and being served some of the most delicious food you’ve ever eaten. Oh, and you’re accompanied by the best daughter in the world.

Do you have the picture ? That picture is of me, sitting with Liza at Marshall’s. It actually was Nancy’s idea for Liza and me to go out for a special dinner. Meanwhile, Nancy did the thing she loves most — taking care of granddaughters Ella and Lily, just as she had when Michael, Liza, and I went to the Easterly in St. Thomas. I’m not sure who was happier, but I was pretty darn happy. Marshall’s is one of the top-rated restaurants in St. Kitts. Now, I tend to be a bit skeptical of ratings of restaurants with great views. Does the fifth star come from the food or the views? Marshall’s proves that it can be both.

We entered and were seated, presented with water, some garlic bread, and menus. Our affable and helpful server explained the specials and took our cocktail orders. We studied the menu and ordered. Liza ordered the “Fresh Garden Salad” to start, and a special, wahoo in an herbed beurre blanc.  Marshall’s dinners come with vegetables and your choice of rice or Marshall’s special potatoes. Liza ordered the rice, looked at the server, and switched to the special potatoes. The server smiled. Ever alert, I chose the special potatoes to go with my red snapper in a passion fruit beurre blanc. I also ordered the smoked marlin appetizer and the garden salad. For wine, we went with a Sancerre.

Usually a garden salad is a small, desultory dish. I expected the freshest ingredients and high standards at Marshall’s, but I was not prepared for the large, beautifully dressed salads that appeared before us, graced, among other delights, with lotus and blueberries. (As the sun set, the artificial light took on some of the yellow of the wall next to us. I didn’t notice it at the time, but it affected my photos.)

The salad was extraordinary, a completely different level of dish than I’d expected.

The smoked marlin also was excellent. Marshall’s smokes the fish in house, and serves it in slices topped with paper thin slices of lotus, cucumber, and red and orange peppers with a mustard aioli, parmesan, and sweet chili. The marlin itself was delightful; the smoke, the fish, and the blend of flavors were excellent. Another highlight.

On to our entrees. Here’s Liza’s grilled wahoo generously sprinked with herbs and set atop a beurre blanc sauce.

And here’s my grilled snapper, with more herbs and that passion fruit beurre blanc.

We both agreed that our respective fish dishes were great. After the extraordinary salads and the excellent smoked fish, our expectations had been ratcheted up to the top, and they were met in full. What I for one didn’t anticipate was the quality of the sides. The special potatoes were croquettes like I’ve never had before, beautifully crisp outside and magically melt-in-your-mouth inside. Wow! And the vegetables — beets, broccoli, carrots, and unfamiliar squashes — usually as perfunctory as a garden salad, actually were delicious.

What a meal! It will not surprise you that Marshall’s gets my Top Places tag. I’m not saying that you should go to St. Kitts just to eat at Marshall’s. You could, you could indeed, but don’t tell your spouse I made you. I do say, however, that you certainly should go to St. Kitts, and once there you definitely should experience the wizardry of a dinner at Marshall’s.


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