Thursday, November 12
Drinking is great, but petty chitchat can be a bore. Some of us would like to have a conversation of substance with our brew, and for those people, there's Nerd Nite. The national program brings great minds from across the nation together in local bars for an evening of drinks and enlightenment. Speakers are invited to give presentations, and intelligent discourse follows. Think of it as TED talks that take place in pubs. For Miami's part, the group congregates every second Thursday of the month at Gramps (176 NW 24th St., Miami), and this Thursday, the topic of conversation will be making the world a better place.
The subject sounds lofty, and it is, but there's a lot at stake. November's Nerd Nite invites the six finalists competing for $100,000 in grant support as part of the Frost Science Museum's CappSci Inventors program. The contest will beget two winners, one for the best invention to restore coral reefs, and another to the one who can best help others lower their exposure to carcinogens. You may not have the winning invention, but you can have a few beverages and help decide whose invention should be funded. It might just be the most important beer (or three) of your life.
The event runs from 7 to 9 p.m. Admission is free. Ages 21 and up are welcome.
Fashion may be all about appearances, but that doesn't mean there's no substance behind the sparkle. Just ask the do-gooders of Destination Fashion, an annual fundraiser and fashion show that's all about bringing in the bucks for spinal cord research.
To celebrate Bal Harbour Shops' 50th anniversary and the Miami Project's 30th anniversary, a whole host of celebrities and philanthropists will get dolled up and mingle at the Destination Fashion Kick Off Party. Notable guests include NFL Hall of Fame linebacker Nick Buoniconti and his son Marc from the Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis, plus honorary event chairs Tommy Lee Jones and his wife Dawn, Gloria and Emilio Estefan, and Brittany and Christian Slater — that's an '80s throwback cast if there ever was one.
In addition to the all-star attendees, there will be a live concert, a designer fashion show, an auction, and the unveiling of the 2016 Women of Substance and Style at Bal Harbour Shops. So drink, gawk, and get ahead of the trends, all while showing support for spinal cords.
Your destination will be fashion this Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m. at Bal Harbour Shops (9700 Collins Ave., Bal Harbour). Visit thebuonicontifund.com/destinationfashion.
Friday, November 13
There's nothing like perfectly cooked steak and a glass of wine. Unfortunately, most wine drinkers can't discern what makes the best vinos great, let alone how to pair them with food. Combining exotic wines with a selection of beef cuts, pork, poultry, and lamb, Steak Brasil Churrascaria brings its traditional Brazilian flavors to another edition of its series Around the Latin Wine.
For $50 per person, diners enjoy an exclusive pairing of more than 15 fine wines, hand-selected by the restaurant's in-house sommelier, along with Steak Brasil Churrascaria's cheese, serrano ham, sausages, picanha, chocolates, and fruits. The four wine countries highlighted are Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and Spain, with choices including Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Marselan, Merlot, Malbec, and Tannat.
Around the Latin Wine begins Friday at 5 p.m. at Steak Brasil Churrascaria (190 SE First Ave., Miami). Call 305-415-2006 or visit steakbrasil.com.
The only thing better than cracking open a good book is cracking open a beer right along with it. Bringing together a night of reading and imbibing, Books & Books invites locals to its Books & Beer Night.
Held at the bookstore's Coral Gables location, Books & Beer Night features brews from Concrete Beach, an artisanal craft beer brewery in Wynwood. Inspired by the culture and flavors of Miami, Concrete Beach features beers such as the Rica— a wheat India pale ale — and the Concrete Common, a medium-bodied copper lager. For this special and studious occasion, Concrete Beach will serve samples of Rica as well as the pilsner Stiltsville, a citrus hop brew and an ode to the village on stilts in Biscayne Bay. In addition to the books, beer, and various food pairings, a raffle will allow guests the chance to win a private VIP tour for four at Concrete Beach Brewery, which also includes one item from the retail store for each visitor and samples of beers on tap.
Books & Beer Night starts Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Books & Books (265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables). Admission is free. Call 786-614-3499 or visit concretebeachbrewery.com.
Saturday, November 14
Though the South Beach Food & Wine Festival is Miami's biggest food bash, the annual Coral Gables Food, Wine & Spirits Festival brings some much-deserved attention to the Gables' thriving culinary community, which is home to some of Miami-Dade's most celebrated eateries.
