Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Events

Celebrity chefs, restaurateurs headed to St. Pete for November festival

There's a lot that's big about the three-day food, wine and arts festival coming to St. Petersburg in November.

First the name: St. Pete & the Bay Area Festival of Food, Wine and the Arts or, depending on where you look, Enjoy Arts and Tastes St. Pete. Definitely a mouthful.

The prices are good-sized, too, from $50 for each 45-minute celebrity chef demonstration at the Mahaffey Theater Ballroom to $225 for an event at the Palm Court Ballroom in the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort.

But also big is the list of celebrity chefs who will be downtown from the Vinoy to the Dalí Museum on Nov. 15-17. For those who don't want to pony up entry fees for the events, there will probably be a chance for celebrity sightings at downtown restaurants and bars. Our bet is on the Canopy Bar at the Birchwood on Beach Drive NE.

"I think the lineup is almost unprecedented for a first-year festival," said Herb Karlitz of Karlitz & Company, a New York event planning firm that has engineered food and wine festivals in Napa, Calif., Las Vegas, Atlantic City and New York.

"You've got an A-list group from Curtis Stone to Todd English to Scott Conant."

Indeed. The chefs, all who sell wares on HSN, one of the festival sponsors, are Top Chef and Chopped judges, Food Network hosts and successful restaurateurs on land and sea, and one is even an Iron Chef.

"We've got in excess of a seven-figure media budget to promote the event," Karlitz said. About $250,000 is grant money from BP Oil that's intended to promote Gulf of Mexico seafood. There's still some concern about the quality of the seafood since the 2011 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

HSN will promote the festival on air and then will broadcast live from some of the events.

Advertising will soon appear in the New York Times, Karlitz said, among other non-Florida outlets, in hopes of luring people from out of the area. That would likely be a goal of another sponsor, Visit St. Pete/Clearwater. The third sponsor is Bill Edwards Presents.

Each of the events will be paired with an art component, such as live painting or appearances by local artists. Tampa Bay area chefs and restaurants will also be featured at the events, among them Cafe Ponte, Datz, Birch & Vine, Ocean Prime, Oxford Exchange, Parkshore Grill and many others.

William Dean Chocolates in Belleair Bluffs will take part in the Nocturnal Cravings event at the Dalí Museum hosted by Duff Goldman, the Baltimore cakemaker whose creations became famous on Food Network's Ace of Cakes. William Dean Chocolates have been used in the Hunger Game movies.

Karlitz said that ticket sales have been steady, with some events nearing capacity, including the kickoff Sense Immersion Dinner at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg.

"It's coming together nicely," Karlitz said. "I think we are going to have a really nice first year."

     
 
Comments
Wine dinners, beer projects and more will wet your whistle this summer

Wine dinners, beer projects and more will wet your whistle this summer

FILIPINO FOOD: WELCOME CHISMISHave you been to the Heights Public Market at the 73,000-square-foot Armature Works yet? It’s the buzzy food market in Tampa Heights with more than a dozen vendors offering up everything from rolled ice cream to Cuban sa...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Top things to do this week: Go Skateboarding Day, Hollywood medium Tyler Henry

Top things to do this week: Go Skateboarding Day, Hollywood medium Tyler Henry

Tyler Henry: Hollywood MediumTyler Henry, the so-called Hollywood Medium who stars in an eponymous E! hit show, is coming to town with a live show called "Life Lessons I Have Learned From the Departed." The soft-spoken 22-year-old has done readings f...
Updated: 1 hour ago
On stage this week: Freefall Theatre’s ‘The Musical of Musicals,’ Jay Pharoah

On stage this week: Freefall Theatre’s ‘The Musical of Musicals,’ Jay Pharoah

SENDUP: MUSICAL OF MUSICALSFive composers, a talented cast, choreography by Cheryl Lee and music directed by Michael Raabe — that’s Freefall Theatre’s recipe for a laugh-filled, season-ending summer musical, appropriately titled The Musical of Musica...
Updated: 1 hour ago
What’s in theaters this week: ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ and heist caper ‘American Animals’

What’s in theaters this week: ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ and heist caper ‘American Animals’

OPENING FRIDAY:JURASSIC WORLD: FALLEN KINGDOMDinosaurs: Keep them alive or kill them off? It’s a question that haunts the human characters in between fireball-dodging cardio workouts in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, the spectacularly ho-hum new ent...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Big concerts this weekend: Luke Bryan, Hall and Oates, Weezer, Logic and more

Big concerts this weekend: Luke Bryan, Hall and Oates, Weezer, Logic and more

HIS KIND OF NIGHT: Luke BryanIt’s been three long years since Tampa has seen the well-groomed hide of Luke Bryan, the Hollywoodiest hunk in Nashville. But he’s about to make up for lost time. On Saturday he’ll headline his biggest-ever show here, a b...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Artists’ talks and Sharon Norwood’s definition of beauty

Artists’ talks and Sharon Norwood’s definition of beauty

MARK MAKING: DEFINING BEAUTYBlack, squiggly lines are at the center of multidisciplinary artist Sharon Norwood’s works, an exhibition of which titled "Defining Beauty" opens at Tempus Projects on Saturday. Norwood’s use of the line in a variety of me...
Updated: 1 hour ago
5 things to do under $5: USF Summer Plant Festival, Bridal Show, free show by AnastasiaMax

5 things to do under $5: USF Summer Plant Festival, Bridal Show, free show by AnastasiaMax

1 Summer Plant Festival: If you think you can’t get anything to thrive in Florida’s brutal summers, check out the vendors with fruit trees and advice on how to grow them, along with hundreds of blooming butterfly plants, herbs and tropical and exotic...
Published: 06/20/18
RuPaul’s Drag Race star Coco Montrese on St. Pete Pride, the Pulse shooting and compassion from police

RuPaul’s Drag Race star Coco Montrese on St. Pete Pride, the Pulse shooting and compassion from police

Coco Montrese is best known as the RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 5 lip-sync queen who came back a record four times to win with fierce performances. But longtime Tampa Bay drag performer Kori Stevens just calls Coco a "hometown girl." As head of entertai...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Like

Like "a beer after a hockey fight," Canada Day hopes to promote friendship between fighting nations

TAMPA — As a Toronto native living in Tampa Palms, Bryan Grimsdale is not at all comfortable with the way political tensions are rising between Canada and the United States."I am a Canadian citizen, but a resident alien. This is my home, but that is ...
Published: 06/19/18
St. Pete Pride calendar: Parties, art exhibits, the big parade and more events for Pride week

St. Pete Pride calendar: Parties, art exhibits, the big parade and more events for Pride week

Pride EventsInterfaith Pride WorshipImam Daaylee Abdullah, of the Mecca Institute in Washington DC, serves as guest speaker. Free. First Presbyterian Church St. Petersburg, 701 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg. (727) 822-2031. 7 p.m. Thursday.Open Mic ...
Published: 06/19/18