With back-to-school season approaching, South Florida parents need to start rethinking healthy eating options for their kids.   After extensive research with kids-only focus groups, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts and eleven-year-old spokes-kid chef Haile Thomas — recognized nationally (and by the First Lady) for her efforts to fight childhood obesity —recently launched its new healthy and restaurant-quality “For Kids By Kids” menu.

Here is a link  to a recent news clip interview of Haile in Scottsdale, Arizona where you can see Haile demonstrating a new dish that kids (or adults) can recreate at home.  Sample dishes include shaken chopped salad with roasted chicken, vegetables, brown rice and a yogurt-basil dressing and vegetable and sesame rice noodles with marinated tofu, corn, green beans, basil and cherry tomatoes.

Haile will be in the Miami area on Monday, August 6 and ready to talk about this exciting new menu that Hyatt its younger guests!

dsc01099On its fourth anniversary on July 26, San Ignacio College culinary arts and business school threw a bash to celebrate its accreditation by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools  www.acics.org to award certificates, diplomas and associate’s degrees.

In attendance among local and foreign dignitaries, Raul Diez Canseco Terry, former Vice President dsc01101of Peru and founder of San Ignacio College, as well as Michelin star chef, Mey Hofmann, whose institute in Barcelona Spain participates in the ongoing exchange program San Ignacio holds with Disney, Orlando, Institut Paul Bocuse in Lyon, France and Apicius in Italy.

San Ignacio College is part of the San Ignacio de Loyola Corporation, a prestigious educational institution with over 43 years of experience in the education sector and more than 90 global partners around the world. San Ignacio’s corporate headquarters are at Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola campus in Lima Peru.

San Ignacio College 10395 NW 41 St. Suite 125 Miami, FL 33178  http://www.sanignaciocollege.com/




Through August 15th, the Café at Books & Books will feature a daily, Julia-inspired two-course meal and glass of wine for $19.95 and will extend a 25% off on all Julia Child books during the month of August.
On Wednesday, August 16,  6pm,  Julia Child's 100th Birthday Dinner,
a special tribute dinner with menu items such as Julia’s Beef Bourguignon, Deviled Eggs and more by Chef Allen Susser. Cost is $85 per person and is limited to 20 people,  RSVP  305-442-4408 or email  Irving@booksandbooks.com to RSVP. Books & Books, 265 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables

To celebrate Julia Child's 100th birthday anniversary, Pascal's is offering a 5-course dinner menu prepared by chef Pascal Oudin, inspired by the celebrated chef's recipes. Starting with Cheese gougeres, the dinner proceeds with a cold leek and potato Vichyssoise; rosted duck with organce sauce, floating island and coffee macaroons.  The cost: $65.
Pascal's 2611 Ponce de Leon Blvd., Coral Gables. 305-444-2024,  www.pascalmiami.com
olympic justin timineriAfter being selected as Culinary Ambassador  by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to represent the Fresh From Florida seafood at the London 2012 Summer Olympic, Chef Justin Timineri is cooking up a healthy storm of dishes to members of the U.S. Olympic team as part of BP’s “Spirit of the Gulf” initiative.
This is the culmination of his work experience, from an event chef for NASCAR, PGA and the Kentucky Derby to several top chef positions around his hometown of Tallahassee, including serving as the chef for the Governors’ Mansion.
Chef Timineri is bringing to foggy London a taste of the sunny State with Crispy Pan-Seared Florida Gulf Swordfish and Florida Firecracker Corn Relish which over 1,000 attendees, including U.S. Olympic athletes, their families and their friends, will enjoy as they celebrate Team USA.
Crispy Pan Seared Florida Gulf Swordfish
6 servings
6 5-ounce filets fresh Florida Gulf swordfish
½ cup cornstarch
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped fine
½ cup canola oil
Black pepper, fresh ground to taste
With a sharp knife score the skin of filets in a crosshatch pattern. Pat filets with paper towel until completely dry. Refrigerate until time to cook. Preheat large sauté pan on medium high heat. Lightly dust the skin side of the fish with parsley and then corn starch. Season the filets lightly with sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste. Add oil to coat the bottom of the heated pan. Carefully lay the filets in the pan skin side down. Cook for 3-5 minutes on both sides until skin is crispy and filets are done. Cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of the filets. Keeping filets skin side up, transfer to platter.
Florida Firecracker Corn Relisholymp florida firecracker corn relish
4 Servings
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 small jalapeño, seeded and coarsely chopped
1 ½ teaspoons Florida honey
¼ teaspoon cumin
¼ cup vegetable oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
4 cups fresh Florida corn kernels (from 4 ears)
6 medium Florida radishes, halved and thinly sliced crosswise
½ cup coarsely chopped Florida flat-leaf parsley
¼ small red onion, thinly sliced
To make the dressing, mix the lime juice, jalapeño, honey and cumin in a medium sized bowl. Add the oil and whisk until combined. Season the vinaigrette with salt and pepper to taste. Combine the corn, radishes, parsley, and red onion with the vinaigrette and mix well. Season the relish with salt and pepper to taste.
For more information about Chef Justin Timineri and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, visit www.FreshFromFlorida.com.

