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What’s Haute: South Beach Wine & Food Festival

From February 24 through February 27, the sun-soaked streets south of 23rd play host to South Florida’s premier culinary event, The Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by Food & Wine. Dedicated to all things epicurean, SBWFF promises to bring everything, along with the kitchen sink for its 10th anniversary. What began as a one-day festival known as the Florida Extravaganza held at Florida International University’s Biscayne Bay Campus has matured into an extravaganza of gastronomical proportions fit for a gourmand.

Garnering more than 50,000 wine and food lovers last year, and unprecedented amounts of media coverage to date, 2011’s Festival also celebrates the November 2010 release of the official Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival Cookbook written by Lee Brian Schrager and Julie Mautner, featuring a foreword by Anthony Bourdain. We’ve digested the haute happenings of the weekend to give you food (and drink!) for thought, and invite those who can stand the heat to get out of the kitchen and head to America’s prodigious cookout on the beach.

The Forge
WHEN Saturday, February 26, 2011
TIME 7:30 p.m.
WHERE The Forge, 432 Forty-First Street, Miami Beach
Upscale sophistication marries old-school charm at The Forge Restaurant | Wine Bar. Making its legendary statement in taste since the 1920s, this blacksmith forge turned black tie culinary locale of choice is recreating its high-profile “Fall in the North and South” dinner at home in The Forge’s 19th century Parisian manse marked by neoclassical design, a world-class collection of art and antiques, and inspired cuisine blending classic with contemporary for “Progressive American” decadence that keeps its distinguished clientele coming back night-after-night.

Perrier-Jouët BubbleQ
Presented by Allen Brothers hosted by Bobby Flay and Friends
WHEN Friday, February 25, 2011
TIME 7:30 p.m. – 11 p.m., General Admission; 7 p.m., VIP reception
WHERE Delano, Beachside, 1685 Collins Avenue
Opposites attract beachside at the Delano where barbeque (an Allen Brothers product order not limited to 1,600 lbs. of brisket, 525 racks of baby back ribs, 2,800 lamb chops, 650 whole quails, 450 lbs. of red snapper, 100 Maine lobsters, and 750 lbs. of prime rib eyes) and Champagne (3,150 bottles) sizzle in the sand at the Perrier-Jouët BubbleQ. After preparing over 270,400 portions of barbeque and pouring over 100,000 flutes of the world’s finest Champagne over the past 10 years, BubbleQ will mark its history-making finale with unbeatable atmosphere, fun cuisine, and the world’s favorite beverage.

Amstel Light Burger Bash
Presented by Allen Brothers hosted by Rachael Ray
WHEN Thursday, February 24, 2011
TIME 7 p.m. – 10 p.m., General Admission; 6:15 p.m., VIP reception
WHERE Ritz-Carlton, South Beach, 1 Lincoln Road
An American-made pairing of burgers and beer is glorified at the fifth anniversary of Amstel Light Burger Bash hosted by Rachael Ray. Sink your teeth into dozens of juicy burgers guaranteed to push the proverbial culinary envelope. Leave an ordinary patty on bun mentality at home because the 2011 competitors will demonstrate their superior burger-building craftsmanship and grilling guru.

Tribute Dinner honoring Alain Ducasse
Presented by Bank of America
WHEN Saturday, February 26, 2011
TIME 7 p.m. – 11 p.m.
WHERE Loews Miami Beach Hotel, 1601 Collins Avenue
Esteemed members of the wine, culinary, and hospitality worlds will sit down at a gala dinner at the Festival’s host hotel to pay homage to Alain Ducasse, master of Provençal cooking methods, and a powerful and far-reaching influence on contemporary cooking and dining. The Tribute Dinner presented by Bank of America and hosted by actress, model, and winemaker Carole Bouquet honors a chef who began his career at just sixteen.

Food Network presents
The Best Thing I Ever Ate at the Beach
Hosted by Duff Goldman
WHEN Saturday, February 26, 2011
TIME 10 p.m. – 1 a.m.
WHERE Ritz-Carlton South Beach, One Lincoln Road
Your favorite personalities from Food Network, Cooking Channel, and the South Florida area are bringing the best things they have ever eaten at the beach from shorelines coast-to-coast straight to Ritz-Carlton South Beach as Food Network presents The Best Thing I Ever Ate at the Beach, hosted by Duff Goldman of Food Network’s Ace of Cakes. Bringing The Best Thing I Ever Ate to life, special celebrity guests, including Scott Conant, Marc Forgione, Chuck Hughes, and Claire Robinson, show their devotion to the chefs, mixologists, and standout dishes that have kept them coming back for more.

Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink Brunch at Sea
With guest chef Jonathan Waxman
WHEN Sunday, February 27, 2011
TIME 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
WHERE Biscayne Lady – departs Bayside Marketplace,
401 Biscayne Boulevard
The Festival is setting sail for the first time as The Biscayne Lady yacht hosts the Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink Brunch at Sea. James Beard Award-Winning chef Michael Schwartz and pastry chef Hedy Goldsmith join culinary legend Jonathan Waxman of New York City’s Barbuto as they welcome guests to brunch on board. Schwartz, Goldsmith, and Waxman prepare a floating feast of savory and sweet small plates using seasonal ingredients from local farms.

Moët Hennessy USA presents
Sobe’s 10th Year Anniversary Party
“Let Them Eat Cake”
Hosted by Emeril Lagasse and Martha Stewart
WHEN Friday, February 25, 2011
TIME 10 p.m. – 1 a.m.
WHERE 1111 Lincoln Road
Save the best for last and end the night at Lincoln Road’s newest hotspot as Moët Hennessy USA presents Sobe’s 10th Year Anniversary Party “Let Them Eat Cake” hosted by Emeril Lagasse and Martha Stewart. Top pastry chefs from all over the country will fly in to whip up elegant cakes and desserts to help SBWFF celebrate its 10th year.

Each participant will present their own signature version of an anniversary treat, which will pair perfectly with Moët & Chandon Champagne and a selection of decadent cocktails from the Moët Hennessy USA portfolio. Shake Shack will serve up late night burgers and shakes for a sweet ending to an unforgettable celebration.

Dim Sum & Disco at the Setai
Hosted by Ming Tsai presented by Groupon
WHEN Friday, February 25, 2011
TIME 11:00 pm – 2:00 am
WHERE The Setai South Beach, 2001 Collins Avenue
Follow the ancient Silk Road to The Setai where Asian traditions of simplicity and grace meld together. Fusion-forward chef Ming Tsai will get to the heart of Chinese dining culture as it meets disco revival. Participating chefs and restaurants are Keyvan Behnam (China Grill SOBE, Miami Beach), Richard Hales (Sakaya Kitchen, Miami), Joseph Maynard (Asia de Cuba, Miami Beach), Joe Nq (RedFarm, New York, NY), Ming Tsai (Blue Ginger, Wellesley, MA), Gregory Yu (Tropical Chinese, Miami), and David Werly (The Setai, Miami Beach).

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