The Chefs - Jamaica Food & Drink Festival
166
page-template,page-template-full_width,page-template-full_width-php,page,page-id-166,page-parent,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,qode_grid_1300,footer_responsive_adv,hide_top_bar_on_mobile_header,qode-content-sidebar-responsive,qode-theme-ver-10.0,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.4.5,vc_responsive
 

The Chefs

DALE DELISSER
Dale Delisser

This meat-loving, backyard-barbequing foodie proved his grill skills when he beat classically trained chefs in the first ever ‘Top Hog’ competition. Can he regain the title this year…?

CHRIS NAKASH
Chris Nakash

Who’s been to the American Royal in Kansas City, dubbed, the ‘world series of BBQ’ and walked away as Champion? Chris has! It’s safe to say he’ll up the ante for Pork Palooza’s ‘Top Hog’.

ANDRE
Andre Sewell

Cue curiosity and a longing for new flavours. Enter stage left, a graphic and tech pro with a God-given talent in the kitchen. Chef Sewell’s audience of thousands of social media followers today are watching him make his moves in the industry with the growing success of his 218 Gourmet catering company.

THEO
Theo Smith

Don’t let the baby face fool you! He owns his own catering company and has a number of accolades under his apron including the Golden Spoon for “Best Use of Pork” at the Taste of Jamaica Culinary Competition in 2012. Sounds like the “Top Hog”?

OPA
OPA!

Born in Greece, Alexx has made a home in Jamaica, having opened OPA! Greek Restaurant, which grabs the attention of curious Jamaicans who wish to explore Greek cuisine. Alexx walked away with “Best New Caterer” at the 2015 Food Awards.

JACQUI
Jacqui Tyson

Classically trained in Switzerland, Jacqui has established a solid repute in the industry for the past 20 years as a celebrated chef, top food consultant and a food stylist with a lavish eye for tablescape! Oh… Jacqui’s signature dish… mango glazed pigs tail is to die for!

CHARISSA
Charissa Henry

After graduating with a Degree in Culinary Arts & Food Service Management from Johnson & Wales, the girl with the pink apron has been making waves in the Jamaican food arena for the past 3 years with her modern take Mexican, Asian and Jamaican fusions.

Michelle-Williams
Michelle Williams

It was during her student years at the University of Technology that Michele realized that she really wanted a career in the culinary arts. Upon her return to Jamaica, Williams honed her culinary skills working alongside Trinidadian Chef Chad at the renowned Shrimp Cocktail. Williams loves the challenge of using fruit and vegetable ingredients that most of us tend to discard such as the cauliflower stalks, in new and unique ways. For more than 10 years, Michele Williams’ company, Moveable Feast Caterers, has offered the finest catering services in Jamaica planning uniquely inspired menus for all types of occasions.

DIONNE
Smoked Marlin

Having worked in kitchens since 16, this Hospitality Tourism graduate is half the father-daughter duo behind the Hopewell Hanover rustic seaside eatery. Think home-cooked comfort food with a cosmopolitan flair and gourmet-style presentation.

Kerry-Lyn
Patsy Lyn Caterers

Cooking is in Kerry-Ann’s DNA. As a child she’d watch her father and aunt cook and it was then that she determined she would one day become the owner of Patsy Lyn Caterers. She pursued a baking and culinary arts degree at George Brown College in Toronto, Ontario and gained restaurant experience. Fast-forward to today, Kerry-Ann is now a proud co-owner of PLC.

SIMON
Simon Levy

Friends, fire, food and Friday nights turned into catering and grilling competitions, which led to the birth of Roast, a one man brand providing artisan meats to foodies at intimate dinners, music festivals and everywhere in between.

DOMINIC
Dominic Pearson

This proud Montegonian strayed to Kingston in 2005 and started cooking purely for survival using only a microwave. Countless hours of Food Network later he tried his hand at BBQ. The purchase of a Weber grill and gift of a Bobby Flay cookbook lead to an obsession with preparing robust, delicious BBQ fare. Dom’s home is now a Sunday staple for friends and family be it for his signature ribs, rustic handmade pizza or a new culinary adventure.

