Bermuda’s Best Bar: The Frog and Onion Pub

On my first visit to Bermuda–on board the NCL Gem last October–I made a terrible mistake.  I put off visiting The Frog and Onion Pub until the day we were to sail back to New York City.  I was having such a great time–and so many rum swizzles–that almost missed the ship.

Imagine my delight when, upon returning to Bermuda on the NCL Star last month, I walked into that same pub to find the same happy, helpful, and entertaining bartender behind the bar (if anyone in management there is reading this, his name was Charles and he should be paid more.  Not that he’s not already paid well–I have no idea how much he is paid.  But still.  He’s that awesome).

Here’s a little tip–if you have a favorite bartender in a bar on an island eight hundred miles from your home, you are either a sailor or an alcoholic.  And I don’t have an anchor tattooed on my arm or any stripes on my sleeves.  Just saying.

Not wanting to make the same mistake as last time, I made sure to work a visit to The Frog and Onion into each day of my three day port stay.  Each time I hit at least a portion of one of the two happy hours that takes place all day, offering drink specials and live music.  And on the third day I chose to have a late lunch with my swizzle and I was not disappointed.  My husband’s strangely named hamburger pizza was gooey and delicious, and the mussel pie I ordered was warm, slightly spicy, and absolutely overflowing with fresh, briny mussels–there were at least three mussels in every forkful.  It was so good, in fact, that it didn’t even bother me that I was eating heavy British comfort food on a hot day on a sub-tropical island.

The thing I really appreciate about the Frog and Onion is this: it doesn’t have to be good, but clearly the management and staff still work hard to make it a quality bar and restaurant.  It is one of only two bars within easy walking distance of a busy cruise port; people are going to go there no matter what.  But I would go to The Frog and Onion even if it were out of the way.  Though I guess ‘eight hundred miles out to sea’ is pretty out of the way for me, when you think about it.

After this season, cruise ships sailing to Bermuda will no longer be docking in the port of Hamilton.  This makes many Bermuda cruisers sad, as Hamilton has long been considered a more convenient location.  After all, the Royal Naval Dockyard is all the way at the far western part of the island.  But to be honest, out of the way as it may be, I love the Dockyard.  It’s compact, it’s safe, it’s photogenic, and it is home to one of my favorite pubs in the world.

The Frog and Onion Pub is located in the same complex as the Bermuda Craft Market.  When you leave the ship, you can walk right or left and still find it.  Don’t worry–there will be signs.  From the ferry dock, walk to the left and look for the signs for the public restrooms–and then keep walking straight past the restrooms.  It is literally a two minute walk from the ferry and maybe a five minute walk from the end of the cruise pier.  If you are not a bar-sitter like me, there are also a number of dining rooms where you can get a proper table and meal.  

Disclosure:  I paid for all of my own drinks.  With an emphasis on the word ‘all’.  Oh and I paid for my food, too.  And tipped generously.

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