I left off last week saving money at the Lolos and gelato stall in Grand Case with the intention of splurging on a bottle or two of wine, always a good trade-off in my book. The rooms at the Grand Case Beach Club, discussed last week, all have kitchens and refrigerator, so bringing in provisions is a wise and cost effective way of stretching your travel budget. And besides, what could be better than a bottle of bubbly on the beach?

If you’re stocking up on food for a meal you would be remiss in not adding a few bottles of wine to your list. In the past there were some issues, primarily with temperature control, that made buying fine wine in the Caribbean a bit of a risk, but the many fine distributors and retailers now selling wine on St. Martin have made finding a special bottle a breeze.

In next week's email: The finest restaurants of Grand Case!

Find Great Supermarkets too

While you're driving around St. Martin, whether to visit the beaches, casinos, or wine shops, leave some time for a visit to the supermarket. Match, on the outskirts of Marigot, is a great market with everything you need to fix up a light snack or gourmet meal. The deli counter is well stocked with fine French cheeses (even raw-milk cheeses that are banned in the U.S), ham and sausages, and the vast selection offers treats that range from Mediterranean Tuna to canned cassoulet! Remember to stock up on water too, the selection of still and sparkling waters is second to none. You can even pick up a bottle or two of wine from their selection, though you can find better options around the island.