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Feel the Thrill of the Grill! Chefs from Benchmark Celebrate National Grilling Month

The Woodlands (Houston), Texas, June 26, 2017… It’s the season of smoking and searing, fire and spice, grillin’ and chillin’ and feeling the burn of homemade barbecue sauce passed down through ages of summer celebrations. The backyard grill is an American icon, honored each July by National Grilling Month. This year, 12 top chefs from the kitchens at Benchmark Resorts & Hotels and the Gemstone Collection, are getting their grill on with recipes that span the American culinary landscape from the East Coast all the way to the North Shore of Oahu.

These keepers of the culinary flame bring skill, imagination and a commitment to authenticity to the grill. Locally sourced meats, fish, poultry and vegetables sizzle over the coals, enhanced by each chef’s unique marinades, rubs and smoking techniques.

Local, all-American ingredients infuse these delicious grills - fresh Hawaiian pineapple, bourbon, ale, root beer, maple smoked salt, local wines and special regional seasonings that kick the flavor up a few fiery notches. The spices and sauces of Asia and the Caribbean add zest and depth.

These talented chefs’ recipes, presented here, span every region. Find Southern Comfort in Hickory Smoked Brisket from Tennessee, spark a ribeye with a Gewurztraminer from Washington’s wine country, grill a salmon steak from New York, put a new spin on barbecued chicken, and top succulent jumbo prawns with a Maui pineapple salsa.

National Grilling Month Ideas from Benchmark Resorts & Hotels properties:

Turtle Bay Resort, Oahu, HI

Asparagus Skewered Jumbo Prawns with Pineapple Avocado Salsa

By Chef Patrick Murakami


  •  6pcs U–10 Jumbo Prawns
  •   6pcs Large Asparagus
  •   4oz Kula Spring Mix or any greens available
  •   6-8 pcs Red and Yellow Grape Tomatoes
  •   2oz Thin Sliced Hearts of Palm

Seasoning for shrimp:

  •  1 tsp Rock Salt
  •  ½ tsp Fresh Garlic
  •  ¼ tsp Smoked Paprika
  •  ¼ tsp Black Pepper
  •  ¼ tsp Granulated Garlic


  • 1 oz Seared Maui Gold Pineapple
  • 1 oz Avocado
  •  ½ oz Red Onion
  •  ½ oz Green Bell Peppers
  •  ½ oz Red Bell Peppers
  •  Cilantro, lime, salt and pepper to taste


  • ½ cup red wine vinegar
  •  2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
  •  Salt and pepper and honey to Taste
  •  ½ cup peeled Papaya seeds
  •  1 ½ - 2 cups Olive Oil

Instructions for Dressing:

In a blender add vinegar, mustard and papaya puree and slowly add olive oil until mixture thickens.

 Add salt and pepper to taste.

Prawn Instructions:

Clean and devein Prawns.

 Make a hole near the back end and top of the Prawn and thread the Asparagus through both holes.

 Season Prawns with seasoning mixture and grill until they turn light pink.  Mix the salsa together and adjust seasoning to taste.

 Add all ingredients together on a large platter, place skewered prawns and top prawns with the Pineapple Avocado Salsa.

 Drizzle with Papaya Dijon Vinaigrette.

Grilling Instructions:

On low to medium heat, place prawns/asparagus directly on the grill for approximately 5-minutes on each side making sure not to burn the prawns.

Doral Arrowwood Resort, Rye Brook, NY

  • Sugar Maple Smoked Salt Grilled King Salmon Steak, Mango & House Grown Tomato Salsa - By Executive Chef Michael Schmutzer -

The Nautical Beachfront Resort, Lake Havasu City, AZ

  • Backyard BBQ Chicken - By Chef John Andreola -

The Inn at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

  • Pimento BBQ Chicken Sandwich with Avocado Aioli, Buttermilk Fried Shallots - By Sous Chef Trevor Henderson - For grilling recipe visit:

Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, Pigeon Forge, TN

  • Hickory Smoked Beef Brisket - By Chef Anthony Ploof - For grilling recipe visit:

Chaminade Resort & Spa, Santa Cruz, CA

  • Chef’s Grilled Ribeye- Chef Nicholas Church - For grilling recipe visit:

Cheyenne Mountain Resort and Country Club, Colorado Springs, CO

  • Grilled Marinated Babette of Beef - Chef Carlos L. Addarich, C.E.C - For grilling recipe visit:

Eaglewood Resort & Spa, Itasca, IL        

  • Prairie Supper Club Grilled Steak & Shrimp - By Chef John Billings CEC - For grilling recipe visit:

Lightburns at Stonewall Resort, Roanoke, WV

  • Burns Burger with Truffle Fries, Ground steak trio, with burger shallots, Nevil’s special sauce, smoked white cheddar, green leaf lettuce, pepperoncini, and house pickle - By Nevil Barr, Chef de Cuisine - For grilling recipe visit:

Willows Lodge, Woodinville, WA 

Grilled Rib Eye with Pickled Peaches and Gewurztraminer Vinaigrette - By Chef Bobby Moore -\                                                            

The Essex Resort & Spa, Burlington, VT

  • Rookie’s Root Beer BBQ Chicken Breast, Rookie’s Root Beer BBQ sauce, grilled chicken breast Roasted fingerling potatoes with fresh herbs, sautéed broccolini - By Chef Brandy J Allan -

Costa d’Este Beach Resort & Spa~The Wave Kitchen & Bar

  • Guava BBQ'ed Skirt Steak and Sweet Potatoes - By Chef Armando Galeas
    For grilling recipe visit:

Grilling Recipes Photography Link:

About Gemstone Collection

The Gemstone Collection includes distinctive hand-picked properties in spectacular and popular U.S. destinations coast to coast. Each upscale resort and hotel destination provides highly-personalized service and luxury reflective of the charm and unique character of the destination, while in keeping with the collection’s shared mission and passion for excellence.  A distinguished portfolio of BENCHMARK®, a global hospitality company, which has been a leading US-based hospitality management company for nearly 40 years, the Gemstone Collection is the preferred choice of guests who yearn for inspiring and transformative experiences, customization over conformity, stimulation over predictability, and adventure over routine. To become a fan on Facebook, visit, or follow us on Twitter at, on Instagram at, and on Pinterest at

About Benchmark Resorts & Hotels®

Benchmark Resorts & Hotels® features the finest in lodging, dining, recreational and meeting accommodations.  Featuring unique and distinctive properties renown for exceptional service and for creating unforgettable memory-making experiences, it is the signature portfolio of BENCHMARK®, a global hospitality company, which has been a leading US-based hospitality management company for nearly 40 years.  Many Benchmark Resort & Hotels' properties are certified by IACC, the association that represents the finest meeting venues and services globally, and many have also been recognized with the coveted 


Ken Ellens
Ken Ellens Communications
Phone: 201-758-2864