The Grille Restaurant’s Demi Chef de Partie, Andre Nurse, has made the hotel proud yet again by copping top prizes in this year’s Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association’s Taste of the Caribbean, held in Miami recently.
Nurse, captain of the Barbados Culinary Team at Taste this year, played a major role in the team’s win of Gold as well as the coveted title of Team of the Year. He also gained silver in the Chef of the Year segment of the competition.
His immediate supervisor at Hilton Barbados Resort, executive chef, Angela Garraway-Holland, congratulated him on his recent achievements.
“I have worked with Andre for the past five years and have found him to be an artistic and creative individual. He has the passion necessary for this profession and I want to congratulate him on a job well done,” she stated.
No stranger to awards, this very talented chef who entered his first culinary competition in 2009 at the age of 23, also created history as the youngest chef to win the National Independence Festival of Creative Arts Culinary Competition — Professional Division.
He has also captured a number of awards and accolades over the years at Hilton Barbados Resort including the title of Team Member of the Month, Perfect Attendance awards and certificates of appreciation.
Nurse was also a member of the 2010 and 2011 Barbados Culinary Teams, winning a number of medals and awards including Best Seafood Dish.
“Competition is a great avenue to enhance your skills and Taste is always a great experience. From the weeks of training to the Gourmet Lunches, which form part of our preparation, to the actual competition and the educational seminars and workshops — the event is one that every local chef should participate in.
“Nothing can match the feeling you get when your name or another member of the team is announced as the winner in any category, whether it is for a special award or for bronze, silver or gold.
“And when Barbados is named Team of the Year and at that moment you realise that after months of training with some of our top chefs, combined with the experience of a lifetime, the team is also named the Best Culinary Team of the Caribbean — it’s an amazing feeling. Words cannot explain,” the 27 year old said.
Commenting that it was always an honour to represent Barbados at any competition or event, Nurse thanked the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association for managing the process of training and taking the team to Taste, as well as Hilton Barbados Resort for allowing him the time to be a part of the Team and to compete.
Nurse, who has been with Hilton Barbados Resort since 2008, sees furthering his studies and the title of Executive Chef in his future. “For now I am at the right place in my career working at Hilton Barbados Resort’s fine dining restaurant, The Grille, which has allowed me the opportunity to improve my culinary skills as well as my overall techniques in the kitchen.
“Being a part of an international company and team is the perfect platform for me to reach my professional goals. Added to that, here at The Grille I get to do what I love best — creating mouth-watering menus and dishes that keep our guests wanting more. In fact, one of my creations for Taste — Tea Smoked, Nine spice rubbed beef — was created right here in The Grille’s kitchen and it was a hit.
“That is what I like about working here, the ability to experiment and introduce new dishes to our menu. Additionally, we have a number of local dishes prepared with an international flair on our menu including local vegetables, roasted rabbit and braised pork and our Fisherman’s Wharf Broth, among other international dishes like lobster ravioli, crab cakes and pan seared red snapper,” noted Nurse.