From Tank to Table: Rainforest Seafoods’ Live Lobster Offering at Moon Palace
There is nothing like the delectable taste of fresh lobster. And now guests at Moon Palace Jamaica in Ocho Rios, can enjoy just that at the hotel’s seaside restaurant. Thanks to a unique partnership between Palace Resorts and Rainforest Seafoods, patrons can choose a live lobster from a salt water tank, and have it cooked to their taste by the hotel’s skilled chefs.
Offered at an additional cost, using Resort Credit, the only live lobster dining experience at a hotel on the island, is made possible through Rainforest Seafoods’ brand — Fresh by Rainforest.
“The tank is very inviting,” says Ben Jardim, business development manager at Rainforest Seafoods. “It allows patrons to select the lobster they like.” While the guests are intrigued by the huge, filtered tank in the centre of the dining room, they enjoy the tasty, fresh lobsters even more.
Moon Palace Jamaica’s Executive Chef, José Vallejo, is delighted at the opportunity to work with this exclusive menu item. “Our guests are looking for a different kind of seafood. As chefs, we like to play with the flavours, and fresh is the best way to get the flavour! It’s much better. I prefer to cook with all fresh products,” Vallejo emphasises.
Executive Sous-Chef Emilio Benavides, has been at Moon Palace Jamaica since it opened just over two years ago, and believes that the live lobsters will provide “that wow factor” for diners.
The live lobster will be served up in a variety of delectable ways for guests. “We serve the entire lobster to the guest ... We don’t just give them the tail. There is some meat inside the head and the body, too. We can cook it traditional jerk, Jamaican style with Jamaican spices — the pimento, the Scotch bonnet, the scallion. We do a marinate on the grill; so, it might be a jerk lobster, or a traditional garlic butter. We poach it and we grill it a little bit. Or we do a thermidor, if they want it. Or maybe au gratin; if they would like it like that, we can do that option, too,” he explains.
An an effort to offer their guests a world-class epicurean experiences at each of their properties, earlier this year, the brand announced an exclusive partnership with Certified Angus Beef, making it the first and only hotel chain, to offer the highest quality beef at all 10 of its properties. In addition, the brand just announced a partnership with world-renowned pastry chef, Antonio Bachour. Palace Resorts will feature an exclusive menu selection of decadent desserts and pastries, exclusively curated by Bachour.
“Palace Resorts’ prides itself in the ability to continuously search for strategic alliances that elevate our brand to the next level,” said Jabib Chapur, vice president of Food & Beverage for Palace Resorts. “Our partnership with Rainforest Seafoods is just another way we consistently bring unique and distinct dining opportunities to our guests.”
Rainforest Seafoods’ Roger Lyn adds that this offering enhances Jamaica as a 'foodie' destination. He points out that visitors are coming “not just for the beaches,” but for a cultural experience, including food. It is also a push for brand Jamaica. Jardim adds, that the hotel industry plays an important role in promoting and highlighting something special for visitors. “The lobsters are our own local species. This is a good way to get it out to the world that Jamaica has this quality product.”