Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Gonzalez

Eduardo Gonzalez

Executive Chef, Grupo Alta

Chef Eduardo Gonzalez leads culinary operations at Casa Palopó. As Executive Chef, he oversees menu development and food & beverage programming to enhance the overall gastronomic experience at Guatemala's first and only Relais & Chateaux property.

Chef Gonzalez is locally renowned for his role in the television program "Flavors of my Land," in which he and his co-host focused on ingredients native to Guatemala. He is currently the host of "A Menu for All," a daily cooking program that features simple recipes and techniques for the at-home cook.

The son of a farmer, Chef Gonzalez spent his childhood lending a hand at his father's fincas, where he developed a love for the land. He studied agronomy, intrigued by the process of crop production. Today, Chef Gonzalez's 23 years of experience include restaurant openings, internships at Michelin-star restaurants and culinary school instructor, always leading with his passion for locally grown ingredients and traditional recipes.

He brings this approach to Casa Palopó, where newly launched menus feature dishes such as Pepían, a spicy stew that's recognized as the national dish, as well as Trucha Asalmonada, a fresh local trout filet in orange sauce, roasted coriander seed and cilantro sauce served with sauteed spinach and sweet potato puree, among other dishes to satisfy every palate. The new menus also zero in on local herbs and ingredients like vanilla and cacao native to Guatemala.

Chef Gonzalez arrives at Casa Palopó on the heels of a highly anticipated property expansion. Last year, the hotel debuted six brand new rooms and suites inspired by local artisans. The new food and beverage menus and culinary programming will continue to elevate the guest experience at Casa Palopó, while raising curiosity toward Guatemala's emerging food culture.

Please visit http://www.casapalopo.com for more information.

Mr. Gonzalez can be contacted at +502 77622270 or egonzalez@grupoalta.com

Coming up in August 2020...

Food & Beverage: New Technological Innovations

In the past few years, hotel food and beverage departments have experienced significant growth. Managers are realizing just how much revenue potential this sector holds, both in terms of additional revenue and as a means to enhance the guest experience. As a result, substantial investments are being made in F&B operations as a way to satisfy hotel guests but also to keep pace with the competition. Though it has been a trend for many years, the Farm-to-Table movement shows no signs of abating. Hotel chains are abandoning corporate restaurants and are instead partnering with local chefs to create locally-influenced dining options. Local, farm-sourced ingredients paired with specialty beverages or local wine also satisfies the increasing demand from Millennial travelers who are eager to travel sustainably and contribute to a positive impact. A farm-to-table F&B program also helps to support the local economy, which builds community goodwill. Also popular are "Self-Serv" and "Grab & Go" options. These concepts stem from an awareness that a guest's time is limited and if a hotel can supply them with fast, fresh, food and beverage choices, then so much the better for them. Plus, by placing these specialty kiosks in areas that might be traditionally under-utilized (the lobby, for instance), they can become popular destination locations. Of course, there are new technological innovations as well. In-room, on-screen menus allow guests to order from any restaurant on the property, and some hotels are partnering with delivery companies that make it possible for guests to order food from any restaurant in the area. Also, many hotels are implementing in-room, voice-activated devices, so ordering food via an AI-powered assistant will soon become mainstream as well. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these developments and document what some leading hotels are doing to expand this area of their business.