Shaking up the Taste of Cayman 2017 Mixology Competition
Things are being shaken up at this year’s ‘Seven Fathoms Cayman Rum Challenge’, taking place at the 29th annual Taste of Cayman Food & Drink Festival, with the addition of some international competition.
Three U.S. mixologists each won preliminary rounds held in New York, Chicago and Miami, and will compete against some of Cayman’s finest in the annual challenge at Taste of Cayman, which takes place Saturday, 28 January 2017 at the Festival Green, Camana Bay. The winner of the final will be crowned ‘Seven Fathoms Mixologist of the Year’.
The International rounds of the annual mixology competition were hosted by the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism in partnership with the Cayman Islands Tourism Association, Cayman Spirits, Cayman Airways and Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa, and provided guests in the host cities with a taste of Caymanian culture and an insight into the Cayman Islands vibrant restaurant and bar scene.
This year will be the first time that international contestants have been invited to participate in the mixology contest.
“As one of the aims of Taste of Cayman is to help promote the wide variety of CITA member restaurants and bars, we are so excited to welcome these three talented mixologists to Cayman, not only to compete but to also experience our unique Caymanian offerings and culture,” Tiffany Dixon-Ebanks, Executive Director of the Cayman Islands Tourism Association (CITA) said.
The Taste of Cayman Food & Drink Festival is CITA’s biggest annual fundraiser and one of Cayman’s largest and longest running annual events.
“We are sure Cayman’s own mixologists will rise to the occasion to battle it out in what promises to be a very exciting and entertaining competition,” Miss Tiffany Dixon-Ebanks said.
The three winners that will be travelling to Grand Cayman, courtesy of Cayman Airways, to compete against local mixologists in the Seven Fathoms Cayman Rum Challenge are Sabrina Kudic, Benny Hernandez and Selma Slabiak, who won the Chicago, Miami and New York preliminaries respectively.
Benny Hernandez, mixologist for Area 31 at the Kimpton EPIC Hotel, Miami earned his place with his “East End Swanky,” which was a favourite among the judging panel. Sabrina Kudic, of Bad Hunter, Chicago, impressed judges with her “Overnight” concoction featuring Seven Fathoms Rum. Selma Slabiak, Winner of the 2016 Rum & Rhythm Battle held in New York earlier this year, claimed her place at the festival with her creation of the “Loa Bird” cocktail.