Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 19th 2013 Contents Friday, July 19, 2013 • Issue 97
Well for starters, you could attend Meet Me @ Fanatic, a
monthly social event created by Sean Gonzales.
The inspiration struck him one day while watching an adver-
tisement for an offline social networking event created by a pop-
ular dating website. It occurred to him then that there were no
real options like that for singles in Trinidad and Tobago -- at least
none where you wouldn't be competing with loud music and gy-
rating waistlines for the undivided attention of your potential love
interest. After musing over it for a few days, and with some en-
couragement from his girlfriend, Gonzales decided to take his
idea and make it a reality -- creating a mock flyer for the event
and leaving it on his boss - and owner of Fanatic Kitchen Studio -
Donna Wyke-Reece's desk. While his original intention was to
give her the idea for her to run with, she and Lisa Johnstone
(wine connoisseur and host of Fanatic's Chef Table series) called
him in for a meeting and insisted that he be the one to bring it to
realisation. Challenge accepted -- Gonzales set about curating a
team, planning the inaugural event, creating a Facebook event
and promoting to all his friends and networks.
The premise is simple -- bring a group of 25-45 year olds to-
gether for a fun, interactive experience involving food and cock-
tails, facilitating social behaviour the 'old-fashioned' way: face to
face. "We're getting back to analog, basically," Gonzales explained.
"Taking people away from their computers, smart phones and de-
vices and helping them get real face time in."
What began as a push to bring singles together, however, has
evolved into a wildly successful socialising and networking event,
attracting both singles, as well as not-quite-so-singles who are
looking for a great night out with good food, ample drinks and in-
Gonzales plays the consummate host during the event -- deliv-
ering the opening speech to get everyone acquainted with the
night's proceedings, ensuring drinks are constantly topped up,
chatting with guests, making introductions and even playing the
part of server once food is prepared. Apart from Gonzales, Chef
Jason Peru and Jason Thomson (he's defied all the positions
we've given him, but he is the guy in charge of the social lubrica-
tion, basically) are two of the key team members. Chef Peru also
has a few assistant chefs working alongside him in the kitchen.
The evening's fare usually consists of six courses, all of which can
be presented in a finger-food format. One or more of those
courses involve a live cooking demonstration from the Chef, who
guides volunteers from the group through the recipe, emphasis-
ing the ease with which these dishes can be recreated at home.
Metro had the pleasure of visiting the last Meet Me @ Fanatic
instalment in June. There, patrons sampled Chicken Shoo Mai
Dumplings with Sweet Chili Soy Sauce, Mushroom Arancini Balls,
Guava Hot Wings, Vegetable Quiche, Cheddar Hush Puppies and
a very decadent dessert -- Cheesecake Truffles. Thomson kept
the drinks flowing, serving up white and red wine sangria, marti-
nis and other cocktails along with a healthy dose of humour and
good conversation. Guests were also treated to a tutorial on how
to make a Dirty Martini -- shaken, not stirred, of course.
Persons interested in attending Meet Me @ Fanatic on July 26,
can contact Sean Gonzales at 7268968 or via his email seanfgon-
Meet Me @ Fanatic is just one of Fanatic Kitchen Studio's many
happenings - they also feature Chef's Table Dinners -- private din-
ner parties catered by your very own personal chef, Corporate
Team Building Exercises, Culinary Experiences for Visitors, Fa-
natic Silent Auctions, Food & Beverage Service Training, Holiday
Boot Camp Sessions and Cooking Classes. Visit
www.fanatickitchenstudio.com for more information on all Fa-
natic's upcoming events.
Perhaps you've heard of Fanatic Kitchen Studio, per-
haps you haven't. Don't be too hard on yourself if it's
the latter - it's one of Newtown's best kept secrets -- a
sleek, modern, open plan kitchen with ample seating
and an understated elegance expressed through its
black, red and chrome decor. Tucked away at the cor-
ner of Dere St. and Melville Lane, Fanatic Kitchen Stu-
dio is the solution to the conundrum that so many
Trinidadians face today -- what else is there to do on
this island besides lime, club and go to the beach?
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