Large turnout at inaugural Tinian beef and beer festival

Posted on Aug 18 2021

The inaugural Beef, Beer, and Bands Festival on Tinian over the weekend saw many people walking away as raffle winners, with two people named winners of a Tinian Top Chef competition and a Bento Box competition.

According to BBB event coordinator Joseph Hocog yesterday, the three-day festival saw a high turnout, with a good number of visitors from Saipan, Rota, and Guam flying over for the event. Hocog said that official numbers will be made known sometime later.

With cattle donated to the festival by the Tinian Cattlemen’s Association, a grand prize of a bullock, or ox and a baby grand prize of a heifer, or a young female calf, were raffled off on Sunday. Tinian resident Jerica Aldan won the bullock, while fellow Tinian resident “M. Cruz, Jr.” won the heifer.

For the cooking competitions, there was the Tinian Top Chef—which followed a format similar to the popular cooking competition Iron Chef—and the Bento Box competition, which judged competitors on the overall tastes of their bentos.

The main ingredient that all chefs were required to use in their dishes was fresh, grass-fed Tinian beef. Three chefs from Saipan—Samson Tan, Laxmi Shrestha from Everest Kitchen, and Sonnie Sablan from Yna’s Kitchen—were invited to participate in the competition.

Winning this year’s competition—and walking away with a trophy, $1,000, and automatic entry into next year’s Tinian Top Chef—was Tan, who prepared for the judges a “French-Chamorro fusion” dish that was paired with a glass of Cabernet wine and featured tender beef, broth, and cream sauce.

Seven local Tinian vendors were invited to compete in the Bento Box competition, and were required to make bento boxes consisting of multiple appetizers using fresh, grass-fed Tinian beef. Winning the event was vendor 6PAC, who were also given multiple awards in various categories: Best in Soup, Best in Dried Meat, Best in Stew, and Best in Kelaguen.

Hocog said the goal is for BBB to be held annually, and to be another event for visitors to Tinian to look forward to, alongside the Annual Tinian Hot Pepper Festival, better known as the “Pika Fest.”

Joshua Santos | Reporter
Joshua Santos is a Mount Carmel School AlumKnight and University of Florida Gator Grad with a passion for writing. He is one of Saipan Tribune’s newest reporters. Josh enjoys golf, chess, and playing video games with friends in his spare time. Reach out to him @rarebasedjosh on all socials.
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