With high-powered supporters including the Community Foundation of Broward, History Fort Lauderdale, the Greater Fort Lauderdale Visitors and Convention Bureau, and Yellow Cab of Broward, the 3rd annual Taste the Islands Experience (TTIX), became a weekend-long event with a variety of fun and fanciful activities for the discerning food and travel connoisseur. Attendees enjoyed authentic flavors, sights and sounds of the Caribbean, celebrity cooking demos, gourmet bites from a variety of South Florida’s favorite Caribbean restaurants, culinary theater and museum, chef talks, glam and massage studios, an artisan shopping village, live music, DJs and more.
The highlight of Saturday’s main event included culinary demos by Chef Ralph Motta of the U.S. Virgin Islands, Mixologist Marv “Mr Mix” Cunningham of The Bahamas, Cynthia “Chef Thia” Verna of Haiti accompanied by singer J. Perry, Mixologist Philip “Casanova” Antoine, and Hugh “Chef Irie” Sinclair accompanied by singer Julian Marley. Marley also offered a meet-and-greet to adoring fans, while sponsors and special guests received his new album and CBD olive oil samples in their swag bags. The olive oil brand “Juju Royal” was also on hand for sampling and purchase. J. Perry headlined the night, thrilling fans with a set that attendees thoroughly enjoyed, whether they understood the mixed English-Creole lyrics or not.
Guests were able to sample drinks and bites from around the Caribbean region in the “Island Pavilions.” 2019 Island Pavilion host islands included The Bahamas, Jamaica, Barbados and the US Virgin Islands. Culinary offerings included The Bahamas’ “Loaded Mango Tree,” Jamaica’s “Jerk Chicken Soushi Rolls,” Taste the Islands’ “Bacon Wrapped Scallopfongo” presented by Chef Danny Peñalo, Barbados’ “Barbados Allure,” and U. S. Virgin Islands “Sofrito Braised Chicken.”
Guests were also treated to a repeat of 2018’s Caribbean Culinary Museum and Theater, and a new element – the Tasting Tour – which offered an audiovisual presentation of a tour around the islands, accompanied by samples of signature dishes from each island visited along the way. At the end of the evening, Sherrie Brown of sponsoring organization Community Foundation of Broward gave hearty congratulations to the production team for bringing the culinary and performing arts together for such a spectacular staging. #TTIX2019 #TasteTheIslands @ttixevents