One glance at this year’s line up during one of the biggest food festivals in the country might have you asking, are we being welcomed to Flavortown or is it this year’s Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival Presented by Capital One (SOBEWFF®)? Taking place February 24 to 27th, on the sands of South Beach and beyond, is the 21st annual SOBEWFF® and a very familiar face is all over the event line up.
Every year, the food-filled festival honors someone within the hospitality community and this year, it’s the host with the most, known for his spiky platinum hair, red ‘68 Camaro, and his big heart as he’s made it his mission to help and highlight small businesses around the country—yup, you guessed it—it’s Guy Fieri.
This year’s Tribute Dinner hosted by Master of Ceremonies Rachael Ray, will celebrate the career and achievements of Fieri (along with Bill and Peter Deutsch of Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits) at the Festival’s host hotel, Loews Miami Beach. The dinner will feature a menu filled with distinct touches designed to pay homage to both Guy Fieri’s wit and Bill Deutsch and Peter Deutsch family flair, along with a live auction led by Food Network and Cooking Channel star Jeff Mauro, that will include once-in-a-lifetime travel and dining experiences available for bidding.
A longtime supporter of SOBEWFF®, Fieri is not just your average chef and restaurateur, he’s created a foodie frenzied culture, driving his way into the hearts of millions with his enormous appetite and even bigger personality. And it’s a feeling that’s long lasting—you can ask nearly any of the small businesses featured on his show. “We are humbled and grateful for all the opportunities presented to us after appearing on the show. When it comes to the impact it had in our business, it was clear and present immediately after our show aired on the Food Network as the very next day we had hundreds of followers of the show reach out to us,” reminisces Jimmy Piedrahita of MOJO Donuts & Fried Chicken who will be part of an exciting new event this year.
Everyone knows about his shows like Diners, Dine-Ins, and Dives and Guy’s Grocery Games, but for someone so impressively loud, Fieri stays surprisingly quiet about his extensive charity work.
Unbeknownst to many, Fieri makes sure any perishables left after filming Guy’s Grocery Games are donated to a nearby shelter. In 2018 during the Carr Wildfire devastation in California, Guy and his team prepared and distributed over 2,000 meals to first responders. Recently, the Mayor of Flavortown raised $21 million for restaurant workers affected by COVID-19. Fieri has experienced a huge amount of success in the world of food, and he’s determined to spread the wealth.
“No stranger to hosting events at SOBEWFF®, this year felt like the right time to honor the kind-hearted superstar,” said Lee Brian Schrager, founder of SOBEWFF®. “In honor of our 21st year, we had to propose a toast to his iconic passion for food, flavor, and dedication to the food and beverage industry. Some people are just born to cook and talk and we are thankful for his never-ending puns and passion.”
This year’s SOBEWFF® will not only feature Fieri as a guest of honor at the annual Tribute Dinner, but on Thursday night festival guests will have the chance to enjoy dishes from restaurants around the country that have been featured on DDD. In the coveted signature tent on the festival’s first night Coke Zero Sugar presents Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives LIVE hosted by Guy Fieri will kick off the Festival. For one night only, hungry food lovers will be surrounded by roadside diners, vintage drive-ins and out-of-the-way dives all featured on the hit show.
Mason Hereford of Turkey & the Wolf, a Season 30 DDD feature, is looking forward to hanging on the beach with friends at this year’s event, “Being a member of the cult of Guy Fieri, there ain’t nothing cooler than being on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. He’s the best, DDD is the best, and we’re pumped to participate in this event. We definitely saw an increase in guests after the episode aired. You can always tell it’s DDD fans when they order exactly what we cooked on our episode.”
Those who want in on the Flavortown action in a slightly more intimate setting will love Guy Fieri’s Late Night Goldbelly Party hosted by Rev Run and Joe Ariel. At this special late-night extravaganza hosted by Goldbelly’s Joe Ariel, Joe and his team of food explorers have hand-picked some of South Florida’s best spots for late night munchies. There will be a DJ spinning late into the night with a special guest GRAMMY award-winner and front man of legendary group RUN DMC, Rev Run. Of course, there’s going to be plenty of cocktails to help wash down the delicious bites. Santo Tequila, Fieri’s tequila in partnership with Sammy Hagar, will be featured throughout the event. Protip: if you’re attending the Tribute Dinner, access to this event is included in your ticket.