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Chefs highlight Dubai\ s changing dining scene.

Middle East-based chefs and restaurateurs are among the speakers confirmed for the 17 th annual Hotel Show Dubai , which will explore the changing face of the region's dining scene during a dedicated food and beverage forum at the event.

Its 4 th annual Vision Conference is a key feature of the three-day event, being held at Dubai World Trade Centre this month. One of the panel discussions will be titled 'Chef entrepreneurs - the secret of success' and speakers on this panel include:

- Colin Clague, executive chef and managing partner of Ruya Restaurant in Grosvenor House, and previously chef de cuisine at Burj al Arab and executive chef of Zuma and Qbara in Dubai;

- Ahmed Al Bader, a Kuwait chef known for his influence on the country's F&B scene through his work with the Epicure Group and Group Six;

- Darren Velvick, head chef and patron of The Croft , who previosuly spent more than a decade working alongside Gordon Ramsay and Marcus Wareing;

- Rawan Al Tamimi, one of the few Arab chefs to be certified by the world renowned Los Roches University and a former in-flight chef for Etihad Airways.

Al Bader commented: "On the one hand, breaking trends in cities like London and New York are about introducing something new and getting the critics on your side. Here, in the Middle East, trendsetting is more like wildfire. The Arab world is a very social media savvy place, therefore our identity is constantly being portrayed at breakneck speed and people are very keen to adopt. Yes, we uphold our traditions, but trendsetting here can happen overnight."

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Cuisinero Uno culinary directorJohn Martho Buenaventura said: "I'm predicting Dubai will get more intense and creative with food in the coming years. As 2020 approaches, a lot of new restaurants are set to open with a wider range of cuisines, imported brands and Dubai-born concepts; especially with the entrepreneurial Emirati community being very active and tapping into really cool concepts. The Dubai market is starting to really open up into trying new, complex and fun culinary combinations."

The trend in Dubai towards casual dining - favouring street foods cooked quickly and served in a relaxed atmosphere - will be a running theme throughout the Vision Conference's series of expert-led discussions.

Alex Teodoresco, who is behind events that celebrate street culture including Street Nights Dubai and Truckers DXB, will be speaking at the conference, whilst hosting a feature on the show floor.

He commented: "In the past three years there have been a few events and concepts that were all about empowering the local communities and young entrepreneurs. Those, in turn have fueled a grass root movement that is creating and expanding the demand for street food concepts."

Steigenberger Hotel, Business Bay Dubai, executive assistant manager Stephen Meredith will reveal preparations for the launch of its new outlet The Backyard, where authentic Asian street food will be served from a food truck.

He said: "Street food has been a part of life for many years especially in Africa and Asia. Invariably it is tastier, cooked by someone who has cooked it their whole life, and is prepared to deliver it in generous portions at a fashionable price. Add to that the rise in popularity of food trekking, blogging driven through social media, a melding of cultures, and a millennial generation that wants to get off the beaten track to engage with locals and voila - street food revolution."

Besides 'Chef entrepreneurs - the secret of success', the F&B themed discussions at the Vision Conference include 'Food as a feeling: trendsetting in the GCC, reinventing classics and loving food', 'Trends in kitchen and eating spaces - reviving your concept for improved performance' and 'The casual revolution: street food, sharing caring, grab and go, menu engineering for new trends and improving revenue performance along the way'.

Find out more and register to attend The Hotel Show Dubai 2016 (17-19 September 2016, Dubai World Trade Centre) and its Vision Conference for free at: www.thehotelshow.com

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Publication:Hotelier Middle East
Geographic Code:7UNIT
Date:Sep 15, 2016
Words:680
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