On Tuesday October 23,  1:00- 4:00pm The Tasting Panel Magazine's 6th Annual Tasting Panel Tour MIAMI (forTrade and Media only)  featuring a selection of Double Gold Winners from The San Francisco International Wine Competition & The San Francisco World Spirits Competition will be held at The Dutch, 2201 Collins Ave., Miami Beach 33139  Click here to RSVP (Trade and Media only)

The San Francisco International Wine Competition took place June 15-17, 2012 at the Hotel Nikko San Francisco. 4556 wines were submitted from 1300 wineries from 29 countries and 26 states.

For a complete list of Double Gold Winners from the 2012 San Francisco International Wine Competition, click here.

Chef Luci Rosende, co-owner of Elle’s restaurant in Miramar, celebrates the pig and its bounty during Elle’s 3rd annual Porketarian Dinner Series on Friday, Sep. 28th and Saturday Sep. 29th beginning at 5:00pm.

Her $45 per person five course menu features:   Croquetas de Jamon (trio of ham croquettes) with fig reduction; pork belly buns with kimchi, cilantro, and nuts; rigatoni with pork shoulder ragú; pork tenderloin with walnut romesco, maple bourbon sweet potato mash;   S’mores Tart - bacon studded graham cracker crust with chocolate, toasted marshmallow cream, bourbon caramel, bacon dust

The price:  $45 per person plus tax and tip. The restaurant asks that everyone in your party order the Porketarian menu. In honor of National Bourbon Heritage Month, Chef Luci will also be offering a bourbon pairing for each course at an additional charge. RSVP: call 954-437-0071 or go to EllesRestaurant.com or OpenTable.com.  Elle’s, 12312 Miramar Parkway 33025, in the Kohl's plaza (Miramar Square), on the corner of Flamingo Road and Miramar Parkway.



Saturday October 13- Sunday, October 14,  The Festival of Chocolate @ Nova University, an all-Chocolate Shopping, Educational and Interactive Experience for the entire family with the best local and regional chocolatiers and confection companies; demonstrations by world renown pastry chefs, live showpiece and wedding cake competitions; chocolate and wine pairings; hands-on classes for the home chef;  chocolate game show stage, a chocolate museum, Adult Chocolate Clubhouse and a Kids-4-Chocolate Area including DIY Chocolate Lip Balm, a one-of-a-kind chocolate museum,  chocolate brain games and the chocolate marshmallow launcher 3000.  In addition, The Cocoa Couture Fashion Show on The Festival of Chocolate Yumway featuring handmade fashions and cocoa inspired accessories.   Nova Southeastern University Arena. Price: $12/Adults, $8/Children (2-12) For Information and Tickets:  www.festivalofchocolate.com,  Tickets on Sale Now. Advance Purchase receives $2 in Coins and a chance to be a Chocolate Judge.

Monday, 9/ 24 - Tuesday, 9/25, 16th Americas Food and Beverage Show and Conference presented by the World Trade Center Miami offers a culinary tour of the Caribbean, South America and beyond. 27 countries will showcase its best produce and products, and the companies that market them with over 400 food producers, product demonstrations, and restaurant and international trade seminars. The Americas Food and Beverage is a trade-only event that is closed to the general public. Miami Beach Convention Center.  Attendee registration and media is open at www.americasfoodandbeverage.com.


Bachelor of Science in Culinary Management student Christopher Fread of Boca Raton, FL has won a $4,500 scholarship from The James Beard Foundation Scholarship Program to continue his studies at The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale.

Fread earned a $4,500 Beard Down South Scholarship to be used for education related expenses to continue his studies at The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale. The Beard Down South Scholarship is part of an extended program offering for the 2012-2013 school year for students who are Florida residents and are enrolled or plan to enroll in a Florida-based college or culinary school.

“We are thrilled that Christopher was chosen for the scholarship and are pleased to see his skills and talents in the kitchen to continue to evolve,” says Chef Director Jack Kane.

