The 6 Best Things We Ate at SOBEWFF 2018 in Miami

Notable bites from the yearly beachside festival
February 27, 2018
by Kelly Dobkin

Images courtesy of WorldEye unless otherwise noted

The annual South Beach Wine and Food Festival just wrapped up its 17th year in operation in Miami Beach, Florida, this past Sunday. Spanning four days in total, the event featured walk-around tastings, panel discussions and curated dinners from big-name chefs like José Andrés, Michael Symon, Giada De Laurentiis, Bobby Flay and more. We were on-site to capture all the action which included Instagram stories and posts as well as live streams from events and local Miami restaurants. (Check out Zagat's Instagram story today to see more Miami coverage.) 

We've summarized a few of our favorite bites from the long weekend of eating — check them out below.  

Wagyu pastrami from Michael Voltaggio at Bobby Flay's Tribute Dinner

This smokey, meaty bite from ink.well chef Michael Voltaggio was one of the event standouts, garnished with finely grated horseradish. The dinner, which took place at Loews Hotel on Saturday night in honor of the famed Food Network chef, included plates from chefs and friends like Giada de Laurentiis, Michelle Bernstein and Marc Vetri. 

Tempura-fried rib-eye burger from Morimoto at Heineken Light Burger Bash hosted by Guy Fieri

​The lines were extra long for this gutbomb of a burger from chef Masaharu Morimoto at this year's Burger Bash tasting. Topped with teriyaki sauce and served with crispy kimchi, its unique Asian flavor profile made it a memorable bite for us. While it wasn't one of the actual winners — the judges favored NYC's Butter, and People's Choice winner was Swine Southern Table & Bar — this was still our personal favorite. Judges at the event included Bravo's Andy Cohen, chef Marc Murphy, Dave Grutman, Foodgod Instagrammer Jonathan Cheban and designer/cookbook author Zac Posen.

Beef cheek pierogi from Michael Symon at Bobby Flay's Tribute Dinner

The Chew chef offered up his signature beef cheek pierogi from his restaurant Lola in Cleveland (it's been on the menu there for 21 years). This version was topped with French horn mushrooms, shaved celery, chives and horseradish. 

Korean fried broccoli from Dirt Candy's Amanda Cohen at Best of the Best

The outspoken vegetarian chef recreated one of her NYC restaurant's most popular dishes for the Best of the Best walk-around tasting at Fontainebleau Hotel on Friday night. Breaded in panko and fried, the veggie is topped with a gochujang-based spicy sauce for extra kick.

Pork ribs from Big Bob Gibson's BBQ at Beachside BBQ hosted by Michael Symon

To close out the festival, Michael Symon hosted a Beachside BBQ on Sunday night with meaty dishes from chefs all over the country. Our best bite was the sweet and smoky pork ribs from Big Bob Gibson's BBQ in Decatur, Alabama, (known for its famous white barbecue sauce). Served with a side of killer mac and cheese, it was the event winner as well as our personal favorite.

Roasted tomato salad from Ray's Jenn Louis at Best of the Best

The Portland, OR based chef created a delicious roasted tomato salad with shawarma tonnato at Friday's Best of the Best tasting. Roasted tomatoes are accompanied by sliced cucumbers, green onions, dill and a spice blend made with ground dried Persian limes, all served with a lemon vinaigrette.