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Sobe wine and food fest grand tasting is $225?!!

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Can someone do a graph of the wildly escalating price of this event, where for that princely sum you experience 80-degree Miami to the fullest: packed into a tent that magnifies the heat to the mid-90s, where you can line 3-deep like pigs at a trough to get a sloppy pour of ripple?
Burger bash $225?!
I could go on, but is anything worth it this year?

Better still: do you know of any fringe/pop-up events that take place during the event but not as PART of WFF, that take advantage of the fact that we have all these visiting chefs?

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  1. The first year we had comp tix but I remember it was around $50 and it was a blast. It went downhill from there. I can't believe Burger Bash is $225. For $25 you can go to a sitdown dinner at Bourbon Steak w 5 chefs from SFO and eat with real plates and silverware. Price points are very erratic.

    1. Whent two years ago on a freebie. Crowds out of control. Fight for food or drink and impossible parking. Never again. Even for free.

      1. People pay to see and interact with the celebs. It is essentially the same business model as a rock concert.

        1. I'm having similar experiences not only with this event - escalating prices, escalating crowds (and insane behavior trying to get to stations), plummeting enjoyment, plummeting value.

          I'm afraid the organizers are cashing in instead of trying to establish a long term viable event circuit.

          It's a shame.

          1. You charge what you can get...these events aren't geared for locals. South Beach is a destination and this event is another reason to come down. Go to Naoe and call it a day

            1. Food and Wine magazine took over the event here in Austin last year and jacked the prices up into the same neighborhood. A previously packed event suffered underwhelming attendence last year as a result of the steep price hike. I wonder if the same is going to happen in MIA

              4 Replies
              1. re: twyst

                Not a chance. The Miami one is a destination.

                As an aside, my guess is the cost of these events have skyrocketed as well as I am sure the talent is requiring more and more money each year.

                1. re: tpigeon

                  The main problem with the Miami Fest is the Food Network tie ins. Subtract the awful Food Network "talent" and you still might have a decent event. Affordable? not so much...

                  1. re: tpigeon

                    I suspect the "talent" gets bupkus from these events. It's promotion for them as well.

                    1. re: Frodnesor

                      You may be right but I can't believe, for example, Rachel Ray does it for bupkus. She does not need the food festival.

                      The Top Chef and other types are another story...

                2. The celebrities show up to sell cookbooks and sign them....and promote their Food Network shows......

                  This WAS a great event.....but the fact of the matter is that its become too large for Lee Schrager (sp?) to handle and his lack of professionalism has damaged this event......

                  The events are over-sold....the lines are long....and it's become a cattle call.....The prices don't bother me....the conditions of the event do......We used to come to SoBe, get a great hotel room and really do it up.....But we've stopped attending....It's not fun anymore....

                  And for the money.....you can go 5 of the top restaurants in SoBe and Miami......and gorge....for less......It's become a "non event".....for us.....

                  EMac
                  Ft. Pierce

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: LargeLife

                    "And for the money.....you can go 5 of the top restaurants in SoBe and Miami......and gorge....for less"

                    Uh, no you can't.

                  2. Not for the $225.....You're right about that......BUT for what we spent.....for the entire weekend....hotel....and tickets for 4 or 5 of the events....at well over $200 a ticket....Yes...you can go to 4 or 5 top restaurants in SoBe.....and GORGE to your heart's content.....That can be done....

                    Thanks....

                    EMac
                    Ft. Pierce, FL