World Class Dining in St. Martin

The Best of French and Italian Cusine



The menu at Spiga has evolves slowly, so many of my favorite dishes have remained in place for several years. The Lobster Bisque for example is a classic, though on this visit I opted for an appetizer that was new to me. The speck-wrapped jumbo shrimp and scallop app featured two succulent, tender morsels of the aforementioned shellfish wrapped in salty, slightly chewy speck, that served to highlight both he sweetness and tenderness of the fish, which were served atop a light salad garnished with dried tomato and avocado slices adding additional textural dimension to the dish.

Spiga’s wine list is also worth mentioning, as it is very fairly priced and well chosen for the menu. We started with a white, the 2008 Tommasi Il Sestante Lugana San Martino, a wine I have not seen stateside but have enjoyed in Italy.  It was a wonderful pairing with the seafood salad. It’s sweet core of fruit was well balanced by a subtle mineral edge and the mouthfeel was soft and satiny. Delicious.

As we moved onto to our main course we needed to switch gears to red wine.  I usually am not one for over-priced Super Tuscans, but finding the 2004 Sassicaia on the list for 215 Euros made the decision pretty easy, and it was after all the final night of a great vacation.

The Sassicaia was velvety and rich with sweet tannins buffered by bright but balanced fruit and a snappy core of acid that made it a wonderful foil for the food to come. One of Spiga’s classic items is their gnocchi in Gorgonzola sauce. These are lovely, light gnocchi, that retain a core of potatoey sweetness to contrast the subtle bite of the Gorgonzola. The dish benefits from the addition of a touch of spinach, and sprinkle of toasted pine nuts, helping to add color and textural contrast to the dish.

For my entrée I chose the pork two ways, a lovely set of medallions, wrapped in pancetta and partnered with a links of locally made sausage. The dish came draped in a light yet richly flavored reduction sauce. The pork was perfectly prepared, a hallmark of Spiga and one of the first things I noticed many years ago during my first meal here. They prepare a mean pork dish! No easy feat.

Another member in my party enjoyed a more typically Italian dish, the tagliatelle with shrimp and zucchini. The pasta was perfectly cooked and the sauce, a crustacean reduction, was rich, deep and satisfyingly clingy, adding it’s rich flavor to each bite. Just writing about this meal makes me want to start planning my next visit. It should go without saying, if you visit St. Martin make sure you leave at least one night for a dinner at Spiga.

And with that my look at wining and dining on St. Martin is complete. I expect to return in May for another visit to enjoy all the island has to offer, and indulge in the culinary pleasures of Grand Case. I’m talking with several people on the Island in hopes of organizing some great events so if you would like to join us please don’t hesitate to email me for more information.


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Comments

  • Snooth User: bigcubfan
    286741 2

    I haven't been to Grand Case since January, 2006, but my wife and I loved Bistro Caraibes. The view from the outdoor dining was breath-taking (like all the restaurants in Grand Case).

    Calmos Cafe is a cute little hut situated right on the beach that serves delicious food. There are numerous tables in the sand, along with lounge chairs. You can order some sumptuous entrees and appetizers that are even more delicious due to the scenery. Also, their wine list is pretty good.

    My wife and I loved their Oceane Salad that was refreshing and delicious. I don't recall the wines that we had, but I do remember being very happy with our entire experience. Of course, we were on a long vacation and my theory is that wine and food always taste better when you're on vacation.

    Check it out if you get the chance. Cheers.

    Jan 21, 2010 at 11:26 AM


  • Snooth User: guymandude
    292055 16

    Wow, that sounds like a great trip,I gotta get there.The food the scenery, and to finish off with the Sassicaia, nice.

    Jan 21, 2010 at 12:16 PM


  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 196,444

    I love Calmos, though have not had a meal there recently. The service was, shall we say, paced!

    Yeah, the Sass was a great way to bring the trip to a close, and the food at Spiga is always a true high-point of any visit too!

    Jan 21, 2010 at 5:04 PM


  • Snooth User: pony600
    290006 2

    Hi Greg,
    Thanks for your great review of Grand Case. We visit every year in October, stay at GCBC & Bistrot Caraibes is our favorite restaurant. Thibeault and Amaury are wonderful hosts & treat us like old friends. One of the best things I like to hear is Thibeault saying- Come fishing with me- as we go out to the lobster pool & choose the fare for the night. Thanks for featuring our favorite place!

    Jan 21, 2010 at 7:53 PM


  • Bistrot Caraibes is my wife's favorite dining haunt. It has been the place of choice to celebrate our anniversary. She has a Lobster Thermodor dinner prepared by Thibeault every visit. Bistrot Caraibes is an always visit on St. Martin.

    Jan 23, 2010 at 8:12 AM


  • Just finished dinner at Spigo. Ok not great. Diffident service, low attention to small things like beverages and bread. Horrible wilted pseudo-ceasar salad. Shrimp and scallops appetizer was one shrimp and one scallop on a salad. Pappardella pasta special was served with a wonderful veal bolognese but the pasta was overcooked. Best dish was the meat ravioli. Wine list was a yawner except for some overpriced brunellos. wine by the glass was maybe a 3 ounce pour. Wouldn't go back.

    Il Nettuno is far better for italian in Grand Case

    Feb 10, 2010 at 9:25 PM


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