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Grace Bay Resorts Announces All-Star Chefs and Winemakers Attending Events to Benefit TCI Post-Hurricane School Rebuilding Efforts

Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands (October 2, 2017) – Grace Bay Resorts, in partnership with the Turks and Caicos Tourist Board and The Wine Cellar, today announced the 7th Annual Caribbean Food & Wine Festival will take place as scheduled in Providenciales from November 2-4, 2017 after Hurricanes Irma and Maria impacted the island. The three-day festival is the Caribbean’s leading culinary event, pairing internationally renowned chefs and winemakers with Turks & Caicos’ diverse local talent for an authentic and avant-garde celebration of Caribbean cuisine.

This year’s headliners include:

  • Victor Yu – Executive Chef and joint owner at Yu Alderley Edge, known for infusing ingredients and spices from the Far East.
  • Meherwan Irani – Executive Chef and co-owner of Chai Pani Restaurant Group, famous for his authentic Indian street food in Asheville, North Carolina.
  • Melissa D’Arabian – Season five winner of “The Next Food Network Star,” D’Arabian is a sought-after culinary expert, television host, columnist, and New York Times bestselling author.
  • Greg Stach – Winemaker at Landmark Vineyards, renowned for crafting elegant, world-class vintages.
  • Tuck Beckstoffer – President of Tuck Beckstoffer Wines and pioneer of the Napa Valley grape growing industry, known for his highest rated Sonoma Coast wines.
  • Neil Collins – Executive Winemaker and Vineyard Manager at Tablas Creek Vineyard. Voted by his peers in 2013 as “San Luis Obispo County Wine Maker of the Year”

“Turks & Caicos strong is a special kind of strong, and the resilience and passion of our nation to recover from these hurricanes has left no question that the festival will continue this year,” said Nikheel Advani, Caribbean Food & Wine Festival Co-Chair. “Following six successful years, this year’s Caribbean Food & Wine Festival will continue its stellar reputation of blending the world’s best chefs and winemakers together with our local community for a one-of-a-kind taste of local culture with inspiration from the latest global gastronomic trends. We’re still cooking!”

The not-for-profit festival, which has consistently sold out year after year, will this year raise funds for Turks & Caicos educational institutions damaged by Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria with grants for rebuilding efforts. When possible, the grants will continue the festival’s legacy of supporting and encouraging young local chefs to develop skills that will assist them in pursuing careers in hospitality, a vital industry of Turks and Caicos. 

“The Caribbean Food & Wine Festival has become both a key calendar event and a noteworthy island tradition—and this year serves as a special testament to the strength of the Turks & Caicos Islands people and government in our efforts to recover from recent Hurricanes” said Hon. Ralph Higgs, Minister of Tourism. “The festival showcases our nation’s exceptional culinary reputation with a taste of global culinary trends, and furthers the Turks & Caicos Islands place as leaders in the Caribbean food and beverage scene.”


Guest Chefs

Victor Yu is the executive chef and joint owner at Yu Alderley Edge, recognized as one the leading high-end Chinese restaurants in Aderly Edge, United Kingdom. Yu is passionate about taking Chinese cuisine to the next level, using the best ingredients to blend fine dining with both traditional and modern methods of cooking. Yu incorporates new techniques and skills he learned from his father, Charlie Yu, to create award-winning, distinctive dishes. Yu views Yu Alderley Edge as a restaurant that brings a new spirit of Chinese dining to the hospitality industry. Yu will add a nice flare to this year’s Caribbean Food & Wine Festival, bringing his Chinese heritage to the island as he continues to push the limits with cooking styles and trends.

Meherwan Irani, Executive Chef and co-owner of Chai Pani and a partner in Asheville’s hottest barbecue restaurant Buxton Hall, will also join this year’s all-star lineup. Buxton Hall, which Bon Appetit magazine lauded as “the best new BBQ joint in America,” aims to revitalize Carolina barbecue history and bring flavorful traditions to the present. Chai Pani, an authentic Indian street food operation in downtown Asheville, tells a story of spice markets, hawkers, rickshaws and streetside chefs smell, flavor, color and taste. A two-time James Beard Award nominee for Best Chef in the Southeast, Irani recently opened his fifth restaurant, a catering company. His self-taught talent and restaurant ventures have resulted in coverage in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, GQ, Food & Wine, Men's Health, USA Today, and Bon Appetit, among others. He credits his business success to the people he works with each day, including his business partner and wife, Molly.

Melissa D’Arabian won season five of “The Next Food Network Star” in August 2009, then premiered her inaugural cooking show “Ten Dollar Dinners” proving a delicious budget-friendly meal can be made without compromise and always delivering on her $10 promise. Melissa’s first cookbook “Ten Dollar Dinners: 140 Recipes and Tips to Elevate Simple, Fresh Meals Any Night of the Week” debuted in August 2012 as an instant New York Times best seller. Her highly anticipated second cookbook – “Supermarket Healthy: Recipes and Know-How for Eating Well Without Spending a Lot” – debuted on December 30, 2014. Melissa writes “The Healthy Plate,” a nationally syndicated column for The Associated Press. She’s also a featured expert on as well as a contributing writer for Food Network’s FN Dish blog.

