On Food & Wine
3,700-years-old Wine Cellar unearthed in Israel PDF Print E-mail
Written by JOHN NOBLE WILFORD, NYtimes   
Tuesday, 26 November 2013 17:57

wine cellar israelDigging this summer at the ruins of a 1700 B.C. Canaanite palace, known as Tel Kabri, in northern Israel, archaeologists found one of civilization’s oldest and largest wine cellars.

Near the banquet hall where rulers of a Middle Bronze Age city-state and their guests feasted, a team of American and Israeli researchers broke through to a storage room holding the remains of 40 large ceramic jars holding  the equivalent of about 3,000 bottles of red and white wines, they said. The vessels were broken, their liquid contents long since vanished — but not without a trace.

A chemical analysis of residues left in the three-foot-tall jars detected organic traces of acids that are common components of all wine, as well as ingredients popular in ancient winemaking. These included honey, mint, cinnamon bark, juniper berries and resins used as a preservative. The recipe was similar to medicinal wines used for 2,000 years in ancient Egypt and probably tasted something like retsina or other resinous Greek wines today.

Click to read full story

Last Updated on Tuesday, 26 November 2013 18:03
Terroir; a concept revisited: Microbes may have a bigger role in how wines taste PDF Print E-mail
Written by NICHOLAS WADE, NYTimes   
Tuesday, 26 November 2013 16:26

wine terroirResearchers have found that grape varieties in different regions carry distinctive patterns of fungi and bacteria, which may play a role in making a wine unique. Read Story in NYTimes  

Terroir is a concept at the heart of French winemaking, but one so mysterious that the word has no English counterpart. It denotes the holistic combination of soil, geology, climate and local grape-growing practices that make each region’s wine unique.

There must be something to terroir, given that expert wine tasters can often identify the region from which a wine comes. But American wine growers have long expressed varying degrees of skepticism about this ineffable concept, some dismissing it as unfathomable mysticism and others regarding it as a shrewd marketing ploy to protect the cachet of French wines.

Now American researchers may have penetrated the veil that hides the landscape of terroir from clear view, at least in part. They have seized on a plausible aspect of terroir that can be scientifically measured — the fungi and bacteria that grow on the surface of the wine grape.

These microbes certainly affect the health of grapes as they grow — several of them adversely — and they are also incorporated into the must, the mashed grapes that are the starting material of winemaking. Several of the natural fungi that live on grapes have yeastlike properties, and they and other microbes could affect the metabolism of the ensuing fermentation. (Several species of microbes are available commercially for inoculation along with yeast into wine fermentations.)

But are the microbial communities that grow on the grapes of a given region stable enough to contribute consistently to wine quality, and hence able to explain or contribute to its terroir?

Such a question would have been hard or impossible to address until the development of two techniques that allow the mass identification of species. One is DNA bar coding, based on the finding that most species can be identified by analyzing a short stretch of their genome, some 250 DNA units in length. The other is the availability of machines that can analyze prodigious amounts of DNA data at a reasonable cost.

Armed with these new tools for studying microbial ecology, a research team led by David A. Mills and Nicholas A. Bokulich of the University of California, Davis, has sampled grape musts from vineyards across California. Grape varieties from various wine-growing regions carry distinctive patterns of fungi and bacteria, they reported Monday in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

They found, for instance, that one set of microbes is associated with chardonnay musts from the Napa Valley, another set with those of a must in Central Valley and a third grouping with musts from Sonoma. They noticed a similarly distinctive pattern of microbes in cabernet sauvignon musts from the north San Joaquin Valley, the Central Coast, Sonoma and Napa.

The discovery of stable but differing patterns of microbial communities from one region’s vineyards to another means that microbes could explain, at least in part, why one region’s zinfandel, say, tastes different from another’s. The links between microbes and wine-growing regions “provide compelling support for the role of grape-surface microbial communities in regional wine characteristics,” the researchers conclude.

“The reason I love this study is that it starts to walk down a path to something we could actually measure,” Dr. Mills said. “There are high-end courses on terroir, which I think are bunk. Someone has to prove that something about terroir makes it to the bottle, and no one has done that yet.”

Microbes are deposited on the grape surface by wind, insects and people, and may fail or flourish because of specific local conditions such as the way the grape vines are trained. And there may be genetic affinities between particular microbial species and each variety of grape, the researchers say.

