September 27, 2022

Cayman Islands: Around the World with Ladyfingers Catering

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By Tonya Abeln From The Voice-Tribune

While it is true that we were enjoying unseasonably warm weather through most of January, the executive staff from Ladyfingers Catering fled to the even warmer temps of the Cayman Islands all in the name of continuing education. Owner Deborah Lowery explains, “About 15 years ago, I started to plan one culinary trip a year for my staff within the United States. Now, we pride ourselves on being well-versed when it comes to multi-ethnic cuisine, so it made sense to expand our travel internationally.”

Plus, she says, it is a nice way to reward the hard-working executive staff of Ladyfingers, a complete catering service that can plan, design and execute any request from a gourmet box lunch delivery to a black-tie reception or even an outdoor cookout. Lowery says it is important to stay updated on the latest food, product and presentation trends in order to maximize their offerings and services, and so she looks to travel opportunities as a fun way to do just that. “This March,” she explains, “we are attending the International Restaurant and Food Show in Manhattan. There will be every vendor you could ever imagine in this industry.”

The staff from Ladyfingers have traveled together to trade shows in Las Vegas. They’ve taken cooking classes in Hell’s Kitchen as well as Cajun cooking classes in New Orleans. “We take cooking classes everywhere we go,” Lowery explains, “but when it comes to preparing international cuisine, I think it is important to actually travel to these places.”

During January 12 through the 16, Lowery, along with Executive Chef Danilo Criollo, Marketing Director Donna Brown, Garmage Chef Robert Brooks, Wedding and Event Coordinator Laura Rich and Bar and Beverage Manager Jason Spencer, attended the Ninth Annual Cayman Cookout, hosted by Food Network’s Eric Ripert and sponsored by “Food & Wine” Magazine. The event featured top chefs from around the world including Anthony Bourdain, Emeril Lagasse, Jose Andres, Terrance Brennan, Daniel Humm, Tim Love, Roland Passot and Christina Tosi. Their island adventure started with an Around the World lunch event on Friday followed by a dinner on the beach at Royal Palms Barefoot BBQ. On Saturday, the group drove to Rum Point and enjoyed a Beach Bash lunch by Moet Chandon champagne. If that doesn’t sound dreamy enough, each event was paired with wine or tequila tastings. Not a bad way to stay educated in your field of expertise!

The Cayman Islands are considered the “Culinary Capital of the Caribbean,” with the cuisines as diverse and eclectic as the residents themselves. Consisting of only a modest 101 square miles, the Islands are home to over 200 restaurants making it the ultimate culinary trip.

“Each trip we take is always an entirely different experience,” Lowery shares. “One up-and-coming trend that we noticed while in the Cayman Islands is that people are starting to prefer individual servings. For example, instead of a slice of cake, you would have 20 options of individual bite-sized servings. It allows the customer to have much more variety than just serving themselves a helping in a large chafing dish.”

Upon their return from the Cayman Islands, Lowery says she received a Request for Proposal specifically for an “around the world” theme presented in small individual plates and glasses. It sounds like Ladyfingers Catering will be uniquely qualified for that client. VT

IMAGE:  Courtesy photograph

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