San Pedro Lobsterfest 2018 or Eating 16 Different Dishes & Calling It An Early Night

Last night was one of the biggest evenings of the year on Ambergris Caye.  The culmination of 7 days and night lobster activities.  The 2018 San Pedro Lobster Festival.

I got to the festival early on an absolutely GORGEOUS perfect late afternoon.  Almost everything was almost set up.  I was helping to judge the food again – an honor for sure.  16 delicious lobster dishes, 15 cocktails…it sounds like SO much fun…LIVING THE DREAM fun…until you hit number 9 or 10.  You hit the lobster wall.  Your vision starts to blur a bit…a heavy feeling sweeps over you…all the chatter at the judges table ceases.

I didn’t last long.  16 tastes, 16 sheets filled out and I headed home.  The festival was just building at that point…I could tell that it was going to be bigger and better than ever before.

But I was just SO stuffed.  SO let me show you my pictures so you can get a sense of how FANTASTIC the food was.  So good I broke my own rules “JUST ONE BITE OF EACH DISH” and ended up having to go home early.

My buddy and ex-co-worker Kevin.  We worked a booth together about 8 years ago.

And just a bit of what was going on behind the stage at a hidden judges table.  We did a blind tasting this year for the very first time.  No idea which restaurant or bar made each dish.  And I still need some info!   I’ll fill it in as I get it…

My fellow judges were:  Jennie Staines, Chef at Elvi’s Kitchen, Chris Aycock, Chef at Blue Water Grill, Amy Knox, Chef at Wild Mangos, Gary Grief from the San Pedro Town Council, Colin for the Belize Tourism Board and Tamara from the San Pedro Sun.

Mango and jalapeno margaritas.Bacon and jalapeno wrapped lobster chunks.  This was not the serving for all 9 judges – each of us got one of these platters!  Can you see how I broke my own rules?

A lobster stuffed jalapeno popper in a nest.  Why?  Just because…

From Jyoto Restaurant, the 2nd place drink…a smoky whisky rum blend.  This was a close contender for first place.

They, of course, did sushi rolls with lobster.

One of two sushis I sampled last night!

The winning drink called Candy Crush!  Nerds, gum drops, sour patch kids…everyone loves it.  By SandBar!

They also won first place for their lobster dish!  Delicious sweet potato ravioli in champagne cream sauce and big tender lobster chunks.

SO GOOD.  And really really pretty plating.  Love these veggie flowers.

Wait…done?  NO WAY!  Lobster cakes with mango sauce.

We had kebabs and lobster tails poached in saffron butter.  We had lobster bisque and quiche.  We tasted lobster paella with grilled pineapple.

All score cards collected I went to take a quick tour around.  My favorite favorite favorite – the Pannerifix Steel Drum crew out of Belmopan – was playing some Rhianna.

The YOUNG women of Smith College and Coral Reed Ed-ventures were running their 19th annual summer camp in San Pedro.  Me, Smith College ’95, these ladies, Smith College, ’20.

Oy I feel old.DJ Debbie and DJ Habo were MCing and warming up for music later.I snagged a few pictures from Jeanna – who stayed a bit later than I did.  I made it home…stuffed with lobster…but just barely.

And for a total different feel, more lobster and SO MUCH FUN head to Caye Caulker’s Lobster Festival next weekend.   AND…since I am in Rhode Island next weekend, SEND ME PICTURES!  I’d love to blog about it from afar.

AND don’t forget to PIN IT!  So you remember to come down next year.

Each June, San Pedro Belize throws one of the biggest parties of the year and it all centers around one thing.  Okay...2.  LOBSTER and good times.

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