With the recent opening of The Cheese Course in Plantation, the European-style cheese shop and quick service bistro has now seven stores in South Florida and more opening soon in Boulder, Colorado and Houston, Texas.

The new location features a selection of more than 150 imported cheeses and a 40-item bistro menu featuring signature cheese courses, sandwiches, salads and wine pairings. Monthly classes and bi-weekly tastings are also available.

The Cheese Course (Plantation Location) at The Fountains Shopping Center, in the heart of Plantation at 801 South University Dr., Suite 126 Plantation, FL 33324www.thecheesecourse.com.


aviatore rossoAt Toscana Divino master mixologist, Xain Coslow serves up from classic Campari and soda — the classic herb-and-bitters-based aperitíf known and enjoyed by all Italians — to Toscana Divino’s new Aviatore Rosso, featuring muddled raspberries, prosecco, club soda and Gin during the Daily happy hour from 3:30 - 8:00 p.m. and every Wednesday from 6 – 8 p.m during Aperitivo Italiano Happy Hour.
 aviatore rosso2Aviatore Rosso
4-5 fresh raspberries
1oz fresh squeezed lemon juice.
.5 oz simple syrup.
1.5oz Oxley Gin
1/4oz Luxardo maraschino liqueur
Splash of balsamic vinaigrette
* Muddle berries, combine all ingredients in a tall glass and fill with ice. Shake vigorously and double strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a raspberry wrapped in a lemon peel twist.

Toscana Divino, 900 South Miami Avenue, Mary Brickell Village, downtown Miami

marcus samuelssonWhole Foods Market – Coral Gables will host a book signing for renowned chef, Marcus Samuelsson, author of Yes Chef, on Thursday, July 26, 2012, from noon – 2:00 p.m.        “Mr. Samuelsson, as it happens, possesses one of the great culinary stories of our time,” says Dwight Garner, a book critic for The New York Times. The memoir takes readers through Samuelsson’s childhood and outlines his career path to becoming a successful chef. This event is free and open to the public. Copies of Samuelsson’s memoir will be available for purchase at the store for $27.

In addition to being a multiple James Beard Award recipient, Samuelsson is the youngest chef to achieve two 3-star reviews from The New York Times. In 2010, he opened his restaurant, Red Rooster Harlem, where he hosted a private dinner for President Obama. Along with being a chef, restaurateur and author, Samuelsson helps raise funds for non-profit organizations through his various philanthropic efforts. On the second season of the hit Bravo television show, Top Chef Masters, he beat out 21 fellow master chefs, winning $115,000 for the UNICEF Tap Project. In 2012, Samuelsson won $50,000 for C-Cap, an organization dedicated to providing career opportunities in the foodservice industry for underserved youth through culinary arts education and employment, when he was crowned Chopped: All Stars champion.

Whole Foods Market – Coral Gables is located at 6701 Red Road in Coral Gables. Telephone: (305) 421-9421

New restaurants have joined the 2nd annual Dine Out with Tropical Audubon Society, wherein each restaurant donates ten percent of dinner checks from designated first Tuesdays of the month to the nonprofit conservation organization help protect South Florida's natural environment, resources and architectural treasures such as the historic landmark Doc Thomas House that serves as TAS headquarters.