Even if Napa’s chardonnay grapes, say, carry a distinctive pattern of fungal and bacterial species, the Davis scientists need still to prove that these microbes affect the quality of the wine. Microbes could exert an influence both during the lifetime of the grape and during fermentation, when they may add particular ingredients to the wine. “We will look at how overall microbial communities correlate with quality traits in the wine, and whether you can predict quality from the microbes present,” Mr. Bokulich said.

Thomas Henick-Kling, a professor of oenology at Washington State University, said it was plausible that microbes are a component of terroir. “Unripe grapes taste the same the world over,” he said. It is known that single strains of yeast can have a strong effect on a varietal’s flavor, he continued, “so it’s likely that microbes play a larger role than presently known and are probably a part of the regional differences that we recognize.”

While Dr. Mills said that “I make fun of terroir all the time,” he believes that regional distinctions between vineyards do exist and that microbes have a role in creating them. If the specific links between microbes and the sensory properties of wine can be identified, growers will be able to take a savoir-faire attitude to terroir instead of a je ne sais quoi shrug.

On the other hand, he added, pinning the qualities of wine on bacteria and fungi may spoil that frisson of enchantment for some connoisseurs. “Many people don’t want this figured out,” he said, “because it demystifies the wonderful mystery of wine.”


Stag’s Leap wins big at 2013 International Wine & Spirit Competitions in London and Hong Kong PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Tuesday, 19 November 2013 23:20

Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in Napa Valley CA  was named “United States Wine Producer of the Year” at the prestigious 2013 International Wine & Spirits Competition (IWSC) in London the same night the 2010 CASK 23 was awarded “Best Cabernet Sauvignon” at the Cathay Pacific International Wine & Spirits Competition in Hong Kong.  In addition to these two Trophies, the wines of Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars were awarded eight top medals.

Founded in 1969, the IWSC is considered to be the oldest and most prestigious competition of its kind for recognizing quality in the industry.  Judging includes a blind tasting consisting of panels selected from over 300 experienced industry judges from around the world.

The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine & Spirit Competition is run in partnership with the London-basedInternational Wine & Spirit Competition and was created specifically for the Asian market.

The following international trophies and medals were awarded at the IWSC Banquet on November 13 at the City of London Guildhall and at an awards ceremony the same night in Hong Kong. 

The International Wine and Spirits Competition London Summary of Awards

USA Wine Producer of the Year – Stag's Leap Wine Cellars 
Stag's Leap Wine Cellars S.L.V Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 
Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars CASK 23 Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 
Stag's Leap Wine Cellars KARIA Chardonnay 2010 
Stag's Leap Wine Cellars ARTEMIS Cabernet Sauvignon 2010

The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine and Spirits Competition Summary of Awards

Best Cabernet Sauvignon – Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars 2010 CASK 23 Cabernet Sauvignon 
Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars CASK 23 Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 
Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars FAY Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 
Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars S.L.V. Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 
Stag's Leap ARTEMIS Cabernet Sauvignon 2010

For more information on The International Wine and Spirits Competition and Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine & Spirit Competition visit: http://www.iwsc.net/home and


Miami-based Cacao Art Chocolates Launches Online Store PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Monday, 18 November 2013 20:58

cacao1Miami-based  Cacao Art chocolates, a maker of artisanal chocolates,  is now selling its products online at www.cacaoart.com .   Owners Isabel and Susana Garcia specialize in creating luxurious, contemporary bonbons using the finest Venezuelan cacao.  All chocolates are individually handmade, without artificial flavors or preservatives and offer an assortment of unique flavors in two categories - the Classics Collection and the Masterpieces Collection.

Chocolates are available for purchase online at www.cacaoart.com with two day shipping in the continental United States; for pick up at local farmer’s markets and for delivery in Miami-Dade for orders more than $100.

These chocolates are available for purchase in Large box quantities, which includes 25 chocolates ($42); Deluxe box quantities; which includes 15 chocolates ($32); and small and mini box quantities ($6/$8), which can be customized and are available for special order.


 cacao 3

Last Updated on Monday, 18 November 2013 21:03
Paso Robles Wine Country named Wine Region of The Year by Wine Enthusiast PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Monday, 18 November 2013 20:35

Wine Enthusiast Magazine announced today that the Paso Robles American Viticultural Area (AVA) has received the honor of being named the 2013 Wine Region of the Year in the magazine's annual Wine Star Awards.