The festival features more than 100 companies and 200 brands, all gathered to showcase the best local restaurant fare, packaged gourmet foods, kitchen supplies, and decorative items. Attendees have two-day access to six areas: a spirits tent, a wine tent, a beer garden, Culinary Square, a VIP area, and seminars and demonstrations. In addition to sampling local restaurant offerings, guests can also enjoy food from Catering by Les, whose special presentation at Culinary Square will include eight tent stations, each offering two to three plates representing different countries.
The Coral Gables Food & Wine Festival begins at 4 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday at 2301 Ponce de Leon Blvd., Coral Gables. General admission costs $39 and allows you to sample beer, wine, and spirits and attend seminars and demonstrations. Food is not included. Food tickets are for sale onsite and are sold in blocks of four plates, eight plates, and 12 plates. Call 786-558-5234 or visit coralgablesfoodwinespirits.com.
Forget snow and near-freezing temperatures. Ring in the holidays Miami-style with a medley of food, wine, spirits, and an epic light display. The fourth-annual Savor the Season will bring together more than 20 of South Florida's chicest restaurants and local vendors for a night of nibbling, schmoozing, and dancing. Taking place under the stars in a 30,000-square-foot open space at Brickell World Plaza and expecting more than 500 guests, the event will mark the beginning of Miami's best time of the year. Participating restaurants include Truluck's, 15th & Vine Kitchen and Bar, Seasons 52, and Taramina. Topping off the festivities will be a swank lighting ceremony of Brickell Plaza's signature 40-foot wreath, featuring more than 3,000 twinkling lights. The annual soiree has raised more than $100,000 for local nonprofits, and this year's proceeds will be donated to the Humane Society of Greater Miami, Feeding South Florida, and University of Miami Center for Autism and Related Disabilities.
The all-inclusive celebration takes place this Saturday from 6 to 11 p.m. at Brickell World Plaza (600 Brickell Ave., Miami). Tickets cost $100. Visit savortheseasonmiami.com.
When it comes to art collecting, average joes tend to be straight out of luck. Art Basel isn't designed for the ordinary person — those price points are made for the Beyoncés and Dan Bilzerians of the world. From the success of Yo Miami's Average Joe Sundays art sales came the Average Joe Spinoff Sale, a Second Saturday event at Concrete Beach Brewery dedicated to local art and craft brews. "This version differs from our monthly Average Joe Sundays held at our gallery and artist collective space in Little Haiti in that it's just a taste of all the other cultural aspects we bring together at the original [sale]," Yo Miami founder Yuval Ofir explains. "The spinoff show at Concrete Beach Brewery focuses on art since they already have the craft brews down at the venue."
Each month on Second Saturday, the team brings in four artists who live-paint from 7 till 10 p.m. or later. "In addition to the live painting, each artist is given a section of the wall in the social hall to display their work, where it remains available for purchase for the rest of the month," Ofir explains.
The November edition will feature a lineup of artists including Registered Artist and Davel. The Average Joe Spinoff Sale starts at 7 p.m. Saturday at Concrete Beach Brewery (325 NW 24th St., Miami). Admission is free. Visit facebook.com/YOmiami.
More than 7,000 paint-covered, glitter-faced participants will run, skip, and frolic to the finish line at the fourth-annual Color Run at Sun Life Stadium this Saturday. The vibrant 5K has launched its Shine Tour, enhancing the beloved experience with a new Sparkle Zone for 2015-16 runs. Glitter will be tossed onto participants during the run, and photo stations will be scattered throughout the course. "Each year, we do a new tour or theme," says Jamie Miller, Color Run's public relations manager. "It has the same elements of color throwing, but runners will now be able to physically see themselves change from start to finish."
The run will be followed by the Finish Festival, where participants can celebrate with music, dancing, and more massive color throws via confetti cannons — plenty of shimmery clouds of color and sparkle. Runners will also receive a limited-edition Shine Tour kit to remember the energy and fun of the Color Run past the finish line. Keepsakes include a race T-shirt, shiny tattoos, shine powder packets, and a gold finisher's medal.
