Organisers of last Saturday’s Taste of Cayman Food and Drink Festival have named the winners of this year’s festival.
The ‘people’s choice’ award for Cayman’s favourite restaurant was won by the Beach House Restaurant, from the Westin Resort & Spa, for the second year in a row.
“Our festival attendees are foodies to the core and it takes a lot to impress them,” Cayman Islands Tourism Association President Theresa Leacock-Broderick said. “It is one thing to be respected by the secret panel of judges but it is quite the accomplishment to be so highly rated by the people you serve.”
The Harbour Grille, which participated in Taste of Cayman for the first time, took home the titles of best dish and best dessert for the restaurant’s Cayman-style beef ravioli and breadfruit cake with caramel sauce.
The Tourism Association added that the Beach House Restaurant and The Brasserie also impressed the judges within the best dish category, while Tortuga and Pico earned high marks in the dessert category.
For the best drink category, the Brasserie Purveyors’ garden gin edged out Island Naturals’ ‘chaga-mocha cold brew float’. Within the Best Local Dish category, Agua’s conch bolognese took home the top award, while the Beach House Restaurant and the Outpost both went home with honourable mentions.
Jacques Scott’s Ciroc Disco Bar and the Beach House Restaurant earned the joint top honours of best booth. Cayman Distributors Group’s Stillhouse Lounge and Cayman Spirits’s castaway-themed booth also grabbed the judges’ attention.
From the demonstration stage, the inaugural Cayman-style beef competition saw East End resident Nordell Jackson take home the title. With the largest number of entries since inception, the heavy cake competition was won by West Bay resident Ileann Rubena Powery.
Ayanna Davis-Eden and Isaiah Bodden won the youth culinary cook-off competition, a new addition to this year’s event.
In the amateur category, Chef Maureen Cubbon and her amateur chef, Tha Dude Feev, won the crown.
The rum challenge rounded off the night’s competitions with 12 of Cayman’s best mixologists going head to head during four preliminary rounds to earn their spot in the final heat. Dan Hollis, Cory Scruggs and Little Cayman’s Rafe Shaik competed in the final round with Scruggs taking home first place.
“At the end of the day, I believe it was our attendees who ultimately won the night,” Taste of Cayman chair Julie Allan said. “They got to sample so many delicious dishes; enjoy the very best of Caymanian culture and danced the night away.”