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About Us

Taste of the Caribbean (TOTC) is not only an annual FREE outdoor 4-day cultural festival; it also features several year-round side projects and events, with an overall mission of promoting the diversity of Canada’s Caribbean culture, starting in Montreal. 

The festival and other related events, encourages visitors to ‘taste’ their way through the islands by way of live musical performances from homegrown talent to Grammy-Award and JUNO-Award winning artists, dance workshops, music business master classes, video documentaries, educational and historical discussion panels, local authentic Caribbean restaurants, international guest Chefs and Rum Ambassadors via cooking and mixology demonstrations, and more.

 

Our mission, via the main 4-day outdoor free festival and year-round related activities, is to promote the diversity of Canada’s Caribbean culture to all audiences to form a better understanding and integration between cultures, as well as to influence Canadians of non-Caribbean background to travel to the Caribbean region, while in the meantime, directing them to visit local Caribbean outlets here, such as: businesses, art galleries, live performances/events, imported products, etc.

 

The large majority of our performing artists, associated products, and food vendors are culturally and authentically Caribbean in almost every way possible.

 

Professional programming within the festival’s evening [ticketed/paid] CONCERT ZONE, includes international artists/live bands from the Caribbean which ranges in several genres, such as: Reggae, Soca, Zouk, Calypso, Dancehall, Kompa, Reggaeton, Salsa/Merengue, and more. Some of our past international acts (of which some are Grammy-Award Winners and some JUNO Award Winners) were: Morgan Heritage, Rupee, Inner Circle, Mighty Gabby, Toto Laraque, Ginjah, Wesli Band, Mikey Dangerous, Elaine Shepherd, Yama, and more.

 

On the FREE site, we feature local and national Caribbean emerging artists, with crowd-engaging dance workshops, percussions seminars (100+ drums), music education workshops, master classes with Canadian Caribbean Music Professionals and Radio Hosts, live screening of Caribbean-produced movies on our large screen in the park, 42 digital web series episodes filmed by our team during the lock-down years as we went to various cities and filmed live performances of Caribbean artists on roof-tops and remote locations, as well as local Caribbean businesses (as Anthony Bourdain did with restaurants), several roundtable panel discussions on social cultural and musical topics (which now continue in-person with several social and musical organizations). We also have an engaging kids activity zone, which features face-painting, drawing, collage, water activities in open-air inflatables.

 

We also present several cooking/culinary and rum mixology demos with Caribbean international celebrity Chefs and Rum Ambassadors, such as, but not limited to: Chef Jae Anthony, Twice De Spice, Didier Skeete, Dimitri Lilavois, Kelerne Cupid, Gabrielle Panaccio, and others (some were featured on Top Chef and Master Chef TV shows).

 

Some of our side-projects include our very own “Taste the Bean – Caribbean Coffeeimported from 3 Caribbean islands and roasted locally in Montreal for Canadian distribution via our website and Amazon.ca.

 

Another special project were the 42 episodes we filmed during lockdowns 2020-2022 era, the “Mi Casa” series and the “Virtual Shift” series. We hope to continue these projects in the future.

 

In 2022, we also stared a collaboration with the “Stages Canadaseries of shows for upcoming and undiscovered artists, out of Toronto and we continue to feature them at our festival and other events.

 

The acquired ‘House of Reggae’ name-brand (an old live reggae music bar venue in downtown Montreal, which closed down in 2011) in collaboration with ‘Rebel Vibez’ out of the Toronto Caribbean-Radio show scene, joint talent co-management project for some of the best (some are JUNO Award Winners) Caribbean artists in Canada has taken fruition in the winter of 2022.

Our most recent additional side project is the ‘Havana Resort’ camping “RV Experience” which entails renting our recently purchased and modified RV Trailer and camp site cultural space about 1hr30min drive from Montreal. Our space can handle 20 people overnight, in our RV and via their camping tents with the family. The hosting venue is a 300-acre full of activities with a Cuban themed flavor.

History

Taste of the Caribbean is an exotic experience for all your senses!

What started out back in 1999 as a small 1 day all-you-can eat indoor ticketed food event, has now [2015 onward] turned into a large 4 days of FREE outdoor music, arts, food, and culture festival of over 96,000+ attendees and growing!

 

From Jamaica’s famous reggae sounds and jerk chicken dishes to the spiced rums mixologies and contests, as well as soca artists of Barbados and Trinidad, zuk/konpa acts from Haiti, reggaeton latin sounds from Cuba, kids zone activities for all ages, our ‘One Love’ tent for special music industry and Caribbean educational/historical workshops, we invite patrons to submerse themselves in Caribbean culture, right here at the Old-Port of Montreal and our other activities across Canada!