The Ultimate Guide to Antigua Food & Drink

Published on: Feb 15, 2021
Renée Dyson
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A melting pot of distinctive Caribbean and Guyanese flavours, Antiguan cuisine has a reputation for creating lasting memories and satisfying even the pickiest of eaters. Expect to enjoy plates of fish fresh from the shore, meat expertly marinated in aromatic spices, accompanied by ice cold glasses of rum punch and Wadadli beer.

Antigua offers a wide variety of dining venues from gourmet restaurants to local eateries serving up traditional dishes. Discover some of the best restaurants and must-try dishes in our guide to Antigua food and drinks.

Antiguan Food You Need To Try

Combining seafood fresh out of the net with locally grown vegetables, fruits and flavourful spices, Antiguan cuisine makes the most out of the island’s natural bounty. While there is a seemingly unlimited number of dishes to choose from, here are some of the very best Antiguan foods you must try during your stay.

Antiguan Ducana

For those who enjoy a blend of sweet and spicy, ducana should be top of the menu. This soft and filling dumpling features a delectable combination of soft sweet potato, grated coconut, sugar, spices and flour, folded between banana leaves before being boiled or fried. Ducana is best paired with briny saltfish, a hearty stew or simply enjoyed as an afternoon snack by the pool.

Fungee And Pepperpot

Deemed the national dish of Antigua, you simply can’t visit this Caribbean island without sampling a portion of fungee and pepperpot at least once during your stay. This is a hearty, one-pot stew that's left to simmer for hours and packed with melt in the mouth meat and perfectly seasoned vegetables. This dish is nearly always paired with fungee – a savoury cornmeal and okra-based bread ball which we like to dip into the rich flavours of the stew.

Antiguan Black Pineapple

What could be better than tucking into fresh, juicy pineapple on a sunkissed beach holiday in Antigua? Antiguan black pineapple is considerably sweeter than normal varieties, with a higher sugar count and lower acidity. In fact, they’re thought to be the sweetest pineapples in the world and are an unmissable delicacy. Pair a triangle of black pineapple with a refreshing rum cocktail for the perfect holiday treat.

Antiguan Butter Bread

Deliciously buttery and tender, Antiguan butter bread is far from your ordinary loaf. It should come as no surprise that this bread is served for breakfast, lunch and dinner – you’ll certainly be craving more once you’ve taken your first bite. Eat it with cheese, salami or sardines for a simple yet delicious snack any time of the day.


As you would expect from a Caribbean island, seafood is an important component of many dishes in Antigua. Expertly seasoned, saltfish is particularly popular amongst locals and is often eaten with a hearty serving of fungee or ducana. Try it sauteed with fresh vegetables or in chop up, which is a mix of callaloo, eggplant, pumpkin and okra.

Antigua Drinks You Need To Try

Steeped in rich flavours, Antiguan drinks are the symbol of the island’s culture and history. Prepare to raise a glass and toast to the island life as you dive into our selection of Antigua drinks not to be missed.

Antigua Rum

Antiguan rum is more than just a drink - it’s a legendary elixir that brings back the days when sugar cane was king. Throughout the generations of Antiguan distillers, the art of rum-making has been perfected over the centuries and is now celebrated widely for its smooth and complex flavours.

Some popular choices in Antigua are the traditional Antigua rum punch, which packs a punch and is served on the rocks, whereas the English Harbour rum is aged to perfection with its rich, deep flavour and smooth finish.

Whether enjoyed neat, over ice or as a base for sundowner cocktails, Antiguan rum is a crowd-pleaser that continues to win the hearts of connoisseurs and casual sippers alike.

Antigua Beer

In contrast to the rich history of Antiguan rum, the beers in Antigua offer a refreshing break under the Caribbean sun. Made with the same care and passion, Antiguan beers are known for their clean and crisp taste with a hint of tropical flair. Options like the Wadadli beer capture the essence of the island, with a light golden colour and a smooth finish that pairs perfectly with the local Antiguan cuisine.

