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Tell us about your party playbook

The Super Bowl is in Tampa this year, but if you are like most people, you'll be watching the game at home, yours or someone else's.

Some 93-million Americans are expected to watch the game on TV (6 p.m. Feb. 1, NBC) and that includes folks at sports bars.

We want to know about your home Super Bowl party. What do you serve? How do you go about planning it? Do you wait until after the playoffs when the Super Bowl teams are determined and then theme your menu? (Fish tacos for the San Diego Chargers, crab cakes for the Baltimore Ravens or an Italian fest in honor of the New York Giants?)

Or do you prepare what you like . . . and lots of it?

When do you put out the food? Before the game or at halftime? How important are decorations, and when do you close the bar?

And most important, how many TVs do you have blaring? We know of some party-givers who have a "no talking" room for serious fans of the game.

If you don't throw a party but go to an excellent one, we'd like to hear about that, too. We want ideas to share with readers who may be in a Super Bowl party rut. Don't be shy. Brag about yourself and your friends and relatives.

E-mail your Super Bowl party tips and recipes by Jan. 16 to Please put FOOTBALL in the subject line. Include your name, city of residence and a daytime phone number. If you're letting us know about someone else, include his or her name and phone number, too.

Submissions can also be mailed to Football Food, c/o Taste section, St. Petersburg Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731.

Taste of the NFL

There will be lots of razzle-dazzle parties in the days leading up to Super Bowl XLIII, but the one that's most attractive to food lovers will be the Taste of the NFL.

On Jan. 31 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, chefs from around the country will unload their arsenal of culinary tricks in the name of charity and good eats. Tickets aren't cheap at $500 each, but the event raises money for hunger relief in each city that has an NFL team.

The big name is Tom Colicchio, head judge of Bravo's Top Chef and an award-winning chef and restaurateur himself. His various Craft restaurants in New York, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and Atlanta are destination establishments. James Beard Award-winning chef Susan Spicer of Bayona in New Orleans will also cook at the event.

Each NFL city sends one of its top chefs to cook for guests strolling around the event juggling food and wine. Representing Tampa is chef Marty Blitz of Mise en Place. Another James Beard honoree, Allen Susser of Chef Allen's in Miami, is the Dolphins' pick. Chef Charles Charbonneau of North Beach Bistro is headed to Tropicana from Jacksonville.

Also cooking will be chefs from Tribeca Grill and NOBU in New York. Fans of early Food Network shows will recognize chef Jack McDavid of Jack's Firehouse in Philadelphia. He was Bobby Flay's co-star on Grillin' and Chillin', which was filmed partly in Clearwater.

Tickets for Taste of the NFL can be bought online at The event is from 7 to 9:30 p.m. with entertainment at 9:45 p.m. VIP tickets that include entry at 6 p.m. are $600.

NBC Sunday Night Football Cookbook, with more than 150 recipes for tailgating and game gatherings, is available on the Taste of the NFL Web site for $16.95. It also raises money for hunger relief.

Tell us about your party playbook 01/06/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, January 7, 2009 7:16am]
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