Guest Winemakers

Winemaker at Landmark Vineyards, Greg Stach is known for crafting the vineyard’s elegant, world-class vintages and creating some of the best single vineyard Pinot Noirs of the decade. For the past 10 years, Stach has brought his enthusiasm and expertise in Pinot Noir to Landmark’s winemaking team. He has helped establish Landmark’s distinguished Pinot Noir program, which is quickly gaining acclaim as one of the premier wine programs in California. His winemaking philosophy incorporates traditional winemaking techniques with a “less is more” attitude. Believing that great wine begins in the vineyard, Stach intervenes during the winemaking process to ensure consistency and quality, but relies heavily on the fruit’s intense, ripe flavors and distinct vineyard characteristics. Under his direction, Landmark’s wines have consistently earned exceptional reviews from top wine critics, including six honorable appearances on the Wine Spectator’s Top 100 list. The vineyard’s wines are also a favorite of U.S. Presidents, and have been served regularly at White House functions since the Reagan administration.

Tuck Beckstoffer, President of Tuck Beckstoffer Wines, produces a dozen of Napa Valley’s most sought-after wines. Pioneers of the Napa Valley grape growing industry, the Beckstoffer family made the vineyards both their lives and their livelihood. Beckstoffer’s extensive viticultural knowledge drove a desire to learn more about the winemaking process. Studies with winemaking legends in wineries both at home and abroad only whetted his appetite to create a wine of his own. After making Tuck Beckstoffer Cabernet Sauvignon in 1997 to critical acclaim, collectors and connoisseurs asked for more. His Semper Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays are among the highest rated and most critically acclaimed Sonoma Coast wines produced today.

Born and raised in Bristol, England Neil Collins trained as a chef, he moved into winemaking with stints with John Munch at Adelaida Cellars and Ken Volk at Wild Horse. At Adelaida, Neil met Robert Haas and the Perrins of Château de Beaucastel when they were just beginning the search for Tablas Creek. Neil was so intrigued by the project that he offered his services, and spent a year working and learning at Château de Beaucastel. Before the year was finished, Neil was offered the winemaker position at Tablas Creek, and he has overseen both the organic vineyard and the winery since 1998. His philosophy is that great wines can only come from great grapes, and that the art of winemaking is founded on starting out with the very best grapes and bringing their juice through fermentation as naturally as possible.


Schedule of Events

Thursday, November 2 – Grace Bay Club
Welcome Dinner

The kick-off dinner for the weekend-long events, features exceptional creations by Chef Victor Yu and wines by Tuck Beckstoffer Wines.

Friday, November 3

Women of Wine Luncheon – Solana Restaurant
This event caters to the adage “it’s 5 o’clock somewhere” by offering an extended lunch break in a relaxed environment for women who love wine with headling chef, Food Network Star Melissa D’Arabian.

Gourmet Safari - Progressive gourmet dining experience

This interactive ‘dine around’ gives festival-goers an opportunity to discover the Island’s incredible restaurants, this year with wines by Landmark Vineyards. Now in its tenth year, the Gourmet Safari was the original event that served as a catalyst for the festival and continues to be a guest favorite today.

·        Grace Bay Club – Innovative cocktails

·        Coyaba – First course

·        Seven Stars – Fish course

·        The Regent Palms – Meat course

·        Gansevoort - Dessert


Saturday, November 4

Dinner with the Stars – The Shore Club Turks & Caicos
Headlining Chef Meherwan Irani pairs his signature recipes with the Tablas Creek Vineyard wines for a lavish dinner experience, allowing guests to dine under the beautiful Long Bay stars alongside the festival’s featured stars.

For tickets and additional event information, please visit


About the Turks and Caicos Islands

The 40 islands of the Turks and Caicos Islands, of which eight are inhabited, are renowned for their award-winning beaches, diving and array of world-class resorts. Additional activities include tennis, golf and horseback riding. The Islands feature a variety of spa and body treatment services and is home to the world’s only conch farm. In 2015, Providenciales was selected as the World’s Best Island in TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Awards. There are three daily 90-minute direct flights from Miami, a US Airways direct flight from Charlotte, twice weekly flights from New York and weekly flights from Boston, Philadelphia, Atlanta and Toronto. For more information on travel, visit the Turks and Caicos Islands Tourist Board’s website at or call (800) 241-0824.

About Grace Bay Resorts

Grace Bay Resorts is a boutique developer and operator of high-end, luxury resorts and branded residences, founded from its flagship property Grace Bay Club which opened in 1993. The brand has grown in recent years with an ownership stake in the management of West Bay Club and The Residences, a micro resort with exclusive luxury private, freestanding beachfront villas, all in Turks and Caicos. Led by Mark Durliat and Nikheel Advani, the developers and hoteliers behind this renowned brand, and Michael Brewster, Grace Bay Resorts provides development, branding and management expertise for luxury five-star boutique hotels and branded residences.  Grace Bay Resorts is expanding its award-winning brand and services across the Caribbean destinations and Latin America, with a target of 10 properties in the next few years.

About The Wine Cellar

The Wine Cellar has been a landmark in the Turks & Caicos Islands since it first opened under the banner of Discount Liquors in 1987. The Company is licensed to conduct business as liquor importers, distributors, wholesalers and retailers of alcoholic and tobacco products.  The Company’s activities are conducted on Leeward Highway, the main thoroughfare that runs through Providenciales, the most densely populated island in the Turks & Caicos Islands. Its core product offerings include beers, wines, spirits, soft drinks, and a variety of cigars and cigarettes and is also known for having the island’s largest retail wine cellar with an assortment of over 400 different brands and a thriving wine tasting club and clientele. The growth in the afore-mentioned industries has provided The Wine Cellar with a unique opportunity as it has enabled us to make a decisive entry into the wine and spirits market.  In doing so, we have secured meaningful distribution and sales of their products to all the resorts on the island as well as the many restaurants that have been established to meet the needs of visitors to the island’s shores.

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