Antigua Cocktails

The cocktails in Antigua often blend local rum, tropical fruits, and exotic spices that create a fusion of flavours that capture the island’s zest. From the renowned Antigua smile cocktail to the strong ti’ punch cocktail made with local aged rums and serviced over ice, every sip of this island’s cocktail will transport you to paradise.

Best Restaurants in Antigua

Whether you’re looking to sample traditional Antiguan food or a fusion of cuisines, this stunning island hosts a number of restaurants for all tastes. With incredible ocean views, electric atmospheres and some of the best chefs in the world working the kitchens, we’ve listed some of the must-visit restaurants in Antigua to add to your itinerary.

Sheer Rocks

Perched on a rocky embankment at the foot of Valley Church Bay, Sheer Rocks sits within the luxurious confines of Cocobay, an all-inclusive plantation-style resort. With a laidback atmosphere paired with unparalleled ocean views and wooden pavilions, you can soak up the sun while enjoying a delicious lunch. The menu boasts seared yellowfin tuna, braised ribs and lobster tail ravioli, as well as a selection of sweet cocktails crafted by the bar’s expert mixologists.

Carmichael’s at Sugar Ridge

Set within Sugar Ridge, a luxury boutique hotel, the bright and airy Carmichael’s restaurant boasts spectacular views of the surrounding coastline. Enjoy an exquisite menu of fresh seafood and other local Antiguan delicacies, prepared by Executive Chef Andrew Jean. Tempt your taste buds with the seven-course Chef’s Tasting Menu, which features the likes of pan-seared Atlantic wahoo with a casserole of turnip, artichoke barigoule and tomato tarragon relish, followed by pancetta pork tenderloin roulade with pork belly and a cassoulet of flageolet beans.

The Bay at Nonsuch

From the wooden floors of the outdoor dining deck at Nonsuch Bay Resort, five small steps lead up to a gorgeous infinity pool overlooking Nonsuch Bay. For the lucky diners seated at the surrounding tables, the glistening ocean appears as a captivating extension to the pool – a magnificent setting for a feast by both day and night.

The refreshing lunchtime menu features crab cakes, shrimp cocktails, classic burgers and zesty tuna wraps, with imaginative cocktails to match. The evening offerings are equally tempting, with pan-fried soft-shell crab, sirloin steak and lobster in a shellfish bisque forming the nucleus of a wonderfully varied selection.

Le Bistro Antigua

Located within a stone’s throw of the shores of Judge’s Bay on the island’s northern tip, Le Bistro Antigua has served up classic French cuisine to locals and visitors for over three decades. Giant palm trees tower above the restaurant’s modest entrance, but once inside one can’t help but feel completely at ease amidst the cosy, intimate interiors, where wine bottles hang from the ceiling.

As you’d expect, the menu features all the French classics – many of which are enhanced by a light sprinkling of local Antiguan flavours. From snails in garlic butter to grilled salmon, veal medallions and beef tenderloin, there’s no shortage of delicious dishes to savour.

Shirley Heights Lookout

Every night’s a party at Shirley Heights Lookout, where diners are spoiled with sweeping views of the English Harbour, as well as the beats and flavours of Antigua. Specialising in traditional Caribbean dishes, this vibrant establishment has long been a favourite with both residents and holidaymakers thanks to its easy-going vibes and cosy, rustic décor.

This is the place to let your hair down, particularly on Sundays when it plays host to one of the island's best-loved parties. Live music and cocktails are the name of the game as people flock to watch the sunset over the harbour. It all kicks off from 4pm onwards, with generous helpings of freshly prepared seafood and juicy chicken marinades available.

Explore the flavours and sights of the Caribbean by booking a luxury holiday to Antigua. There are a wealth of affordable options here at Best at Travel, with premium resorts at great prices.

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