Every year, there is a culinary event I refuse to attend. It's called Feast With the Beasts and it is a fundraiser for Miami Metrozoo. As a rule, I'm not a fan of zoos or anywhere else animals are held in captivity. (Don't get me started on the aquatic hellhole that is the Miami Seaquarium.) Last week's tragic incident at SeaWorld Orlando further proved that these majestic animals belong in their natural habitats. So, no, you won't catch me anytime soon at the Miami Metrozoo -- unless it's for a protest rally.
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However, the idea of munching on mini Kobe beef sliders while watching lions and tigers pace uncomfortably in their pens is sickening to me. Tonight, at Feast With the Beasts, over 1,000 well-heeled Miami socialites will be supping on dishes from Azul, Caffe Abbracci, Ruth's Chris Steakhouse, Meat Market, Canyon Ranch and Sushi Samba. The juxtaposition between eating gourmet fare and viewing penned up giraffes is offensive.
Ironically, proceeds from the pricey soiree are said to support wildlife conservation and education. If they are so concerned with the welfare of the 2,000 animals imprisoned in Kendall, they shouldn't confine them and force the primates and other intelligent animals to entertain the Christian Louboutin-wearing crowd.
Adding to the spectacle tonight are fire breathers, belly dancers and "live animal encounters." Hmmm, all that beef from Meat Market might make the Bengal tigers very, very hungry. Don't say you weren't warned.