I couldn’t ask for a better greeting to the Bahamas than the potent Bahama Mama I had at Angler’s Restaurant at the Abaco Beach Resort. Less than halfway through, I was eased into vacation mode. Combined with some of the best chicken pot stickers I’ve ever had, grouper fingers and my first introduction to conch in the form of fritters (much like hush puppies), our first dining experience put me in a happy island mood that set the tone for an amazing trip.
There were a few things left a memorable taste in my mouth.
It’s funny how conch (pronounced konk) went from being something I first learned about on Spongebob and had only heard about on a few occasions to something my friends and I became very familiar with. I’m delighted that we were introduced to the ever popular conch salad by the conch man himself. Having been featured in Abaco Life and known throughout the island for his fresh conch salad that he prepares on the spot, “Show Bow” is the go-to guy for conch salad. With a genuine desire to feed our curiosity, Show Bow shared a taste and opened our eyes (and taste buds) to the world of conch, which we didn’t know at the time would pop up again several times throughout our trip.
Because of the simplicity of the recipe, a conch salad can quickly be prepared at any time, which we came to realize during our island hopping adventure (which I’ll share in another post). In between islands our gracious guide Charlie suited up in snorkeling gear on a quest for conch. During the moments we sat and took in the beautiful blue water, Charlie gathered 9 conchs, which later became the freshest conch salad we could have asked for.
On our fishing adventure, where I caught a tasty tuna (more on that in another post), we were introduced to the Cobia fish that the chef promised would be a treat. I couldn’t even tell you how it was prepared but it was so good that it made me want lick the juices that ran down my hand to savor each drop.
I cannot forget to mention the Mahi Mahi and peas and rice (not rice and peas) that we couldn’t resist at Snappa’s (our hangout). My spicy Queen trigger fish sandwich at Pete’s Pub, Sleepy’s jerk chicken, and the “Chicken in the bag” (a chicken breast, seasoned, fried, covered in ketchup, sitting on a bed of fries, all wrapped up in foil like a shiny present) that was so good it would make you yell obscenities.
And yes, our trip was colored with the bright colors of Bahama Mamas, Goombay Smashes, Ricardo’s Coconut Rum and orange juices, Blasters and the infamous Frozen Nippers. I even tried a Kalik, the beer of the Bahamas.
Maybe we were influenced by the aphrodisiac qualities of the conch or the various rum punches, but my heart is full of love for Abaco.