By Dana Niland
Love mangos? It’s time to head to Saint Lucia — right now.
Mango Madness is returning to the island’s Anse Chastanet hotel from June 13-17.
The popular event celebrates the tropical fruit and treats guests to mango-themed activities designed to entertain and educate.
“We have mango trees in abundance across our organic Emerald Farm and will continue our annual celebration of this fascinating tropical fruit while we educate our guests and enhance their food and beverage experience at the resort,” said Karolin Troubetzkoy, Executive Director of Anse Chastanet.
One highlight amongst the five days of festivities includes a live, interactive cooking class that uses the fruit as the core ingredient.
Participants will learn to cook with mangos in the Chef de Cuisine’s special cooking class.
“There we will reveal the secrets of preserving the exotic flavor of mango while creating traditional chutney,” Troubetzkoy said.
As always, Junge Grill on Anse Mamin Beach will be available to delight visitors.
In keeping with the theme of the week, the grill will deliver an infusion of mango flavors in salads, fresh fish and homemade burgers.
Guests will also be invited to feast on a mango breakfast of exotic fruit, artisan cheeses and freshly brewed St. Lucian coffee and cocoa tea.
The evening will feature a five-course mango dinner, including a pairing matched to each dish.
In addition to cooking classes, experienced bartenders will teach the secrets behind mango mixology, featuring the Caribbean’s signature spirit– rum.
“Throughout mango season guests can experience our mango tasting menu, special mango cocktail list, fresh ripe and fresh green mango juices for breakfast and mango-infused spa treatments,” said Allen Susser, the resort’s James Beard Award-winning consulting chef.
Mangos will also be featured in various jams, jellies and chutneys that will be available in the restaurants and for sale in the boutiques.
During their stay at Anse Chastanet, travelers can stroll back in time with a tour of the historic Anse Mamin plantation, which began as a sugarcane plantation in the 18th century.
The area has now become home to cocoa plants and other produce, including mangos.
Festival attendees will also have the chance to learn more about the resort’s farm-to-table conceptual dining with a tour of the organic farm, which includes a variety of mango trees along with other locally-grown produce.
“For those who love mangos, this festival is a must,” Troubetzkoy said.