I have been visiting Martinique for over 35 years and lived here for 6; I have never dined at this restaurant before because I couldn't imagine it would meet my requirements. I was wrong.
The Imperatrice is ideally located in the city center, where you can enjoy the historical and cultural sites, and economic and administrative activities.The Imperatrice Hotel is in the heart of Fort-de-France, facing the historical "Savanne" (City Square), once the center of Martinique. It exudes Creole elegance and charm with its orginal art deco style tile, local mahogany woodwork and rooms with a distant view of the bay.
The recently renovated building and its Creole furniture and art collection have been preserved to give the hotel the warm and intimate atmosphere of a family institution where you will feel like home. The only time I had the same feeling of time traveling was when I visited the historic Raffles Hotel in Angkor Wat. Your mind dances thinking of the historic political, business and cultural events that were celebrated there - not to mention the notorious trysts that made the hot days bearable.
Our dinner on this second story restaurant was perfect! NO one was in the restaurant on a Friday night. There appeared to be 2 people working: the Hostess / Waitress and the Chef. We loved the Acras (cod fish beignets dipped in a hot sauce) which were perfectly executed; the Foie gras poellé (fresh sautéed duck liver - awesome); and Z'Habitants Soup (shrimp callaloo).
The main dishes were Filet Rossini (tenderloin with a slice of fresh sautéed duck liver - a little too small); very nice Gambas au Rhum (Prawns sauteed in rum) and a delicious Vivaneau à la Creole (whole fried Creole Red Snapper - nice and spicy).
The service was appropriate for Martinique: slow, steady and pleasant. (Do NOT be in a hurry for anything in Martinique). The cooking was exquisitely done by long time Chef Madame No --- call to make sure she is cooking the night you visit. (She is off on Tuesday and Wednesday) Call ahead.
This is as good as it gets in Martinique. Handsome, clean, wonderful A/C and "Old School" Franco-Creole cooking. I'm going back as soon as I can!
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