Paso Robles Wine Country, located along California’s famed Central Coast, is midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco with over 200 wineries and 32,000 vineyard acres. The region’s winemakers, growers and industry are ecstatic to be held in the highest regard among some of the world’s greatest wine producing regions with this incredible award.

“Since 1983, when the Paso Robles AVA was first created, the region has grown exponentially with talent, quality and artistry,” said Gary Eberle, owner of Eberle Winery.

Paso Robles as a wine region has been gaining in popularity in recent years with a number of accolades through exemplary point scores, creative video marketing initiatives and high profile articles and reports. The AVA continues to mature with a current proposal to create 11 districts within the boundaries of the Paso Robles viticultural area which will allow growers and vintners to tell their stories more clearly, which in turn will give consumers and trade a much greater understanding of Paso Robles’ diversity and complexity.

“This award is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our wineries and growers whose individual accomplishments help raise the bar of the region as a whole,” said Jennifer Porter, Executive Director of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance.

The Paso Robles wine region and the winners of the 2013 Wine Star Awards will be honored at an industry studded gala / black-tie awards ceremony at the New York Public Library in New York City on January 27, 2014. The Paso Robles AVA will be represented by Jennifer Porter, Executive Director and Christopher Taranto, Communications Director of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance, as well as a number of winery and grower representatives.

For more information, visit www.pasowine.com .


Venissa 2010, the Liquid Gold of Native Venice, makes the Top 100 Italian wines PDF Print E-mail
Written by Simone Zarmati Diament   
Friday, 15 November 2013 23:20

venissa wineIl Golosario, the Guide to the good things of Italy edited by renowned food and wine experts Paolo Massobrio and Marco Gatti, has selected Venissa 2010 among the 100 best Italian wines.

Venissa , a 100% Dorona varietal  is made an ancient variety of grapes rediscovered by Gianluca Bisol in the remote Venetian  lagoon island of Mazzorbo.  The yellow berries native to Venice were cultivated on the lagoon islands up until 1400 after which all trace was lost. Listen to an interview with Gianluca Bisol on location at Venissa.

The full-bodied  golden yellow nectar-like wine exhibits notes of wild flowers and chamomile, apricot, quince, notes of dried fruit, walnut extract, nuances of rock salt and iodine. Velvet-textured,  it is full-flavored, with a lively acidity and a long finish. It is great as an aperitivo and pairs perfectly with fish and white meats.

The Il Golosario Top Hundred Award, now into its twelfth edition, will be presented during the official ceremony on Sunday 17th November 2013 in the AGORÀ area of Superstudio Più Milan during the ‘Golosaria’ event at the Papillon show that is running from November 16th to 18th.

Venissa is part of an ambitious project aimed at showcasing and enhancing the history and cultural heritage of Native Venice, an archipelago that includes the islands of Burano, Mazzorbo and Torcello. Gianluca Bisol has reclaimed the ancient walled vineyard of Venissa, owned by the municipality of Venice, on the island of Mazzorbo and it is here that the historical Venetian grape variety of Dorona has been planted. It was from this grape that Venissa, the Liquid Gold of Native Venice came into being, with the participation of Desiderio Bisol an innovative and authoritative oenologist and Roberto Cipresso a renowned international expert on terroir.

The second exclusive vintage of this great collector’s white wine is now available in the form of 3911 half-litre, 188 Magnum, 88 Jeroboam and 36 Imperial collector’s bottles made with gold leaf plated Murano glass – a creation of Giovanni Moretti. The label has been replaced by a precious sheet of pure gold leaf fashioned by the modern day descendent of the ancient Battiloro family of Venice. The leaf was applied by hand and the bottle was then re-fired in the ovens of the Carlo Moretti glassworks on the island of Murano.


Last Updated on Friday, 15 November 2013 23:35
Edible Art: Cheeses Of France hosts Free Pop-up Café during Art Basel Festival, Midtown Miami PDF Print E-mail
Written by SFG   
Friday, 15 November 2013 00:50

cheeses of franceOn Saturday, December 7th and Sunday, December 8  The Cheeses of France will be showcasing delicious fromage offerings with two free pop-up events  in conjunction with the Art Basel Festival held in the Wynwood Art District of Midtown Miami under a tent specifically erected for the Cheeses of France event.

