Tuesday, March 14 | 11:00am - 5:00pm
Wednesday, March 15 | 9:30am - 3:00pm
Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
You'll walk away with hundreds of ideas from our award-winning tradeshow at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans. Packed with more than 400 exhibitor booths you'll explore trending foods, inventive techniques, interactive demos, creative products, and new services that will inspire you to truly differentiate and stay ahead of your competition.
400+ companies will be on the show floor, introducing you to thousands of products and services that will help you grow, maintain, and exemplify your business in 2017 and beyond. Connecting with these exhibitors at the tradeshow will give you access to exclusive discounts, giveaways, and 1-on-1 advice you can't get anywhere else!
Don't miss the non-stop excitement on the tradeshow floor! Cheer on your favorite competitors in these thrilling contests on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Rapid Recipe Challenge
Wednesday, March 15 | 10:00am - 2:00pm | Culinary Competition Arena
Inspired by Top Chef's Quickfire Challenge, watch as these talented chefs compete in a heated rivalry. Contestants will be given a covert list of food items and then will have just minutes to prepare and present their catering creation. Cheer on your favorite chef as a team of experts decides who is named the Rapid Recipe Champion.
Diced Culinary Competition
Tuesday, March 14 | 11:30am - 1:30pm | Culinary Competition Arena
Armed with a mystery basket of ingredients, six creative and highly skilled chef teams will face off in a culinary competition not to be missed! Assigned a specific dish, each team has thirty minutes to complete their dish and submit for judging. Watch as our panel of noteworthy judges tastes each dish and declares a winner.
Out of the Box Lunch Contest
Tuesday, March 14 | 2:30pm - 4:00pm | Culinary Competition Arena
Anchor Packaging presents the Out of the Box Lunch Contest LIVE! Tuesday on the Tradeshow floor! This new and exciting competition will include live demonstrations by competitors utilizing Anchor Packaging products. A three-judge panel will select the winner of the $1000 prize whose creativity is at the forefront, taking food design Out of the Box! Learn more.
My Favorite Things
Wednesday, March 15 | 9:00am - 10:00am | Founder's Stage
Grab your morning coffee and hightail it to the Headliner Stage to see Sasha Souza, Emily Ellyn, and Jack Milan present their favorite things! This lively and skilled trio has carefully selected products to give you a leg up in 2017 with creative presentations for wedding, event, and culinary displays. These are products you want on your radar! The first 400 guests* will receive a swag bag filled with valuable gifts, including products on the tradeshow Floor.
*Pick up your swag bag ticket at the Info Booth on Sunday or Monday and join us on the tradeshow floor for this exciting and on-trend presentation.
Catersource Cocktail Competition
Wednesday, March 15 | 1:30pm - 3:00pm
Who can put together the best “bar program” in this fast and fun cocktail competition? Head over to the Founder’s Stage on the tradeshow floor Wednesday afternoon to cheer on your favorite caterer, “masquerading” as a bartender for just one day!
Prior to the competition, each contestant will be asked to select their best three cocktails, one from each of the following spirit categories, for a three-round winner-take-all competition.
Best of all, recipes will be provided for those attending and cheering on the competitors. Take these recipes back to your city and wow your clients—your cocktail program R&D is done for the year!
ROUND ONE: RUM
Tick Tock—it’s TIKI!
With a nod to native of New Orleans and father of the Tiki drink, Don the Beachcomber, our contestant bartenders will attempt to dazzle the judges with their best tiki libation. Is it Nordic tiki? Caribbean tiki? Good ‘ol NOLA tiki? So many options! Bonus points for best garnish.
ROUND TWO: VODKA
Hello bartenders. It’s me, Vodka. I pay the bills.
Gin might be on the rise and bourbon might be the tall, dark, and handsome of the spirit world, but vodka accounts for over 32% of liquor sales. In this freeform competition, bartenders will be tasked with creating a signature drink that speaks to a wide variety of imbibers.
ROUND THREE: BOURBON
I like my kitchen neat…just like my bourbon.
Well, we won’t go that simple in this final round, but will be looking at the spirit-forward goodness of a unpretentious but exquisitely crafted bourbon cocktail.
The winner will take home a beautiful trophy, a $500 check, and bragging rights!
Founder's Stage, honoring Catersource founder Michael Roman
New to the tradeshow floor, the Founder's Stage will feature an exciting lineup of notable chefs and designers. From butchery to BBQ, and lots in beteween, these action-packed sessions will be fun, lively, and educational.
The Tasting Bar
Your taste buds will be tingling with anticipation when you “belly up” to the tasting bar. Taste ancient grains, olives, craft beers, and join us for a closing Cocktail Competition on Wednesday afternoon! Each session is limited to 50 "tasters", so get to this stage early.
Deepen your understanding of business operations and processes with workshops, power panels, and thought-provoking sessions geared to introduce you to how others in the industry are overcoming obstacles in their markets effectively and turn a larger profit or possibly grow your business.
Hands-on Demo Arena
Get hands on in the interactive demo arena and get familiar with new service styles, plate-up ideas, design techniques, and more. These interactive sessions are limited, so get there early to participate, or you can grab a seat and watch the demonstrations from a bird's eye view!