Ten Strangest Things at the South Beach Wine and Food Fest
Hey, Tony. Why so angry?
All photos by Laine Doss
The South Beach Wine & Food Festival wrapped up yesterday after a four-day whirlwind of dinners, brunches, parties, cocktails, and events.
Each year we're delighted by the food, impressed by the cocktails, and amazed by the sheer number of celebrities that come to Miami to party and mingle.
During such a week, we're bound to experience events that astound even us.
In the past years we've seen Paula Deen's pants fall down and Spike Mendelsohn dress up as a burger thief. This year gave us a few surprise moments, too.
Join us as we count down our ten favorite moments of weirdness at the 2012 SoBe Wine & Food Festival.
10. David Burke sets off the alarms at Dining in the Dark
David Burke had every good intention of surprising guests at the Dining in the Dark dinner at the Perry South Beach hotel on Thursday by using fire to torch one of his courses. Unfortunately, the chef set off the fire alarm strobes in the process. A source at the dinner tells us that most of the diners thought it was an interactive part of the evening until they were ushered out of the room. After waiting about twenty minutes, the diners were escorted back in, the lights were turned out, and the dinner resumed.
9. Robert Irvine makes ceviche ... topless.
At Friday's Party Impossible event at 1111 Lincoln Road, Food Network star Robert Irvine was given crazy challenges to perform. One of the challenges involved making ceviche, using ingredients hidden in a carnival dunk tank. Thinking there was water in the tank, Irvine stripped off his t-shirt to dive in -- only to find plastic balls instead of water. With the clock counting down, Irvine decided to finish the challenge sans shirt. We're just glad the challenge didn't involve frying bacon.
8. Sunny Anderson gets wiggy at the Best Thing I Ever Ate.
Sunny Anderson was hanging out with fans in front of the Sonic booth at Saturday's Best Thing I Ever Ate party. After a fan said she loved Anderson's hair, she admitted that it's a wig, adding that her natural hair is almost a military-length crewcut. The only time she leaves the house without a wig? A day at the beach!
7. Bethenny Frankel talks penis and vibrators.
The reality television star-turned-spirits mogul once again shared too much information with her screaming adoring fans, who drank up each word like it was a Skinnygirl Margarita. First off, Bethenny told everyone that husband Jason Hoppy does not actually have cobwebs on his penis (referencing a sound bite overplayed by Bravo Television). Then the entrepreneur shared her latest invention idea -- a combination hand blender vibrator. Though she promises she would never use the gadget on baby daughter Bryn's food. It would be strictly to make guacamole. Talk about a party in your pants!
6. Garlic in the goodie bag?
Everyone loves a good freebie, but some of the items and giveaways were (ahem)...unusual to say the least. While we loved the wine glass holders provided by Bing and the little bags of Jelly Bellies being handed out, we were a little surprised to be offered some bulbs of garlic from our friends at Barilla as we left the Grand Tasting Village. A perfect gift to ward off any vampires we may encounter in the parking garage, but a strange offering, nonetheless.
5. Third time's a charm for Michael Symon.
Even Rachael Ray was surprised as she announced that the winner of the 2012 Burger Bash was Michael Symon. Again. For a third time. The eternally-smiling chef claimed his giant check and trophy for his B Spot's porky burger, a pork and bacon burger topped with pulled pork. Seems like Symon's gettin' piggy with it, once again!
4. Countess LuAnne can't identify her kitchen gadget.
Real Housewife LuAnne de Lesseps, better known as the Countess, conducts a cooking demo at the Grand Tasting Village, opposite Paula Deen. We know that you can't have two mega-watt celebs back-to-back, but the fun was clearly in the adjoining tent. As the Countess tried to get everyone to join her in a rousing chorus of her painful disco song, Chic C'est La Vie, she picked up a citrus reamer to juice some lemons for her chicken and admitted she never saw such a clever gadget. "It's a citrus reamer", someone helpfully pointed out, as people filed out of the demo early. Overhead by the crowd, "Is this a joke?" In the Countess' own words, C'est la vie!
3. Martha Stewart impressed by Hanley Ramirez's watch.
At the Saturday evening Diamond Dishes event, Martha Stewart walked the bases, enjoying the cool weather and good food provided by some of Miami's best chefs. As Martha stepped into the Marlins' dugout, which was converted into a VIP section, she caught sight of Hanley Ramirez's watch. This giant blinged out piece of finery impressed even Martha, who had to snap a picture.
2. Paula Deen feels up Robert Irvine, kisses Bobby Flay, makes dick joke, and reveals bra size.
Paula Deen may be nicknamed "The Lady", but the tramp side of her was out in full force at her cooking demo at Sunday's Grand Tasting Village. First, she broke the ice with the standing-room-only crowd by telling the story of husband Michael Groover's trip to the dentist. Seems as though Groover is afraid of needles so before pulling a tooth, the doc prescribed Viagra. Viagra? The doc replied, "Yes. Because when I yank this sucker out, you're going to need something to hold onto" (cue rim shot sound effects).
We also learned Deen's bra size (36 Long) before pal Robert Irvine came out for his annual fondling. But wait! There's more. Deen also gave Bobby Flay some tongue before making fun of his skinny legs.Not quite on par with her britches falling down, but a good enough show for Deen to make our list.
1. Anthony Bourdain rides Paula Deen -- verbally.
It's no secret that Anthony Bourdain is not a fan of Paula Deen. In fact, it's safe to say that everyone was waiting for the inevitable question about Deen during Bourdain's Q&A session that closed out Sunday's GTV. Bourdain, however, answered the question via a plant in the audience. "How can you make fun of that nice old lady when you smoke cigarettes on television?" chef Eddie Huang of New York's Baohaus asks Bourdain.
Bourdain replies. "Because I wasn't selling you motherf**king cigarettes. You don't go to five or six casinos around the world and find a Tony Bourdain smoking section. I didn't sell smoking Tony dolls to your kids. When I found a spot on my lung I didn't wait three years so I could get a deal selling you the patch. Thank you for asking that, young man, because I was just thinking about that".
Bonus: Emeril calls bullshit on live radio, drops F-bombs all morning.
During the Paul and Young Ron Celebrity Cook-Off on Friday morning, Emeril Lagasse and Guy Fieri were pitted against each other in a cook-off that was aired live on Big 105.9's radio show.The two Food Network chefs were tasked to cook a meal in 30 minutes using ostrich meat and other ingredients. Emeril was dropping F-bombs all morning before the show went live ... but you know what happens once you get into full-curse mode.
When judges Geoffrey Zakarian, Nadia G., and Ralph Pagano named Guy Fieri's team the winner for an ostrich saltimbocca, Emeril cried out, "This is bullshit" into his live mike during a live broadcast. Shit, by the way, is one of the infamous "seven dirty words" that the FCC won't let you say on the air. On the bright side, no F-bombs made it on the air.
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to Miami dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.
More Food & Drink News
- 20 Miami Restaurants to Watch This Year
Sat., Nov. 7, 7:00pm
Fri., Nov. 13, 7:00pm
Thu., Dec. 3, 6:30pm
Fri., Dec. 11, 6:30pm
- Schnitzel Haus Serves Up a Traditional Oktoberfest Experience
- Changes Afoot at Michael Schwartz's Cypress Room Following Kitchen Exodus