Presented by the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), Miami’s 2019 edition of the Caribbean305, ‘Taste it All’, food and drink festival certainly did not disappoint as foodies and lovers of all things tasty indulged themselves in not only unlimited tapas style dishes crafted by award winning chefs, but also an open bar that featured flavorful cocktails from all over the Caribbean diaspora—including the islands of Bahamas, Barbados, Bonaire, Belize, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Grenada, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Saint Lucia, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago and Turks and Caicos.
What’s more, there was live music and entertainment to fit the occasion, as well as raffles to win giveaways and an Island vacation. In that spirit, It seemed as if Taste It all patrons were island hopping—without needing a passport of course—as they were able to sample the savory delights and cuisines from such a wide swath of islands across the Caribbean Basin.
And all the flashy carnival costumes and regalia were surely befitting in terms of complementing the festive atmosphere inside the Mana Wynwood Convention Center quite nicely, as music grooves which included reggae, soca, salsa, and zouk filled the air. All the while, patrons casually milled around the cooking stations that were on hand from over 16 Caribbean countries. In that regard, Caribbean305 without a doubt highlighted the signature flavors and dishes from each country, and also convened top chefs and Hall of Fame cocktail mixologists to display their expertise and culinary artistry in the Caribbean cooking sphere.
This year was the 3rd installment of Caribbean305, and it indeed lived up to the notion that the islands came to Miami in more ways than one. In other words, where else could you go on June 22, 2019 and skip around from island to island in just a few steps while eating to your heart’s content, enjoy and open cocktail bar, and dance the summer night away to the hottest selections in Caribbean music? I’ll leave you to answer that question on your own! That said, many regards to not only the several cooking awards winners, but just as important to the CHTA and all the sponsors, chefs, mixologists, bartenders, supporting staff, and Caribbean tourism representatives who were on hand to make such a great event possible on an annual basis.
Photography by Nick Ford, who lives and works in South Florida