Nearly 100 journalists, sponsors, and other industry types attended a private welcome brunch at The Betsy Hotel's rooftop this morning to kick-off the South Beach Wine & Food Festival and, lo and behold, there was Daniel Boulud mixing amongst the common folk.
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Guests dined on glossy pastries, fresh cut fruit, illy espressos prepared by their U.S. master barista, and yogurt parfaits, as Lee Brian Schrager, the sponsor of the event, announced that the Festival has racked in record sales despite economic challenges. It took longer to sell this year's tickets, he admitted, but nearly 50,000 went into the hands of hungry attendees.
As Schrager introduced Boulud, he also mentioned that tickets to the Tap Tap dinner benefiting Haiti (which was admittedly thrown together at the last minute) sold out in about one hour. Boulud, along with Chefs Masaharu Morimoto, Kris Wessel, and Jose Garces contributed their culinary talents for that event.