SobeSavvy.com Presents: The People, Plates, and Pours of @NYCWFF 2015 ! Grand Tasting Recap #NYCWFF #NoKidHungry

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On Saturday October 17, 2015 SobeSavvy.com joined thousands of food-lovers to EAT. DRINK. END HUNGER at NYCWFF‘s signature Grand Tasting event ! The Grand Tasting presented by ShopRite featuring Samsung Home Appliance USA Culinary Demonstrations presented by MasterCard is a 130,000-square-foot culinary wonderland that everyone MUST experience in a lifetime !image

Attendees met the greatest food stars in the country, sampled food from local NYC restaurants representing cuisines from around the world, and tasted the most sought-after wines and spirits alongside up-and-coming labels from the Southern Wine & Spirits of New York portfolio and take part in exciting interactive experiences with various brands and foodie products. 100% of the net proceeds from NYCWFF go to Food Bank For New York City and No Kid Hungry

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Known as the Best Food & Wine Festival in America, my goal was to capture all the foodie fun and priceless moments! Speaking of Priceless, Mastercard cardholders got exclusive access perks at the festival, such as skipping the lines, getting into private events, reserved seating and a chance to mingle with the chefs. Learn more at http://www.priceless.com/image

The Grand Tasting was from 12:00pm -6:00 pm , so we had to pace ourselves. Although the Pier 94 venue was crowded, it never felt cramped. We were prepared to spend some time with our favorite culinary stars and people from around the world. One amazing moment was my introduction to Korean traditional royal cuisine. I had the opportunity to learn about Hansik (Korean Food) presented by the Korean Food Foundation and picked up some recipes that I cannot wait to try this at home!

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As always, I have photographs to share of the amazing event. SobeSavvy.com Presents: The People, Plates, and Pours of NYCWFF Grand Tasting 2015 ! Cheers…and I suggest you join me next year!

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Had A Blast at #BurgerBash! Thanks @BurgerBeast #SOBEWFF #SobeWff2015 @AmstelLight

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A Burger (also called a beef burger, hamburger sandwich, burger or hamburg) is a sandwich consisting of one or more cooked patties of ground meat, usually beef, placed inside a sliced bun.

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Bash- a gathering of people who have been invited by a host for the purposes of socializing,conversation, recreation, or as part of a festivalor other commemoration of a special occasion. A party will typically feature food and beverages, and often music and dancing or other forms of entertainment.

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Put these two together and you have the 9th annual Amstel Light Burger Bash hosted by Rachel Ray. It was held in a signature white tent behind The Ritz-Carlton in Miami Beach this past Friday evening.

Anyone who is familiar with the Sobewff knows that THIS is THE most coveted ticket of maybe the entire festival. It usually sells out in less than 48 hrs of being on sale. I was able to attend, thanks to the encouragement of my wife who is the founder and editor of SobeSavvy.com. The social butterfly herself took me to lunch at Beer and Burger Restaurant and told me to enter the Burgerbash Amstel Light photo contest on IG given by Burger Beast. I entered. Guess what? I WON ! See winning picture here titled “Spin the Bottle” :

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Off I went to the Burger Bash. What a spectacle. Every imaginable variation of a burger was represented by dozens of restaurants nationwide. Even Al Roker was there in the flesh manning the grill!  Burgers were paired with Amstel Light and Menage A Trois wines …it was a night to remember! The cover band was great. They helped all of us dance some of those burgers off.

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Special shout out to the ladies at Hard Rock Miami. Heyden and Elise both had a infectious spririt that exemplified the entire event.

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Lure Fish Bar won the Judges’ trophy. Celebrity judge Chrissy Teigen really enjoyed the vibe. Lure won with a burger with sweet rich bacon-onion jam.
Pincho Factory won the People’s Choice award.  With it’s Croquetesa burger. A triple meat patty blend, with Swiss cheese .

No one left hungry. Everyone left smiling. Epic success!

