Special to The Times Media
The South Beach Wine and Food Festival celebrated 15 years this past weekend. With more than 75,000 revelers at 75 signature events on Miami's South Beach, the event raised the ante for charitable food and wine events, with nearly $30 million dollars raised in total to date for its named beneficiary, the Florida International University Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. The event is rated the #1 Food and Restaurant Industry event in the United States for the third year in a row. The festival kicked off with Seaside Easts hosted by The Food Network's resident "Superman" Robert Irvine in the inaugural Taste Fort Lauderdale event, which showcased the best of the Fort Lauderdale neighborhood just north of Miami Beach at the historic Bonnet House Museum and Gardens. Considered 'the Venice of Florida,' Fort Lauderdale is known for its lovely gardens, beautiful seaside dining and exquisite cuisine, all of which was on display in a luxurious setting. The following night transported guests deeper into the cuisine of Italy, with Barilla's Italian Bites on the Beach hosted by Giada De Laurentiis, host of multiple Food Network shows. She brought a taste of her namesake restaurant at The Cromwell in Las Vegas to South Beach along with 30 of the top Italian oriented chefs from around the country. Under a huge white tent constructed on the white sand beach under a brilliant moon, this was the perfect way to start a serious of weekend of noshing, partying and wine drinking.
Paramount Aurora's re-imagined production of Miss Saigon gives a fresh new and dynamic face to the award-winning show of the 1980s. Set in Vietnam during the fall of Saigon in 1975, Miss Saigon tells the powerful story of an American Soldier Chris, sung powerfully by returning Aurora theatre favorite Brandon Moorhead, and Kim, sung passionately by South Korean native Shawna Kaeji Shin, in her Paramount debut, who fall in love and have a child during the wars most tumultuous final days.
Standout films to see
The Oscar race is on and it’s only October. Two of today’s greatest female actors, Dame Judi Dench and Meryl Streep, have films in this year’s Chicago International Film Festival.