Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach
The Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by FOOD & WINE presents some of the top food and wine experts in the world, including Food Network TV personalities February 19 – 22, 2015. Among the highlights of the four-day food and wine festival are wine tastings, gourmet dinners, seminars, cooking demonstrations, tributes and the Food Network Awards Show. Past rosters for the Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival feature such names as Emeril Lagasse, Bobby Flay, Rachael Ray, Martha Stewart and Guy Fieri.
Hosted by Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida and Florida International University (FIU), the Festival benefits FIU’s Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management and the Southern Wine & Spirits Beverage Management Center. To date, the Festival has raised more than $18 million for the School.
Widely recognized as America’s most prestigious gourmet gathering, the festival began as a one-day festival known as the Florida Extravaganza held at FIU’s Biscayne Bay Campus. For five years, from 1997-2001, the Florida Extravaganza showcased wines from national and international wineries paired with food from local restaurants and chefs working with students of FIU’s School of Hospitality & Tourism Management. In 2002, Lee Brian Schrager, then director of Special Events and Media Relations at Southern Wine & Spirits of America, took the reigns of the one-day festival and brought his vision for the festival to life by relocating it to South Beach. The renamed South Beach Wine & Food Festival® attracted close to 7,000 guests to a series of dinners, seminars, a Grand Tasting Village and live Auction in its first year. The following year, the Festival grew, attracting close to 10,000 people and garnered extensive national media coverage. In 2004, with the addition of a number of events and a revamping of the program, the Festival doubled in size and attracted more than 20,000 guests to the three-day event.
In 2006, the South Beach Wine & Food Festival celebrated its fifth anniversary and became one of the largest and most well-known festivals of its kind in the country. During the planning of the 2007 Festival, Food Network entered into a partnership with the South Beach Wine & Food Festival to become its title sponsor. The resulting Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by FOOD & WINE combined the international appeal of top-quality libations from around the world, the national appeal of Food Network and its celebrity chefs and hosts, and the appeal of Latin and Caribbean-inspired regional cuisine.
The 2008 and 2009 Festivals each attracted close to 50,000 guests over four days and garnered an unprecedented amount of media coverage. The Festival earned more than one billion media impressions in both years through its integrated marketing and public relations plan.
The 2010 Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by FOOD & WINE welcomed over 50,000 wine and food lovers and paid respects to Daniel Boulud at its annual Tribute Dinner. The Festival raised more than $2.2 million for beneficiary, FIU’s School of Hospitality & Tourism Management.
In 2013 the Festival broke three of its own records, with attendance growing to over 65,000, bringing in more than $5.1 million in ticket sales and exceeding $4.1 million in sponsorship sales.
With over 60 events to choose from during the four-day festivities, you’ll surely be busy wining and dining. Choose from seminars, intimate dinners, late-night parties and grand tastings. Events not to miss include the Oyster Bash, which feature delicious delicacies from the sea paired with a great selection of wines. Be among over 25 of the country’s top burger maestros at The Amstel Light Burger Bash hosted by Rachel Ray. It’s a cook off where you get to decided who will take home the year’s coveted Amstel Light People’s Choice Award. Enjoy many of the best burger recipes and refreshing Amstel Light Lager beer at this popular event.
Love brunch? You’re in luck. There are multiple brunch events hosted by top Food Network TV stars, including the Table Brunch hosted by Geoffrey Zakarian and the Southern Kitchen Bruch hosted by Trisha Yearwood. Think, fried chicken and waffles, crawfish grits and warm apple pies.
If you plan to go out with a bang this year, attend the Whole Foods Market grand Tasting Village. Enjoy a little bit of everything under the MasterCard Grand Tasting Tents on the beach at the Whole Foods Market Grand Tasting Village. Sample bold cuisine, stylish wines and carefully creative spirits with your toes in the sand as you enjoy the sound of the ocean. From 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. catch all of your favorite Food Network & Cooking Channel chefs, authors and culinary personalities in their own 45-minute segments on the KitchenAid® Culinary Demonstration stages. Afterward, meet your fave personalities at the Food Network Book Signing Tents with on-site retailer Books & Books selling these superstars’ latest cookbooks.
It is no surprise that tickets to the events throughout the festival weekend are a hot commodity, with many of them selling out before the event date. Tickets go on sale generally at the end of October of the previous year. MasterCard cardholders can enjoy special presale access to tickets at the beginning of October of the previous year.
If you’re still in luck and tickets are available you may purchase tickets until 3 p.m. on the day prior to an event at sobefest.com or by phone at 877-762-3933. The festival’s box office at 13th Street and Ocean Drive is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day of the festival.
For more on events, hosts, ticket prices and more visit sobefest.com