Friday, October 18, 2013

Battle of the Beaches - whose cuisine reigns supreme?

Toss Catering & Event Productions - Miami
Shot: Coquito, Puerto Rican eggnog with Coconut Rum

Hello Foodie Friends,

It was a Culinary Showdown between 4 South Beach Caterers and 3 Palm Beach Caterers. The contenders: Representing the South Beach region- Eggwhites Catering, Toss Catering & Event Productions, Suzanne Michaels Haute Cuisine & Events and Aaron's Catering. Repesenting Palm Beach - Catering Concepts & Concessions, Christafaro's and Chez Gourmet. Not only did the winning catering company receive the title and bragging rights, but one lucky guest walked away with a $500 cash prize as well, courtesy of venue sponsor Atlas Party Rental. A portion of the ticket sales from this evening's event, spearheaded by Tiffany Riordan from The Beacon and MPI's Director of Special Events and owner of Zazz Events Jeff Gold, went towards providing MPI members education in the Special Events Industry.

The battlefield took place inside Atlas Party Rental's warehouse and extended outwards under covered tent where many guests were found imbibing on cocktails poured by the friendly bartenders of Potion in Motion and dancing to the rhythmic sounds of Junkanoo, provided by event sponsor EMG Entertainment.

I meandered the room one table at a time, taking notes, snapping pics and finally sampling each caterer's offering.
Aaron's Catering - Miami 
Columbian Cola, Beer
Aaron's Catering - Miami
Deconstructed Columbian Bandeja Paisa
Crispy rice cake, red bean puree, short rib, pancetta, avocado

Aaron's Catering - Miami
Columbian Bunuelos
Columbian "doughnut" with vanilla cream and balsamic strawberries

Chez Gourmet - Boynton Beach       Graffiti Shrimp Tempura
Chez Gourmet - Boynton Beach
colorful condiments, assorted sesame seeds

Suzanne Michaels Haute Cuisine & Events - Miami
Kobe beef sliders with carmelized onions, red wine jam & blue cheese crumbles
(also served, but not pictured: Pork & Chorizo sliders with red pepper aioli, manchego cheese & quail egg)

Suzanne Michaels Haute Cuisine & Events - Miami
Sweet Potato fries
(also served, but not pictured: truffle pomme frites)

Christafaro's - West Palm Beach
Christafaro's - West Palm Beach
Mini Lobster Rolls

Christafaro's - West Palm Beach
Killer Kale & Quinoa Salad, Salad of Red Quinoa, shredded kale, diced apples, cucumbers, dried cranberries, pumkin seeds & lemon vinaigrette
Christafaro's - West Palm Beach
Pomegranate braised boneless short rib, creamy potato parsnip puree, carmelized cipollini onion
                         Toss Catering & Event Productions - Miami 
Corn Fritter with portabella & goat cheese topped with a mayo ketchup truffle aioli

             Catering Concepts & Concessions - Boynton Beach 
Seafood Rice: conch, shrimp, crab, scallops & fish with a tamarind jerk chicken skewer. Served in a bamboo cone.

Eggwhites Catering - N. Miami Beach
Falafel Sliders with tzatziki sauce & spicy red cabbage
Eggwhites Catering
Coffee Cake with espresso buttercream

It was very difficult for me to decide on which to vote for, but I finally did!
Me casting my vote for best dish for Suzanne Michaels Haute Cuisine & Events.
Pictured with Suzanne Michaels
Panera Bread provide tasty pastries for the guests to enjoy.


And the winner was...

Chez Gourmet Catering of Boynton Beach!!!
Congrats to Chez Gourmet and to all the participating Chefs.


Until we eat again,
I send you delicious wishes, xo


Denise Righetti
C.E.O. (Chief Eating Officer)
Denise's Foodie Events

Thursday, October 10, 2013

It's Time to Wine & Dine in South Florida

Hello Foodie Friends,

There's a plethora of food & wine events coming up as we head into season that I wanted to be sure to alert you about.