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Photo Credit: Barry Heigh

@TheBetsyHotel presents #SOBEWFF VIP Happy Hour w/ @Lee_Schrager & #Sobewff2015 Cigars & Spirits @CigarAficMAG #theBetsyHotel~Recap by #SobeSavvy.com

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The rooftop of The Betsy Hotel is a great place to enjoy the magnificent views of South Beach and served as a magnificent backdrop for two of the SOBEWFF events attended by Barry Heigh of SobeSavvy.com

On February 19, 2015, invited guests and media joined Founder and Director of SOBEWFF Lee Brian Schrager at the Director’s VIP Welcome Happy Hour during the 2015 Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by FOOD & WINE.  This kick off event included hors d’oeuvres by BLT Steak at The Betsy, Rose wine and cocktails provided by Botran Rum. 
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On February 20, 2015 , Barry returned to The Betsy Hotel for a sophisticated evening with Cigar Aficionado and Whisky Advocate.  Tickets to this event called Cigars & Spirits was won by me via Yelp Miami Contest but awarded to him for the Ultimate Guys Night Out ! Guests lounged on the rooftop and sipped exclusive, rich and lustrous bourbons, whiskies, scotches, and tequilas from the Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida portfolio.  Attendees also got to experience the aroma and flavor of some of the finest selections of premium cigars while also learning from the specialists on hand about what makes each spirit distinctive and flavorful and each cigar exceptional and superior. Appetizers and desserts were served (by BLT Steak at The Betsy). 
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Photo Credit:  Barry Heigh

#OutandAboutAva visits @JungleIsland #SOBEWFF #FunandFit #Family #Foodie #Event ~ Recap by #SobeSavvy

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On Saturday, February 21, 2015, my family joined other kids, parents and aspiring young chefs at Jungle Island, South Florida’s favorite landmark attraction, for the eighth annual Fun and Fit as a Family sponsored by Carnival featuring Goya Kidz Kitchen. Produced by the Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival presented by FOOD & WINE, this family-friendly affair brings together celebrity chefs, culinary personalities, health and fitness professionals, and more for a fun weekend in an off-the-beaten path, jungle-like setting. The $20 advanced purchase ticket price makes this extraordinary experience affordable and accessible to all.

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Each year, children get up-close-and-personal with an impressive group of chefs and culinary talent in the Goya Kidz Kitchen. The 2015 roster includes demonstrations by Todd English, Duff Goldman, Ingrid Hoffmann, Robert Irvine, Rev Run & Justine Simmons, and Andrew Zimmern.

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“This is the demo I look forward to more than any other all year long. I get to directly impact the lives of children, and engage with them one-on-one during Fun and Fit as a Family,” says Andrew Zimmern, host of Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods. “Kids don’t come with a set of instructions, and I feel obligated to help families make the cooking connection that makes for better health and better relationships.”

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Kids also experiment with all the major food groups in the Whole Foods Market Food Lab, which is being hosted this year by Reed Alexander. The famous cookbook author and former Nickelodeon star invites children six years of age and up to prepare hands-on recipes using fresh and healthy ingredients. Alexander served as commentator for the Food Lab featuring Lorenzo Boni of Barilla America; Adrianne Calvo with Panda Kitchens; Latin Chef and TV personality, Doreen Colondres with the National Pork Board; and local favorite, Dewey Losasso.

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Jungle Island’s natural environment, animal exhibits as well as physical fitness activities, provided by Florida International University, keep the entire family active at the attraction’s Garden Outpost and private beach. Thanks to sponsors including Badia Spices, Baptist Health South Florida, Barilla, Goya Foods and Carnival Cruise Lines, parents and kids get to enjoy additional activities and healthy snacks around the park.

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The purpose of Fun and Fit as a Family is to educate children and parents about healthy lifestyle options in a hands-on manner. It’s an accessible, fun-filled event that presents families with realistic tips. Vibrant activities from Carnival and interactive experiences combine with wholesome food samplings and culinary demonstrations for a truly well rounded event.

