Well fishing and food fans, here is my June fishing and food report. I arrived June 15, to find beautiful weather with easterly winds 10-15 mph with a few clouds in the sky. When I arrived at Tropic Air, I was greeted with warm hellos by the ground staff and the shared with me that the weather had been horrendous and that I had brought the sunshine. So maybe my name should be Captain Sunshine, not Captain Jeff.
Day 1: Fish with Pete Graniel: A local fishing guide and good friend. After a hardy breakfast at Estelís Restaurant, I had the 6 am healthy start breakfast,[yeah right] which is two big fried jacks with guva jelly ; ham,and bacon,chesse omelet; two sausages, 4 slices of bacons and a side order of home fried potatoes; three cups of steaming coffee and of course, sweet and low. With my belly full, the boat arrived exactly as promised at 7 am. Accompanying me was Steve from the Internet cafť and a local kid who loves to fish; he also caught the most and biggest fish. Take a kid fishing and you are truly blessed. Anyway, we headed south as the wind was blowing about 20 mph from the east and tucked around to the back lagoon, to Pete Granielís secret spots. I canít tell you what they are because they are a secret. Wink, Wink. Anyway we anchored the boat and had the fish on in about 20 seconds. Fishing was fast and furious with a good mix of gray snapper and mutton snapper. We fished till we ran out of sardines. On the last cast, I hooked into a Cobia which is fiesty fish to land and fish was in the 30-40 lb class. I am fishing with a 2.0 hook, no wire and 12 lb test. This is going to be a challenge to say the least. To make the story short I fought the critter for 30 minutes but score in the end Captain Jeff 0, Cobia 1. The fish breaks off 10 feet from the boat. A great end to a great day. Thank you Captain Pete
We return to the dock by 12 oí clock in time to filet the fish and have a few of cold ones. Another day living the dream in San Pedro.
Day 2: We go out with Captain Dilzon. The captain has a new 28 footer wide beam comfortable boat with two twin 115 engines. This is one fine fishing machine. We go north this time to the channels by Baisel Jones. We anchor up in the channels and are fishing with live sardines and mullet. We get a few hits, catch a few snappers. lose some big fish ,but not a lot of the big snappers we were looking for, but the sharks did came around. We caught 2 big sharks which we released promptly as the juice is not worth to squeeze. We sent them back to the deep blue sea to live another day. After the 2 pesky sharks went away, we trolled down to the coast for barracuda and snapper. We caught some big nice snapper and then we saw the nasty wind,and rain coming from the offshore reef heading towards San Pedro. It was time for us to beat out the storm and we made it to the docks just as the storm hit San Pedro. We watched the storm pass over San Pedro from the safety of Estelís restaurant on the beach drinking cold beers and watched the storm pass over quickly just as they do this time of the year. Another fine day fishing with Captain Dilzon, an up and coming captain.great off shore guy.
Day 3: We have aboard as guests, Collate and Maya.my new neighbors ,and soon to become great friends , We are fishing with Captain Dilzon again. This time the wind has died down and we fished the outside the reef for the big fish. We are fishing in 170 feet of water, 8 oz sinkers, big hooks, wire line, heavy tackle. This is deep water angling for a big grouper and amberjack. We hook a black snapper, nice size, some nice big yellow tail and a yellow eyed red snapper. But the sea is picking up and there is a swell on which makes for uncomfortable drifting as the boat is rocking left to right. We decide that before we we turn green ,we will go back to shallow waters,I love so much.. we go in shore and troll for snapper and barracuda and and we do hook up with some nice big mutton snapper. By this time after catching our fill of snapper, we head home and are back around the docks by 12 0 clock. On the way home we have the bonus of seeing a school of 5 dolphins which are frolicking and jumping right in front of our boat. Definitely this enhances our experience on the water as we slow the boat down and the dolphins are giving us a show for about 10 minutes. One would think they like showing off for us and they knew we were enjoying it. Collate and Maya took some wonderful pictures of their antics and it has been posted on their blog. Another living the dream day in San Pedro.
Day 4: We go out with my buddy Pete Grannel. I ask him to take Collate and Maya aboard again as they had a great time the day before. I ask him to take us to his secret spot south, of Savannah caye. He says ďNo problem Captain Jeff, Me Casa Sue Casa.Ē We anchor up in the same spot as 3 days prior, throw some cutup sardines,for a chum slick into the water, and bangÖFish on after fish on, strike after strike. As soon as you throw your bait in the water, a hit. Either you have a fish or you have to rebait. The action is fast and furious and nonstop. We have 3 hours of solid fishing when another black cloud appears over the horizon and is heading straight for us. This is no sprinkle; this is a big mother rainstorm. We pull the blue canopy over us and try to tuck in from the wind and the rain, but to no avail, we are just totally soaked and loving it. The rain is warm and refreshing and nobody seems to care. After the storm moves over quickly, it heads towards Belize City, we are soaked to the bone. We call it a day as there are a lot of fish to filet. We head back to San Pedro and are still laughing for the soaking we got and how we looked but we have had one of the best days of fishing one could ever ask for. Collete and Maya are definitely hooked on reef fishing, no pun intended. This has just been a wonderful fishing experience these last few days. Catching the variety of fish and little bouts of rain in between has not put a damper on our spirits or our love for the water. All fishing was booked with my buddy Steve Coconut Internet Cafť. His website is www.fishingsanpedro.com
and his phone number is 011 501-226-2835. His company takes credit cards which are a plus, and if the weather is not good or you canít go, you do not get charged which is another plus. The prices are less then half of what it costs to fish in the states. He is a wonderful and knowledgeable guy so I highly recommend his company. He books 7 of the local guides in San Pedro. If you want a living the day dream in the water, look him up.
