February is upon us, and it’s only a few weeks until the year’s most important food event, the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, begins. Tickets to the nearly countless events have been on sale since before 2013 even started, and while some of the more coveted events are sold out, there are still tickets available to some very exciting dinners, tastings, and parties that are sure to be the highlight of your year. A list of all available events for this year’s Wine & Food Festival can be seen at www.sobefest.com, but here are some highlights that any foodie should definitely not miss:
These last few days of summer are precious so take advantage and do all things summer: enjoy the outdoors, bqq, and cool off with something cool 'n' sweet. Check out all of these New York City restaurants offering up just what you need!
Go On a Picnic:
Folks who want to relax in Washington Square Park should order pizza picnic boxes from Pizza Roma on Bleecker Street in the West Village. These clever carryout containers, named after parks in Rome, are filled with the restaurant’s signature Roman-style pizza al taglio (square pizza by the cut), Paninis, fresh summer salads, and more.
Rusty Pelican has always been known to me as Miami's best spot for brunch: Easter brunch, Mother's Day brunch, post-graduation brunch, etc. However, it never occurred to me that with it's unparalleled waterfront views from almost anywhere in the restaurantwould be the best place to watch July 4th fireworks displays. This Independence Day, enjoy an All-American buffet that includes all the classics, such as potato salad, macaroni and cheese, Jack Daniels barbecue chicken, and even Miami-inspired delicacies like guava barbecue ribs. After ending your meal with some Georgia peach cobbler, sit back and enjoy the several fireworks displays occurring litterally all around you. In honor of our troops, Rusty Pelican is offering this July 4th buffet at half off to all active service members, which includes free beer and wine!
Summer time is considered barbecue time, but even if you're not a huge grill enthusiast, it's almost a patriotic requirement to have some sort of grilled or barbecued food on the Fourth of July to celebrate our country's independence. Brother Jimmy's Barbecue based in New York City, is planning on moving down to the sunshine state soon, and to celebrate its upcoming opening and Independence day, the barbecue eatery is teaming up with Sailor Jerry Rum to bring Miamians a free southern-style barbecue fest. Revelers can enjoy a complimentary pig roast along with rum cocktails like the Backyard Tea and Rockabilly Lemonade in front of Brother Jimmy's future Brickell home, which promises to open later in July.
Barbecues are fun and a great way to enjoy the warm weather- and sometimes, with summer vacations and days off, they can be a last minute thing. That's why Guy Fieri's pre-made gourmet barbecue sauces are the way to go.
Even if it were never named "Best New Restaurant" by the Miami New Times this year, there is no doubt in any foodie's mind that there is no hotter restaurant in Miami Beach right now than Andrew Carmellini's outpost of his famed NYC restaurant, The Dutch. To celebrate its success, and maybe even to thank the people of Miami for making his restaurant venture in the 305 so successful, Chef Carmellini and his chef de cuisine, Conor Hanlon will be offering a weekly barbecue series featuring different styles of barbecue each week for only $30 per person. The series kicks off tomorrow with a Texas-style barbecue that includes smoked brisket, spare ribs, Texas hot links, and delectable side dishes like grilled corn on the cob, baked beans, and corn bread. Drink specials will include $3 PBR tall boys, and $22 pitchers of Pimm's Punch and Boozy Arnold Palmers, as well as barman Rob Ferrara's Smokey Bacon Old Fashioned.
Morningstar Grillers Prime are a good choice in terms of a very general-tasting veggie burger. They are made primarily of wheat gluten and soy protein, rather than vegetables. The patties can be dressed up with basic sauces like ketchup, hot sauce or barbecue sauce, and taste best on a roll with lettuce.
The Gardenburger Original is another veggie-burger classic. These small patties are low in calories and fat, and made up of mushrooms, onions, cooked brown rice and some cheeses. These taste good on a roll with sliced avocado and alfalfa sprouts.
Summer is officially here, so it's time to whip up the frozen desserts! And what could be easier than making ice pops? These are perfect sweets to hand out at a barbeque or to enjoy after a long hot walk back from work. These recipes won't only impress your guests, but will bring you back to your childhood memories.
What a great weekend to have been in Miami! The South Beach Wine & Food Festival went on from Thursday, February 23rd, through Sunday, February 26th, with different events going on each day. I had the absolute fortune to attend the opening party, "The Q", hosted by celebrity chefs Emeril Lagasse and Guy Fieri.
Set up behind the Delano, right on the beach, the smells of barbecue and ocean water hit your nose as soon as you handed over your coveted ticket. That's right, folks! barbecue was the theme of the night! About a city block’s worth of beach space was transformed into a barbecue wonderland, with chefs having set up booths on the left and right and various bars set up right down the center. The very first thing we did was hit up the bar for a truly lovely little cocktail called a "Grand Berry". Consisting of Grand Marnier liqueur, cranberry juice, and fresh lime juice, it was a great sweet, crisp and light choice to get our mouths ready for the smokey, savory, deliciousness of the food we would soon glut ourselves on. And glut we did!
All said and done, we managed to hit up 10 chefs. Although everyone produced a great product, there were a few unquestionable stand outs in the crowd, the first being Guy Fieri. I'll admit to having a bit of a foodie crush on this man, but please believe me when I say that his food was hands down the best of the night. Everything about his "banh mi taco with BBQ chicken fried Rice" was great! The best word I can use to describe it would have be "dynamic", as it exploded in my mouth with flavor. While everyone else seemed to be pushing ribs and coleslaw here comes Guy Fieri with the last thing I would expect to find at a barbecue.
The very first thing we saw when we approached Guy's table was the man, himself, wearing his signature shades, laughing uproariously and popping a bottle of Moët, which he poured for his fellow chefs working the booth with him. A lot can be said for presentation, as well. Some of the dishes we tried were alright, they tasted just fine, we enjoyed them...but they were served to us on little paper plates. Not Guy! He served his in a corn husk boat with a generous pile of yummy rice, two light corn tortillas, and chopped scallions as garnish. Lovely.
Another stand out of the night for me was Nadia G of Bitchin' Kitchen fame. I got a chance to talk to her a little while in line for her yummy "slow smoked pork belly with balsamic BBQ sauce, green onion and cucumber on an open-faced challah bun sandwich". She couldn't have been nicer, and she told me she was having a great time in beautiful Miami and having great fun with the South Beach Wine & Food Festival. Her food was excellent! The pork was super tender and had a nice smokey flavor to it, and the barbecue sauce added a certain sweetness and tang that really went well with the relative mildness of the bun. All in all I was very impressed by her dish.
The band was rocking, the cocktails were flowing, and I hit up the Godiva Chocolate bar more than once. To cleanse my palate, of course. I had a grand time.
Don’t mess with Bulldog Burger! In less than six months Bulldog Burger has gained a great deal of success, proving that Chef Howie “Bulldog” Kleinberg, a former Top Chef contestant and owner of Bulldog Barbecue, has outdone himself yet again. Much of Bulldog Burger’s success is owed to the restaurant’s location located in North Miami on Biscayne Boulevard, across from Florida International University, in a shopping center right next to Bulldog Barbecue. North Miami was missing a burger joint that offered lip-smacking, homemade burgers, and now FIU students and loyal Bulldog Barbeque patrons alike can flock to Bulldog Burger when they are craving a delectable, inexpensive burger. The atmosphere at Bulldog Burger is very casual and family friendly. There is a no-frills style to it that screams “good eats are located within”. The restaurant opened with a limited menu and is now offering a full menu of signature burgers, snacks, salads, and hotdogs.