It’s easy to find good food in French Saint Martin. (The place IS French, after all.) More challenging: finding good food here that’s actually good for you too.
You know the kind I mean – 100% all-natural dishes made from fresh ingredients sourced along locavore lines. Dishes worthy of the terms vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free; designations not commonly found in our islands.
Dishes like the ones all over the menu at the all-new Natural Cafe Restaurant and Juice Bar.
You’ll find Natural Cafe right along the main road that runs from Marigot through Sandy Ground, a dusty down-home section of St. Martin where, I’m told, there reside people from every country in the Caribbean. An uncommon location well away from the more celebrated culinary corners of St. Martin (Marigot, Grand Case) mirrors Natural Cafe’s predilection toward supremely healthy dining options rarely seen anywhere else on-island.
This is a place where tofu is tops, where salad options number in the double-digits, where humus, herbs, quinoa, cumin, and something called soja yoghurt sauce are as common as french fries and Johnny Cakes most everywhere else.
My lunch choice on the occasion of my initial visit here last April – the absolutely delicious curry chicken wrap pictured at the head of this post – was great, but the true star of this meal for me was the gooey green juice that accompanied the eats.
Now, I tend to eat fairly healthy…
Mostly, though, I draw the line at slimy green supercharged vitamin juice concoctions. Let’s just say there was a bad experience long ago, memories of the snot-colored chalky monstrosity positively devoid of flavor still fresh in my mind.
The green guy at Natural Cafe, though, was something altogether different. A wonderfully balanced mix of apple, ginger, kale, and cucumber, this green juice wasn’t bitter or chalky at all. The ginger shone through the most, carrying the day without eclipsing the other flavors.
On appearance and ingredients alone, I would’ve never ventured a sip. Thankfully, though, there was Marcel, one of the friendly staffers at Natural Cafe, to encourage my culinary explorations.
Seriously, if/when you go to Natural Cafe, definitely try the green juice. It is supremely wonderful in a manner that actually has me anxious to return and try a few of their other juices and herbal infusions.
If you know me real well then you know that’s saying a lot!