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Ari

SoBe Wine and Food Festival

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The South Beach Wine and Food Festival is coming up at the end of February. Has anybody been before? Anybody planning on going this year? They've increased the ticket prices, apparently because too many people came last year. The ads make it look like a convergence of FoodTV celebrities. I'm wondering whether it's worth attending and if so, what one should expect to find there.

Here's the festival website.


Edited by Ari (log)

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Made plans to visit Miami Beach weeks ago, (used to live there) and just heard SoBe Wine & Food fest is going on at same time.

I may look up some old contacts to see if I can wangle my way in, but yeah those prices are ourageous!

If I do attend, be sure I shall return with a full report!

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I went the first year (when I could still get comped tickets) and I enjoyed it. However, towards the end of the day, my girlfriend and I looked around the tent and saw how packed it had become. We knew there would be problems with overcrowding and sure enough, the following year and last year, the crowds were onerous. I heard stories of wine and food stations running out, people getting food and drinks spilled on them, etc. Apparently this year the crowd will be thinned down and the prices hiked.

What you can expect is a very large tent on the sand in South Beach. Local S. FLA restaurants will give out small tastings of their items. I remember when I went, Wish handed out a mini tuna tartare with a shot of blood orange mojito (this was about 3 years ago when these items were still cool). There is a large stage set against one wall of the tent where the celeb-chefs do their demos. It's a good time, especially if the crowd control issue is taken care of. That's the only reason we haven't gone to the last 2 events.

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I've been the last two years and reported on the fest for egullet; here are links to those reports.

2003 Report

2004 Report

I agree, it's just too crowded. I was planning to go just one day this year, Saturday, but the tickets I have are for Sunday. Anyone want to switch?

Neil


Author of the Mahu series of mystery novels set in Hawaii.

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Any members attend?

Everyone behave themselves?

I can only imagine with todays panel.

Looking forward to some warm yummy info,

from a chilly gal up north.

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I wasn't able to make it to the Food Fest this weekend, but here's a report from the Miami Herald on what went on. One of the questions that was answered was "Who has the best balls in town?" (meatballs, that is.)

Neil


Author of the Mahu series of mystery novels set in Hawaii.

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I attended on Saturday and had a great time at the cooking demonstrations. I thought the grand tasting was less successful. The venue felt a little like a state fair, while the cuisine strove for fine dining. There was a good deal of elbowing to get to the scallops (or the gazpacho, or filet, or what have you).

The chefs' demos, on the other hand, were fabulous. Chatty, fun, and a good dose of celebrity for all. I took the opportunity to do a story about the phenomenon of celebrity chefs (for which I chatted with Steve Klc, who was very helpful).

Unfortunately, it was one of the rare weekends when the weather in SoBe was not perfect. Rainclouds threatened for most of the weekend, and apparently some of the outdoor VIP dinners were actually rained on.

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