CHRISTIAN
Christian Sweeney

A love affair with food that started from age nine led Christian to obtain his Bachelor’s in Culinary Management at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale. Having consulted and catered for events since 2003, Christian decided to open Fuzion Food Service in 2010. Today his name is among only the best in the industry, specifically known to fuse the mostly oddly paired foods into pure gastronomic bliss.

CHRISTINA
Christina Simonitsch

Having spent her childhood in the Half Moon famed kitchen tailing her father, Christina was only 14 when she headed to Villa Blanka Hotel College in Austria. Now back in Jamaica, she’s created her company Simo’s Bread & Catering, focusing on speciality breads and pastries.

COLLIN
Colin Hylton

One of Jamaica’s most sought-after consultancy chefs and founder of the once widely popular Guilt Trip restaurant, Colin’s been brining creative and ambrosial feasts to persons in Jamaica for 30 years. His passion for food? Level: He has a dining room in his bedroom.

SORA
Sora Japanese Cuisine

Since a lad, owner Hiromasa ‘Peavey’ Takahashi has been fascinated with the art of cooking and it’s safe to say he perfected his art at former Hilton Hotel in Kingston as a Japanese chef. W With head chef Koichi Matsumoto, Sora woos foodies with delectable handmade oriental foods while fusing Jamaican cuisines.

 

Mahek-Chatani
Nirvanna Indian Fusion Cuisine

Complemented by an aesthetic balance of ethnic and contemporary Moroccan design accenting a rich Indian palace ambience, the food is guaranteed to intensify your rousing Indian culinary experience with sweet and savoury pan Asian fusions.

MYSTIC
Mystic Thai

Traditional Eastern pan-Asian cuisines influence the Jamaican west, and so this Mobay hot spot blends Thai, Chinese and Indian into one palatable symphony of sweet and sour, bitter and salty, fused delicacy, and is determined to win over Kingston with its first time at JFDF.

tamarind
Tamarind Continental Cuisine

This cozy Kingston retreat offers a fusion of culture and palates with vibrant colours and opulent aromas, serving a seriously wide selection of foods from Asia and Europe, entangled in Indian spices.

RAINFOREST
Evrol Ebanks

Executive Chef for Rainforest Seafoods, Evrol has extensive experience in the hospitality industry and is passionate about transform the way Jamaicans view seafood by elevating expectations and palettes.

RAINFOREST
Rainforest Sushi

 

 

LORRAINE
Lorraine Fung

A well-respected name in the industry for over 30 years catering for Prime Ministers, Governor Generals, Diplomatic Corps, party-goers, and at countless private and charity events. Lorraine has certainly earned her 4 time “Caterer of the Year” award by the Jamaica Food Awards.

DEBE
Débè-Ann Lange-Chen

A Trini with an affinity for Jamaica, Debe leaves footprints in food industries country to country. When not creating menus of 7-course wine pairings, she’s masterminding recipes for international clients like Kraft. Débè is happiest when catering for crowds of 3,000 and more. She won Caterer of the year in 2012-13 at the yearly Food Awards, and won best food and best bite at Chefs on Show 2018, which is a feather in her cap as the islands top chefs cooked and judged this event.

Dylan-Benoit
Dylan Benoit

Chef Dylan is a driven by three things – food, travel and creating. This content strategist specializes in food, beverage and travel related articles, recipes and stories. Based in the Cayman Islands, Chef Benoit has spent the last decade traveling the world increasing my repertoire and expanding my horizons, studying cuisines and cultures from around the globe to bring dynamic solutions to you and your business. His food & travel writing has appeared in publications such as FLAVA Magazine, Swanky Retreats Magazine, Caribbean Living Magazine, Good Taste Magazine, FIND.EAT.DRINK.com and The Cayman Compass.

 

Michelle-Williams
Michelle Williams

It was during her student years at the University of Technology that Michele realized that she really wanted a career in the culinary arts. Upon her return to Jamaica, Williams honed her culinary skills working alongside Trinidadian Chef Chad at the renowned Shrimp Cocktail. Williams loves the challenge of using fruit and vegetable ingredients that most of us tend to discard such as the cauliflower stalks, in new and unique ways. For more than 10 years, Michele Williams’ company, Moveable Feast Caterers, has offered the finest catering services in Jamaica planning uniquely inspired menus for all types of occasions.

ALLISON
Allison Smalling

This foodie turned homegrown chef turned cuisine artist by virtue of a classic combination of raw talent, practicing her craft for family and friends. A newbie in the industry, Alli has been making waves with her modern twists on traditional favourites.

