A Formidable Legacy Supper Launch
General Manager, ROK Hotel Kingston Jaap van Dam (left) and Wouter Tjeertes, co-founder, Pure Chocolate Company Ltd, help themselves to Jamaican Jack with Scotch bonnet pepper, pimento, jerk rub and coffee and chocolate, bloomy rind cheese wrapped with and aged in banana leaves, red maroon, washed Red Label Wine and sorrel cheeses from Outland Hurders.

Fast-rising chef Lacey Williams served up the first course in her fine dining Legacy Supper series, which proved to be a melting pot of culinary fusions, incorporating local spices and dishes with an international twist.

The Martha’s Vineyard-based food aficionado combined her menu offerings with wines from Select Brands, oysters from Juicy, charcuterie cheese board from Outland Hurders, products from Ruby Goat Dairy, Pure Chocolate, Trelawny Honey and local farmers all simmered at Grizzly’s Plantation last Sunday.

The evening saw guests being treated to 10 courses of Jamaican-influenced dishes with some very interesting takes, with Williams giving descriptions and revealing the inspiration for each meal.

“Through my descriptions of each meal I hope my guests learn more about the food here in Jamaica, and about the people who provide each item. Learning to truly appreciate each meal a little more knowing its value and back story” Williams said.

Chef Lacey Williams guides guests through her menu offerings.
Oysters with pineapple salsa, ginger syrup, spicy sweet and Bob Marley sauce from Juicy in Old Harbour, St Catherine.

“I have been living in Martha’s Vineyard for about five years. It’s extremely common to have cocktail parties with food being the centre of the gathering, accompanied by lots of wine. When I realised how much my clients enjoyed my rendition of Jamaican dishes at their cocktail parties, I thought it would be nice to share this kind of royal, grand experience with that same culture of people I represent, in a very classy, high tea setting,” Williams added.

The event’s guest speaker, Alando Terrelonge, minister of state in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, lauded Williams for helping to lead the charge of a gastronomy revolution in Jamaica.

“When we use Jamaican food and ingredients, our farmers and their families benefit; when we employ Jamaicans they benefit; ultimately the economy benefits. That is the power of food and what Chef Lacey Williams is doing. When she caters to stars at Martha’s Vineyard, it is Brand Jamaica that’s flying high. We are in fact privileged to be dining with one of Jamaica’s young, culinary geniuses. Our young people continue to find creative ways to serve the food that we grew up on. They’re using their knowledge of, and exposure to, other cultures to create fusions, redefining the proud legacy of Jamaican cuisine,” Terrelonge stated.

Select Brands Luxury Portfolio Manager Debra Taylor-Smith introduced the wines curated for the evening, explaining the choices and what patrons should note during the dining experience. The wines chosen were the Ruffino Orvieto Classico with notes of green apple, citrus and pear; the Banrock Moscato from Australia; the 7 Moons Red Blend from California; and the Robert Mondavi Private Selection Pinot Noir from California .

“I hope guests were able to appreciate the local farmers who planted and harvested each ingredient, as well as the students who worked rigorously for three days prepping the meals. They share the same love and appreciation for food as I do, so they were delicate and patient in the process to ensure it was just as good as [it was] intended to be. I hope guests were able to taste their culinary legacy. Almost every meal had pimento seeds, garlic, thyme, coconut milk and scallion, all the things we use every single day,” Williams said.

— Text & Photos Aceion Cunningham

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