The fifth edition of Saborea Puerto Rico will be held this weekend (April 21 and 22) at San Juan’s beachside Parque del Tercer Milenio. This event is organized by the Puerto Rico Hotels and Tourism Association and sponsored by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company and MasterCard, among other entities. Fifty chefs from Puerto Rico, the US, and the Caribbean will be participating in different activities during these two days of tastings, education, and fun.
Upon arriving to the press conference area, I had two reactions. The first one: I had to start running again. Saborea Puerto Rico will be taking place at the start/finish line of my first half marathon about five months ago, and I was hit with flashbacks and guilt for abandoning my formal running plans (and eating as if I hadn’t). The second: it was a GORGEOUS day. I wished I didn’t have to return to the office right after the conference was done, but the promise of all the fun to be had during the two actual days of Saborea activity will definitely make up for it. The weather is also supposed to remain like this for the rest of the weekend.
Saborea Puerto Rico 2012 has two purposes: to promote the island as a gastronomic destination, and with the funds generated from the activity, support training and education initiatives benefiting over one thousand employees that work in hotels and other tourism activities. The people in the hotels and tourism services industry are our face to the thousands of visitors that arrive to the island annually on business and pleasure travel. In addition to customer training focused training and seminars for restaurants, the Puerto Rico Hotels and Tourism Association grants the Abimael Sémprit scholarship to a promising culinary school student.
The press conference started with a demonstration by chefs Augusto Schreiner and Ariel Rodríguez at the GE sponsored pavilion, with commentary from food personality and associate producer for the event Cielito Rosado. The chefs showed how to make crab cakes with a chipotle sauce, injecting their presentation with quick tips and a bit of humor. Chef Ariel deftly shaped the crab cakes into quenelles instead of the usual patty form. They looked amazing. The chipotle sauce was made with mayonnaise, sour cream, plain yogurt, chipotle, and plenty of chives. These presentations will continue through the weekend – two chefs will be at this stage every half hour doing twenty minute demos.
In addition to the GE Demonstrations area, Saborea Puerto Rico offers the following activities to all participants:
- Main tastings area with representatives from thirty restaurants
- Beer, wine, and spirits tasting pavilion
- Coffee and desserts pavilion (new for 2012)
- California Wines tasting area featuring representatives from Kynsi Wines, Luna Vineyeards, Oakville Ranch Vineyards, Rocca Family Vineyards, John Anthony Vineyards, and Castle Rock Winery ($25 per person additional tasting fee)
- Saborea Farmers’ Market (in collaboration with the PR Department of Agriculture)
- Kids’ pavilion for children ages 5-12
For tickets and more information, visit the Saborea Puerto Rico site. It has all the schedules, information on participating chefs, and additional event details. If you attend, make sure to share your experience and impressions here, on Twitter, or on our Facebook page.
* GreatFood360˚ was granted a press pass to attend this activity. All opinions here are 100% my own.