 

Michelle Smith

Chocolatier Michelle Smith knows just how to satisfy your sweet tooth with her chocolate covered treats that ooze all sorts of sweet goodness. Leaving dessert for the end of the night may just prove to be nonsense as you indulge in your chocolate dreams.

 

 

SIMON
Simon Levy

Friends, fire, food and Friday nights turned into catering and grilling competitions, which led to the birth of Roast, a one man brand providing artisan meats to foodies at intimate dinners, music festivals and everywhere in between.

HALEEM CARD
Haleem Card

Die hard pork lover. Un-classically trained by the Food Network. Rebellious millennial whose curiosity and adventure boldly blossom through his food, earning him due credit to stand alongside the best in the biz.

ANNA-KAY
Anna Kay Tomlinson

Affectionately known as “Miss T”, Anna-Kay fulfilled her dream when she opened doors to her restaurant Miss T’s Kitchen in 2009 and she’s been bringing fine Jamaican country cooking to folks for years ever since.

FROMAGE
Fromage Gourmet Market/Brasserie

Europe meets Jamaica. A fusion of both cuisines and cultured ambiance. Think wines around the world, gourmet food with a twist of local fare. Handcrafted food and locally sourced ingredients made with lots of love.

Akafe-Lindsay
Akai Lindsay

Dubbed “one to watch” in 2017 by the Jamaica Observer, 21 year old professional chef Akai Lindsay has been making a name for himself as an extraordinary talent in the Culinary world offering delectable delights for small and corporate events. Graduate of the Culinary Institute of America Chef Lindsay offers aesthetically pleasing, palate stimulating culinary creations that surpass the expectations of his clients; challenging himself and raising the bar with each project he completes.

Amanda Mccreath
Amanda McCreath

Architect-turned-chef is not something you hear every day. Hailing from Kingston, after graduating from University, the Miss Jamaica World 2013 2nd Runner-Up, hung up her sash, and turned to the kitchen. While Pinterest and the Food Network fuelled her interest, Amanda cites an easy bake oven she received as a child, as the initial gateway into the wonderful world of food. The self-trained culinary artist started Gourmet Jamaica in 2014. Known for a whipping up a wide variety of vegan dishes and her signature Plantain Tarts, Amanda prides herself in using fresh ingredients and keeping her recipes natural which she says “goes an extra mile to really make the dishes pop.”

Sara-Mair-Small
Sara Mair-Doak

Chef Sara started her culinary career at Johnson and Wales where she worked for James Beard Award winning chef Mark Millitello of “Mark’s Place”. She then moved on as a Sous Chef at two hip South Beach restaurants, “Tantra” and “The Strand” before moving on to “55 The Restaurant.” It was after in Miami where she became the Chef De Cuisine at world renowned restaurant, Ortanique On The Mile. After almost a year on a dairy farm producing cheese, she was offered a position on Bravo’s Top Chef which she accepted and placed in the top five. Back in Jamaica she started a consultancy business, “Cooking n Tings”, and has revamped many restaurants on the including Jack Sprat and John Crows.

DAWN
Dawn Mitchell

Dawn has had a self-proclaimed love affair with dessert for over a decade now. Having studied at the French Culinary Institute New York and interned with Ron Ben Isreal, Dawn is back in Jamaica today as one of the most sought-after dessert chefs.

Dennis McIntosh
Dennis McIntosh

Hats off to this multi-award winning gourmet master, who chooses to actively advance the Jamaican gastronomic sphere through education and industry building as Chairman of the Culinary Federation of Jamaica.

SHEA
Shea Stewart

His “Bachelor Chef Cookout” fans will testify that this Kingstonian simply does. food. well. Ensuring an ambiance that only intensifies his clients’ dining experience – now that’s just part of his MO.

OJI
Oji Jaja

When the modern foodie raises a challenge for new and exciting, Jamaican but International… Oji accepts and performs, perfecting daring modern fusions. Think BBQ Jerk Tofu, Almond Crusted Snapper Filet and Scotch Bonnet Pumpkin Ragout.

