Poolside dining has been taken to a whole new level at the Ritz-Carton’s Periwinkle.
The chic, fun restaurant hosts its weekly Date Night; an evening that has been garnering considerably attention for its unique take on poolside dining.
Diners can opt to stray from the footprint of the Mediterranean inspired alfresco restaurant, and choose to dine nestled under one of the large Bedouin tents festooned around the resort’s North Sound pool, or in the pool itself.
Yes, that’s right, IN the pool.
This I had to check out. So, undeterred by being a single girl, I dragged along a friend to try it out.
Arriving promptly, we were led by our waiter through the restaurant and out to the pool area where our table awaited.
I breathed a sigh of relief. Thankfully, donning full swim gear wasn’t necessary.
Tables are placed on the 8-inch deep ledge surrounding the main body of the pool, so the only thing to get wet is your feet.
My friend Jen and I removed shoes, rolled up trousers and stepped into the pool for a night of fine-dining.
This was going to be fun.
Both hungry, we were eager to tuck into the food.
I’d heard good things about Periwinkle, but in the 18 months it has been open, I have never had the opportunity to dine there.
The restaurant combines the artistry of renowned chef Eric Ripert, with simply prepared seafood, grill selections and homemade pastas and pizzas, all at an affordable price.
The relaxed and informal restaurant has a breezy location adjacent to the Blue Tip golf course and the resort’s waterway. Berthing is even available alongside Periwinkle for diners who want to arrive by boat.
The menu isn’t huge, so patrons won’t feel overwhelmed. But, there’s more than enough choice to cover everyone’s taste.
We kicked off our underwater feast with a selection of appetizers for two, including crispy fried calamari paired with a pickled cucumber, green mango and caper sauce, kebab of Caribbean conch combined with a fruity mango dipping sauce and my favourite, shrimp and mango ceviche, marinated with lime, coconut milk, cilantro and jalapeno peppers.
For mains I plumped for the mussels, while Jen opted for grilled chicken panzanella, with Tuscan bread salad, marinated tomatoes, spinach and onions. Our waiter also brought us a plate of the can’t-be-missed parmesan truffle French fries to share. Only the Ritz could glam up such a humble food in such a decadent way.
Next it was time for dessert. Hands down, our favourite was the bite-sized, freshly made feather-light doughnuts, served up with a choice of three mouth-watering sauces for dipping. Delicious.
If that’s doesn’t fill you up, try some mango passion cheesecake or chocolate tart topped with whipped cream. All came a close second.
I really couldn’t fault the food, and dining in the pool made the whole night extra fun and memorable. Separated from the hordes, we felt special – the centre of attention, if you like, as we dined under the Caribbean stars in our own private setting.
Waiters ran back and forth catering to our every whim. The table was beautifully laid out, surrounded with candles casting a soft, romantic glow. A wine bucket kept our two for one POP champagne chilled to perfection. Even fluffy towels were at arm’s reach for when we left the comforts of the pool and needed to dry our feet.
I have to admit, during the course of our meal, we did get some curious looks as guests made their way to and from Periwinkle. It just made us feel all the more special.
After devouring our way through three courses we stepped out of the pool, dried off our feet and headed to the comfort of the movie area.
With full bellies, we relaxed on the loungers to take in a screening of The Family Stone.
Chilly? Staff will provide you with a soft pashmina to snuggle up with.
Fancy one of the restaurant’s dessert drinks or a post-meal coffee? Eager waiting staff are always happy to please.
Relaxing under the starry night in front of the big screen was the perfect end to the night.
Ok, so, I didn’t have a ‘date’ for the evening. But the overall dining experience had to be the best, and most novel, I’ve had in Cayman so far.
Here’s a tip for the guys. Looking for a place to take a date? – Periwinkle’s Date Night will truly impress.
Date Night is held every Friday at Periwinkle. Movies are screened at 7pmand 8.30pm and change weekly. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner daily, 11.30am am to 10pm, Fridays 11.30am to 11pm. Call 815-6091 or 943-9001 for reservations and to request an underwater table.