This year's South Beach Wine & Food Festival will see 350 chefs from around the world cooking at more than 100 events. With each year comes fresh experiences and new additions to the lineup that run the gamut from intimate chef-curated dinners to late-night soirees.
Though most attendees gravitate toward popular events such as the Grand Tasting Village and Burger Bash, there's a world of flavor to experience if you want to truly explore.
With so many chefs representing the cuisine of Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and other countries, you can virtually eat around the globe while keeping your toes planted in the South Beach sand. Here are the most interesting culinary journeys at this year's festival.
Barilla's Italian Bites on the Beach. Emmy-winning chef and crowd favorite Giada De Laurentiis is back to celebrate all things Italian beachside at the Delano. More than 30 acclaimed chefs will participate in this grand exploration of Italy's diverse cuisine. From seafood plates originating off the coast of
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Rock and Roll: An Asian Night Market. Adam Richman of Travel Channel's Man Finds Food will take you on a late-night culinary jaunt by bringing the food and excitement of an Asian night market to Fort Lauderdale. Enjoy unique sushi bites, hefty dim sum, and your fill of dumplings while drinking specially crafted sake cocktails courtesy of Gekkeikan Sake and House of Suntory. No trip to Asia is complete without karaoke, so grab a friend or two and finish off the night with your best rendition of your favorite Madonna song at the event's karaoke station. 10 p.m. to midnight Friday, February 22, at Dune at Auberge Beach, 2200 N. Ocean Blvd., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $125 via sobewff.org/dune.
Tacos After Dark. This grand taco celebration, hosted by Food Network star Michael Symon, will present America's favorite Mexican staple in its many shapes and forms. Imagine an evening of food from taco masters such as Steve Santana (Taquiza), Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette (Coppa, Little Donkey), and Scott Linquist (Coyo Taco) paired with a free-flowing bar sponsored by Tequila Cazadores, and you have the perfect combination for a Mexican fiesta. 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. Thursday, February 21, at Loews Miami Beach Hotel, 1601 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Tickets cost $150 via sobewff.org/tacos.
Taste Jamaica. If you crave island vibes, Taste Jamaica, presented by the Jamaica Tourist Board and the Jamaican Gastronomy Network, will have you feeling
Taste of Puerto Rico by José Andrés. Well-known chef, beloved restaurateur, humanitarian, and We Fed an Island: The True Story of Rebuilding Puerto Rico, One Meal at a Time author José Andrés pays homage to the U.S. territory that's in the midst of a major moment after suffering devastating damage in Hurricane Maria in 2017. Andrés, alongside 12 cooks with Puerto Rican roots — including Mario Pagan, Jose Enrique Montes, and Jose Mendin — will present the island's favorite dishes, such as mofongo, lechón, and bacalao. The soiree comes complete with wine pairings and libations from the González Byass USA portfolio. 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday, February 21, at SLS South Beach; 1701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Tickets cost $175 via sobewff.org/sls.