 

broken plate damian
Broken Plate

A culinary enthusiast who appreciates all that culinary has to offer. Chef Stewart an Utech grad with
more than 6 years in the Hospitality industry both here and in the States decided it was time to add
his love and passion of culinary to open his restaurant Broken Plate. Broken Plate is a melting pot of
different international cuisines with a Jamaican flavour. He is the firm believer of ‘tantalizing the
palate with food and love’

 

STUSH
Stush in the Bush

From farm to table, Lisa & Chris offer an unforgettable dining experience using fresh local produce straight from their farm. Homemade sauces, pestos, butters and preservatives on their fiyah grilled pizzas with ripe plantain, roasted eggplant… now that’s vegan heaven!

 

CHRISTIAN
Christian Sweeney

A love affair with food that started from age nine led Christian to obtain his Bachelor’s in Culinary Management at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale. Having consulted and catered for events since 2003, Christian decided to open Fuzion Food Service in 2010. Today his name is among only the best in the industry, specifically known to fuse the mostly oddly paired foods into pure gastronomic bliss.

GEORGE-Matthews
George Matthews

Chef Matthews pursued his dream at the Runaway Bay Heart Academy and the Culinary Institute of America where he got certified as an Executive Chef Pro Chef Level 3. After returning to Jamaica he landed his dream job as a personal chef to the United States Ambassador to Jamaica in 2007.

 

He was awarded the ‘US Ambassador’s Award’ for outstanding contribution as a personal chef to the US Ambassador in 2013 & 2016 and received a letter of appreciation for menu creativity & execution from the Chaine Des Rotisseurs Jamaica. Since, his brand Jam Chef provides culinary services to the likes of ‘Shaggy and Friends’, and the Tryall Foundation. Chef George is currently the Group Executive Chef at Gore Villas.

MARK
Mark Cole

The Jamaica Pegasus Executive Chef has created pure culinary divineness for President Barack Obama, Prince Harry and Princess Anne. But can he thrill you? He dares to delight at Picante.

Johnoi-Cliff
The Cliffs

Chef Reid began his culinary journey at Jamaican favourites like the “Fish Place” and “Norma’s on the Terrace”. After meeting Norma’s son Delius Shirley and his partner Chef Cindy Hutson in 2005, he earned a position in their restaurant in Grand Cayman where he spent 6 years. His proudest moment involved cooking at the famed James Beard House in New York City along with Chef Cindy and many other international Chefs. Chef Reid returned to Jamaica in 2015 where he is currently an exquisite Chef de Cuisine at the Zest Restaurant at The Cliff Hotel and Spa Resort. During his tenure at the Zest Restaurant, they have been awarded by Trip Advisor as the number one restaurant in Negril.

REBECCA
Rebecca Karram

Raised in a Lebanese household, Rebecca was always surrounded by excellent cooks and delicious food. After graduating with a Culinary Arts & Food Service Management Degree from Johnson & Wales Uni, she’s now one of the rising young bringing global exposure of different flavours to Jamaica.

DYLAN BENOIT

Dylan Benoit is a Canadian born chef who currently resides in the Cayman Islands.

Dylan began his culinary career in 2003 working at a local burger joint cooking fries and flipping burgers at nights and on weekends while he was in high school. He instantly fell in love with the work and the lifestyle, and not long after enrolled in culinary school to dedicate himself to learning the craft.

 

Dylan studied at George Brown College in Toronto, Canada, graduating in 2007. He then joined the opening team of ONE restaurant in the trendy Toronto neighborhood of Yorkville, led by renowned Canadian chef Mark McEwan. There he focused himself and worked up the ranks before moving out to Halifax, Nova Scotia for a few years to gain more experience working with the freshest seafood Canada had to offer. Upon his return to Ontario in 2009 Dylan worked a season in Muskoka, Ontario at a Delta Rocky Crest Resort on the prestigious Lake Joseph and at Touchstone Resort on Lake Muskoka. These few post-secondary years were also speckled with stages at Jamie Kennedy’s Wine Bar, and a brief stint at Chicago’s 3 Michelin Starred Alinea with Chef Grant Achatz.

 

In early 2010 the travel bug bit hard and Dylan went on a 4 month backpacking adventure around South America, eating his way through Colombia, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, Bolivia, Chile and Argentina. At the end of this tour Dylan wasn’t prepared to return to normal life in Canada so he relocated to the Cayman Islands with some previous co-workers to re-open a fine dining establishment known as Osetra Bay.