“Our Scholarship Program reaches some of today’s greatest culinary minds no matter which stage they’re at in their cooking careers—allowing chefs to not only further their educations, but also advance the culinary arts as a whole,” says Diane Harris Brown, Director of Educational and Community Programming for the James Beard Foundation. Since its inception more than twenty years ago, the James Beard Foundation Scholarship Program will have awarded over $4 million in financial aid to 1,413 admirable recipients as of 2012.

The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale is located at 1799 S.E. 17th Street, Fort Lauderdale, FL. 33316. For information, visit www.artinstitutes.edu/fort-lauderdale, call 800.275.7603, or email aifladm@aii.edu.


December 9 marks the start of Dinner in Paradise (DIP)'s eighth season of dinners at the Gabriele Marewski owned Homestead organic farm with five-course repasts served al fresco with twinkly lights and edible centerpieces with an array of red and white wines poured by sommelier, Shari Gherman.

Partnering with the Loews team of executive chef Frederic Delaire and chef de cuisine Jason Prevatt on Dec. 9 is a kitchen duo from DIP newcomers chefs Phillipe Reynaud and Jason Stocks with the Ocean Reef Club. On March 10, chef Jacob Anaya joins chef Julie Frans of Essensia at The Palms Hotel & Spa, On March 24, Norman Van Aken and Travis Starwalt with Tuyo at the Miami Culinary Institute, debut alongside DIP veterans Dewey LoSasso of the Forge and Michael Reidt of Area 31 at Epic Hotel. It will be difficult to decide between that stellar trio and the following month's lineup of Meat Market's Sean Brasel, 1500 Degrees' Paula DeSilva and Lido Restaurant and Bayside Grill at the Standard's Mark Zeitouni on April 14. These repeat chefs' dinners tend to fill up quickly. Closing out the season on April 28, Sergio Sigala from Cecconi's at Soho Beach House teams up with David Bracha, the chef behind River Oyster Bar who expands to the Design District with Oak Tavern, and Alex Feher, the executive chef at InterContinental Miami hotel.      Tickets are $165 per person plus tax and processing fees. Proceeds benefit Urban GreenWorks.  For more information and to make reservations:  www.Paradisefarms.net .

 From September 14 – 16, 300 winery portfolios representing 16 countries will be showcased at the Miami International Wine Fair (“MIWF”) 11th annual edition. The grand tasting will be open to the public for one day only on Saturday, September 15 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Miami Beach Convention Center (Hall A, entrance on Washington Avenue).   
General admission ($95 in advance; $125 at the door) includes an unlimited sampling of unique wines not yet available in the United States, complemented by foods from South Florida’s favorite eateries. Tickets for industry professionals ($30 in advance; $45 at the door) require presentation of valid ID - with business card identifying them as members of the trade -  and grants access to daily seminars starting September 14, and to the exhibitor hall September 15 – 16 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. inclusively.  For more information, please call 866.887.WINE or visit www.miamiwinefair.com.

The 1st annual Las Olas Oktoberfest presented by The Riverside Hotel and Fritz & Franz Bierhaus will take place from Friday, September 28 to Sunday Sept.30 on the Riverside Hotel lawn on Las Olas Blvd. in Ft.Lauderdale.

Harald Neuweg, owner of NRG the Neuweg Restaurant Group, who started the tradition in Coral Gables 18 years ago to a boisterous success, has expanded the Beer Fest as a result of the opening of the second Fritz & Franz Bierhaus as well as Satchmo’s Blues Bar and Bouillabaisse French Bistro in Fort Lauderdale.

The 3-day food and music festival will kick off with a Keg taping opening ceremony by Ft.Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler and is expected to draw over 5000 people.

From October 5th to 14th daily from 11am to midnight,  the 18th annual Coral Gables Oktoberfest — the traditional 10 day Beer-, Food- and Music Festival —  will celebrate once again tradition and family fun at the Bierhaus Plaza in front of Fritz & Franz Bierhaus at 60 Merrick Way, Coral Gables.