Whisk Gourmet, Dine Out’s most frequent partner, officially inaugurated the Summer Season on Tuesday, July 3rd and on Tuesday, August 7th , 6-10 p.m., Sports Grill South Miami steps up to the plate.  Sports Grill South Miami is located on 1559 Sunset Drive directly across from Tropical Audubon Society.) Phone: 305.668.0396 www.sportsgrillmiami.com Dinner reservations for parties of 8 or more will be accepted on Tuesday, August 7th.
The next dinner will take place on Tuesday, September 4th at George’s in South Miami. For additional information log on to: www.tropicalaudubon.org


When I stepped into the crowded room after making my way through the tented stalls casting a welcome shade on tables sagging under hundreds and hundreds of different species of mangoes, spices, foods, artisanal products and more at the 20th Mango Festival at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, it was as if I was stepping back in time but into the future.  The Mango Festival is by now a Miami tradition which is gaining a worldwide reputation.

While curator Richard Campbell was celebrating the past 25 years of what is now one of, if not the largest mango festival anywhere in the world, and projecting the future of his passionate research in the field, some of the original “mango-gang” chefs were cooking yesterday at the 20th Mango Festival Brunch. Some had changed venues, others came with their children, but they all cooked delicious dishes with mango.

3allenLines of brunchers snaked around each chef’s table. Chef Allen Susser made mounds of rock shrimp, chorizo and green mango curry with jasmine rice. Chef Douglas Rodriguez offered crêpes with duck, foie gras and mango butter rum sauce; Chef Andrea Curto Randazzo was cooking with two of her three little girls mango-chile glazed slow roasted pork belly with chorizo  mango French toast;  Chef Mark Militello made taco cones of Asian tuna with avocado and wasabi butter and salted mango salsa. Hotel chefs Rolando Cruz Taura (Biltmore) prepared buckwheat waffles with smoked salmon, caviar and mango salsa and Jay Mariadoss (Sofitel) Pernod and chervil marinated chicken with tropical mango, leek and boursin cheese.  Desserts were provided by chef Joe Holmes of Macy’s catering.

6liliesOnce the brunch was over and as the heat of mango auction built up inside, outside in the sweltering July afternoon, water lilies competed with Shihuly’s sculptures as to whose reflection would best catch the early afternoon sun.


mango festivalSaturday, July 14 and Sunday, July 15 from 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m, Fairchild 20th Annual International Mango Festival celebrates the growth and development Florida’s beloved tropical fruit has undergone since first being planted in Fairchild’s rich soil. Through lectures, cooking demonstrations, samplings, sales, and children’s activities, visitors learn the differences among mangos cultivars around the globe. Purchase mangos at the Mango Fruit Market, buy a Curator's Choice mango tree the Mango Tree Sale area, or bid on mangos at the world's only mango auction. The full list of activities is available online. Call 305-667-1651. http://www.fairchildgarden.org

For more info: 305-667-1651 or www.fairchildgarden.org parking:     Visitor Center (North Entrance) Admission is $25 for adults, $18 for seniors, $12 for children 6-17 and  free to children 5 and under and Fairchild members. Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, 10901 Old Cutler Road, Coral Gables, FL.


 On Wednesday, July 25, from 7 to 10 p.m., 4th Annual To Live & Dine — a MIAMI magazine culinary melting pot of over 350 food enthusiasts, honored chefs, media and restaurateurs —  co-hosted by Chef Daniel Boulud in benefit of Chapman Partnership,   will be held at Miami Design District’s Moore Building, 4040 NE 2nd Avenue, Miami, FL 33137

There will be creative bites and pairings from over 18 of Miami’s favorite culinary hotspots — db Bistro Moderne, Eating House, EDGE Steak & Bar, HaVen South Beach, J&G Grill at The St. Regis Bal Harbour, Katsuya by Starck, Paulina’s Pops, Scarpetta at Fontainebleau Miami Beach, SUSHISAMBA dromo, The Dome Restaurant & Caviar Bar, The Dutch at W South Beach, The Restaurant at The Setai Miami Beach, Toscana Divino and Yardbird Southern Table & Bar and a taste of Miami’s soon-to-open establishments including Bloom, Florida Cookery and Swine Southern Table & Bar — spread across two floors of the historic Moore Building.

Tickets are available now for $25 (tickets will not be available at the door) at http://toliveanddineinmiami.eventbrite.com. View the digital edition of the July/August Restaurant Issue of MIAMI magazine,    Miami Design District’s Moore Building (4040 NE 2nd Avenue, Miami, FL 33137)


lobster key largoKey Largo comes alive with over 24 food and wine events from July 27 through August 5,   with cuisine from the Keys as well as International,  lobster and seafood cook outs, cooking demos, murder mystery dinners, live music,   martinis and margaritas, Caribbean paddlewheel river boat cruises and more…

The festival finale event, “A Taste of Key Largo,” is planned for 4-8 p.m. Sunday, August. 5, at the Sundowners Bayside Beach and Restaurant complex.  There, local chefs will prepare signature dishes and uncork a grand selection of wines.

