It might not be "Taste of Cayman," but a culinary event this month will offer a true taste of Cayman.
On 13 March, the Cayman Islands Tourism Association will host "Seaspice," an all-inclusive fine-dining experience on the Beach Deck at Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa. The evening features cuisine from 11 local restaurants, wines, top-shelf spirits and live music by Swanky Kitchen Band.
Seaspice is the brainchild of restaurateur Markus Mueri of Abacus and Deckers. The idea for the event was sparked after he attended Feed Our Future’s annual Island Roast.
“It was the best fundraiser I attended in 2020,” Mueri said. “You pay one price for food, dancing and drinks, and you don’t have to wait for anything."
That initial inspiration opened conversations with the Cayman Islands Tourism Association to create an all-inclusive, high-end tasting event that, in lieu of the postponed Taste of Cayman, would showcase the range of restaurants on Grand Cayman.
“For me it was important to include restaurants of different flavours, so we have some stewed conch in there, fish tea, jerk, but also fancier fare," said Mueri. "We have a mix of different restaurants, some of which never typically make it into the higher-end culinary events on island.” Those who enjoy a drink or two with dinner won’t be disappointed. Alongside a main bar of speciality top-shelf liquor, there will also be a feature wine bar and a dessert cocktail bar.
Wanting to include a fundraising element, Mueri decided to incorporate a raffle prize. A $25 raffle ticket gives purchasers the chance to win a round-trip flight for six to Cayman Brac on a private luxury helicopter to enjoy lunch at Le Soleil d’Or. It is not necessary to attend Seaspice to purchase a raffle ticket.
Proceeds from the raffle will be donated to Acts of Random Kindness and Feed Our Future.
Cayman Islands Tourism Association Director Jay Ehrhart said the event aims to support restaurants grappling with the impacted tourism industry. CITA is paying all participating vendors for food costs, and hopes the festival will introduce residents to neighbourhood dining establishments they might not have tried.
“Cayman has a fantastic food scene; it is the reason we are the Culinary Capital of the Caribbean,” he said. “But it seems we fall into a rut of going only to the same restaurants week in and week out. We sometimes forget that there is another great restaurant just down the road that serves amazing food as well. The food served at Seaspice will give people the chance to choose a new favourite restaurant, and I think they might walk away with more than one.”
In addition to Kimpton Seafire, another key sponsor of the event is Provenance Properties Cayman Islands, the official Christie's International Real Estate affiliate in the Cayman Islands. In keeping with the brokerage’s focus on luxury real estate and excellent client service, the team of sales specialists will welcome Seaspice’s guests on the night with a smile and a glass of bubbles in their elegant champagne bar and lounge.
“We are delighted to support an event that shines the spotlight on Cayman’s world-class chefs and restaurateurs,” said Provenance Properties’ Sue Nickason. “Cayman is known for its food scene and events such as Seaspice give everyone a chance to experience the wide variety of excellent cuisine available to all who live and visit here, while also supporting the worthwhile work of non-profit organisations Acts of Random Kindness and Feed Our Future, who work so tirelessly to feed as many as possible in our community.”
The long-term vision is for Seaspice to continue in 2022 with rotating outlets and a commitment to supporting local restaurants.
“If it becomes an annual event, I will be super proud,” Mueri said.
Event or raffle tickets for Seaspice can be purchased online at https://eventpro.ky/seaspice.
This article will also appear in the March 2021 print edition of Camana Bay Times, with the headline "A high-end Taste of Cayman."