Best of the best Carib chefs in culinary contest

Trinidad & Tobago received top honors as Caribbean Culinary Team of the Year at the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association’s (CHTA) 2011 “Taste of the Caribbean” competition hosted by the Hyatt Regency hotel in Miami last weekend.

The highest individual honors were bestowed upon Mitchell Husbands of Barbados as Chef of the Year, sponsored by Bahama Breeze Island Grille. Humphrey Lew Jen Tai of Curacao won the Bartender of the Year prize; Kunal Chakrabarti of the U.S. Virgin Islands was Pastry Chef of the Year, sponsored by Albert Uster Imports, Inc.; and Mikhala Bagot of the British Virgin Islands was Caribbean Junior Chef of the Year.

For the second year in a row, a junior chef has been recognized for creating the Most Innovative Dish, an honor traditionally received by senior-level chefs. Kevin Pratt, junior chef from The Bahamas, won for preparing abaco spiced-rub beef & pan seared Exuma scallops, served with Nassau sweet potato and plantain cheesy croquettes, coconut-infused warm vegetable slaw acompanied with Eleuthera pineapple chutney finished with Andros mango reduction.

“All of the teams and individuals who participated in this year’s Taste of the Caribbean competition should be proud of their accomplishments,” said Josef Forstmayr, president of CHTA. “The tastes and smells of the Caribbean were on display for all to enjoy, raising the profile of our regional cuisines. We applaud the hard work of all competitors who showcased their talents.”

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Following are all of the honors bestowed at Taste of the Caribbean:

Caribbean Culinary Team of the Year: presented to the Trinidad & Tobago Culinary Team.

Caribbean Chef of the Year – sponsored by Bahama Breeze® Island Grille: presented to Mitchell Husbands, Barbados.

Caribbean Pastry Chef of the Year – sponsored by Albert Uster Imports: presented to Kunal Chakrabarti, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Caribbean Bartender of the Year: presented to Humphrey Lew Jen Tai, Curacao.

Caribbean Junior Chef of the Year: presented to Mikhala Bagot, British Virgin Islands.

Hans Schenk Commemorative Award for the Most Innovative Menu: presented to the Jamaica Culinary Team for Jerk Chicken & Pineapple Crepe, Cucumber & Turnip Citrus Salad, Sorrel Sauce, Coffee & Pimento Rubbed Pork Appleton Rum Flamed Shrimp, Green Banana, Coco & JackFruit “Risotto,” Curried Cauliflower & Brie Mousse, Fava Bean Stew, Beet Foam, Chocolate Teardrop, Dark Chocolate – Passion, White Chocolate – Curry, Naseberry Base, Spiced Sweet Potato & Coconut Dumpling and Papaya – Mango & Thyme Compote.

Most Innovative Dish: presented to Kevin Pratt, junior chef from The Bahamas, for Abaco Spiced Rub Beef & Pan Seared Exuma Scallops, Served with Nassan Sweet Potato & Plantain Cheesy Croquettes, Coconut Infused Warm Vegetable Slaw Accompanied with Eleuthra Pineapple Chutney finished with Andros Mango Reduction.

Best Use of Cheese: presented to Negust Kaza, U.S. Virgin Islands and Fernando Parilla, Puerto Rico.

Best Mac & Cheese: presented to St. Lucia for Smoked Saltfish Mac & Cheese with freshly made Lucian Ketchup.

Best Use of Orchid Chocolate: presented to Barbados for Homestyle Cassava Pone Caramel Rum Sauce Star fruit Ginger and Pineapple compote, white chocolate bay leaf shooter, tropical fruit sauce, Chocolate Passion and finished with orange flavour dirt.

Most Creative Drinks: presented to Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago.

Most Creative Rum Drink: presented to Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago.

Most Creative Vodka Drink: presented to Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago.

Most Creative Non-Alcoholic Drink: presented to Jamal Bowen, Barbados.

The Spirit of the Competition: presented to Puerto Rico Culinary Team.

Certified Angus Beef Competition sponsored by Certified Angus Beef

Best Use of Certified Angus Beef: presented to Wimore Jordan, Barbados.

Gold Medals: Wilmore Jordan, Barbados; Kenneth Molyneaux, British Virgin Islands; Anthony Miller, Jamaica; and Negust Kaza, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Silver Medal: Darren Conner, Anguilla

Bronze Medals: Charon McKenzie, The Bahamas; Fernando Parilla, Puerto Rico; and Jeremy Lovell, Trinidad & Tobago.

Honorable Mention: Jonathan Hughes, Anguilla, and Johnathan De Haseth, Curacao.

Seafood Competition

Best Use of Seafood: presented to Lester Gumbs, Anguilla.

Gold Medals: Lester Gumbs, Anguilla; Andre Nurse, Barbados; and Cynthia Negron, Puerto Rico.

