CHTA Press Release:

Theresa M. Oakes /
Richard Kahn /
Telephone: 516-594-4100

MIAMI, FL (April 16, 2014) – With preparations in full swing for this year’s Taste of the Caribbean, the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) has announced the comprehensive line up of interactive educational sessions and demonstrations that will be offered to hoteliers, restaurateurs and food & beverage professionals attending the Caribbean’s most prominent culinary event. Taste of the Caribbean is set to take place at the Hyatt Regency, Miami, June 28 – July 2, 2014, with general sessions taking place June 29 and two days of workshops, tastings and demonstrations July 1-2.Taste of Caribbean2

“One of the greatest benefits of attending Taste of the Caribbean is the opportunity to work hands-on with culinary experts and get a first-hand look at how the industry is evolving,” said Josef Forstmayr, chairman of CHTA, who oversees the event. “The educational aspect of this CHTA event has become a key tool for chefs and bartenders as well as restaurant managers and staff interested in honing their skills and increasing the success of their businesses,” he added.
Each educational session will be conducted by top culinary professionals from different areas within the industry ready to reveal the latest food and beverage trends and marketing strategies designed to improve culinary presentation and boost profitability.

Attendees will learn “what’s hot” (and not) in food and beverage trends at the Is Your Menu Keeping Up With Consumer Tastes? general session which focuses on delivering a modern culinary experience. During the Caribbean Influence in American Cuisine general session, panelists will explore how island influences have emerged in kitchens across America and how food and beverage professionals can spread the knowledge and interest in Caribbean cuisine. The general sessions will take place on Sunday, June 29, 2014 at 8:45 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. and 10:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Additional educational sessions and demonstrations offered July 1-2, 2014 include:

  • Cooking With Nutrition In Mind– Nutrition has been gaining momentum and is a top influencing factor in customers’ decisions when selecting a restaurant, bar or hotel. This session will help attendees understand all the components and how to keep offerings relevant.
  • Profit Improvement – This session will introduce the methodologies and tools used to control costs and enhance revenue.
  • Hospitality Information Systems – Understand the software applications designed for the food service industry including database, standardized recipes, inventory management and point of sales systems
  • Menu Planning – Menu planning is the driving force of a food and beverage operation impacting overall operations but is also an important factor in creating the image of the restaurant. Learn how to facilitate a smooth and revenue generating operation.
  • Effective Marketing Strategies For Your Food & Beverage Operations and Services– Find about all the opportunities that you are missing when it comes to selling your products and services.
  • Demo: Raw Cuisine – Foods that have not been heated above 40ºC retain more nutritional value and natural enzymes that are hugely beneficial to the body and its digestive process. Additionally, the elimination of processing ensures that ingredients such as chemicals, preservatives, additives, dyes and other toxins created by cooking are completely avoided in the finished product. Raw foods can be extremely flavorful and nutritious when properly prepared. Technique to be demonstrated: Vegetable lasagna with seed-based paste.
  • Demo: Vegan Baking – Baking without eggs and gluten can create a challenge for chefs; however, avoiding these products should not result in blandness, tastelessness and poor presentation. Alternative binding agents are necessary to mimic the binding action of these ingredients. There are many alternative ingredients available and this session will teach you how to identify and use them to enhance your baking technique and versatility. Technique to be demonstrated: Protein binder substitutions.
  • Demo: Working With Liquid Nitrogen – At a temperature of -321º F, liquid nitrogen will flash freeze any food it touches. As it boils away, it gives off a dense nitrogen fog that can add atmosphere and drama to food preparation.  Techniques to be demonstrated: smores, ice cream and “Puff the Magic Dragon.”

“It is fascinating to see the latest industry trends and techniques on full-display each year at the Taste of the Caribbean,” said Jeff Vasser, director general and CEO of CHTA, adding, “I am confident that culinary professionals who attend the event’s seminars and demonstrations will walk away with increased knowledge of the food and beverage industry and a clearer picture of how they can succeed in today’s marketplace.”

In addition to the seminar portion of the event, attendees will also witness the expertise of talented Caribbean chefs and bartenders in actions as culinary teams from Anguilla, Bahamas, Barbados, Bonaire, Curacao, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, St. Lucia, Suriname and the U.S. Virgin Islands battle for top honors in a variety of competitions including: Caribbean Culinary Team of the YearCaribbean Chef of the YearCaribbean Pastry Chef of the Year, Caribbean Bartender of the Year and Caribbean Junior Chef of the Year. While entertaining, the competitions also serve as a developmental tool, allowing viewers the opportunity to interact with participants and discuss the culinary skills they are observing live.

Taste of the Caribbean also features a unique trade show for event participants which assists in the educational component by providing a one-stop forum for gathering practical information, sampling, purchasing, strengthening supplier relationships and meeting new vendors.

Exhibitors will be able to promote their products and services to delegates by purchasing a tabletop display at Taste of the Caribbean. Tabletop display registration with one delegate is US$750 plus US$175 for each additional delegate.


Full event registration, applicable to hoteliers, government entities and food/beverage professionals attending the entire duration of the event, is US$175 for CHTA members and US$225 for non-members.  The registration fee includes access to all educational sessions, all events on the program including the Awards Dinner and access to the tradeshow.  The competition events are not included and are additional including US$40 for Taste of the Islands and US$50 each for the Competition Lunch and Competition Dinner.  CHTA is also offering two package options for the competition events: US$85 per person for the Competition Lunch and Competition Dinner or US$110 per person for the Competition Lunch, Competition Dinner and Taste of the Islands festival.

CHTA has arranged a group rate of US$139, plus taxes and service charges, (run of house, single or double occupancy) per night, at the Hyatt Regency Miami.  The group rate is available until May 23, 2014 and can be made via the hotel website.

Relive the action from the 2013 event with videos presented by Exposure4 including: Taste of the Caribbean 2013 OverviewJudges’ InterviewsTeam of the YearChef of the Year,Bartender of the YearPastry Chef of the YearJunior Chef of the YearTaste of the Islands.

Follow the competing teams on the Taste Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Taste of the Caribbean is staged by CHTA in conjunction with patron sponsors MasterCard and Interval International along with Team of the Year sponsors AloutteANC and International Dairy and event sponsor Certified Angus Beef.

For details about sponsorship opportunities, contact Gabi Doria Simpson or call (305) 443-3040.

For more information about Taste of the Caribbean visit or contact CHTA at (305) 443-3040.  Follow and


About the CHTA Education Foundation:

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 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 marshaling the resources of the active and allied members to devise solutions. CHTA represents all facets of the hospitality industry with more than 600 member hotels and over 300 allied members.

For more information, visit  Follow CHTA on Facebook