Dining in Bora Bora

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Sarah Garrod | 11 Dec, 2014

Before I journeyed to the incredible Four Seasons Bora Bora back in November, I researched the kind of dining experiences which I could expect on the idyllic French Polynesian island. 

I was surprised to find very little information, and so with that in mind, I thought I’d write a blog on what fine fare and delicious drinks you can expect on your luxury holiday to Bora Bora. 

Roulottes, Tahiti

If you’re heading to Bora Bora then, like me, you’re probably stopping in Tahiti en route. If your time on the island includes an overnight stay, then experiencing the famed ‘street food’ of French Polynesia at Papeete’s Roulottes is a must.

Come nightfall and the main harbour becomes a hub of activity as Tahitians cook up a storm in their food vans, offering everything from local fish delicacies to steak and chips, freshly made Chinese dishes to scrumptious French crepes.

The food is tasty and very reasonably priced, served on long, communal tables under the stars. It’s a great, authentic Tahitian experience and not to be missed if you’re lucky enough to be spending time on the island.

Sunset Restaurant & Bar, Four Seasons Bora Bora

This was, personally, my favourite dining experience in French Polynesia. Boasting a prime location on the front of the luxurious resort, the waves lapping beneath you, the sun setting behind Mount Otemanu…this is seriously idyllic.

If you don’t have time for a meal here then a cocktail at sunset is a great experience. We enjoyed unusual, and delicious, mixes, including a chilli mojito, pina colada and raspberry caiprinha. On the menu is also a wide variety of sushi and Asian-inspired fare. We sampled the Vietnamese crunchy vegetables spring rolls and tamarind sauce and the Local Moorea shrimps tempura, mint and soy sauce; both were scrumptious.

Bloody Mary’s, Vaitape, Bora Bora

This restaurant in the main town on Bora Bora is something of a French Polynesian institution. When you arrive to the thatched property, the first thing to greet you are ‘walls of fame’ covered with the names of celebrity faces who have visited the restaurant and including everyone from Tom Cruise to Kim Kardashian! Inside the décor is ‘feet in the sand’, rustic dining, with fascinating features including a mini waterfall to wash your hands in the ladies room!

Start your experience like we did; with a classic bloody mary, or an ice cold Hinano beer, the favourite tipple of French Polynesians, at the beach-style bar. From there you’re welcomed over to the counter to choose your menu from the array of fresh fish, seafood and meats which are displayed on ice. Mama was our host, who has been at the restaurant for years and speaks numerous languages. She talked us through the dishes on show, where they’d been caught, how they were prepared, and what was popular. It was a superb experience to be talked through the menu in this way and see for yourself the fine local ingredients which would be used in your dish. I chose teriyaki fish kebab to start and mahi-mahi for my main (both were completely delicious), while my partner’s sashimi to start was a triumph and his swordfish main extremely tasty.

Arii Moana, Four Seasons Bora Bora

Our final night on the magical island was spent at the Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora signature restaurant, Arii Moana. The service here was exceptional and our server was highly knowledgeable on the offerings at this French/Polynesian fusion restaurant.

With views over the water and a bottle of excellent rioja, we delved into our starter of Heart of coco, avocado foam, cashew nuts and root chips. Although a little on the large side for a starter, it was a fascinating combination of flavours and ingredients neither of us had tried before. For our main dishes my partner had the Sweet potato gnocchi, wilted arugula, confit tomato, shaved Parmesan and Taha’a vanilla sauce which was rich and flavourful. My choice ‘won’ though; a Polynesian Bouillabaisse of local seafood, saffron potatoes and fennel fish broth…it was out of this world.

My advice if you’re heading on your own luxury holiday to Tahiti and Bora Bora would be to try as much of the local food and drink as you can; it won’t disappoint.

Book a luxury holiday to Bora Bora by calling an Inspiring Travel Company specialist on 01244 355 550.