 

After several excellent years at Osetra Bay, Dylan left in early 2010 to join Market Street Group as their head chef. Over the next 4 years Dylan and the MSG team would take the group from 1 restaurant to 7, each with a different concept, menu and clientele, with Dylan creating all the menus and overseeing all 7 kitchens. These years were dotted with several trips to Asia and Mexico doing research and development for the restaurants.

 

In early 2016 the travel bug returned full force and Dylan parted ways with Market Street Group to enjoy a 10-month trip that would take him to Europe, Australia and ultimately Asia, researching and studying some of his favourite countries and their cuisines.

 

Eventually Dylan was called back to the island in late 2016 to spearhead the opening of a high-end steak house at a new resort. After getting the operation up and running Dylan left to start his own private chef and consulting company called Prime Group in early 2018. Dylan now creates bespoke private and corporate dinners and events in the Cayman Islands and abroad.

 

His food and travel writing has appeared in publications such as FLAVA Magazine, Swanky Retreats Magazine, Caribbean Living Magazine, Good Taste Magazine, FIND.EAT.DRINK.com and The Cayman Compass.

He is very excited to return to Jamaica after many years and participate in this year’s JFDF at Chopstix on October 24th.

SARA MAIR-DOAK

Sara Mair-Doak started her culinary career at Johnson and Wales University and was in the second graduating class. While at school, Sara worked for James Beard Award winning chef Mark Millitello of “Mark’s Place”, she was there for 4 ½ years and worked her way up through the ranks of the kitchen. While at Mark’s Place, Sara befriended co-chef Michelle Bernstein which she later worked with as Michelle’s Sous Chef at two hip South Beach restaurants called “Tantra” and “The Strand”. After four years of working together, Sara and Michelle parted ways and Sara went on to be the Executive Chef of “55 The Restaurant.”

 

Alas, Sara had to make one more move in Miami. She went on to be the Chef De Cuisine at the world renowned restaurant, Ortanique On The Mile. While working with Chef Cindy Hutson at Ortanique, Sara assisted with the opening and maintenance of four other concepts in Washington, DC, Baltimore, Vegas and Destin, Fl.

 

Sara left Chef Cindy after five years to pursue her lifelong dream of making cheese. She spent ten months at Bobo Link Dairy with Jonathon White and learned how to make 100% grass-fed Artisan cow’s milk cheese. Sara eventually took over the day-to-day running of the farm. After leaving Bobo Link Dairy, Sara intended to move home to Jamaica to open her own dairy farm, but it was not meant to be just yet. She was offered a position on Bravo’s Top Chef which she accepted and placed in the top five.

 

Finally, back in Jamaica she started her consultancy business and has opened and revamped many restaurants on the island i.e. Pizza Pazza, Fiction, Jack Sprat, John Crows. She has also partnered with Tanya Taylor to produce “The Local Gourmet” as well as “The All Jamaican Jack Danielle’s Grill Off”.

 

Sara reunited with Chef Cindy Hutson on her new endeavor, to be her Executive Chef of Ortanique at Camana Bay on Grand Cayman. In her limited spare time, Sara was chef/host of her own Jamaican culinary show produced by Mega Mart, “Culinary Journey’s with Chef Sara Mair” that is televised locally each week.
Sara parted ways with Cindy once again to open her consulting company “Cooking n Tings” and has opened her first concept “Smokies BBQ Smoked House“, located at AL Thompsons in Grand Cayman.

18275262_775755685922098_1906277547149103946_n
Patrick Simpson-Large

PATRICK SIMPSON

Hailing from the parish of St. Ann, Chef Patrick, as he is affectionately known, pushes the boundaries in the kitchen with masterpieces inspired by Caribbean spices, Southern cooking and American flair.

 

Having been in the Kitchen from the age of ten, he has enjoyed a prestigious career, from serving on the Royal Caribbean and Disney Cruise Lines, serving as Celebrity Chef for Jamie Foxx, Taye Diggs, Bill & Hillary Clinton to being an Executive Chef at a number of prestigious restaurants in New York City, including  the B.B. King Blues Club & Grill. He is now establishing the Simpson Culinary Institute to give back to those from his hometown who want to pursue a similar career path.

Top BUY TICKETS HERE