Jamaica Food and Drink Festival kicks off on November 2
The 9th annual Jamaica Food and Drink Festival (JFDF), presented by VISA, is set to kick off on November 2, with its signature event, Pork Palooza. This extravaganza will feature delectable Copperwood Pork creations from 17 esteemed chefs, including favourites such as Theo Smith from Great House Caterers, Pink Apron, Haleem Card, and Andre Sewell. To complement the all-inclusive event, Absolut Vodka and Worthy Park will be crafting cocktails throughout the night, accompanied by live entertainment.
On Friday, November 3, the excitement continues with Picante. The event showcases renowned chefs, including two-time Michelin Bib Gourmand awardee Chef Cesar Zapata and Ani Meinhold from Phuc Yea in Miami, Florida. Meinhold will lead live mixology demonstrations while Zapata shares a popular dish from Phuc Yea’s menu, Masitas, inspired by the Haitian Griot and Cuban Masitas de Puerco.
The culinary line-up also features the return of Chef Wenford Simpson, representing Walkerswood with his famous fyah shrimp. Picante highlights local talents, including Brian Lumley, a newcomer to JFDF, alongside all-star chefs like Gariel Ferguson, Executive Chef Mark Cole from The Jamaica Pegasus hotel, and Chef Garfield Jr.
And, after a three-year hiatus, festival favourite returns to this year’s line-up. The family-oriented Meet Street and The Market is back at its new home, the Historic Naval Dockyard in Port Royal, in partnership with the Port Authority of Jamaica.
Patrons will experience over 50 vendors, including food trucks, restaurants and mixologists, and explore the Emporium, powered by the Tourism Enhancement Fund which showcases several artisans and coffee seminars. Tours of Port Royal will also be offered to learn more about the rich history.
To add to this, National Baking Company returns with their Kids’ Zone, with many engaging activities, including live entertainment. There’s also the option to park and ride with JUTC, from UWI, Portmore and Half-Way Tree.
The festival ends with a premium brunch in the scenic St Andrew hills, featuring renowned chefs like Lisa and Chris Binns, Oji Jaja, Trevanne Donegal, Simon Levy, and Nadine Burie, with wines and bubbly being poured by Select Brands.