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Destination Tennis, The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman: The meal of a lifetime from Eric Ripert
“You can feel the emotion and love in the food. People are known to cry.”
Published Sep 09, 2023
One of the best vacations of your life wouldn’t be complete without the meal of a lifetime. At the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman, Blue by Eric Ripert delivers just such an experience. (Note: Blue is closed through Nov. 2, 2023.)
The Caribbean’s only AAA Five-Diamond restaurant conjures a regional culinary experience in five to seven courses. Ripert’s signature dish, tuna foie gras, is on the menu.
“The fish is the star on the plate, but he never overpowers it. There is always a balance,” says general manager Marc Langevin, who has the pleasure of tasting 20 of Ripert’s dishes once a year when they meet to determine the entire menu. “You can feel the emotion and love in the food. People are known to cry.”
That is, they can bring themselves to disturb the visual masterpieces.
“Each plate is absolute perfection,” said Destination Tennis host Monica Puig. “You didn’t want to touch it because it looks so perfect.”
Ripert’s influence is felt across all nine restaurants at the Ritz-Carlton, and even around the island.
“He elevated everything. Everyone learns from each other,” Langevin said.
The resort’s culinary reputation extends to its marquee event, the Cayman Cookout. Every January, world-renowned chefs host 60 events over five days. José Andrés and Anthony Bourdain headlined the first festival, and an invitation to it became coveted in the culinary world. Now it’s limited to 10 masters.
Year-round, there’s plenty to feast on, including Japanese and steakhouse menus, and legendary piña coladas at oceanfront eateries treated to tropical breezes. Kids can sign up for cooking classes, too.
“They love to put on those big chef hats,” Langevin said.
The resort also handles special dietary needs with finesse, ensuring that every guest experiences the full range of its epicurean artistry.
Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman
- West Bay Rd.
- Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
- Starting at $799/night
- One Thing You Need to Know: Every day the staff opens up the Armoire, a cabinet full of finely aged rums, and presents an educational tasting with chocolate pairings for a rich Caribbean cultural experience.
Tennis at a Glance
Facilities: 2 hard courts, 3 Har-Tru clay courts, 2 pickleball courts
Rates: Complimentary court reservations, $80 clinics, $195/hour and up for private instruction
Good to know: Tennis director Uli Hoppe taught alongside Nick Bolleteirri at his academy, and teaches the same style during private lessons.