Taking A Bite Out of Nassau
In a destination as commercialized and Americanized as Nassau, it can be hard to find authentic Bahamian culture, particularly for cruisers with limited time in port. My go-to recommendations have always included a trip to the restaurants and food stalls at Arawak Cay or Potter’s Cay to sample some conch; an elegant lunch at Café Matisse just behind Bay Street; or a sumptuous and sophisticated dinner at Mahogany House in posh Lyford Cay. Are you sensing a theme here?
Well, (apart from shopping!) I believe that food is one of the most accessible entry points into the core of country’s culture. When you’re eating local fare, prepared by locals as they have for years, in the company of locals, isn’t the entire experience well … authentically local?
Alanna Rogers shares my point of view. That’s why a little less than a year ago she started Tru Bahamian Food Tours, which offers visitors a real taste of downtown Nassau.
Come hungry and wear your elastic-waist pants because over the course of three hours you’ll chow down at seven different local eateries, sampling everything from artisanal chocolate to “bush” (herbal) tea. You only end up walking just over a mile on your culinary adventure, but what a deliciously calorific mile it’ll be!
Tour groups are limited to 12 people (so there’s no fighting over the last fried plantain), and the guides share not only their passion for food but also the history and contemporary culture of the city the way only locals can.
“We want visitors to eat, drink, and experience Nassau, one bite at a time," says Alanna, who often leads tours herself. And while I haven’t had the pleasure of taking the tour yet, its top of my to-do list for next time I’m passing through. Conch salad with a side of Caribbean culture? Sign me up!
Tours, which must be booked in advance, are $70 per person, and run Monday through Saturday, rain or shine.