Turophiles (that is cheese connoisseurs) will be able to sample a variety of cheeses, while enjoying spectacular interactive and edible art displays from three international artists, as well as tasty passed hors- d'oeuvres and wines.

The “Eat Art” movement was created by Daniel Spoeri in the early 1960s to create synergy between art and food. During the Miami Art Basel Fair, the Milk Factory, a Parisian Art Gallery specializing in the “Eat Art” movement, will showcase three “Eat Art” artists: Dorothée Selz, known as the “Eat Art” baby, who began work as an artist in the late 1960s; Antoni Miralda, who with Daniel Spoeri created the “Eat Art” movement and who later opened The Food Culture Museum, an informal museum preserving diverse popular food culture throughout the world; and Krai, an artist from Thailand currently residing in Paris, who adapted his art of sculpturing tropical fruits to the French culture and is now the only sculptor on cheeses in the world.

Dorothée Selz will be constructing a work of edible art, created specifically for the Miami pop-up, from which the public will be able to eat cheeses, fruits and other delicious bites on bamboo sticks. Antoni Miralda will work on another art-piece related to the Eat Art movement, which will be unveiled at the event. Krai will sculpt Tomme de Savoie and Mimolette cheeses in front of a live audience. These artists will make us think about what we eat, how we eat, and why we eat. Most importantly, they will help us discover how eating French Cheeses is an Art, and is a fundamental part of our world culture.

Six cheese companies from France will offer samples of more than 15 different types of French cheeses and Representatives from the Cheeses of France Marketing Council will be traveling from France to attend the event and will be present to answer any questions attendees may have (and also, of course, to provide the requisite ‘savoir-faire’).

Both events on Saturday, December 7  from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday, December 8 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. are free and are open to the general public.

Midtown Miami, Wynwood Art District, Midtown Boulevard (between NE 31st & NE 32nd), Miami, FL  33137

Last Updated on Friday, 15 November 2013 21:47
Funky “Brooklyn Brewery Mash: Adventures In Food, Film, Music, Books & Beer” comes to Miami December 9 – 15 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brooklyn Brewery Mash   
Thursday, 14 November 2013 19:56


Brooklyn Brewery is taking its neighborhood on the road. Collaborating with friends old and new, the Brewery has bundled up some of its favorite events into The Brooklyn Brewery Mash as a benefit for Slow Food USA. Including its last stop in Miami from December 9 - 15, The Mash will drop in 11 cities during 2013 and roll out a roster of parties, comedy, concerts, pop-up supperclubs and readings, all featuring humanity’s favorite beverage.

The Brooklyn Brewery MASH - Stop Motion Tour of Brooklyn from Transient Pictures on Vimeo.

The Brooklyn Brewery MASH - Stop Motion Tour of Brooklyn from Transient Pictures on Vimeo.


