Review: Thyme Restaurant’s Lobster Feast

April 3, 2022 | 0 Comments

[Written by Dale Butler]

We are told that the ultimate culinary arts goal of excellence, coveted by chefs, is to be rated with AA Michelin Star. I have eaten at approximately six of them in four different countries and, while they had some interesting and unusual menu items, I was not in a hurry to return. In fact, I avoid them. Simply put, I’m purely a grandma’s homeboy and the standard I have is very simple: would I order it again?

I entered Thyme Restaurant for its first ever Lobster Feast with great expectations. Located at 1 Cataract Hill West, Fritholme Estates in Paget, or in Bermudian lingo, “darn d road immediately pass Stonington Bermuda College, see d sign and go lef’ up d hill.” It’s one of those hidden gems tourists often hear about one day prior to their departure. It is a quaint spot.

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The current Executive Chef and owner of Thyme Restaurant, Shannon Simons, is an inspiration to young chefs interested in rising up the ladder. Self-taught, together with experiences gleaned from working at MEF’s famous Lido Restaurant and the popular Front Street Bolero Brasserie, he has used his homegrown skills and industry achievements which have resulted in the offering of a delightful weekly menu.

There are three main meats that excite Bermudian palates: fishcakes, rockfish and lobster. All three have an extensive history, and I commend ‘The Bermudian’ magazine and numerous St. David’s Islanders for their rich and storied history about the sweet and tender delicacy of the Bermuda lobster.

It is most unfortunate that the St. David’s restaurants like Dennis’ Hideaway and the Blackhorse Tavern Restaurant & Bar, to name just a few, are no longer in existence, but the stories surrounding the taste and quality of their lobsters come to the fore the minute lobster season kicks in from September 1st. to March 31st.

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The End of Season Lobster Feast held at Thyme Restaurant was timely, after a strenuous COVID-19 season that limited restaurant menus. Chef Shannon came out with fireworks when introducing a six course meal that avoided the typical bisque, lobster mac and cheese, crabmeat and scallops. With a complimentary cocktail, and later a great glass of Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon, I had a meal fit for a king.

My main server was Mezhyiah Lambert who has a promising future in the industry and she was joined by MacKaylin Simmons, Cierra Holdipp and Michelle Rochester. With the front of the house intact I was ready. Yes, six courses as follows:

  • Amuse-Bouche – lobster salsa on an herbed potato chip, drizzled with bourbon reduction. The strong inviting smell of the bourbon overwhelmed me and in an instant it was devoured. Oh no! No time for a photo.
  • Homemade lobster spring rolls served with sweet mango chili sauce. They had a great balance, and my excitement was growing.
  • Lobster fritter with lobster tartar sauce melted in my mouth. Maybe tartar sauce could be avoided, only because it is so common.
  • Lobster corn chowder with hearty vegetables, topped with parmesan garlic bread. It was thick, meaty, ‘on top of the mountain’ and the main meal had not yet arrived.
  • Tropical lobster and Caesar salad on romaine lettuce, with diced avocado mango and cranberries, brought back sanity.
  • Lobster Thermidor — half shell, truffle lemon butter sauce, served with mashed potatoes and Bermuda honey glazed carrots. This was it!!! A thousand kudos. I am not a lobster thermidor eater because they have often come with far too much sauce, and filled with too much fish. But his was perfect with just about enough of everything with the key being the lobster—moist and definitely not spongy or stringy. It is certainly an award winner, and a memory I will never forget and will see me return.
  • Last, but not least, Bermuda Loquat Creme Brulee—timely, given Bermuda’s loquat season that seemed to have been avoided by our children who used to raid trees all over the island. Much more can be done with our loquats that were so plentiful this year. [Need I mention my experimental loquat fried rice? No!].

Thyme Restaurant Bermuda April 2022 (5)

Thyme Restaurant is not mentioned in the online list of ‘7 restaurant lobster hotspots’ in Bermuda, but should be. As I stated, tourists often hear about its general qualities when they are preparing to leave. Thyme has earned its place on the list and I commend Executive Chef Shannon and his staff for a memorable ‘lobster feast’ that I am sure will be repeated.

Thyme is currently open Wednesdays through Saturdays at 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., with the last reservation at 7:30 p.m. It has established a reputation for birthday parties, award ceremonies, and wine tasting, and has a number of thrilling activities during the week as well as an exciting schedule of seasonal events. Check their website for menu options. Contact number is 1-441-236-1379. Take out is offered.

- Dale Butler is the Professor of local Music and also writes restaurant reviews for Bernews.

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