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Olee Fowler is a Miami native and former publicist with a passion for discovering what's next and what's best in South Florida. With a love of dining out, volunteering, country music, Twitter and college football Saturdays, Olee always has her pulse on all things "Miami." From the ritzy fundraisers on Fisher Island to the hidden gem restaurants of Coconut Grove and everything in between, she loves to cover them all!

Recap: 2nd Annual Snail Of Approval Tasting Party To Support Slow Food Miami

Event Host Norman Van Aken and Florida Cookery's Kris Wessel (Photo courtesy of Maude Eaton)

Event Host Norman Van Aken and Florida Cookery’s Kris Wessel
(Photo courtesy of Maude Eaton)

Some of South Florida’s elite chefs and food lovers gathered on Friday, March 15, to celebrate the growing “slow food” movement in Miami at the 2nd Annual Snail of Approval Tasting Party benefitting Slow Food Miami and their Edible Garden Program

The tasting party, hosted by Chef Norman Van Aken and Deco Drive’s Louis Aguirre, was set up pool side at the James Royal Palm Hotel where guests dined on bites from local restaurants such as 1500°, CopperboxEating House, The FederalYardbird Southern Table & Bar and many others. If that lineup wasn’t enough to satisfy the party goers, they got to wash it all down with beer tastings from The Abbey and The Titanic breweries, cocktails courtesy of Grey Goose Vodka, and specialty wines provided by Vinecraft.

Todd Erickson plating his winning dish (Photo credit Maude Eaton)

Todd Erickson plating his winning dish
(Photo credit Maude Eaton)

At the beginning of the night guests were each given a pin that they were to award to their favorite bite of the evening. At the end of the party, the chef who got the most pins from the guests was awarded the “People’s Choice Award.” This year’s winner was Todd Erickson of Haven Gastro-Lounge for his shrimp and corn grits dish. For all of you who want the winning recipe, it will be featured in an upcoming issue of “Cooking Light” magazine, which also sponsored the event.

Following the tasting party, there was a VIP reception hosted by Florida Cookery featuring special guest Hedy Goldsmith, Executive Pastry Chef of Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink and author of “Baking Out Loud.”  The after party also honored 2014 nominees Kris Wessel of Florida Cookery and Matt Hinckley of Boxpark.

 

 

(Photo courtesy of Maude Eaton)

(Photo courtesy of Maude Eaton)

Essenia's Chef Julie Frans  (Photo courtesy of Slow Foods Miami)

Essenia’s Chef Julie Frans
(Photo courtesy of Slow Foods Miami)

(Photo courtesy of Maude Eaton)

(Photo courtesy of Maude Eaton)

Host Louis Aguirre announcing the winners (Photo courtesy of Slow Foods Miami)

Host Louis Aguirre announcing the winners
(Photo courtesy of Slow Foods Miami)

 

Group of chefs with their awards  (Photo courtesy of Slow Foods Miami)

Group of chefs with their awards
(Photo courtesy of Slow Foods Miami)

 

 

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