Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Half Moon resort recognized at the Taste of the Caribbean competition

The Jamaica National Culinary Team amassed ten medals and special awards at the recently concluded Caribbean Hotel Association Taste of the Caribbean competition.

After an eventful two days of cooking, creating, mixing and showcasing their culinary and bartending skills, Team Jamaica copped the gold award for the Mystery Basket which consisted of 20 items, unknown to the teams prior to the start of the competition, of which each team had to prepare a three-course meal in just four hours.

Team Jamaica won the first place medal for preparing the most innovative dish overall named Carrot-Pineapple, Orange-Scallion Cheesecake, Sweet & Sour Sauce, Chocolate Scotch Bonnet Mousse on Passion Fruit Crepe with Mango Ice Cream. The team also earned special awards for the best use of cheese in its Orange Scallion Cheesecake and the most creative non-alcoholic drink, Ms. Lou, named after the popular Jamaican cultural icon.

Individual members of Team Jamaica who competed for the Chef of the Year award also received top awards- with the bronze award going to Brian Lumley and Martin Maginley, Ravi Anne fell one short of the gold award to take home the silver. Pastry Chef Gilbert McKenzie and bartender Junior Lewis were not left out of the individual awards as they both received bronze awards for their respective categories. In addition Stephen Sowa walked away with the team manager’s indigenous cuisine presentation award.

The team which comprised of coach/manager Stephen Sowa executive chef of Half Moon,
Ravi Anne chef de cuisine of the Sugar Mill Restaurant at Half Moon, Brian Lumley executive chef at the French Embassy, Martin Maginley executive chef at Round Hill Hotel & Villas, Gilbert McKenzie pastry chef and Junior Lewis bartender at Starfish Resort & Spa competed against 13 other national teams at the Caribe Hilton in Puerto Rico.

The Taste of the Caribbean is the annual food and beverage festival of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourist Association and is aimed at educating and inspiring food and beverage professionals across the Caribbean.

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