The Color Run begins at 9 a.m. at Sun Life Stadium (347 Don Shula Dr., Miami Gardens). Registration costs $45 per runner. Visit thecolorrun.com/miami.
Tuesday, November 17
What goes better with fashion than a little music? Imagine having the perfect soundtrack to that superstylish outfit while you strut to work — though that music should be playing only in your head. But come Tuesday, music will pair nicely with fashion and the arts for Miso Chic, a visual spectacle featuring the Miami Symphony Orchestra, conductor Eduardo Marturet, and fashion designer Nicolas Felizola. As the music elevates your soul, the large screens in the background and the chic models will heighten your visual sense. The Adrienne Arsht Center describes the spectacle thusly: "Lights and images will follow the orchestra in total synchronicity, accompanied by beautiful top models onstage showcasing Felizola's new collection: Vibrations."
Presented by American Developing Smiles and Maman Fine Art, Miso Chic will take over the Arsht Center's Knight Concert Hall (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami) at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $64. Visit arshtcenter.org.
Wednesday, November 18
Vogue-centric documentary Paris Is Burning shed a beautiful spotlight on gay minority culture's greatest underground safe space: the ball. What began in New York City has since become a worldwide phenomenon. The hierarchy of houses, the couture style, and the famous dance styles (popularized in the mainstream by Madonna) enchant gay and straight communities alike, but it was the social plight that pushed the documentary subjects to these gatherings that made the 1991 film resonate well past its 20th anniversary.
What is not so endearing is how similar issues continue to plague the queer and African-American communities in our own era. Thankfully, there are still great minds and artists crying out in moving prose and protest. Paris Is Still Burning is a night of reading and performance by Lambda Literary Award winner Danez Smith, Justin Phillip Reed, David Thomas Martinez, and Dawn Lundy Martin. Their presentations will explore themes of social, racial, and economic injustice, followed by a miniball featuring South Florida's own stunning talent, bringing the vogue and runway visions of Paris Is Burning to life before your very eyes.
The event begins Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at the Olympia Theater (174 E. Flagler St., Miami). Admission is free, but a donation to organizer Reading Queer is greatly appreciated. Visit olympiatheater.org.
Let's be real: The moviegoing experience has revolved around popcorn, soda, and Sno-Caps for far too long. That kind of cinema cuisine is old-school, and in our increasingly sophisticated age, it's time for an upgrade. Thank the heavens for Movie & Munchies, the kickoff to the second-annual Seed Food & Wine Festival, the nation's only plant-based wine and food fest.
The Seed crew will host a superspecial screening of May I Be Frank, a film about actor, comedian, and director Frank Ferrante's totally transformational vegan journey. The screening will be followed by a live Q&A session with Ferrante himself and tastings of organic wines, Miyoko's Creamery and Heidi Ho cheeses, chocolate, and other mouthwatering munchies.
So bring a bean bag, a blanket, or a folding chair, and get ready for some enlightening entertainment. The event runs from 7 to 10 p.m. Wednesday at Miami Beach Botanical Garden (2000 Convention Center Dr., Miami Beach). Tickets cost $30 per person in advance and $40 at the door. Visit seedfoodandwine.com.
Get ready to either enjoy some truly funny locals or endure a series of train wrecks soundtracked by crickets and uncomfortable silence — that's always the gamble with a comedy show. The 2015 Brickell Comedy Festival (BCF) is on the horizon, and it can be an amazing and terrifying prospect for fans and performers. Presented by Comic Cure: Comedy for a Cause, BCF invites South Florida comedians to perform their material for the chance to win a $500 cash prize in a number of categories, including improv, sketch, and standup. Participants must be at least 18 years old (as do those attending just for a good chuckle) and need to apply through the website's submission page. Standup comics will be limited to three-minute sets, with audiences voting for the winners in each category. As is the case in life, there's no second or third place, so budding Seinfelds will need to fine-tune their fart and relationship jokes before hitting the stage. A portion of the proceeds will go toward Habitat for Humanity of Greater Miami.
BCF takes place this Wednesday at the '70s-themed Flamingo Theater in the Four Ambassadors Hotel (905 Brickell Bay Dr., Miami). Doors open at 6 p.m., and showtimes are 7 to 9 p.m. Tickets cost $20. Call 786-564-2291 or visit comiccure.com.