W

ho remembers the early beginnings of Taste of Cayman? Restaurant stalls were set up in a quadrangle in a field and vendors dressed in the theme of their booth.

Taste of Cayman TicketsAttendees would line up with their plates then find a place to sit down and enjoy the fruits of others’ labors.

It was a humble start, fueled by enthusiasm from the Cayman Islands Restaurant Association and the quest to create award-winning chili. The Chili Cook-Off was always a big highlight of the event – spoonfuls of fiery magnificence created from beloved secret recipes.

Now, in its 31st year, Taste of Cayman has evolved into a huge festival that requires a much larger area to accommodate more than 45 participating restaurants, bars, stages, chairs and tables. On Jan. 26 at 5 p.m., the Festival Green at Camana Bay will once again open its gates to thousands of food lovers eager to get their Taste on.

The stats are pretty impressive: last year there were more than 5,000 people in attendance and over 18,000 portions of food served. The key is to get there early.

The 2019 festival promises to be bigger and better than ever before, celebrating Caymanian traditions and a rich culinary heritage through heavy cake and mixology competitions, plus some exciting new features that guests will discover on the day.

There will be everything from ice cream to cocktails and street food to gourmet masterpieces. You can feed your taste buds and olfactory senses in the early evening, then settle in for a night of live music on the main stage.

Before the show starts, there is a spectacular firework display that lights up the sky. Every seat in the house is a great one – you won’t miss them, no matter where you are on-site.

Over the past few years, local and international bands have kept the party going until 11:45 p.m. Tribute acts channeling artists such as Paul McCartney, Madonna, The Bee Gees, Steve Perry, David Bowie and Cher encourage the audience to sing along to familiar hits. The music appeals to all ages and is the perfect end to a day full of activities. Who will be performing this year? Listen for announcements closer to the start date.