Live music, mixology demonstrations and summer cocktail tastings round out the evening on the water. Tickets to this event are $25 per person, including a souvenir tasting glass and gift bag, and can be purchased online starting July 1 by calling 305-394-3736 or www.KeyLargoFoodandWineFestival.com

Thursday, June 28 kicks off the summer dinner series, “Dinner Across The Decades”. During this culinary voyage across the decades at the Federal,  Chef Cesar Zapata will be revamping classic Americana in his own 21 st century style, in partnership with Augustan Wines.

June will feature the 1950s, a decade made famous for fast food, TV dinners, the beginning of foods on the go and, the ever frightful, foods in a mold (aka. Jello molds, tuna molds, etc.)

The reception is a 7:30 p.m. with The Federal Spritz - sparkling wine, bittermens sour lemon & hopped grapefruit, housemade lemon syrup and orange

The 5-course dinner is at 8 p.m. sharp with dishes like traditional shrimp cocktail; “The Elvis” with seared foie gras, caramelized bananas, peanut butter and French toast; “TV DINNER” with rabbit a la KFC, candied kumquats, smashed taters, and Florida sweet corn, to end with “The Sugar Fairy’s Sweet Confections”. The cost: $75 per person, plus tax & tip

RSVP info@thefederalmiami.com
or call 305.758.9559The Federal Food, Drink & Provisions, 5132 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL 33137



Direct Wine Domaines USA has partnered with Stampler Auctions to launch the South Florida Preferred Wine Auction  I & II  series, to be held at 12 noon on July 1, 2012 and November 1, 2012.   The bidding will run live at Robovault in Fort Lauderdale and will also be accessible online via www.ProxiBid.com With an estimated 1,000 bottles of collector level inventory encompassing a full spectrum from Grand Cru  to  Napa’s best, this kick-off auction is designed to become a lasting fixture within South Florida’s wine culture.   

To learn more about this unprecedented event and its online bidding access, please call Direct Wine Domaines USA  at  (305) 834-9849  or  Stampler Auctions at  (954) 921-8888  and www.stamplerauctions.com

Known for their white truffle dinners, Italian twin chefs Nicola and Fabrizio Carro of Northern Italian  Quattro Gastronomia Italiana in South Beach and Mexico City, are now offering, in addition to their à la carte menu,  a sumptuous Caviar Tasting Menu.The Aggroittica Lombarda caviar de Venise  we use is the world leader in farm raised caviar and is the freshest most flavorful we’ve found,” notes Chef Nicola Carro. , The caviar tasting menu, priced at $140 per person (excluding tax and gratuities) can be accompanied with Antica Fratta Franciacorta Brut D.O.C.G Brut or Essence Rose Vintage, available by the glass or bottle.

Quattro Gastronomia Italiana is located at 1014 Lincoln Road on South Beach. Reservations required. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner daily. Telephone: (305) 531-4833. www.quattromiami.com


 As a preview to the 20th anniversary of the International Mango Festival, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden is hosting “Mango Munchkins Cooking Class,” a free event on Sunday, July 1 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. where children ages 5 to 12 can learn how to create healthy and delicious meals using the fruit at the tip of every Floridian’s tongue this summer: mangos.

Noris Ledesma, curator of tropical fruit and writer for the blog “For the Love of Mangos” at Fairchild, is teaching participants how to make mouthwatering mango popsicles and smoothies. Ten-year-old Paloma Fernandez is teaching her peers how to make a healthy mango pizza, a recipe she created herself.

“Mango Munchkins Cooking Class” gives a sneak peek into Fairchild’s buzzed-about International Mango Festival, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary on Saturday, July 14 and Sunday, July 15.

The cooking class takes place at the Shehan Visitor Center in the Ballroom on the second floor at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, located at 10901 Old Cutler Rd., Coral Gables, FL, 33156. This is a free event. There is a two guest limit per each child participating. Space is limited, so an RSVP in advance is strongly recommended. Please call Morgan Brooks at 305.667.1651, ext. 3303 to reserve a spot.

For more information, please visit the Mango Munchkins Cooking Class webpage.

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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