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SOBE It! Meet Me at the Famous Food Fest in Miami

Here's what Giada has planned for the 2018 South Beach Wine and Food Festival


For the 17th year in a row, South Beach is playing host to the SOBE Wine and Food Festival Feb. 21-25. You'd think any event would get stale (no pun intended!) after 17 years, but the beauty of SOBE is that it's always changing with the times. Whatever exciting things are happening in food and culture, whichever chefs are shining brightest in the culinary sky, you can expect to see them there at the fest, up close and in person. It's an opportunity to get inspired, learn new tricks, and eat so so well, all in one fabulous, four-day party! No matter what I've got on my plate, I make it a point to be there every year.
I love Miami for its gorgeous beaches, of course, but also for the fantastic food. The quality of the seafood is out of this world, and it's even home to one of my all-time favorite Italian restaurants. It's such an eclectic mix of tastes and cultures, but there's a common welcoming spirit that always makes me feel right at home. I'm hoping I'll be able to sneak away from the festivities for just a couple of hours to visit some of my favorite under-the-radar spots, which I revealed in my Where to Eat Now guide to Miami.
For the fest, I'm excited to be hosting an Italian beachside cocktail party, featuring 30 fantastic chefs representing different regions of my beloved Italia. I'll be cooking for the party, too, serving bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with Italian sausage and topped with a cool mascarpone cream, a menu favorite at my restaurant, Giada. I feel so honored to be able to shine a light on the unique regional cuisines of Italy, and share their deliciousness here in the U.S. And my dear friend Bobby Flay and I are co-hosting a dinner, where I'll be dishing up a corn and spicy sausage rigatoni - of course I had to bring the pasta!
But my favorite part of the festival are the demos. I feel most at home when I'm cooking in front of an audience, whether it's my family, the Today Show hosts, or a tent full of hungry fans! This year, I wanted to share my excitement about my new cookbook, Giada's Italy, so I'll be preparing a recipe from the book: Italian BBQ shrimp, marinated in a sweet, savory spice blend and grilled quickly till they're just cooked and tender.  If you come to SOBE, I hope you'll introduce yourself as a Giadzy reader - I'd be honored to say hello!

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