“The Mash is an expression of Brooklyn art, music, food and the cultural links we see with many cities around the world,” says Brooklyn Brewery President & Co-founder Steve Hindy. “There is a revolution happening in the world of food and the world of beer, and we are happy to celebrate this revolution with our friends around the US.”
NYC food and art organizations have been closely linked to Brooklyn Brewery from the beginning. Be it a beer dinner, cook-off, concert or film festival, the ethos of these happenings has consistently mirrored the consideration and creativity behind the making of The Brewery’s beer. Paired with the flavor and flair of Brooklyn, classic nightlife is re-imagined as a more interactive experience. During The Mash, participants will enjoy an array of perennial and rare Brooklyn beers.
Helping color in The Mash, NBNY, the organizers of Brooklyn’s Bring to Light festival, will create their immersive installations of light and projection art throughout the tour. Continuing a tradition of giving back, Brooklyn Brewery cooked up The Mash as a benefit to Slow Food USA. Proceeds from every ticket sold will go to Slow Food chapters in each city.
“We’re absolutely delighted to have the support of the Brooklyn Brewery as it launches its Mash tour,” says Richard McCarthy, Executive Director of Slow Food USA. “Brooklyn Brewmaster Garrett Oliver has been a Slow Food supporter for a long time and we're looking forward to the celebrations in the various local communities.”
Art Of The Burger
Mon, Dec 9, 7pm; Shake Shack; 1450 S Dixie Highway, Coral Gables, FL – $25
Shake Shack Culinary Director Mark Rosati talks about the flavor profile of the hamburger and shares his insights on how different burgers on Shake Shack's menu pair with beers selected by Brooklyn Brewery House Chef Andrew Gerson.
Mash HQ
Tue, Dec 10 – Fri Dec 13, 5-7pm; Abbey Brewing; 1115 16th St, Miami Beach, FL – Free
Brooklyn beer specials, new and special offerings, giveaways and general info available on The Mash.
Chaos Cooking
Tue, Dec 10, 6pm – Free
Four hours of social cooking, eating, conversations and new friends. Everyone brings the ingredients to make a dish of their choice and helps return the space to its original condition. What are you making? For location details, go to ChaosCooking.com.
Local 2 Ways
Wed, Dec 11, 7pm; The Federal; 5132 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL – $60
Multi-course beer dinner celebrating local cuisine, interpreted 2 ways by Chef Cesar Zapata & Aniece Meinhold of The Federal and Brooklyn Brewery House Chef Andrew Gerson.
Slow Supper with Chef Miguel Aguilar
Thu, Dec 12, 7pm; Wynwood Walls; NW 2nd Ave between 25th & 26th St, Miami, FL– $80
Guests will feast on a meal prepared in collaboration between Brooklyn House Chef Andrew Gerson & Chef Miguel Aguilar of Wynwood Kitchen & Bar. Projection installations from Brooklyn’s NBNY. All proceeds benefit Slow Food Miami.
NY Night Train Soul Clap & Dance-Off with DJ Mr. Jonathan Toubin
Thurs, Dec 12, 10pm; Gramps; 176 NW 24th St, Miami, FL – Free
Compete for a trip to New York for the Dance-Off championship at Brooklyn Bowl and $100 cash prize after getting warmed up with the exquisite 1960s soul 45s of world famous Brooklyn DJ Jonathan Toubin. Must be 21 years of age to win.
Books & Beer with Allan Shulman
Fri, Dec 13, 6pm; Bakehouse Art Complex; 561 NW 32nd St, Miami, FL – $10
Togather and Brooklyn Brewery present a conversation and Q&A with one of Miami’s most celebrated & respected architects, Allan Shulman. Shulman has worked on some of Miami’s most celebrated projects and is the mastermind behind numerous award winning projects in residential, corporate, urban development & hotels. Your ticket includes a complimentary Brooklyn beer and a percentage of ticket sales will benefit Slow Food Miami.
Found Footage Festival
Fri, Dec 13 & Sat, Dec 14, 9pm; O Cinema; 90 NW 29th St, Miami, FL – $12
A hilarious comedy event that showcases footage from videos that were found at garage sales and thrift stores and in warehouses and dumpsters across the country. Featuring special guest comedian Kurt Braunohler.
Eat, Drink & Learn with Brooklyn Brewery House Chef Andrew Gerson
Sat, Dec 14, 4pm; Total Wine & More; 8851 SW 136th St, Miami, FL – Free
Join House Chef Andrew Gerson for a delicious demo and class on the art of pairing beer and cheese.
Sun, Dec 15, 6pm; Gramps; 176 NW 24th St, Miami, FL - Free
Slideluck is a non-profit that hosts slideshows combined with potluck dinners in over 75 cities around the world. Bring your favorite dish to share, come see fantastic art, and stay for live music at their Miami debut. Artists are encouraged to submit their work for consideration by December 1st.
Go to BrooklynBreweryMash.com for info on the rest of the tour.

Last Updated on Monday, 18 November 2013 20:46
Tweet to win 4 tickets at Decanter Fine Wine Encounter 2013 offered by Bisol PDF Print E-mail
Written by Simone Zarmati Diament   
Friday, 08 November 2013 19:45

The prestigious Decanter Fine Wine Encounter 2013 will be held at the Landmark Hotel in London on  Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th November. To mark this occasion Bisol is offering 4 entrance tickets for Sunday 17th November and a  tasting of Bisol's prestigious wines against the backdrop of this long awaited London event .