Captain Jeffs Restaurant and Food Report
Well food loving gourmets, here is my eating out report for the week of June 15 -22. We went to Rojo lounge at Azul Resort. This is a class property with a five star plus restaurant. Ambiance, second to none. Chef Jeff and hostess Vivian, both co-owners, make this one of the premier properties on the island. I went with a party of six and ordered appetizers. We started with drinks that were mixed with perfection. The appetizer selection was fit for queens and kings. The fire cracker lobster puffs, humus, and flat bread, plantation shrimp, and so much more. Everything was just marvelous. For the main course, we had lobster stuffed , with sausage, crabmeat and shrimp with a touch of ricotta cheese and bread crumbs served on a bed of exotic risotto,and two orders of There famous guava glazed ribs the best i have ever eatan and a order fresh groupper filet that was also stuffed with exotic spices ,and special filling that was also one of the best I have ever had. All this accompanied with fresh island vegetables and their famous mashed potatoes. We knew to save room for their fabulous desserts like warm bananas forster with caramel sauce over ice cream, hot fudge sundae, and home made coconut ice cream. We left this place stuffed. If you are looking for a romantic evening out, this is a must place. Take the island ferry up north, mention Rojo lounge. You get 50% off the island ferry price. Watch the stars on the way up, and on the way back. This will be an evening you will put in your diary.
Another fabulous evening was spent at Casa Picasso. Another one of my top 10 restaurants, and a must in San Pedro. We were greeted at the door by their host Chris and he started us off with killer martinis. Some had appleteenies, some had lemon drops. The drinks were superbly mixed to perfection. We started with his famous Caesar salad and on the side a appetizer of there oven roastedfresh bulbs of garlic with crisp toast points. A great starter to the eveningís meal. The main course prepared by Chrisís wife Jennifer, a gourmet chef in her own right, was seafood alfredo which had chunks of lobster, shrimp, and scallops. All done with a creamy alfredo sauce. A truly fabulous dish. As we are regulars at Picasso, we made sure to save room for their desserts as well. We ordered for the table cracked coconut and bananas Picasso and their chocolate lava cake with coconut ice cream. A fabulous end to a fabulous meal. Kudos to Chris and Jennifer on consistently creating a wonderful dining experience in San Pedro.
We tried the new steakhouse upstairs at Fidoes. Dave the gracious host and owner met us at the door with his warm smile and sweet demeanor. As this is a new steakhouse, we wanted to wait till it was in full operation but heard the steak was good, and wanted to give it a great try. I could tell you we started with fresh Caesar salad with hot garlic croutons and seafood cakes that were just absolutely fabulous. We ordered the New York Strip Steak which was done exactly how we ordered it. It is served with their home made smashed potatoes and thin French fried onion rings which we ordered an extra order of, as they were so yummy. Some fresh vegetables were served on a side and three sauces were ordered on the side to dip your steak to if you wish. I tried all three and thought they were wonderful. I thought this was a nice place if you are looking for prime steak. Service was friendly but needed a little more training. We know this will improve as time goes on. We will review this restaurant on our next trip as Dave is working hard to make this into a class steak house restaurant.
We got to eat in some local restaurants, el Fogon is a newly established restaurant which is cooked by locals and serves local cuisines. Sweat pea soup with ham, stew chicken and rice and beans, great potatoes salad, fried fish, fish of the day, some pork dishes. Again this is a local place with lots of locals and savvy tourists. Cheap prices, big portions, a must try place. Another local place we tried was Pedros Sports Bar and Bistro. Great pizza, fabulous atmosphere, icy cold beer, Great for a fun night out. Lots of locals and expats hang here which makes for great fun.and pedro is such a nice host,he loves when you joke with him ,give him a kiss it will make his day.. They also have great take out pizza, the best on the island. We also tried the new bakery which is on Chicken St., around the corner from el forgan: Hacal Kirkil. spelling wrong for sure. Big pink building. The banana bread is to die for, fresh baked roll, pastries, and cinnamon buns. Everything done the old fashioned way and I predict will soon become one of San Pedros best bakeries. I challenge anyone to go there and not buy out the place, it is that good.!!!!!! Went also to one of the capts favorite places el divino at the famous banana bech resort , we where real hungry fora big lunch. I did the huge 3/4 quarter cheeseburger with caramelized onions, tomatoes and had there fresh cut fried potatoes. Do not attempt to eat this yourself, it must be shared by 2 or 3 people; itís that big. It was made of 3 /4quarter pounds of great sirloin beef and again cooked to perfection . If you have the craving for a big burger, this is a must place for you. They also have great salads and a great breakfast. Their dinners at el devino, are also on my top 10 list so try this place as you cannot go wrong.
All in all, my week was just fabulous. While we did get bouts of rain from time to time, it passed quickly. The sun was shining. The people were smiling and friendly. I dined and fished with great friends and made some new ones as well and had good times, lots of fun, made fun of Pedro at the sports bar every chance I had I will be returning in August as this is my second home and as close to heaven as Iím ever going to get. I am wishing everybody a living the dream time in San Pedro enjoy .