Nov 24 2011

Olives in Nassau- A Restaurant Report

I have just survived my first cruise experience. A four-day Carnival Funship trip from Jacksonville to the Bahamas and back. Cruising was not quite what I expected. The food and entertainment were better than I thought they would be.

The crowds and summer camp type schedule were actually worse than I thought they would be…but that is a different article to be written.

Our first port of call was to be Freeport but Mother Nature had different ideas. The winds and the surf made approaching the harbor too dangerous and Captain Steubing opted to cancel and instead bypass Grand Bahama Island and arrow straight to the island of New Providence. We pulled in at about 8:30 roughly 12 hours early.

After more than 24 hours onboard I was MORE than ready to feel solid ground under my feet and we made a quick land fall to assess the situation before retiring back to the ship.

Saturday dawned early and my wife and I opted to eschew the canned excursions and instead walked our way all around the downtown area of Nassau. We saw the Queens Staircase, the Water Tower, Fort Fincastle, the Government House, Christ Church and we narrowly avoided the Pirate Museum (whew!).

We then walked down to Junkanoo beach and took a side trip through the British Colonial Hilton before braving the Straw Market to bargain for souvenirs. The Market building is being built so it is just rows of stalls with varying degrees of tourist oriented crap.

By this point it is 2 o’clock. Too late for lunch but needing a bit of sustenance we stumbled into an alley way down by the dock that looked charming and not scary.

Beyond a Jewelry store and the Kama Sutra shop was a little cafe that spanned both sides of the alley called Olives. It had sort of a European vibe and my wife and I sat down and ordered a couple of appetizers.

Service was insanely fast and we were nibbling on hot pita, hummus and spanokopita before you could say Grecian Formula.

The hummus was of the rustic variety with lots of garlic and just a touch of tahini and spices. It was tasty and satisfying and was a bit coarser than I am used to. The spanakopita was a satisfying combination of spinach and feta sandwiched between a pillowy puff pastry that threatened to float away it was so light. The density and strong flavors of the filling contrasted really nicely with the lightness of the pastry. What looked like too much food at delivery ended up disappearing quickly.

To top it all off they offered free internet access for customers via WiFi and I actually got to send my daughters a note about how much I missed them. Free internet is a REALLY big deal if you have priced it on a cruise ship.

Pricing was reasonable and service was friendly and fast. It was just what my sore feet needed before the trek back to the ship.

Olives Mediterranean Cafe & Bar
Nassau International Bazaar
Off Bay Street or Woodes Rogers Walk
Tel: 242 356 3986


  1. Helen

    “…and Captain Steubing opted to cancel and…”

    coffee splurk….

    (I guess that puts me(us) in a demographic I’d rather not admit to…)

  2. Jeff Mac

    I don’t know what you are talking about. I have never even heard of the Love Boat…


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