The decorated Beer garden will hop to the sounds of Bavarian Band “Nachtschicht” and Austrian Band “Die Chaoten” as traditional Austrian/Bavarian food is served, with Bratwurst-eating and Jodel contests, Raffles and more.

The admission is Free and in 2011 over 12,000 spectators visited the Bierhaus Plaza over the 10 Oktoberfest days. The Bierhaus Plaza is located direct in front of the # 6 City parking garage with over 400 parking spaces, Entrance 51 Aragon. Fee is $ 1per hour, free on Sundays.

For additional information: www.oktoberfestmiami.com,   www.bierhaus.cc , www.miamioktoberfest.com


Les Dames d’Escoffier Miami is marking the 100th anniversary of Julia Child’s birth by presenting a series of events on Saturday, September 15, 2012, commemorating the "Lady of the Ladle’s" commitment to gastronomy, education and philanthropy. Net proceeds will benefit the Les Dames d’Escoffier Miami Legacy Awards, which gives professional experiences to young women studying Culinary Arts, Hospitality, Gastronomic Journalism and Food Agriculture. Breakdown of events follows:

Miami Dade Culinary Institute, Wolfson Campus, 415 Northeast 2nd Ave., Miami

In Classroom #9301; 3rd Floor

  • 10:30 am – Noon: Cooking Class “From Julia Child’s Kitchen to Yours” Chef Michelle Bernstein puts a modern twist to Julia’s classics that add intrigue and freshness to the plate and palate  ; $60 per guest; seating is limited to 30.

In the Auditorium; Room #1261 Dade College Auditorium, 300 Northeast 2nd Avenue,

  • 1:00 – 2:30 pm: Seminar and book signing.  Nancy Verde Barr author of “Backstage with Julia—My Years with Julia Child, “  celebrates the adventurous, unassuming essence of the chef who seasoned American palates and heightened our appreciation of food. This seminar will be a delightful behind the scenes look at life with Julia.  ; $30 general admission; $20 affiliated organizations; $10 students (ID required). Following her seminar Verde Barr will sign copies of her book.
  • 3:00 – 4:30 pm: Media Evolution: From “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” to “Tweeting for Your Supper;” Explore changes in food culture and media in a conversation with our local gastronomic panel.  $30 per person, $20 affiliated organizations, $10 student (ID required)
To purchase tickets go to:  http://lesdamesmiami.org/celebrating_julia.html

The Freedom Tower, 600 Biscayne Blvd., Miami

Julia’s Birthday Bash

  • 5:00 – 7:00 pm:  Cocktail party to celebrate Julia’s 100th birthday with small plates and sweets crafted by the talented MCI Chef’s Council and friends, festive libations and live music. Culinary/travel-themed silent auction. Tickets : $75 per person.

An American in Paris - Dinner at TUYO Restaurant at Miami Dade Culinary Institute, Wolfson Campus

  • 7:30 – 10:00 pm: Chef Norman Van Aken will host an five-course, Julia-inspired intimate dinner party at TUYO Restaurant, atop of the MCI Building. Menu items will include an Amuse-Bouche of Torchon of Foie Gras and Mousseline de Poisson; a Julia-approved Tamal; Homard à l’Américaine;  the iconic Boeuf Bourguignonne; and Julia's favorite dessert, Reine de Saba, an almond chocolate cake. $150 per person; space is limited to 70 seats.

 To purchase tickets, contact Claire Tomlin at (305) 775-2165 or online at http://lesdamesmiami.org/celebrating_julia.html . Follow Les Dames d’Escoffier Miami on Twitter: @LesDamesMia and join the conversation at #JC100.




Because of the worst drought in half a century Americans will face higher food prices at the supermarket next year.

