Savoring the Culinary Extravaganza: Highlights from SOBEWFF 2019 and NYCWFF 2018

The 18th annual Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival returns in February with more than 100 star-studded events. 

By Janice Hoppe-Spiers, Knighthouse Media

The iconic white tents of the Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival (SOBEWFF) will line Miami Beach in February to house returning and reimagined fan-favorite tastings for five star-studded days.

“We are excited to unveil the 100-plus events we have planned to our passionate fans and partners,” says Lee Brian Schrager, festival founder and director and senior vice president, communications and corporate social responsibility for Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. “With a variety of new offerings and the return of the specially-curated CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series, the 18th annual edition of the festival is our most robust event line up yet.”

CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series, a dinner hosted by Donatella Arpaia, PJ Calapa and Michael Chavez, will kick off SOBEWFF on Feb. 20. The series continues throughout the festival with dinners hosted by Anne Burrell and Angelo Elia; Elizabeth Karmel and Martina McBride; a clambake hosted by Alex Guarnaschelli and Jorge Ramos; Rock ’n Roll hosted by Adam Richman, Sunset Spritz Party hosted by Valerie Bertinelli and more.

The new events taking place during the 18th annual SOBEWFF include:

* Bites & Beats on the River hosted by Adam Richman;

* Wine & Cheese Happy Hour hosted by Martha Stewart;

* Taste Jamaica hosted by Cindy Hutson and Delius Shirley;

* Mangia After Dark hosted by Marc Murphy;

* Rosé Pool Party hosted by Geoffrey Zakarian;

* Sunset Stone Crab hosted by Emeril Lagasse; and

* An array of new Master Class experiences covering a variety of topics.

In addition to the new events, SOBEWFF attendees can rely on returning favorites like Tacos After Dark hosted by Michael Symon, Oyster Bash hosted by Josh Capon, Chicken Coupe hosted by Andrew Carmellini, Southern Kitchen Brunch hosted by Trisha Yearwood, Goya Foods’ Swine & Wine hosted by Eileen Andrade and Fernando Desa, as well as featured Wine Spectator Wine Seminars presented by Bank of America.

Tickets are on sale now for SOBEWFF at Hosted by Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits and Florida International University (FIU), SOBEWFF benefits FIU’s Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management and the Southern Wine & Spirits Beverage Management Center. Every year, more than 1,000 students and volunteers gain valuable real-world experience with the festival, which serves as an interactive education platform for the future leaders of the hospitality industry. To date, the festival has raised more than $28 million for the school.

Save the Date

The 11th annual Food Network & Cooking Channel New York City Wine & Food Festival took over the Big Apple in October, attracting nearly 50,000 fans, media and industry professionals. Attendees enjoyed a variety of offerings during more than 75 events, which include signature tastings, late-night parties, hands-on classes, specially-curated panel discussions and more throughout the four-day weekend.

Chefs and Food Network personalities Giada De Laurentiis, Alex Guarnaschelli, Katie Lee and Rachael Ray joined social justice advocate and Me Too movement creator Tarana Burke on stage at the Supper is Served kick-off even on Oct. 11. During the event, more than 2,500 attendees enjoyed fare from more than 25 of the nation’s top female chefs carving a path for future generations while Natasha Bedingfield and Martina McBride performed a selection of their most empowering hits.

Fan-favorite Blue Moon Burger Bash presented by Pat LaFrieda Meats hosted by Rachael Ray crowned Citi Field, home of the New York Mets, the 2018 NYCWFF Burger Bash? Champion for its Sliders & Sinkers entry. Clinton Hall was this year’s Blue Moon People’s Choice Award winner for its entry, The Double Smashed burger, which was served with French fries.

NYCWFF benefits the No Kid Hungry? campaign and Food Bank for New York City with 100 percent of the festival’s net proceeds helping fight hunger. The festival has raised more than $11 million to date for the organizations. Visit to learn more about next year’s event, which will be held Oct. 10-13, and to purchase tickets.