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Curaçao obtains a Gold Medal for the Bartender Competition

Willemstad, June 27th, 2018 – Curaçao’s Culinary Team has successfully represented Curaçao at this year’s Taste of the Caribbean competition organized by the Caribbean Hotel & tourism Association (CHTA) in Miami. These highly motivated young chefs and bartender had the opportunity to create signature dishes and have various guests enjoy their creations.

The Taste of the Caribbean consisted of several bartender competitions, pastry and chocolate competition, beef and seafood competition and a team competition where the Culinary Team cooked for 40 people. The consumer event ‘Caribbean 305 took place on Saturday June 23rd where teams prepared local bites for the public. CTB provided the booth, which was a huge success and attracted hundreds of visitors. According to CHATA President & CEO Miles Mercera, who was also present at the event, “Curaçao can be very proud of their culinary team. These young professionals gave the competitions their all and captured both the hearts of the judges and the audience at the competition. Our Curaçao Culinary Team proved that Curaçao is an island to watch when it comes to its people and their culinary skills.”

Their hard work did not go unnoticed. The chefs and bartender form one of the most decorated national team representing Curaçao, amassing 9 medals at the Taste of the Caribbean. Jurnick Merced won a gold medal in the Bartender competition and was awarded with the best cocktail for the Bartending Mystery Basket competition! The Curaçao Culinary Team won silver for the overall team competition; Jereld Balentien won bronze in the Chef of the year competition.  In the Beef competition, Jévgeny Hasselmeijer won a Bronze Medal.  In the Junior Competition, Brayan Arroyo won a Silver Medal; In the Chocolate competition Dane Ribeiro won a Silver medal. In the Pastry Chef Competition, Sjagnon Winklaar won a Bronze medal. Lastly, Jereld Balentien participated in the Seafood Competition and won a Bronze medal. CHATA congratulates the Curaçao Culinary Team 2018 with their achievement and thanks the team for placing Curaçao on the map.

The success of the Culinary Team depends on more than just the team members. Sponsors also played a vital part in achieving the medals. Thanks to the sponsors: Landhuis Chobolobo, TUI, Caña Bar & Kitchen, Mosa Restaurant, Licores Maduro, Bacardi, Dolce Vita, Firgos, Deli Nova, Centrum Supermarket, Luke’s Cocktailbar, Curoil, DHL, Luxury Taxi Service, Café Barista, CINEX, Curacao Tourism Board, Windcreek, Curaçao Academy Hotel, Caribbean Bakery, Mangusa Supermarket, Fuik Microgreens, Caribbean Legacy, De Jongh’s Printing, Adorable Cakes, Cake Faces, Curaçao Delights, Bliss Sweets, Curaçao Creations, Leañez, Margil Party Rental, Dani’s Fruit Center, Amazia, Stacey Embroidery, Frog Media, Pluz Marketing, De Jongs Sporthuis, Hilton Curaçao, D&I Business Support, Experentia, TeleCuraçao, Thelma & Louise, Me & Uniforms, Caribbean Cargo, All Stars, Coca Cola, La Vie en Rose and CHATA.

The Culinary Team will arrive this Sunday July 1st at 8.48PM.  CHATA encourages the community to come to the airport to congratulate the team with their tremendous achievement.

If you believe you have what it takes to join the Curaçao Culinary Team and represent Curaçao at the Taste of the Caribbean competitions, please contact


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