Ambergris Caye’s Lobster Festival is no longer the new kid on the Belizean block. This was the 9th Festival in San Pedro – so we are now the slightly more mature kid on the block. And each year, the players may change a bit but the food gets more creative and the crowd gets bigger.
Placencia’s is going strong with th 17th Annual Festival this weekend and Caye Caulker (only 20 mins away) is celebrating 21 years next weekend – I shall see you there.
But last night was the final event in the week long San Pedro Fest and restaurants, vendors, musicians and tons of people gathered in Central Park to celebrate it.
It was nice, this year, to start out with a display by the new San Pedro House of Culture to remind us a bit of the serious fishing culture that helped build the island (and Belize) over the years.
From left: Felix, Brenda and Mito
T-shirt and hats for sale.
The SAGA Humane Society selling brownies.
I was a bit early and went around to take pics of the booths and the menu…before the hungry hoards arrived.
Caliente Restaurant was serving early and big plates of chunky lobster dips looked divine.
Pirates Treasure was doing LOBSTER pierogies. How delicious!
Maresha, the chef, cooking them in plenty of butter and onions.
But later that night it was hoping.
I first take this good picture because my video quality seems to be circa 1952. But playing “Rude” by Magic! Super cute.
Estel’s was doing their first booth ever and…it was awesome. Plus, they won for best drink – their Red Wine Sangria. The judges were RAVING about it. “Best sangria they’ve ever had in Belize”. Lucky for us, it’s on their menu.
And later…the eyes were flashing.
Super cute visiting couple – I crowned them Lobster King and Queen.
Toys being sold…cute old school horseys…
Balloons and pinwheels…
Elvi’s Kitchen was setting up under the big palapa. YES! Cheesecake.
Chef Jennie Staines hard at work…
No seriously. Cheesecake with lobster IN IT.
Gorgeous sisters…Miss Susanna and Miss Shelly.
Paul from Caye Coffee GRACIOUSLY letting me take his picture in his lobster beanie. He was mid-rolling his eyes at me.
These guys enjoying lobster tails…
And these lovely and exceptionally intelligent ladies promoting Coral Reef Camp. They (well not THEY…but Smith College) has been running this environmentally geared camp in San Pedro for years. And they are fellow alumnae! (Yes…we did a group hug.)
Me, class of 1995 (20 YEARS AGO!), them, Class of 2015. Sigh…
They later busted out the games.
The crew from Casa Picasso…getting ready pre-rush.
Ready to send out Lobster Corn Bread Pudding…yum and their very famous BUTTERY lobster sliders.
Di V’u at Wet Willy’s Dock had an amazing line-up…and later, when judging, they served my (tied for) favorite plate.
Pineapple Restaurant’s Lobster Dukunu and Bacon Wrapped Lobster bites were my other favorite.
I got to taste them all! Oh? Didn’t I tell you? After SWEARING I would never help judge again (after last year’s 16 dish lob-straveganza), I…come on! I’d be a total ingrate to say no.
I’ll burn off the butter and lobster calories in…4-6 weeks. No biggie.
The runners for the six judges…cute kids. And awesomely hilarious to hear them describe the dishes. I know at the other end the chef would meticulously describe the nuances of their creation. It was like a game of telephone.
And I had mentally coached myself. ONE BITE ONLY. But I couldn’t do it…my plate from Ramon’s. This dukunu…sweet creamy corny bread wrapped around lobster and steamed. Too good.
Joe and Mary (from the San Pedro Sun), two of my fellow judges. I think the idea of 10 lobster dishes + 10 cocktails (many CONTAINING lobster) was starting to weigh on Joe…
Lobster corn pudding from Casa Picasso…and more and more and more.
And an EXTREME close-up of the winning dish from Elvi’s Kitchen. A Chaya Tamalito with Pork Belly and Lobster.
The beautiful San Pedro Dance Troupe getting ready to perform…
And later more music…including Supa G. Who is simply incredible live. If you don’t know his music, check out this Belikin commerical. Killer 49 seconds.
And I’ll stop there…almost. SUPER fun time. And I hope to see you all at next weekend’s Caye Caulker Lobsterfest and next year in San Pedro.
And just a few more pictures. Super fun night…and great music. GO PANERRIFIX! I am your #1 fan.