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Who's News in Catering for November 6. 2021

Venue News

The newly-opened Hilton Aventura Miami is a contemporary urban oasis serving as a gateway to the best South Florida has to offer. With a prime location close to both major airports, a robust food and beverage program, including a mixology-focused lobby bar featuring handcrafted cocktails, and amenities like a private executive lounge, Hilton Aventura Miami is built to cater to the diverse needs of groups and business travelers. Taking meetings up a notch, starting November 1, 2021, groups can book the “Mix Like a Master” experience. For either a cocktail party, welcome reception or team building exercise, the “Mix Like a Master Experience” is an elevated mixology class with two levels – “Back to Basics” and “The Master Series.” The beginner series is focused on introducing the group to cocktail basics, like flavor components, different kinds of spirits and topline techniques, with attendees trying their hand at creating traditional cocktails, like a martini or an old fashioned. The advanced experience is curated for more knowledgeable cocktail enthusiasts and allows for attendees to master their techniques and have a firsthand try at creating more demanding cocktails, like the aromatic espresso martini, and learn how to elevate cocktails with fresh fruits, floral infusions, handmade syrups and more. Following the tutorial and cocktail class, guests will sip, savor, and enjoy a private cocktail hour at one of the hotel’s premier spaces. 

Products on the Market

Eco-Products® announced today that it has earned the coveted GreenScreen Certified™ Silver designation for its groundbreaking line of compostable plates and containers made from sugarcane.  Called VanguardTM, the award-winning line uses a proprietary chemistry to achieve grease resistance without the use of PFAS, a class of materials sometimes referred to as “forever chemicals.” In addition, GreenScreen Certified products do not contain other chemicals of high concern or known regrettable substitutes.  Eco-Products is the first manufacturer to earn the GreenScreen designation for a foodservice ware product line. The certification was developed by Clean Production Action (CPA) and the Center for Environmental Health (CEH). 


The brand-new Perlick Tobin Ellis Signature Series Limited Edition Mobile Bar is an upgraded luxury mobile bar on wheels, that is enhanced with stunning luxury surface finishes and designed for bartender efficiency and comfort. It provides a way for bar owners a way to keep both drinks and profits flowing, with the flexibility to set up a bar wherever it’s needed. Unlike other bar equipment on the market, our limited edition mobile bar is eye catching and sleek, while still providing the functionalities bartenders need to pour drinks quickly. AND it’s all on wheels! Venues can set up a bar outside on the patio during the cocktail hour rush, and then move the bar inside for the dinner crowd. In an age where proper spacing and distancing are necessary, having ways to quickly adapt a space is key. The new Tobin Ellis Signature Series Limited Edition Mobile Bar has the same great features as our original bartender’s cockpit on wheels, including a zero-step bartending design and curved speed rails for better counter access, but now with upgraded functionalities and design features.  

People on the Move

The Balfour Hotel, which recently opened on Miami Beach, is proud to announce the appointment of Steven Acosta to executive chef. In this role, Acosta is responsible for managing the hotel’s food and beverage team, implementing new menus at the hotel’s three-meal restaurant and providing exceptional culinary experience for hotel guests, travelers and South Florida locals. Acosta assumes this position immediately and has already stepped into the role of overseeing all aspects of the restaurant’s culinary operations. This winter, Acosta will spearhead the launch of a new restaurant concept at The Balfour Hotel and create all menus. After graduating from the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Miami, Acosta took on executive sous chef positions at distinguished restaurants throughout South Florida, such as Vix’s Restaurant at Hotel Victor and the Cascada Grill at the Turnberry Isle Resort. In 2008, chef Acosta worked with Todd English to open da Campo Osteria as the restaurant’s executive sous chef. He then brought his expertise to the W Hotel South Beach to the former Solea Restaurant and KNR Food Concepts in 2009. Upon Todd English’s departure from da Campo Osteria in 2012, Acosta returned to the team to lead the kitchen as the executive chef.  

Hot Off the Presses

Feed the Soul Foundation, the non-profit arm of Black Restaurant Weeks LLC and founded in Houston last year, has opened their 2022 cohort application process. This year, they awarded 25 businesses with $10,000.00. From now until Wednesday, January 5, marginalized culinary business owners can apply to the Restaurant Business Development Program.   


The National Restaurant Association today unveiled a major modernization of its Kids LiveWellSM initiative that makes it easier for caregivers and children to choose ‘better-for-you’ meals when dining out. The program, originally launched in 2011, is a successful industry solution to providing a wider range of menu options for families. This update brings the Kids LiveWell participation requirements in line with today’s nutrition science. Restaurant operators with qualifying meals and sides certified by Kids LiveWell are validated by an approved third-party registered dietitian. Menu items that are certified to meet the Kids LiveWell criteria will help caregivers increase a child’s consumption of fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy while limiting unhealthy fats, added sugars, and sodium.  

Association Updates

The SEARCH Foundation, a 501(c)3 that assists event professionals in crisis, is pleased to announce their incoming board of directors for 2022. 

  •  Chairwoman – Kate Patay, Patay Consulting
  • Vice Chair – Patrick McMichael, Denon & Doyle
  • Treasurer – Larry Green, International Event Products
  • Secretary – David Lombardo, Lombardo’s
  • Immediate Past Chair – Rick Turner, Forward Hospitality Group
  • Executive Advisor – Joann Roth-Oseary, Someone’s in the Kitchen
  • Directors: Nick Borelli - AllSeated, Judy Brillhart - Sheraton Commander, Evan Carbotti - Carbotti Experiences, Mark Catuogno - MC Event Consulting, Thuy Diep - Haute., Bobby Dutton - GBM6, Stephanie Jayko - Knockout Productions, Jolie Oree-Bailey - Low Country Quisine, Michele Polci - Caesars Entertainment, Frank Puleo - Framboise Catering, India Rhodes - Wilkinson Rhodes, Thomas Whelan - Levy Convention Centers, JC York - Classic Entertainment   



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