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BHTA focus on culinary tourism


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BHTA focus on culinary tourism

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The Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) is courting a new niche market in culinary tourism.Assistant executive vice president Michelle Smith-Mayers said yesterday the island was recognised as the culinary capital of the Caribbean, and was looking to its young culinary professionals to drive its thrust in this area of tourism.Smith-Mayers was speaking at the Sandy Lane Hotel where Barbados’ culinary team for this year’s Taste Of The Caribbean food and drink festival was undergoing training for the September 9-12 competition in Puerto Rico.Barbados is fielding the youngest ever team in the competition staged by the Caribbean Hotel Association, and Smith-Mayers disclosed that in a departure from past years, the members of this year’s team were selected from winners in the NIFCA Culinary Arts Competition.She told the Press conference: “We try to use this process to develop our young people in Barbados who are the future of our culinary industry. “The Barbados culinary team is very important in moving Barbados towards being able to tap into the niche market possibilities of epicurean and culinary tourism.”The team is currently undergoing five weeks of intensive training and preparation, including three public gourmet evenings. The first is a gourmet dinner at the Grill, Barbados Hilton, on August 20; the second a gourmet lunch at the Cassia Room, Sandy Lane Hotel, and the third a gourmet dinner at the Upper Level Spa, Sandy Lane.The BHTA assistant executive vice president said Barbados boasted of a large number of restaurants with all different sorts of cuisine, and a rich and diverse culinary heritage. The Taste Of The Caribbean team is being trained by past culinary team members, expatriate chefs and veterans like Peter Edey and Graham Licorish.Preparing for Puerto Rico are chefs Mitchell Husbands (Coral Reef Club) – team leader; Andre Nurse (Hilton Barbados) – commis chef; Wilwore Jordan (Sandy Lane Hotel) – chef de partie; Thaddeus Sealy (Coral Reef Club) – chef; Henderson Butcher – team manager; Creig Greenidge – assistant team manager and Queen’s College student Stephanie Sayers – apprentice chef. The pastry chefs are Janelle Crawford (Almond Casuarina) and Ezra Beckles, Harold Harper (Fairmont Royal Pavilion) and Andre Tull (Sandy Lane). (GC)

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