Tweet  tagging  the profiles @BisolProsecco  and @Decanter_Events, and give a good reason why you should be one of the 4 fortunate winners of a ticket to  the Decanter Fine Wine Encounter 2013.   

The choice of winners will be at the absolute discretion of the Bisol company and they will be published on our twitter profile on Tuesday 12th November.


Last Updated on Friday, 08 November 2013 19:51
Miami Book Fair International Turns 30! from Nov. 17 - 24 @ MDC PDF Print E-mail
Written by press release   
Thursday, 07 November 2013 22:22
Miami Book Fair International Turns 30!
The 30th edition ofthe Book Fair, the nation’s finest and largest literary gathering, presented by The Center for Literature and Theatre @ MDC, will take place Nov. 17 – 24, 2013, at the Wolfson Campus, with more than 200 exhibitors from around the country selling books in a festive atmosphere.
In commemoration of the 500 years since Ponce de Leon landed in Florida, the Fair will celebrate the culture and literature of Spain and will present some of its most recognized authors and artists.
For a complete schedule of activities, please visit www.miamibookfair.com<http://www.miamibookfair.com>.
The 30th edition of the Book Fair, the nation’s finest and largest literary gathering, presented by The Center for Literature and Theatre @ MDC, will take place Nov. 17 – 24, 2013, at the Wolfson Campus, with more than 200 exhibitors from around the country selling books in a festive atmosphere.
In commemoration of the 500 years since Ponce de Leon landed in Florida, the Fair will celebrate the culture and literature of Spain and will present some of its most recognized authors and artists.
For a complete schedule of activities, please visit www.miamibookfair.com 
French Police bust 'vintage wine scam' PDF Print E-mail
Written by BBC News   
Sunday, 27 October 2013 21:40

French police say they have broken up a scam in which fake bottles of vintage Burgundy were sold, netting fraudsters up to 2m euros ($2.75m; £1.7m).

 Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-24637689

Winners of the 2013 Samuel Adams LongShot American Homebrew Contest at The Great American Beer Festival in Denver PDF Print E-mail
Written by SFG Staff   
Sunday, 27 October 2013 21:36

 The LongShot American Homebrew winners at The Great American Beer Festival in Denver are:  Tamarac, Florida resident Russ Brunner’s American Stout, Evanston, Illinois resident Cesar Marron’s Grätzer and Samuel Adams employee Teresa Bury’s Pineapple IPA. Winners will receive the ultimate honor in beer – for their homebrew recipes to be enjoyed by drinkers across the country.  These winning brews will be bottled and made available nationwide next year in the 2014 Samuel Adams LongShot variety six-pack for a suggested retail price of $7.99 – $9.99 (price varies by market).  The variety pack will include two bottles each of Russ Brunner’s American Stout, Cesar Marron’s Grätzer and Teresa Bury’s Pineapple IPA.

Each beer was carefully evaluated on the aroma, appearance, flavor and mouthfeel according to the style category under which it was submitted.

‘Spain’s Great Match’ Food, Wine & Design Event In Miami, Nov. 12 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Wednesday, 23 October 2013 21:09
On November 12th, Wines from Spain returns to Miami for a stop on their annual ‘Spain’s Great Match’ US tour. The events will take place at the Moore Building in the Miami Design District.
The Great Match is a collaborative celebration of the distinctive wines and food of Spain. American importers and distributors of Spanish wines will be presenting their best products, some new wines and the latest vintages to wine industry professionals (trade and press) and consumers. More than 200 Spanish wines will be featured in a walk-around tasting format. Leading Miami-area restaurants will serve their specialties paired to the wines in an evening consumer ticketed event.
During the afternoon, members of the wine trade and press will also be invited to a tutored tasting seminar offered by the Grandes Pagos de España, an association of Spanish wine producers dedicated to upholding and promoting Spain’s single estate wines.
In the evening, the Great Match event will open to the public and will feature, along with the wine stations, a selection of tapas from Miami’s best Spanish restaurants and tapas bars. The evening portion will be a ticketed lifestyle event, which will offer an extensive choice of wine and tapas.  
Guests will also have the opportunity to visit: Tapas: Spanish Design for Food, an exhibition organized by AC/E with the collaboration of SPAIN Arts & Culture, La Fundación España-Florida 500 Años and the Centro Cultural Español de Miami, in recognition of the 500th anniversary of the arrival of the first European, Spaniard Ponce de León, to the shores of Florida.
Trade and Press Event Schedule
1:30 – 5:00 pm                      Walk-around wine tasting
12:30 – 2:00 pm                    Seminar: Grandes Pagos de España moderated by Steve Olson 

