We had a fantastic trip and spent way too much money
. Here are some of our takeaways:
is a beautiful little city. We really liked it there.
Thursday was the best boat show
day. Smaller crowds, and vendors who were not yet jaded by hundreds of hours of repeating the same speech. If we were to come back next year, we'd fly in on Wednesday night and return home Saturday morning, having Thursday and Friday for the show.
It was truly fantastic to see so many non-boat vendors. This was a vastly more complete show than Miami
. I got to fondle lots of cool stuff I'd only ever seen pictures of online.
Most modern boats mostly have no soul. All shiny plastic and thin, fake wood veneers and pale ghostly colours. Felt that way about the mono's and the multi's. Maybe I have poor taste. There were a few nice rides there. And even though we're unlikely to buy anything we saw, we still had a fantastic and educational time looking at them. Overall a great experience.
Missed Marlow-Hunter, Island Packet
, and Seaward
, among others.
My wife is religious about the Women Who Sail
Facebook group, and managed to find others like her everywhere at the show.
remains spry and cheerful and impressive. I enjoyed a brief chat with her, and I'm very happy for having done so.
Best crab cake I ever had was at Dock
Street. Looks live a dive bar, but not priced liked one; and the crab cake was amazing.
at Harvest, bona fide chef
action. Yes, the hand-made, homemade chicharrones
were $8. They were astonishingly good. We ended up eating half the friggin' menu there. And unlike our other experience, here the mussels were most definitely fresh and most definitely delicious.
Great breakfast at Cafe Normandie. Fancy French eats. Yum.
Best place to just sit and drink: Castlebay Irish Pub. Mostly locals, boat show
crowd mostly stayed away, dunno why.
Best (gourmet) pizza: The Fox's Den. We had a fine dinner here, and the pizza really was delicious.
: Pusser's. We got mussels. I don't believe they were fresh, they smelled and tasted like inter-tidal mud; we got crab balls, they tasted like batter and unseasoned rice. Best I can tell, they serve only frozen, manufactured products. You might have a better experience there than we did, but we will not return.
Biggest disappointment: Brokerage Cove. The promo literature for the show made it sound like there would be dozens of boats on display here. But I don't believe there was even one dozen. This was a real letdown for us. It was ameliorated a bit by there being an Amel 53 among the brokerage boats, along with Stealth Chicken, a Perry custom yacht. I spoke with a broker later and learned that it's quite expensive to put a boat in the show (> $3k) and the seller bears that cost. So I get it. But it was a letdown anyway.