According to The U.S. Department of Agriculture the production and yield per acre of corn and soy will drop significantly, rising feed costs for cattle, hog and poultry producers and lowering meat and dairy production.

The initial effect will be low meat prices as farmers bring their animals to the market a bit early to cut losses from the high cost of feeds. But "a second wave of higher food prices tends to emerge from rising meat prices. Historically, within a year of a drought, the initial influx of meat supplies disappears and meat supplies shrink as there is a shortage of animals for slaughter " the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank said in a recent report.

Will the drought impact food costs in restaurants?

This year’s drought will put additional cost pressures on food as it will likely accelerate wholesale food price inflation, according to a spokesman for the National Restaurant Association.

Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the NRA’s Research & Knowledge Group, noted that one-third of a restaurant’s sales typically go toward food purchases .

NRA research found wholesale food prices in June stood 2.2 percent above their year-ago levels, and have remained elevated because of continuing gains over the last two years.

But with the nation’s economic recovery still sluggish, consumers’ spending habits remain tentative, and restaurants are reluctant to raise menu prices and most don’t want to start now.

(Editing Simone Z. Diament)

Every Saturday from 2 to 4pm throughout the month of August  taste samples of American artisan cheeses chosen by Whole Foods Markets Specialty Cheese Buyers. Click here to listen to an interview with cheese buyer Kari Foley on Food & Wine Talk WSFG.

Whole Foods Market, 6701 Red Road, Coral Gables. 305-421-9421. http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/coralgables

 Stags Leap District Appellation Collection  releases a limited edition of 18 of Napa Valley's 2008  Best Cabernets. This is the15th release of the rare compilation which represents the only offering in the U.S. comprised entirely of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from a single appellation. This year’s Collection features one bottle of 2008 Stags Leap District designated Cabernet Sauvignon from each of 18 of the Association's distinguished member wineries. It will be available from October 15th through December 15th, 2012.

"The 2008 vintage brought us some early frost challenges, a dry spring and a beautiful, warm growing season,” commented SLDW President, Elizabeth Vianna of Chimney Rock Winery. “Although there were some heat spikes, we are fortunate to grow Cabernet which can withstand many challenges. The vintage resulted in low yields, small berries and extraordinary quality - the wines showcase structure and ageability," she explained.

To order the 2008 Appellation Collection ($1,499.00 per case. 7.75% tax applies to California sales and various states by law) log on to www.stagsleapdistrict.com/appellationcollection starting on October 15 or for additional information, contact the Association's Executive Director Nancy Bialek at (707) 255-1720.

FIU Wine Academy is now open to both enthusiasts and professionals with a 13-week course  taught by industry-renowed expertsPatrick "Chip" Cassidy (FIU Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management), Bill Hebrank (FIU Chaplin School of Hospitality and TourismManagement), and  Eric Hemer (Southern Wine & Spirits).

The courses will explore the famous wine regions of the world including tasting, identifying and evaluating in a blind tasting format, wine and food pairing; buying, storage and serving wine; selling wine in an on-premises scenaria. Graduates will receive a certification of completion. Cost $695, includes all course materials, book, food pairing/tastings and parking permit for the entire semester.

Registration forms https://hospitality.fiu.edu/Wine%20Masters%20Certificate%20Registration%20Form.pdf should be submitted, along with payment, no later than September 3, 2012.
For details, email Samantha Dahlia at kdahlia@fiu.edu and request to be added to the mailing list for the "Advanced" class, which we anticipate offering for the first time in Spring 2013.