Registration for members of the trade and press is available online at sgmmiami.eventbrite.com
Public Event Schedule and Tickets
6:30 PM – 9:00 pm               Tasting open to the public
Tickets for the public are available at sgmmiami2013.eventbrite.com
General Admission: $60. Early Bird General Admission (good until 10/25) tickets: $40; Attendees must be 21 or older to attend. Photo ID required.
Please visit www.greatmatch.org for more information.
Last Updated on Thursday, 24 October 2013 17:57
Whole Foods Markets® Celebrate Diwali – The Indian “Festival of Lights” with traditional Indian cuisine and food demos PDF Print E-mail
Written by Simone Zarmati Diament   
Wednesday, 23 October 2013 20:31

Until November 8,  Whole Foods Market stores in Florida are celebrating Diwali, the five-day Hindu “festival of lights,” with special Indian cuisine offerings and pop-up Indian street foods carts in select stores.

On Diwali, holiday observers light clay lamps filled with oil, a symbolic representation of the triumph of good over evil. Lamps are kept on overnight, while houses are cleaned to welcome Lakshimi, the Hindu goddess of wealth and prosperity. Firecrackers are set off to ward off evil spirits as families gather for celebrations that include festive dress, candy and traditional Indian cuisine.

In celebration, Whole Foods Market stores  are offering authentic Indian fare and a cultural cooking demo, teaching patrons how to make healthy, flavorful Indian dishes at home. The hot food bars include Punjabi Large Potato & Mixed Vegetable Samosas – deep-fried pastries with savory vegetarian filling; Goan pork vindaloo – a popular, fiery curry dish from the Indian coast; Hyderbadi Chicken Biryani – a rice dish made with traditional Indian spices such as cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg; Firangi kale dale – a hearty kale stew; and Mumbai Bhaji – Indian vegetable fritters. The cold salad bars offer Kovalam cole slaw and curried Madras Potatoes. Dheli Dal Saag – a curried stew of spinach and split pigeon peas, is available as a specialty soup, while chef cases display tender tandoori chicken satay; a light Madurai mango & coconut chicken salad; and delicate farm-raised tandoori salmon. Kovalam beach wraps and playful tandoori pizzas made of tandoori chicken and mango chutney are also being offered.

Sanjog Sikand, owner of Sukhi’s Natural Authentic Indian Cuisine, one of Whole Foods Market’s spice vendors, will host A Tour of India, a cooking demo on how to prepare the authentic, healthy Indian dishes in celebration of the autumn holiday. The demo will take place at Whole Foods Market Coral Gables on Thursday, October 24 at 7 p.m. and will be free and open to the public. Space is limited and guests must pre-register. Please call 305-421-9421 to pre-register or visit Whole Foods Market – Coral Gables customer service. 

For more information about Whole Foods Market, please visit www.wholefoodsmarket.com


The Best Olive Oils Made in the U.S. PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wall Street Journal   
Tuesday, 22 October 2013 20:39

The Best Olive Oils Made in the U.S.

Producers across the U.S. are pressing olive oils that are truly world-class. Here are five of the best, sourced everywhere from Georgia to California. Read story in Wall Street Journal

Frank "The Italian Slayer" Ficarra from Whole Foods Market, Wellington crowned Finest Fishmonger at FEAST Portland PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Saturday, 28 September 2013 23:06




After months of regional competitions at Whole Foods Market stores nationwide, 22 top butchers and fishmongers battled it out on Saturday in the “Best Butcher Competition and Fishmonger Face-Off” an epic live showdown at FEAST Portland – an event  which honors the age-old crafts of butchery and fish mongering, fishmonger Frank “The Italian Slayer” Ficarra from Whole Foods Market – Wellington, Florida was crowned Finest Fishmonger and Hector “El Jefe” Yedra from the company’s Northern California region won the title of “Best Butcher”

Ficarra, who has been filleting fish for over 30 years, is  originally from Queens, New York and has lived in the Wellington area for the past 13 years.

