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Plant-Based Heaven: Seed Food and Wine Festival Returns with Burger Battle, Tasting Village, and Special Dines

This year's Tasting Village takes place in Coconut Grove's Regatta Park.
This year's Tasting Village takes place in Coconut Grove's Regatta Park. Seed Food and Wine Festival photo
What started as a homegrown idea to make cleaner, delicious food more accessible “in a fun Miami way” — in the words of its cofounder Alison Burgos — has evolved into a culinary must for our region and beyond. The 2023 Seed Food and Wine Festival kicks off this Thursday evening and runs through Sunday.

“With each year, we hope that every single event is always a little better, smoother, delicious, and a little more fun than the last year,” Burgos tells New Times, alongside her wife and fellow festival cofounder Michelle Gaber. “At the end of the day, the festival is an incredible amount of work. We are not a big corporation, but, through the years, I’m so lucky to have met so many amazing people that have helped and that we have helped connect to take their smaller brands to the next level.”

According to Burgos, the Seed Food and Wine Festival attracts approximately 9,000 guests annually. This year’s schedule includes eight events, such as the highly anticipated Burger Battle on Thursday evening in the Miami Design District and its hallmark Tasting Village in Coconut Grove's Regatta Park with more than 70 participating restaurants, bakeries, and brands.

The throughlines of anything pertaining to the festival are 100 percent vegan and have wellness vibes. The latest slate of confirmed events, including complimentary fitness and yoga classes and a Sunday brunch at the Sacred Space sponsored by Oatly, is available at seedfoodandwine.com.
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The Seed Food and Wine Festival's Burger Battle
Seed Food and Wine Festival photo
New this year, and a highlight for organizers, is a Friday evening "Blue Zones Global Dinner" within Love Life Cafe's brand-new, 4,500-square-foot space in Wynwood. The event will serve as the public's first glimpse of the space. The dinner will be hosted by National Geographic Explorer and New York Times best-selling author Dan Buettner, with a five-course spread from Love Life's Jeff Brana and Diego Tosoni and Wasabi Bakery's Pamela Wasabi.

"They [Brana and Tosoni] are dear friends and to have this happen in such a gorgeous restaurant that will be such a center for the plant-based community is huge," says Burgos.

With so many happenings over four days, Burgos has a few pro tips for making the most of Seed '23. She says, "Our Plant Pusher Pass is a lot of fun — it's under $200 and gets you into the Burger Battle, our Tasting Village, and the Sunday brunch. It's a solid deal. Especially at the Burger Battle, it's always fun to hear people saying, 'I just cannot believe that was not meat,' too."

Beyond the festival, Burgos hopes the event serves as a catalyst for folks in their plant-based journeys.

"The pandemic provided a real moment for people to look at their lives, including their health and the food they were eating," she says. "Within the plant-based space, the growth has been incredible in the last three years. So, with our festival and beyond, do it all. We want to support everyone."

Seed Food and Wine Festival. Thursday, January 26, through Sunday, January 29, at various locations throughout Miami; seedfoodandwine.com. Tickets for individual events and multi-event passes are available via eventbrite.com.
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Jesse Scott is a Fort Lauderdale-based contributor for Miami New Times covering culture, food, travel, and entertainment in South Florida and beyond. His work has appeared in Condé Nast Traveler, Lonely Planet, National Geographic, and his hometown newspaper, the Free Lance-Star, among others.

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