INDUSTRY EXPERTS

CHEF STEFAN BORCHARDT

Head Chef, Jumeirah Restaurant Group

Chef Stefan has a driving passion that has steered the culinary direction of Asian soul food The Noodle House is renowned for. His passion has seen Chef Stefan undertake a tour of Asia with his team to delve deep into the Asian street food aNd explore new ingredients that can be incorporated into the Noodle House’s menu, while respecting UAE diners taste palates and preferences. When he’s not menu planning, training or mentoring young talent in the kitchen, he enjoys discovering new sustainable products for guests, and has championed plastic-free delivery packaging for the brand and other sustainable initiatives that have been implemented in The Noodle House during the past few years.

LALAINE CHU-BENITEZ

Founder and Managing Director, Illustrado FZ LLC

Marketing pro for 16 years and entrepreneur for 12, Lalaine has been instrumental in helping build quite a few multinational and local brands in the region - first from the corporate side as a client, then, as agency lead.  As an entrepreneur who has co-founded Illustrado/CREO, as well as up and coming tech startup Gver - Your Friendly Marketplace for Sharing, Lalaine brings skills, hardcore experience and market understanding that transcend marketing strategy and communications, providing invaluable business insights to help brands and companies grow.  

CHEF ANDY CUTHBERT

GM of Jumeirah Creekside Hotel

Chairman of Emirates Culinary Guild and World Association of Chefs Societies

Andy joined the Emirates Culinary Guild in 1992 and for the last twelve years he has been its Chairman, Emirates Culinary Guild is responsible for uniting and uplifting thousands of chefs working in the UAE, improved the culinary standards of the UAE to such an extent that it breaks world records, sweeps culinary Olympic medals, brings home medals from all major chefs competitions around the world and organises the biggest Chef competitions in the region such as Emirates Salon Culinaire and Sial Middle East.


Andy is also the Chairman of the World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS) Young Chef Development team where he and his team of senior Chefs and young ambassadors spread across the planet are working hard at ensuring that global culinary standards are maintained and enhanced through the training and development of young chefs around the
world. 
His current employer is Dubai's Jumeirah Group where he is General Manager at Jumeirah Creekside Hotel and at the Madinat Jumeirah in charge of conference and events and Jumeirah Hospitality division of the group. His multifarious duties include catering outdoor events (usually in the middle of nowhere) for 5,000 covers. Andy has been recognized as the Winner of the Caterer Award ‘Events Caterer of the Year 2012 and Time Out Dubai 2013 ‘Outstanding Contribution to the Industry’.

JOVY TUAÑO

Executive Director, Filfood

Jovy Tuano is a thought leader in business ecosytem and an industrial entrepreneur with over 25 years of combined business experience in food & beverage industry, travel, finance, hospitality and real estate projects.

He is the CEO of Asia Gulf Companies and co-founder of Philippine Business Councils of Abu Dhabi and Dubai in the early 2000 after working with a 5-Star Airline in the Gulf. Jovy Tuano started his carrier in 1984 as a CPA at SGV&Co, now affiliated with Ernst & Young.

CHEF ENRIQUE SUAREZ

Executive Chef, Foodmark

Max's Restaurant & Carluccio's

An Executive Chef with 2 decades of successful experience. Highly adaptable and accomplished in all cuisine types including Italian, Thai, Chinese, japanese, Indian, French and Filipino. Possesses proven versatility with experience in hotels, independent restaurants, off site catering, store fronts and manufacturing. Experienced in operating food and beverage establishments in UAE, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Muscat, Egypt and the United Kingdom.

ALI AL RAIS

CEO of Al Rais Enterprise Group

 

With over 30 years of experience in diversified industries from aviation to food and consumer goods, Mr. Ali Al Rais is a transformation catalyst and reliable local partner for any company who would like to start up, accelerate or expand their business operations in the Middle East region. As the CEO of Alrais Enterprises Group (AEG), he successfully integrated the products and services
of his various enterprises into a strong value chain that enable business units to function simpler, faster and better. He operates Arabian Tea House, an authentic chain of Emirati restaurants and tea houses in Dubai, that has become a must-try dining experience for local residents and tourists from
around the world.

MARIA CELESTE (BOBBIE) CARELLA

Chairman of the Philippine Business Council Dubai