Food and fun at Fontainebleau

I found myself gazing up at the sparkling, crystal chandeliers of the Fontainebleau Miami Beach ballroom last Friday night. They mesmerized me with a heavy cascade of icicle-like strands — the perfect complement to a festive evening overflowing with indulgence.

We spent most of the day here, setting up a food station for our chefs and arranging a table for the signature steer. Then we grabbed a cab and rushed back to our hotel. I changed into a flowy little black number with a splash or two of hot pink floral. We arrived in plenty of time to wait for grand entrance into the Best of the Best.

South Beach Wine & Food Festival Best of the Best

The best chefs and the best wines in the country were set up in stations around this grand space. Guests flocked to the tables, sampling bite-sized culinary masterpieces and tasting the fruits of the vine. Upon entrance you were given a wine glass on a neck strap.

I kept the strap. It might come in handy … I can sit on the couch here at home, watching movies and sipping wine hands-free. Awesome!

This South Carolina chefs served strip loin Bresaola with watercress, pecorino and black olive oil, and Brisket Reubenaise with Amish Swiss and a rye chip.

It was one of the best things I ate all night! But there were many things to taste …

On the left, Oxtail marmalade with Gold Rice Grit Cake. On the right, Roasted Ribeye with Mashed Potato and Hot Sauce Butter.

Charred beef heart with Barley, Radish and Meyer Lemon. On the right, Beef “en Brodo” with turnips and radishes. And that shot of beef broth was rather … hmmm. Not a fan of that one.

porchetta

Porchetta — a traditional street food in Italy. It is a savory, fatty and moist boneless pork roast. The body of the pig is gutted, deboned and arranged carefully with layers of stuffing, meat, fat and skin. Then it’s rolled and roasted on a spit. Porchetta is heavily salted and traditionally stuffed with garlic, rosemary and fennel.

Slow-cooked short ribs with smoked potato foam, pickled red onion and parsley. I have to figure out how to make smoked potato foam. It was like a little bite of cloud that melted in your mouth. On the right, Dry-aged Ribeye Oscar-style with Red King Crab, Asparagus Ribbons and King Crab Bearnaise.

It wasn’t all proteins and vegetables, however. I also saw several seafood stations, including one offering sea urchin. After watching the facial expression of a coworker who gave it a try, I kept on walking. Ick.

And it wasn’t hard to find a little bit of everything to satisfy the sweet tooth in everyone …

salty sweet dessert with pretzels

There was a table brimming with salty-sweet confections from milk.

And the two I sampled: a caramel pecan brownie something-or-other that was very, very rich. Thankfully these are bite-sized desserts (the size we should eat anyway!). The tasty bite on the right was a Chocolate Neugat with Meyer Lemon and Malted Milk Ice. Yum!

South Beach Wine & Food Festival Best of the Best

After several hours of eating, greeting and indulging in tasty treats, we rolled ourselves out the door and into a cab back to the hotel where we crashed until morning. Then we got up and did it all over again at The Flavors of Flay.

 


Go exploring! You may enjoy these previous posts.

4 Comments

  • comment-avatar
    Mary Poppins February 28, 2012 (11:18 am)

    A wine glass on a neck strap? I’m intrigued! How does it work? Post a picture lol!

  • comment-avatar
    deborah February 28, 2012 (7:48 pm)

    Ooh, la, la!!! Would love to hear first hand about this out of the world fabulous trip. Let’s meet at the Twigg Winery for details! The pictures are luscious as well as your words!

    • comment-avatar
      Farmgirl February 29, 2012 (11:16 am)

      Sounds like a fabulous idea, Deb. Perhaps Friday!

  • comment-avatar
    deborah February 28, 2012 (7:48 pm)

    Ooh, la, la!!! Would love to hear first hand about this out of the world fabulous trip. Let’s meet at the Twigg Winery for details! The pictures are luscious as well as your words!