Representatives of Tourism Trinidad Limited gathered at the Residence, One Woodbrook Place last Monday to extend their good wishes to the 2019 National Culinary Team. The team left Trinidad on Thursday to participate in the Taste of the Caribbean competition carded for tomorrow in Miami.
Led by Captain Jeremy Lovell, the team comprises senior chefs Shonelle Greenidge and Gerard Cox, junior chef Jodi Eversley, pastry chef Keenan Lezama and bartender/mixologist, Isaiah Trumpet—all currently enrolled students at Trinidad and Tobago Hospitality and Tourism Institute (TTHTI).
"This is the first all-student national culinary team that Trinidad has ever sent abroad to the competition," said Brian Frontin, CEO, Trinidad Hotels, Restaurants & Tourism Association (THRTA).
Frontin said the decision to send an all-student team came about when they recognised that over 95 per cent of all former team members had graduated from the TTHTI over the past 20 years.
Frontin said he sees this as a pilot project that will provide the stimulus and justification for Trinidad to host an inter-school regional and international culinary competition—a junior version of the competition next year, and indicated that organisers of Taste of the Caribbean in Miami have already agreed to hold discussions on this proposal.
Frontin added, "Hosting this competition in Trinidad has the ability to positively impact our tourist arrivals, increase destination awareness and presents an amazing opportunity and platform to promote culinary tourism and display our world-class talent."
Camille Campbell, CEO, Tourism Trinidad, pledged her company's support to the team and said, "This is a unique opportunity for these students to showcase their talent on a world stage and demonstrate their discipline, commitment, and culinary skills. Tourism Trinidad is proud to support this initiative and look forward to the country's hosting of the 2020 competition."
A release from Tourism Trinidad stated that over the past eight weeks, the team has been diligently practicing their craft and hosting 'sold out' Monday night dinners at the Residence, One Woodbrook Place, where they have been fine-tuning their skills in preparation for the competition.
"We have the fullest confidence in the team's ability to make us proud and bring home the gold," added Campbell.