Silver Medals: Jordel Gumbs, Anguilla; Shaquine Bodie, The Bahamas; Kevin Broderick, Jamaica; and David Benjamin, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Bronze Medals: Macgarvey Thompson, British Virgin Islands, and Adrian Cumberbatch, Trinidad & Tobago.

Honorable Mention: Adriyel Lourens, Curacao

Caribbean Chef Medal Presentations

Gold Medals: Justin Hughes, Anguilla; Mitchell Husbands, Barbados; Kenneth Molyneaux, British Virgin Islands; and Devon Joseph, Trinidad & Tobago.

Silver Medals: Mychal Harris, The Bahamas; Jonathan De Haseth, Curacao; Michael Dannaker, Jamaica; Nicodemus Joseph, St. Lucia; and Dennis Vanterpool, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Bronze Medals: Jorge Ramos, Puerto Rico.

Caribbean Junior Chef Medal Presentations

Gold Medals: Mikala Bagot, British Virgin Islands, and Victor Bonano, Puerto Rico.

Silver Medals: Kevin Pratt, The Bahamas; Junrick de Windt, Curacao; Rochelle Grindley, Jamaica; Scott Leone, St. Lucia; and Ryan Bailey, Trinidad & Tobago.

Bronze Medals: Stephanie Sayers, Barbados, and Afiya Auguste, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Honorable Mention: Joseph Hodge, Anguilla

Caribbean Pastry Chef Medal Presentations

Gold Medals: Janelle Crawford, Barbados, and Kunal Chakrabarti, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Silver Medals: Ruben Garcia, Puerto Rico, and Cheryl-Ann Shortt Charles, Trinidad & Tobago

Bronze Medals: Jamal Small, The Bahamas; Ansony Salmon, British Virgin Islands; and Syneuve Brandao, Curacao.

Honorable Mentions: Shirmel Gumbs, Anguilla; Veerjoonauth Parmesur, Jamaica; and Paylyn Eugene, St. Lucia.

Caribbean Bartender Medal Presentations

Gold Medal: Humphrey Lew Jen Tai, Curacao; Ded Chazulle, Puerto Rico; and Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago.

Silver Medals: Taffy Hodge, Anguilla; Jamaal Bowen, Barbados; and Elton Sprauve, British Virgin Islands.

Bronze Medal: Hugh Jones, The Bahamas; Fitzgerald Haughton, Jamaica; Hanna Anneville, St. Lucia; and Al Boston, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Caribbean Ice Carving Medal Presentation (a new category for this year’s competition)

Gold Medal: Randie Anderson, Jamaica.

Silver Medal: Kevin Broderick, Jamaica.

Bronze Medal: Imran Ashton, British Virgin Islands.

Caribbean Team Medal Presentations

Gold Medals: Barbados Culinary Team, British Virgin Islands Culinary Team; Jamaica Culinary Team; and Trinidad & Tobago Culinary Team.

Silver Medals: Anguilla Culinary Team; The Bahamas Culinary Team; Curacao Culinary Team; Puerto Rico Culinary Team; St. Lucia Culinary Team and the U.S. Virgin Islands Culinary Team.

Ten teams participated in Taste of the Caribbean, hailing from Anguilla, The Islands of The Bahamas, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Curacao, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, St. Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago and United States Virgin Islands.

This year’s host sponsors were CHTA and MasterCard Worldwide along with Chef of the Year sponsor Bahama Breeze® Island Grille; and Pastry Chef of the Year sponsor Albert Uster Imports. Other sponsors included: American Hotel Register, Certified Angus Beef®, Exposure4, Interval International, Kaplan University, Treasury Wine Estates and U.S. Dairy Export Council. Product sponsors included BEEF® Funded by The Beef Checkoff, Buckhead Beef, Fresh Point, Halperns’, Superior Farms, U.S. Meats Export Federation, and U.S. PORK. Silver Media sponsors: El Nuevo Herald, Miami Herald, MIAMI Magazine, and WDNA Serious Jazz; and Supporting Sponsors: American Airlines and Virgin Holidays.

Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association

The Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA) facilitates the full potential of the Caribbean hotel and tourism industry by serving members’ needs and building partnerships in a socially responsible and sustainable manner. CHTA was founded in 1962; it is the voice of the Caribbean hospitality industry for the development of the region in the highly competitive and sophisticated environment of international tourism. Today, tourism is widely recognized as a pivotal industry in the economy of the region – and CHTA functions as the common denominator for this industry in a region of diverse nationalities, languages and styles, identifying mutual problems and marshalling the resources of the active and allied members to devise solutions. CHTA represents all facets of the hospitality industry with more than 725 member hotels and 525 allied members.

CaribbeanHotelandTourismAssociation and Twitter


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