South Beach Wine & Food Festival

SoBeWFF: Why We Heart Symon's BBQ & The Blues

The grub and the booze lasted all night long, and that's why we loved

Thrillist's BBQ & The Blues last night. There was no line to get

in, simply present your ticket and boom, welcome to the party (Burger

Bash snaked around for what seemed like miles, a pissed out man behind

us commented, "if the line is this long just to get in, they must be

doing something wrong." Natch).

Festival operations give each chef an idea of how many portion sizes to prepare for any given event, but when we asked around the resulting response was less than happy. Several mentioned the failure to provide correct estimate for events like Best of the Best for example, where the oncoming onslaught of hungry festival-goers wiped out entire tables halfway into the event. Are tickets oversold for these things? It's hard to say, but sometimes it does seems like the spaces are unable to accommodate the many, many, bodies crammed in.

Since this event did not seem to be over-ticketed, for once, there was plenty of room for the amount of people attending; meaning no pushy crowds. Everyone was in a damn good mood as a result, they came, they ate, they drank, they danced. Diablo Dimes & the Bloodhounds provided a mix of classic American ragtime and Dixieland blues, harmonica and kazoo included. (And when was

the last time you saw someone really go to town on a kazoo?)

Michael Symon did admit that the surrounding barbecue on offer wasn't necessarily "good for his girlish figure," and apparently he almost named one of his restaurants "Meat Market." Since the Eden Roc played host, 1500° had to really bring it, and chef Paula DaSilva's gorgeous suckling pig was the star of the show. The event was an extravaganza of smoky pork and beef, and the restaurants in attendance were local all the way around: Hogzilla, Sparky's, Gastropod, Sushi Samba and Sugarcane, City Hall, Bulldog Barbeque, Wynwood Kitchen & Bar, Area 31, and, of course, Meat Market.

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