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My family believes that through daily exercise and smart food choices, we can have a fun filled, better quality of life! For more information about this event can be found at SOBEWFF’s Fun and Fit as a Family 
Next year be sure to “Walk this Way” with the entire family and celebrate healthy eating and living!
Enjoy my slideshow from the event !

Recap #SOBEWFF @Sws_Of_America #SouthernWineandSpirits #TradeDay @WineSpectator – Photos by #SobeSavvy .com!

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On Friday, February 20,  2015 , SobeSavvy.com joined Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida’s most valued customers for Wine Spectator Trade Day presented by Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida at the Whole Foods Market Grand Tasting Village. Insiders were offered the opportunity to learn about new trends and products in the beverage industry. This invitation-only event offered a sneak peek of the grandest of tastings set on the gleaming sands of South Beach.  Invited guests sampled rare vintages, unique spirits and select pours while networking with fellow industry leaders. 
Here are some of my fave pics of the day and photo slideshow from the Trade Day Event!
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#Cheers to all who attended #WineSpectator #TradeDay today at #SobeWff #Sobewff2015 #Sobewff15

A post shared by Lovely Leslie (@ijust_lovethis) on

Kicking off #SOBEWFF with @ronzonipasta Italian Al Fresco Feast @LouieBossi @debimazar @TheTuscanGun @cheflouiebossi @miamimagazine -Photos by #SobeSavvy

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On Feb. 19, Foodies kicked off SOBEWFF in unprecedented fashion with Ronzoni’s 100th Birthday Bash where guests were invited to dine alfresco like an Italian!

This carb heavy feast featuring Italian dishes was described as follows per
SobeFest.com ” When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie . . . and pasta, meatballs, arancini, charcuterie, and so much more! Hosted by Debi Mazar and Gabriele Corcos, the king and queen of all things Italian from Cooking Channel, this al fresco feast on the sand will showcase more than 30 chefs serving up mouth-watering fare behind the Delano Hotel.  Fall in love all over again with your favorite Italian-American dishes – whether its white sauce, red sauce, perfectly aged Parmigiano-Reggiano, broccoli rabe, or any number of specially crafted pastas.  You’ll savor your way through an abundance of both classic and modern twists while sipping on wines from Folonari Amore Italia.  Leave it to SOBEWFF to show you true amore under the stars! ”

I was able to attend courtesy of tickets provided by the Miami Beach 100 giveaway! It was uncommonly cold outside, but nothing a lot of vino and great food could not fix. Enjoy these photographs from this saucy event !

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#DespanaPoolSidePaella hosted by @ChefJoseAndres @SLSSouthBeach @MasterCard #SOBEWFF #PricelessMiami ~ Recap by #SobeSavvy .com! 

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On Thursday, February 19 at the SLS, 1701 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, I attended an exclusive South Beach Wine and Food Festival MasterCard Event (for cardholders only) called Despana presents Paella by the Pool hosted by Jose Andres

This new event focused around Paella seemed like a natural fit for South Florida and naturally sold out! It was recommended by Ocean Drive as a can’t miss event and I was fortunate to have Won two tix by participating in a MasterCard Twitter Giveaway called #PricelessSurprises. 

Known as the eccentric king of Spanish Cuisine, James Beard Award-winning chef and owner of The Bazaar José Andrés brought the quintessential Spanish dish to South Beach at the swank SLS.  He , along with other chefs succeeded in transporting our taste buds to the streets of Sevilla and the coastline of Málaga, all while enjoying the classic rice dish that is paella. the sandy shores of South Beach, no one can deny themselves the classic rice dish that is paella. 

It was a pleasure to join them poolside at the boutique luxury SLS Hotel as they created that certain, ineffable combination of textures and flavors that add up to something both creamy and crunchy and all around delicious.

Needless to say I enjoyed Paella by the Pool and hope you enjoy these pictures from this tasty event! 
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