It was the best meal of my life. I sat at the bar through an entire service, including pre shift, at the Galleon Restaurant @ Green Cay Marina, St. Croix USVI. Periodically walking down to the docks to take in the taste of the Caribbean air, and listen to the cheers of locals and visitors gambling with hermit crabs across the way.
Getting to my destination wasn’t the easiest task. I had spent the morning skipping stones and drinking Banks Lager on Shoys Beach. Working up and appetite as my pale Irish skin battled the Caribbean sun. There ended up being no better cure than fresh aloe, coconut water, and the meal I was about to have.
My first course was an unpretentious ensemble of cheeses accessible to most restaurants on the Island, but to this day the way I serve my goat cheese to guests. Rolled in fresh parsley, lemon zest, and black pepper. With the course down and my beer buzz subsiding, it was time I moved on to the chicken liver pate and Lodi Cabernet.
This Pate is what dreams are made of. Creamy and Rich, served with brandied cherries and toasted house made Brioche. The blend a salt, fat, cream, sweetness, and texture made this classic dish an experience that lasted over an hour.
Then came the time to order dinner, and I did something most people shouldn’t ever take liberties on, but do anyway. I asked the bartender Sarah-Jean to make it a Chefs whim. He must have thought I was such a cocky asshole for doing that but he ended up, to the owner Lesley’s surprise, making me a Steak which altered the path of my life. A perfectly prepared New York Strip with a Foie Gras and Oyster Jus.
After finishing my meal, I didn’t say anything to Chef about the meal until he asked, to which I replied, “Are you fucking kidding me?”. I moved to St. Croix 5 months later to apprentice. Thank you Chef.