Every Sunday, Sip Sip Restaurant on Harbour Island, Bahamas, cooks a traditional brunch of boiled fish, grits and johnny cake for its jetsetting guests.
Overlooking the famed pink sand beach of Harbour Island, the decks of Sip Sip Restaurant are filled with famous faces indulging in seafood delicacies. On Sundays, the perfect ocean view gets overshadowed by a fragrant bowl of boiled fish with all the fixings. Owner Julie Lightbourn shares this recipe with Pottery Barn, and the rum-pineapple drink she pairs with it over a little "sip sip" — local slang for gossip. Breathe new life into the classic American brunch with Sip Sip's recipes showcased here, along with our brunch decor using sea glass colors, aquatic animals and ocean hints that bring the warm, lapping waves right to your table.
Having a Bahamas-inspired brunch is sure to bring out your sunny side. Like island life, the menu and the decorating are easy, low pressure and ocean fresh — and we've created a table that's lovely yet informal, cool to the eye and refreshing to behold.
Take the party into the sun with an outdoor dining table on the patio or shaded deck. Our stylist created a color palette of the softest turquoise from Sip Sip's beachfront view. Wood accents bring a rustic touch, fish shapes add humor and other sea-worthy accessories bring out your party's laidback personality.
When it comes to the food, take your time, as they do in the Caribbean. Prepare the grits in the morning when there's time to let them cook slowly and develop a creamy texture. The johnny cake batter can be made earlier and go in the oven 30 minutes before guests arrive. The fish broth can be made ahead as well. But what must be ready to go are the cocktails featuring a rum and pineapple elixir garnished with a simple slice of lemon or an umbrella speared with tropical fruit.
Julie Lightbourn, the charming owner of Sip Sip, the best place on the island for Sunday brunch, tells us that despite the popularity of her restaurant among celebrities, the menu is authentically Bahamian. A tasty boiled grouper simmered in a broth of lime juice and celery gives locals enough energy for fishing all day. Habanero-hot Bahamian goat peppers wake you up, while the traditional accompaniments of cornbread-like johnny cake and white grits fill you up.
Once the table is set, the dishes prepped and the guests installed in their lounge chairs, all that needs doing is poaching the fish. But there's no rush. There's always time for a little sip sip at this party.