Food and drink
Creole cuisine has numerous influences: French, African, Chinese, Indian, and English. Lobsters, tuna fish, flying fox, pork and chicken are used more often than beef or lamb, which have to be imported. Fresh fish on the Seychelles includes tuna, bonito, kings mackerel, perch, job, red snapper, barracuda and cuttlefish, just to mention the most well-known. Mostly fish is prepared as a curry (Carri Pawson) in which flaked fish is served in a hot spicy curry sauce with rice and different vegetables such as aubergines, pumpkin, breadfruit or the cucumber-like patole. The basic ingredients of other curries are chicken (carri poul), pork or the rare speciality, flying fox. The spice mix for the curry sauce is more often than not individually prepared, but it is possible to obtain a ready-made sauce at the market in Victoria. There are also sauces that are less spicy, e.g. creole sauce, which consists mainly of tomatoes. A further speciality is tec-tec soup, which contains small mussels. Other local specialities are: kat-kat banana, coconut curry, chatini requin (shark), bourgeois grillé, bouillon Bréde, chauve-souris (flying fox), cari Bernique, salade de palmiste (from hearts of palm trees, known as millionaire’s salad) and la daube (made from breadfruit, yams, cassava and bananas). Breadfruit is cooked in the same way as potato (puréed, fried, baked, etc.), and is a little bit sweeter in taste. Tomato is called, romantically, "Pomme d'Amour". On Mahé there are also Chinese and Italian restaurants. Some of the larger hotels have their own bakery and, in the small guest-houses, home-made bread is common. In the restaurants one is served normally at the table. Groups of four or more should make reservations, especially at Round, Cerf and in the La-Réserve restaurants on Praslin.
Drinks: There is a large selection of wine, spirits and other alcoholic beverages. “Seybrew”, a German-style beer, is brewed locally. The same company also manufactures brown ale and alcohol-free beverages. Calou, a wine made from the flower stems of coconut palms and rum-like Bacca made from sugar cane are pretty potent and have a long lasting effect!
Those who prefer something for their well-being and a good night’s sleep can finish their evening meal with a citronelle tea, made from lemon grass. There are also other refreshing non-alcoholic delicacies such as freshly-squeezed lemon or passion-fruit juice. The local tea is very popular (see “Shopping Tips”).
Alcohol can be bought in shops - Mon-Fri 14.00-18.00 and Sat 08.00-12.00 and 14.00-18.00. Local opening hours are 11.30-15.00 and 18.00-22.00. The consumption of alcohol in public or on the street is not allowed.
Beer and wine prices
The most commonly stocked drinks in restaurants and in the small grocer's shops are the two local beers, "Seybrew" and "EKU". Both are very drinkable and are brewed under German licence. The bottles are very small (275 ml), costing between 20 and 30 rupees (approx. 1 and 2 £) in restaurants (also at the beach in the simple restaurants and "bars") “EKU” is usually 2 rupees more expensive than "Seybrew". In shops, beer starts from about 10 rupees. The wine on offer mostly comes from South Africa (Cabernet Sauvignon). At the smaller beach restaurants, red and white wine is amazingly good value. In such places a small glass of red wine (approx. 0.1 litres) costs about the same as a bottle of beer. In the grocer's shops there are small selections of wines. However you will be hard pressed to find a bottle of wine for under 100 rupees (approx. £6).