South Beach Wine & Food Festival

by: Barbie Bertisch

Our Favorites & Where To Stay

February, Yearly

 
Truly one of the largest Food & Wine festivals in the country, SOBEWFF is now fifteen years old and backed by the Food Network, Delta, and the NY Times. The glorious festival brings America’s favorite TV chefs to sunny Miami, as well as industry pro’s that teach, chat, and cook all week.
 
This yearly pilgrimage is considered massively entertaining. Consider this your once-in-a-lifetime chance to meet that competitor who was on Chopped three years ago. But honestly, WFF aims to please every palate under the sun as top global culinary talent prepare the best dishes. Come eat and drink all of the wine, sleep, then repeat–for five days.
 
Our favorite angle on the festival: the chance to enjoy Miami’s local flavors so easily. Guy Fieri is hilarious, but how many triple-decker, deep-fried, beer-battered angus beef burgers can you seriously ingest? The city is bursting at the seams with kitchen talent. Look out for local chefs from Finka Table & Tap, Scarpetta, db Bistro Moderne, Alter, and El Mago de las Fritas. This is your chance to get to know the real culinary heroes of Miami and what they bring to the table (see what we did there?).

HOTELS
  • Loews Miami Beach

    This is the very official, very important headquarters of the SBWFF, and where most of the events will take place. Staying at the host hotel comes with a price tag, but it will get you through the ropes for some pretty high-profile events, like the NYT Cooking Series with Master of Ceremonies Anthony Bourdain. Try to snag a room way in advance, and make sure to reserve a table at Lure Fishbar for one of the city’s best meals.

  • Ritz Carlton Miami Beach

    This option is another staple if you’re in town for the SBWFF, with loads of events going down here. Every year, the hotel is host to the beloved Burger Bash (an outdoor competition in all things Burger-related), Italian Bites, Meatopia, and Lucky Chopsticks. On top of that, Ritz-Carlton’s restaurant, the DiLido Beach Club, is one of the only beachfront dining experiences in South Beach–and a delicious establishment for seafood.

  • The Fontainebleau

    The Fontainebleau has more restaurants than recommended meals per day: Scarpetta for Italian, Hakkasan for Cantonese, and two Michael Mina eateries: Stripsteak and Michael Mina 74. For after-party opportunities, LIV is the provider of Vegas-style nightclub vibes. Between the sprawling lobby, gorgeous views, and the bill to match, this luxury spot is certainly a top-of-the-line place to stay.

  • Faena Hotel Miami Beach

    Beautiful. Delicious. Fresh. Those are just a few words that come to mind when the local, hot new restaurant Los Fuegos is mentioned. This Argentinian culinary-heaven was opened by renowned asado master Francis Mallmann (featured in Netflix’s Chef’s Table documentary), and Pao, with award-winning chef Paul Qui at the helm. Foodies have to make a stop at the Faena Hotel.

  • The Miami Beach EDITION

    Newcomer Miami Beach EDITION offers two Jean-Georges Vongerichten restaurants: the upscale Matador Room, and the more laid back Market. It is only here where the famed JG teams-up with queen bee of home living, Martha Stewart, for a Rosé Brunch. Clearly there are only winners here. After a life-affirming meal, make sure you go ice-skating, bowl, and dance in the BASEMENT.

  • Soho Beach House

    Soho Beach House is one of Miami’s most exclusive spots–home of members-only facilities and unmatched intimacy. Luckily for the rest of us peasants, Cecconi’s is the only area that’s open to the public, and is a great place for chef-stalking activities during the festival. Renowned food writer Nigella Lawson hosts a fancy dinner here during the event week.

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