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Palm Beach Food and Wine Festival: Top Palm Beach Restaurants To Try This Season

Submitted by on January 8, 2014 – 4:13 pmOne Comment

Palm Beach Food and Wine Festival

By Heather Buchanan

Photos by LILA PHOTO

They say that too many chefs in the kitchen is a bad thing but at the Palm Beach Food and Wine Festival that proved quite untrue.  When it’s Daniel Boulud, David Burke, and Todd English all you can say is “I’m in.”  Taste buds were percolating in anticipation and promises of pilates and green juicing quickly went out the window in favor of a foie gras hotdog and baba with rum gelée and vanilla Chantilly.

For snowbirds heading south take note that the event serves as a preview for what’s in store for the culinary season in Palm Beach at some of the most picturesque settings.

Daniel Boulud

Daniel Boulud

At the opening Daniel & Friends presented by Regions Private Wealth Management guests were surprised and delighted to see Daniel Boulud himself preparing delectable nibbles at Cafe Boulud.  The courtyard of the Brazilian Court Hotel with its signature fountain set a definite Garden of Eden tone and if original sin involves fine wine and oysters, guests were ready to listen to the snake. Here’s a sample from the tasting menu:

Sea Scallop from Browne trading to be cooked on the plancha served with the miso and Brussels sprout salad and black garlic.

Monkfish wrapped in pancetta stuffed with lobster served with pumpkin.

Swordfish on the Hibachi grill served with a harissa rub, broccoli rabe with lemon, garlic and chili flakes, crushed chickpeas and a pequillo yogurt dressing

Peekytoe crab & Sea Urchin toast with olive

Another festival highlight was Chillin’ n’ Grillin’ at the Four Seasons Resort in Palm Beach.  I bumped into a group of handsome men who had left their vegan girlfriends behind to enjoy this carnivore’s delight.  I’m happy to say however that many a female had no trouble digging in and licking their fingers in delight.

Robert Irvine

Robert Irvine

Robert Irvine of Restaurant: Impossible was front and center at his deliciously light lobster salad station goading on his fellow chefs, “If you’re not smiling and having fun in my line then go to the next guy,” he joked.  And if you’ve never considered doing pizza on the grill you had to taste Elizabeth Falkner’s Californication Pizza.

Elizabeth Falkner

Elizabeth Falkner

Falkner, winner of the World Pizza Championship, uses walnut arugula pesto, mozzarella and goat cheeses, shishito peppers, prosciutto, and a drizzle of honey.  DJ Adam Lipson played the coolest chill grill music you can  imagine.

The ocean breezes, sea view, and sunny weather remind you that the Four Seasons Resort is a great place to have a drink or dine al fresco this winter.  And their spa is one of the best in Palm Beach.

Other top Palm Beach restaurants which participated include PB Catch Seafood & Raw Bar, Pistache French Bistro, Buccan, Coolinary Cafe and the Breakers where if you haven’t been to the chic retro HMF Lounge you must go.

Future Chefs

Future Chefs

Festival organizer David Sabin also commented, “Truth be told, the charity work is equally as important as the food and wine component.”  This year the festival foundation Chefs Dish Back will benefit five organizations including Share Our Strength (child hunger), Alex’s Lemonade Stand (health and medical care), Feeding South Florida (local/poverty), James Beard Foundation (education), and American Red Cross, Palm Beaches –Treasure Coast Region (disaster response).

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