Representatives from 13 countries
took part in the master lectures, presentations,
tastings, combination proposals and cocktail and
cookery contests during the event, organized by the
Ministry of Tourism, the Palmares Business Group and
the Professional training for Tourism System (FORMATUR).
Innovations in this edition of the
Festival included the participation for the first
time of private restaurants in Matanzas province,
with a presence expected to increase next year,
given the current boom of gastronomy within the self-employed
The Cuban Gourmet competition
demonstrated the strength of national cuisine in the
daring and skill of its chefs, recognized by
specialists from the Culinary Association of the
Republic of Cuba, international chefs, sommeliers
and professors at the Hotel Services and Tourism
School in Varadero.
The Gaviota Group won first prize in
the Gourmet contest, for presentation and excellence
of service. The Salsa Suárez private restaurant in
Varadero took second prize, with ideal menu
combinations. Third prize went to the Gran Caribe
Hotel Chain, for its members’ refined sense of style
In the Fusion Cuisine category, the
first prize went to the Don Qko private restaurant
in Cárdenas for creativity and the exquisite
combination of its dishes, accompanied by perfect
No less outstanding was the Palco
Group presentation, which won it second prize in a
first participation in the event, for the harmonious
combination of traditional national dishes and
contemporary trends. Third place went to the
Palmares Group, for its perfect inclusion of cigars
and drinks at different points of its cuisine, with
an interesting sensorial impact.
The Con sabor a mujer
cocktail competition, a Matanzas women’s event,
demonstrated the recent expansion of their
incorporation into bar work.
During the closing session of the
Festival, Liubersy Pérez, vice president of
Palmares, noted how the gourmet concept is expanding
and diversifying at the global level, "a fertile
consequence of renewed sensorial impacts, as well as
the exaltation of the origins, authenticity and
socio-cultural attributes of the products obtained."
She explained, "All of this is
strongly accompanied by ecological concepts,
benefits to health and economic and environmental
The 6th festival, once again at
Plaza América in Varadero, April 9-11, 2014, is to
be based around business executives and specialists
in national and foreign food and drinks.
Varadero, located on the northern
coast of the western province of Matanzas, is Cuba’s
most important beach resort.
Menu dishes which won the Palco
Group second prize in the Fusion Cuisine category:
Principal dish: Lobster with
creamed potatoes and Serrano
starter: Chicken salad
in an avocado and cream
starter: Black beans with
foie gras and glazed mango.