Director of Premier Events Services Inc. Jerry Ishmael, producers of Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival chats with?? [from L-R] Director of Marketing and Sales at the Barbados Tourism Authority (BTA), Averil Byer, President of the BTA, David M. Rice,?? Vice President?? of American Express Travel, Eric Davis and Vice President of the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association,?? Sue Springer following the press conference to launch the newest festival??on the tourism calendar, Barbabdos Food & Wine and Rum Festival.??????

A new festival has been added to this island’s tourism calendar of events. It is the Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival which will be staged here from November 19 to 22.??

Spearheaded by the Barbados Tourism Authority (BTA), it is a partnership that includes Travel + Leisure, Food & Wine, Departures and Executive Travel magazines.

President and Chief Executive Officer of the BTA, David M. Rice, in addressing the launch ceremony for the festival, made the point that it would not be a "one-off event" but rather "an opportunity to showcase Barbados not only from culinary aspect but the aesthetic side".

"The Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival provides an ideal platform to showcase our island’s gastronomic excellence," Mr. Rice said, acknowledging that there was tremendous interest in this endevour.

The tourism official explained that it was being staged towards the latter part of the year where the volume of business was not as high as in other months. ??He conservatively forecasted arrivals for the first year to range from 300 to 350 visitors, who "might not have come to Barbados".

Commending the partnership, he further stated: "We are honoured to partner with American Express Publishing and to welcome some of the industry’s leading chefs and wine experts to our beautiful island to participate in this world-class culinary event."

Meanwhile, producer of the festival, Premier Event Services Inc. has promised "four days of world-class events that will attract both tourists and locals." Director, Jerome Ishmael, said the epicurean festival would bring together "the very best of food, wine, rum and culture".??

He declared: "Some of the greatest chefs, wine and rum experts will join with the island’s best artistes, to share their talents and to create what is certain to be an unforgettable and rewarding culinary experience."

According to him, international culinary masters Tom Colicchio, a celebrity chef and head judge on Bravo’s hit reality cooking series "Top Chef", will be joined by culinary superstars Marcus Samuelsson, Ming Tsai, Fergus Henderson and Tim Love, to provide first-hand cooking demonstrations to visitors and locals. They will also pair with local Barbadian culinary talent to bring collective expertise to the masses through chef demonstrations, tasting events and interactive sessions to be held at venues such as the Hilton Lighthouse Terrace, Wispers on the Bay, Second Street, Holetown, George Washington House, Mount Gay Visitors Centre and Lion Castle Polo Estate.

Wine seminars are also on the schedule, and will be curated by Ray Isle, FOOD & WINE wine editor and wine expert Anthony Giglio.

As host island, Barbados, which is considered the culinary capital of the Caribbean, lends a backdrop of being the only Caribbean island to be Zagat-rated, providing an ideal epicurean stop for the coveted Food & Wine Festival which will be hosted by Travel + Leisure magazine’s Features Editor Niloufar Motamed.

For further information on the festival and travel packages, locals and visitors may contact the BTA at 427-2623, or by visiting Joyann Gill (JG) –

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