KAABOO Cayman Rocks Grand Cayman in February

Cayman in the News 23 October 2018
KAABOO Cayman, the two-day live music and comedy, culinary, and lifestyle experience, just announced the full PALATE chef and restaurant lineup for the inaugural event.

KAABOO Cayman, the two-day live music and comedy, culinary, and lifestyle experience, just announced the full PALATE chef and restaurant lineup for the inaugural event. The culinary programming will take place on the PALATE Stage February 15+16, 2019 in Grand Cayman. The 2019 PALATE chef program will feature Michael Mina (Mina Group; International Smoke, Cal Mare), Richard Blais (Bravo’s Top Chef and San Diegobased Juniper & Ivy), Michelle Bernstein (MBC Michelle Bernstein Catering Company), Nina Compton (Compere Lapin, Bywater American Bistro), Cody Bush & Anthony Lawson (Smokin Bros BBQ), Dylan Benoit (Prime Kitchen), Josef Felts, Maureen Cubbon (BestLife Culinary, Seed2Plate Program), and Thomas Tennant (Michael Schwartz’s Fi’lia, Tomfoodery Kitchen).          

“We are thrilled to be expanding KAABOO to the beautiful island of Grand Cayman this February,” says Jason Felts, Chief Brand + Marketing Officer, KAABOO, “One of the key differentiators of KAABOO is our signature PALATE culinary program. PALATE is thoughtfully curated to combine the very best local fare mixed with some favorites from abroad. This elevated offering aligns nicely with Cayman, which continues to be hailed as the culinary capital of the Caribbean.”       

Headlining Chef Michael Mina is an award-winning culinary great, known for bold dining concepts that have shaped his restaurant empire as world-class epicurean destinations across the country. Mina will be bringing his vision to KAABOO Cayman with participation across the culinary platform, including a presence in PALATE and on the PALATE Stage, and an exclusive AMPLIFY (VIP) experience.           

Richard Blais is a successful chef, restaurateur, James Beard nominated cookbook author and television personality. Perhaps most recognizable as a recurring judge on Bravo’s Top Chef and the winner of Top Chef All-Stars, Blais is currently a partner at the popular San Diego eateries Juniper & Ivy and Crack Shack.  

Chef Michelle Bernstein has dazzled diners and critics alike with her sublime cuisine and a personality as bright and vibrant as the Florida sun. A native of Jewish and Latin descent, her food is inspired by her travels and focuses on amazing ingredients, layered flavors and simplicity.                      

Winner of the James Beard Award for “Best Chef South” in 2018, Nina Compton is the     Chef/Owner of award-winning restaurant Compère Lapin in New Orleans’ Warehouse District. Born and raised in St. Lucia, Nina grew up with the flavors and beauty of the Caribbean which she takes inspiration from at her two New Orleans restaurants.             

Cody Bush and Anthony Lawson, better known as Smokin Bros, have been cooking together for charitable events and competitions for years. As proud Cayman locals, they recently took home the Best Amateur Chef award from the Cayman Cookout judged by top chefs including Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert.                   

Dylan Benoit is a private chef, traveler and writer based in the Cayman Islands. He curates bespoke culinary experiences in Cayman and beyond for guests all over the globe. An avid traveler, Dylan is constantly eating and drinking his way around the world and documenting the adventures for several international publications. Dylan will also be the host of an upcoming show called Fire Masters premiering on Food Network Canada in the spring of 2019.                          

Texas native Josef Felts started his career at home at the young age of 13 cooking for his family and was later the only male in the Culinary Arts High School program. He then trained in Los Angeles where he was mentored by icons such as Chef Raphael Lunette (Jiraffe) and Josiah Citrin (Melisse). He still cooks for “family” and aims to create memories and a feeling of celebration through his food. 

Chef Maureen Cubbon is a passionate food advocate and culinary entrepreneur. She has called the Cayman Islands home for over 18 years and has sparked the “Cayman Style Food Revolution” - a way of empowering people, especially children, to become food conscious, and inspiring everyone to get into their kitchens and cook.              

Chef Thomas Tennant is known for using local ingredients in an approachable manner. After heading the kitchen at Michael Schwartz’s Fi’lia in the SLS Baha Mar, in Nassau, Bahamas, he returns to Cayman with his own company, Tomfoodery Kitchen, a concept centered around local ingredients highlighting Caribbean cuisine with global influences. 

Joining the PALATE lineup are the seafood centric restaurants Guy Harvey's Bar Crudo, Catch, Agua, Capt. Ceviche, and The Wharf, along with Cayman’s fine dining and artisan restaurants Grand Old House and The Brasserie. Agave will be joining the program as well, to bring authentic Mexican flavors to the islands, and Gelato & Co. will have Italian inspired treats for guests to enjoy.  

These chefs will be joining the previously announced music and comedy acts, featuring The Chainsmokers, Duran Duran, Zedd and Jason Derulo, plus comedians Wanda Sykes, David Spade, Jenny Slate, Darrell Hammond and many more.                 

Passes are currently available at www.kaaboocayman.com. THATCH (General Admission) passes are currently $350 US dollars ($280 Cayman dollars), while SILVER THATCH (VIP) passes are currently at $1143.75 US dollars ($915 Cayman dollars). Additional VIP packages including ROYAL PALM $3425 US dollars ($2740 Cayman dollars) and ULTIMATE HANG $17,500 US dollars ($14,000 Cayman dollars) are also available. Prices are set to increase on November 1st, or when the current price tier sells out. At KAABOO, all guests receive a multifaceted experience with access to: the indoor and seated HUMOR ME comedy club; an on-site Contemporary Art exhibit in the ARTWORK area plus large-scale outdoor murals and installations on display; PALATE gourmet food and craft libation offerings; the relaxation oasis at INDULGENCES; and the BASK Beach Club. SILVER THATCH (VIP) passes include additional access to AMPLIFY zones which provide premier stage viewing areas, access to the Thursday Night AMPLIFY-only preview party and more. 


KAABOO has shifted the festival paradigm and carved out its name among international and destination events as a lifestyle and live entertainment brand. At KAABOO, all guests receive an immersive, multifaceted and hospitality-driven experience that engages all five senses. At KAABOO multi-day annual events, guests enjoy a world-class music and HUMOR ME comedy lineup; an on-site Contemporary Art Fair in ARTWORK, plus a display of outdoor murals and installations; PALATE gourmet food and craft libations tastings; a Las Vegas-style day club called BASK, plus spa and relaxation services at INDULGENCES.              

KAABOO is proud to expand its brand in 2019 with two brand new events. On February 15+16, 2019, KAABOO Cayman will host its inaugural event with all of the same elements that have made KAABOO Del Mar an international success. Overlooking the world famous Seven Mile Beach in Grand Cayman, KAABOO Cayman hosts KAABOO’s elevated live entertainment lifestyle brand in paradise. For more information, visit www.kaaboocayman.com.


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