The Florida Beer Company’s Hurricane Reef Pale Ale won a Gold Medal in the competitive, English Pale Ale Category at 2012 U.S. Open Beer Championship.
Over 1,650 beers were entered this year in 65 categories from breweries from around the world. Over 20 international breweries entered the competition. This year the judges were selected from England, Canada and the United States.
The Florida Beer Company, located in Melbourne, Florida, is the leading craft brewer in the state and the sixth largest Craft Brewer in the Southern U.S.
Florida Beer Company, 2500 South Harbor City Blvd., Melbourne, Florida 32901, 321-728-3412.  For more information on the 2012 U.S. Open Beer Championship  go to www.usopenbeer.com

As we know by now, August 15 marks Julia Child’s 100th birthday. So, from Tuesday August 14 through Saturday, August 18 Chef Cesar Zapata of the Federal Food, Drink & Provisions will honor the 6 foot 2 inch Californian responsible, whether by television or cookbook, for bringing the joys of cooking luscious French cuisine to all Americans, with a special menu.

For starters, White asparagus with hollandaise, king trumpets, quail egg, olive crumble;  Caramelized onion tart; freshly shucked oysters with verjus mignonette and pastis pearls or moules marinières with garlic confit, smoked grapes and pommes frites; followed by entrées of boeuf bourguignon en croûte - short rib, pearl onions, carrots, trumpet royals mushrooms; RIS DE VEAU MEUNIERE, that is sweetbreads with sauce soubise; Canard à l'orange with beluga lentils, foie gras sausage; and a lusty bouillabaisse (since the lady lived in Marseilles and Provence). For dessert: a whimsy Julia’s Sweet

With the Miami Spice menu approachably priced at $33, add an additional $2 per person and we will donate them to The Julia Child Foundation for Gastronomy and Culinary Arts. the Federal Food, Drink & Provisions 5132 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, Fl 33137, 305.758.9559, RSVP to ani@thefederamiami.com or 305.494.0609


julia_child100August 15, 7:30pm Julia Child’s 100th Birthday Celebration Dinner. 7:30PM champagne reception, followed by a 5-course dinner prepared by Copperbox Culinary Atelier Chef Gabriela Machado, inspired by Julia Child's first meal in France and on her books Mastering the Art of French Cooking 1&2. Dinner will paired with Artisan French Wines, courtesy of Vinecraft Dinner limited to 24 people. Cost: $100, inclusive of tax, tip and a $25 per-seat donation to The Miami Legacy Awards. In benefit of Les Dames d'Escoffier Miami Chapter Legacy Awards, giving professional experiences to young women studying Culinary Arts, Food Media & Agriculture.  Copperbox Culinary Atelier. 3328 North Miami Avenue, Wynwood/Midtown. Miami FL 33127, RSVP 305.904.8535 |info@copperbox.com

9:00PM Screening of Julie and Julia A one-time screening of the Nora Ephron- directed movie MiamiBeach Cinematheque $10 GET THE TICKET! http://tinyurl.com/d7xq9k6 1130 Washington Avenue Miami Beach, FL 33139305-673-4567



A group of Olympic bosses appear to have splashed out on a £44,000 lunch that included a £19,000 bottle of 1853 Hennessy Cognac, according to reports circulating on the internet.

A receipt has been posted on Reddit, the news website, with the headline: “My friend’s a waiter and this is a receipt for an official lunch for 15 Olympic Bosses. Now we see where all the money’s going…”

From there it has spread onto more news websites where more details appear.

Food & Wine Talk Radio

Achile Sassoli, Director of Gelato World Tour
and Gelato Artisans:
James Coleridge, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Abdelrahman Al Teneji, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Matthew Lee, Austin, Texas
Ahmed Abdullatif, Kingdom of Bahrain
Stefano Versace, Miami, Florida
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The House of Mandela Wines from South Africa


Chef Scott Conant: Scarpetta


Mark Schatzker, author of The Dorito Effect, The Surprising New Truth About Food and Flavor


Elizabeth Minchilli, author of  Eating Rome: Living the Good Life in the Eternal City.  


James Beard Award-winning wine journalist Lyn Farmer on: Garnacha from Carinena; the next great wine


Cindy Hutson,chef/owner, Ortanique and Zest, author of From the Tip of My Tongue


Lidia Batianich, celebrity chef, TV host, author and restaurateur 






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