The Sony Open came to a close yesterday, and Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic finished with the singles titles. Lovers of the sport rejoiced during the past couple of weeks as they watched the world's best in tennis battle it out.
But there were plenty of other reasons to check out the tournament. For starters, there was booze -- lots and lots of booze. Food options ranged from Sushi Maki to Novecento and shucked oysters to a Brazilian-inspired buffet with endless chicken wrapped in bacon. There were also interactive tents where participants could improve their game. We got a taste of all the action, on and off the court.
Moët & Chandon was the official champagne of the Sony Open this year. (Clearly, it's a #moetmoment.) It's the first time the spirit paired with the tournament, and it feels like it will the beginning of a wonderful friendship. What better way to enjoy a match than by sipping Imperial Ice from a goblet? Imperial Ice, by the way, was created to be enjoyed on ice and was launched in Miami two years ago.
Moët had a suite, which allowed guests to watch tennis matches while living the glam life and indulging in sushi from Sushi Maki and freshly shucked oysters from Oysters XO, which launched in the Magic City just last week.
Oysters XO brought its very own oyster shucker to the Moët Lounge. What better surprise as you're drinking a glass of champagne than to have someone walk up to you with three buckets and say, "Would you like me to shuck an oyster for you?" These bad boys came from New Brunswick.
And it didn't stop there. Oyster shucking was followed by "Would you like me to top that with bloody mary and Tabasco?" Yes, yes, we would. Thank you, Oysters XO. XOXO.
In case you needed a pick-me-up after sitting in the sun all day and drinking copious amounts of champagne, Starbucks had its own tent because, well, it's Starbucks.
What goes good with a Cuba libre? Vaca frita. Latin Café was part of the Barcardi tent, allowing for thirsty and hungry folks to complement their libation with some lechón.
The Bombay tent served cocktails for gin lovers. We sipped an Ace Collins ($11.25), which mixed Bombay gin with lemon juice, simple syrup, club soda, and fresh raspberries. There was also food -- shrimp tempura, sliders, and hummus and corn salsa dip with hummus.
In case none of the three above spirits did it for you, fresh lemonade and orange juice stands gladly spiked freshly squeezed juice ($5) with some Grey Goose for just $4 more.
Hmmmm, sausage. Options included Argentine gaucho chorizo, Italian sausage with peppers and onion, and turkey sausage ($8).
Kosher? Don't fret. There were options to satiate your needs too.
Itau's air-conditioned buffet tent provided all-day service and unlimited eats for $32 per person. A pasta station, certified USDA skirt steak, bacon-wrapped chicken, and a dessert station made it a good choice for the hungry.
Michelob Ultra's beer garden offered Budweiser selections in addition to Michelob Ultra and had its own happy hour going on.
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Lots of generic-looking tents -- the Marketplace, One Fish Two Fish, the Burger Joint, Crepe Express, and Taco & Tequila -- offered a variety of options. The one that really called out to us was Novecento, whose owner, Hector Rolotti, recently drowned while away on a spiritual retreat.
Follow Carla on Twitter @ohcarlucha