The Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by FOOD & WINE is a national, star-studded, four-day destination event showcasing the talents of the world’s most renowned wine and spirits producers, chefs and culinary personalities. 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 $22 million for the School.
Headed into its 15th year, the Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by FOOD & WINE 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 & media relations at Southern Wine & Spirits of America, took the reins 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® was held March 15 – 17, 2002 and attracted close to 7,000 guests to a series of dinners, seminars, a Grand Tasting Village and live Auction in its first year.
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 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.
In 2011, the Festival celebrated 10 years and released the Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival Cookbook: Recipes and Behind-the-Scenes Stories from America’s Hottest Chefs (Clarkson Potter), written by Lee Brian Schrager with Julie Mautner, featuring a foreword by Anthony Bourdain.
The Festival and Southern Wine & Spirits celebrated the opening of the Wine Spectator Restaurant Management Laboratory and Mel Dick Wine Tower at FIU, the state-of-the-art educational facility built as a result of the funds raised from the Festival over the years, during the 2014 Festival. The Festival now attracts more than 60,000 guests annually to its 75+ events throughout the weekend. Looking forward, the 15th annual Festival will take place February 24 – 28, 2016 and will once again feature internationally renowned talent and leaders of the hospitality industry at uniquely crafted events showcasing world-class wine, spirits, food, and fun.
Popular returning events for the 15th year include:
Wine Spectator Wine Seminars, highlighting Heitz Wine Cellars, Joseph Phelps Winery, Opus One Winery, Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, and more.
Bank of America Lifestyle Seminars
Paella & Tapas by the Pool hosted by José Andrés, featuring pours from Vibrant Rioja.
Tacos After Dark hosted by Aarón Sánchez
Oyster Bash hosted by Josh Capon, paired with samplings from HENRIOT Inc.
The Art of Tiki hosted by Guy Fieri
YogArt presents Buddhas & Bellinis, accompanied by Cavicchioli Prosecco.
Yappie Hour hosted by Rachael Ray, with sips from Chateau La Paws™ Wines.
Chicken Coupe hosted by Andrew Carmellini, including bubbles from Champagne Bligny, Pol Roger and more.
Goya Foods Swine & Wine hosted by Lorena Garcia, showcasing samplings from the Frederick Wildman and Sons, Ltd.
New Festival events in 2016 also include:
Grilled Cheese Happy Hour hosted by Laura Werlin & Ms. Cheezious
Midnight Breakfast hosted by Chrissy Teigen & Fireman Derek
Dessert Party hosted by Duff Goldman
Croquetamania hosted by Jean-Georges Vongerichten
Like Water for Chocolate Screening & Conversation with Screenwriter Laura Esquivel
Click HERE to get the tickets.