Cayman’s cuisine comes to life with some of this season’s tastiest events.
Welcome to the Cayman Islands and the start of a new year. Whilst any time is good to visit our Islands, you are here during a remarkable stint of cool breezes and a calendar filled with awe-inspiring activities.
Cayman has earned the reputation — and rightfully so — as the Culinary Capital of the Caribbean, which we celebrate every January with the Cayman Cookout. Always at the helm of this world-class event is internationally renowned chef Eric Ripert. He hosts a weekend of celebrating all things food and wine at one of the premier resorts on Grand Cayman — the Ritz-Carlton. Other internationally famous chefs, including Anthony Bourdain and Jose Andres, will be joining him for this 10th instalment of the Cookout. If you’re here the weekend of 10-14 January, join us for an incomparable roster of world-famous chefs, wine experts and spirits blenders. You won’t want to miss the tantalising tastings, vivid demonstrations, tours and awesome dinners. I implore you to be a part of what is truly the Caribbean’s prime epicurean event filled with food, fun and fellowship.
Following closely on the heels of Cayman Cookout will be the Cayman Islands Tourism Association’s Taste of Cayman Food and Drink Festival. The venue is Camana Bay and the date for this 30th Taste is 27 January. If you love food and wine, it’s a dream come true. The tickets you buy for this event include tastings from some of Cayman’s top restaurants and chefs, and I assure you it’s not something to be missed. Remember, though, eating small portions at each station will be the key to enabling you to sample all of the great restaurants.
If you can’t make it to our foodie events, don’t worry. Cayman has plenty of top-notch restaurants to choose from.
We also produce some of the best Caribbean food right here on our land and in our seas. You are fortunate that lobster, conch and whelk season is still open. On Saturday mornings you can venture to Market at the Cricket Grounds and find local provisions for cooking up some good farm-to-table Caymanian food. If you have doubts on how to prepare your purchase, just ask your vendor.
You can also find many made-in-Cayman treats at our supermarkets and mom-and-pop shops. And don’t forget to ask some of the locals where you can get good old-fashioned Cayman and Caribbean dishes such as fish tea, jerk chicken, stew beef, escovitch-style fried fish, conch or rum cake.
So whether you are here as a first-time visitor, a returning guest or visiting us for business, we offer you a warm Caymanian welcome. I am glad that you chose to start off your New Year with us. I hope you brought a hearty appetite, because the gastronomic journey in Cayman is absolutely amazing.
Please enjoy your trip and start making plans to come back again.
The Hon. Alden McLaughlin, MBE, JP, MLA
Premier of the Cayman Islands