Get ready for the world renowned South Beach Wine & Food Festival Presented by Food. The 14th annual Festival, takes place February 19-22, 2015, and consists of more than 75 different events to ensure that you will find the perfect fit for even the most discerning taste buds this holiday season. All proceeds from the Festival benefit the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management’s Wine Spectator Restaurant Management Laboratory and Southern Wine & Spirits Beverage Management Center at Florida International University (FIU).
For the social media socialite: The Festival’s signature white tents on the beach are the perfect place for that person in your life who has to try everything on the menu – and then post it! The Whole Foods Market Grand Tasting Village featuring MasterCard Grand Tasting Tents & KitchenAid® Culinary Demonstrations features seemingly endless tastings from South Florida’s hottest restaurants and the latest wine and spirits tastings from brands carried by Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida. Undergoing a major refresh for 2015, this event will feature several upgrades including: the inaugural class of Culinary Captains – chefs representing different neighborhoods of South Florida and cohorts of chefs from those areas – plus, more seating and shade options, live music and DJs, free park-and-ride opportunities, and KitchenAid® Culinary Demonstrations from everyone’s favorite Food Network and Cooking Channel personalities.
For the grillmaster: Take your favorite carnivore king to Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino’s Meatopia: The Q Revolution presented by Creekstone Farms hosted by Guy Fieri curated by Josh Ozersky – the Festival’s iconic celebration of all things grilled, braised and barbecued! During what has been called “a meat-lover’s paradise” by New York Magazine and a “bacchanal of pork, beef, lamb, chicken, duck, turkey, and quail” by The New York Times, chefs celebrate the whole animal with their all-wood-fired custom dishes that are created just for this event. Sip on an incredible array of bourbons like Knob Creek, Basil Hayden, Jim Beam and Makers Mark, and enjoy a special musical performance as Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino presents the Blues Traveler live on stage. A band that has learned to be ever-changing, while sticking to the roots of who they are, in 2014, Blues Traveler celebrated the 20th anniversary of their Grammy and will perform memorable and classic hits.
For the paw-perfect pooch: Treat your favorite four-legged friend to the Festival’s very first Yappie Hour presented by BarkBox hosted by Rachael Ray! Enjoy a bayside view while sipping on signature drinks and bites, as your best friend engages in interactive activities courtesy of BarkBox and treats from Ray’s line of pet food, Nutrish®.
For the cocktail connoisseur: The Festival celebrates the latest trend in mixology at this brand new event The Art of Tiki: A Cocktail Showdown presented by The Captain Morgan Rum Company hosted by Emeril Lagasse. One of the world’s foremost mixologists, Francesco Lafranconi, who also serves as the Executive Director of Mixology and Spirits Educator for Southern Wine & Spirits of Nevada, has rounded up some of the best tiki-maestros from across America for the Festival’s first cocktail competition judged by culinary royalty Emeril Lagasse, Jeff Barry of Beachbum Barry’s Latitude 29 (New Orleans, LA) and Martin Cate of Smuggler’s Cove (San Francisco, CA).
For the sweet tooth: There are two options to take on a sugar rush during this year’s Festival and both are certain to be a sweet indulgence! First, Frost: A Sprinkles Wonderland hosted by Candace Nelson, who opened the world’s first cupcake bakery and is a judge on Food Network’s Cupcake Wars, will showcase her famous cupcake creations and exclusive line of Sprinkles Ice Cream, cookies and more. Second, the Festival is also pleased to highlight the one and only Cronut™ creator at Death by Chocolate: A Dessert Party hosted by Dominique Ansel. The highly regarded Fresh pastry chef and owner of Dominique Ansel Bakery has rounded up some of his acclaimed colleagues for a late-night poolside soirée that promises to be both dramatic and delicious.
For the bubbly enthusiast: For those who like comfort classics with a twist of sophistication, Chicken Coupe hosted by Andrew Carmellini is the perfect gift. This perfect pairing of birds and bubbly celebrates America’s culinary fascination with fried chicken and comfort-food sides, accompanied by everyone’s favorite Champagne houses including Château de Bligny, G.H, Mumm, Henriot, Moët & Chandon, Nicolas Feuillatte, Pol Roger and Vueve Clicquot. A walk-around tasting featuring classic recipes and unique twists, this event is the real-life celebration of Festival Founder and Director Lee Brian Schrager’s latest cookbook Fried & True: More Than 50 Recipes For America’s Best Fried Chicken & Sides (Clarkson Potter, May 2014).
Tickets to these events and more are available online at www.sobefest.com or by calling 877.762.3933 (phone sales open Monday – Friday, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM EST)