First up: The Delray Bash is taking place this Saturday, Oct. 12th from 7 - 9:30pm at Old School Square to benefit the American Lung Association. Here's the highlights of what your $50 ticket ($60 at the gate) will get you: Relax in the Bombay Sapphire lounge, spend time in the William Hill Estate Winery wine garden, savor fabulous wines from Apothic wines and sip creative cocktails with Shellback Caribbean Rum.  Check out the red VW Bus at the Beer Pavilion and try Cisco Brewery’s Whale’s Tale Pale Ale from Nantucket.  You can also try your chance at a hole-in-one on the putt-putt green, grab your friends for a game of glow-in-the-dark bowling or rock out with our live band, Box of Rocks. Then stay in town for the After Party at Union Delray, where your event wristband will get you a free drink!

A sampling of the amazing restaurants participating include Angle @ Eau Palm Beach Resort and Spa, Ben and Jerry’s, Bistro N (Nordstrom Boca Raton), Bistro Ten Zero One, Buddha Sky Bar and Buddha Garden, Cabot Creamery, Caffe Luna Rosa, Dada Restaurant, DIG “Doing it Green”  Restaurant, Don Ramon Restaurant, Havana Restaurant, Nature’s Way CafĂ©, Onli Beverages, Pizza Rustica Delray, Salt7, SoLita Italian, Sweet Treat Events, LLC, Temple Orange, The Melting Pot, and Truluck’s Seafood*Steak*Crab House. Check for additional restaurants.

I have organized a special Sunday Brunch at 101 Cantina at Royal Palm Place, located in Downtown Boca this Sunday, Oct. 13th beginning at noon. Normally this restaurant offers an ala carte brunch with the option of adding bottomless Mimosas and Bloody Mary's for an additional $15 (which may seem like a good deal-until you see what I've got planned). For a ridiculous price of just $25pp*, you get a scrumptious buffet of items such as Frittata, Grand Marnier French Toast, Scrambled Eggs, Sausage, Bacon, Fruit, Slow roasted shredded pork presented with red rice and black beans, Hash Browns, plus...UNLIMITED Mimosas & Bloody Mary's. To join my group, please click here to purchase your tickets.

*plus tax & tip

The American Fine Wine Competition (AFWC) is having their 2nd Wine Social of the year on Wed, Oct. 16th from 5:30 - 7:30pm at Grille 401 Las Olas. $45pp includes a sampling of an obscene amount of wines (up to 48) including a 6 course pairing and lots of great networking. A portion of the ticket price will benefit 100+ Abandoned Dogs in the Florida Everglades charity. Click here to learn more about the AFWC and here to purchase your ticket for this upcoming event!

Here's something for you die hard Foodies out there: On Sunday, Nov 3rd from 4-6pm, Allen Salkin, investigative journalist and author of "From Scratch: Inside the Food Network" will reveal some behind-the-scenes anecdotes and other juicy info of what goes on behind the Food Network cameras. The event, being held at the Mandel JCC in Palm Beach Gardens, will also feature samples of favorite celebrity chef recipes. Tickets are $45 and can be purchased by clicking here.

The 4th Annual Boca Raton Wine and Food Festival, A Culinary Affair is taking place Nov 8 - 10th. The festivities kick off Friday evening with a VIP 4 Course Dining Under the Stars experience on one side of the event area, while a Vineyard Party offers patrons a more intimate preview of what's to come the following evening at the Grand Tasting. The festival concludes on Sunday with a Jazz Bubbles and Brunch where patrons can stroll the grounds, enjoy some bubbly, some wonderful bites, listen to the cool eclectic sounds of Urban Gypsy, shop at the Farmer's Market and Retail Bazaar. New this year, guests will have an opportunity to log on to the festival's mobile-friendly wine store to purchase wines featured at the festival and have them ready for pick up on their way out. Click here to purchase tickets to this event for 50% off, valid through the end of October.

This is just the beginning of the many splendid events to come. Stay tuned for more updates.

Until we eat again...
I send you delicious wishes, xo


C.F.O. (Chief Foodie Officer)
Denise's Foodie Events