For additional information visit media.wholefoodsmarket.com  .




David Ventura, Regional Seafood Coordinator;  Frank Ficcara, Crowned Fishmonger National Champion from Whole Foods Market Wellington; Eddie Steadley, Associate Seafood Coordinator

Last Updated on Saturday, 28 September 2013 23:15
2nd Annual Las Olas Oktoberfest September 26- 29 hosted by The Riverside Hotel and Fritz & Franz Bierhaus PDF Print E-mail
Written by Simone Zarmati Diament   
Tuesday, 24 September 2013 00:00

Austrian-born Harald Neuweg—owner of the Neuweg Restaurant Group (NRG) and Fritz & Franz Bierhaus in Coral Gables and Ft. Lauderdale—who started the successful Oktoberfest  tradition in Coral Gables 19 years ago (which will take place this year October 3 to 13) has partnered again this year with The Riverside Hotel to expand the event to Las Olas Boulevard.

On two consecutive weekends, September 20- 22 and  26-29, the 2nd Annual Las Olas Oktoberfest hosted by The Riverside Hotel and Fritz & Franz Bierhaus will celebrate the Austrian and German tradition on the hotel’s Lawn, overlooking Las Olas Boulevard,  in sync with the actual Munich Oktoberfest

The celebration will kick off on Friday, September 20  at 6 p.m. with German Consul General, Jürgen Borsch, and the traditional keg tapping ceremony.  “This year’s Las Olas Oktoberfest at the Riverside Hotel is even more special as we are starting the Oktoberfest on the same weekend as our counterpart in Münich, Germany and adding a second weekend to double the fun.” said Riverside Hotel’s general manager, Heiko Dobrikow.  

Under a 4,000-square-foot tent with a stage for Austrian Entertainment Band “Die Echt Urigen,” jugs of Austrian ice cold beers −  Warsteiner Pilsener, Warsteiner Oktoberfest and Warsteiner Dunkel – and Austrian wines from Burgenland,  will quaff thousands of festival goers.

The Riverside Hotel Executive chef Toby Joseph,  and Executive Chef Patrick Jagdmann  of Fritz & Franz Bierhaus Ft. Lauderdale will prepare miles of Nürnberger Rostbratwürstl, Wiesenhendl, Wurstteller, mountains of crispy Wiener Schnitzel, heaps of Fritz & Franz’s iconic potato salad, Giant Bier Pretzl, Apfelstrudel, and German Chocolate cake among other Austrian/Bavarian specialties, all served by dirndl and lederhosen-clad wait staff.   

Both Sundays Sept. 22 and 29 at 4pm there will be a Celebrity Bierstein Holding Contest. Oktoberfest will also be holding a raffle benefiting BRANCHES – Grand Prize winners get a 7-day Carnival Cruise for two, second place winners get a weekend stay for two at the Riverside Hotel in downtown Ft. Lauderdale and third place winners get a $100 gift certificate for Fritz and Franz Bierhaus Coral Gables or Ft Lauderdale.

Other Oktoberfest activities will include the traditional Bratwurst-eating and Jodel contests for the chance to win complimentary beer, t-shirts, hats and more.

Oktoberfest visitors can enter the events’ photo contest by submitting their most German, fun-filled image on the Las Olas Oktoberfest Facebook page or tagging their photos on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag, #LasOlasOktoberfest. Admission to the event is free all weekend long. The Riverside Hotel Lawn on 620 Las Olas Blvd.   Ft. Lauderdale. Self-parking is available in attended lots and The Riverside Hotel garage for a $5 flat rate. Valet parking is available at the Hotel. 

The Riverside Hotel will be offering a special Oktoberfest rate for the weekend per night:   For reservations click here  or call 1-800-325-3280 and mention the Las Olas Oktoberfest.    Corporate or party tables can be reserved by calling Maria Baez at 954-377-0943.   Private parties of  100 guests or more can be reserved or scheduled Monday-Wednesday (9/23-9/25).

For additional information and schedule visit www.lasolasoktoberfest.com or the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/#!/OktoberfestLasOlas .

Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 September 2013 21:06
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