Last week, MoKenny and I got invited to an Exclusive VIP Event called “The Crave Canada Florida Foodie Event” that was hosted by Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau (GFLCVB). It was held at The Market Kitchen, which was located on the upper level of the St. Lawrence Market in Toronto.
The objective of this exclusive event was to invite foodies, journalists and other industry peeps to taste and experience the culinary scene that are currently happening in the Greater Fort Lauderdale of Florida. We all know Florida is 1 of the most visited destinations for Canadians to vacay in the United States. Other than the sunny blue sky weather and beautiful beaches, they also have good food and solid culinary teams.
Although the weather in Toronto was still freezing cold, but the chefs, mixologist and the CEO of Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau flew in from Florida to Toronto to bring some nice heat wave and #HelloSunnyTO to the Toronto crowd. It was a delight to get to taste the cocktails and the food prepared by the Fort Lauderdale Culinary Team. And they chose the right venue. The Market Kitchen at the upper level of the St. Lawrence Market is a perfect spot for private event like this. There are many vendors and grocery spots for the chefs to gather their fresh ingredients. The kitchen studio is perfect for cooking demo with its top notch kitchen appliances from Monogram.
When we arrived at this Florida Foodie Event, we were greeted by the friendly staff, checked us in, we placed our coats on the coat rack. The 1st thing we spotted were rows and rows of photogenic cocktails that were waiting for us, they were prepared by Mixologist Jean-Pierre Belonni (aka JP).
Here was the run down of The Crave Canada Florida Foodie Event:
- Cocktails & Hors d`Oeuvres reception to start off the evening
- Mix and mingle time
- Welcoming Intro: Stacey Ritter, President & CEO of Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau (GFLCVB)
- Chef 1: Chef Adrienne Grenier, Harbor Beach Marriott Resort
- Chef 2: Chef Paula DaSilva, Burlock Coast at The Ritz-Carlton
- Chef 3: Chef Christian Cobos, GG`s Waterfront Bar & Grill
- Mixologist: Jean-Pierre Belonni, Burlock Coast at The Ritz-Carlton. JP`s cocktails were being served throughout the entire event and he also prepared specialty cocktails to pair with each dish that the other chefs were preparing
After the mix and mingle reception, everyone was asked to be seated as the chefs and mixologist who flew in from Florida were preparing to make us some delicious food. As I looked around, this was a super exclusive VIP event, it`s a small group of attendees and it had a sit down element to the event. In front of each seat, there was a brochure, showcasing the INFO about what Greater Fort Lauderdale has to offer and the background INFO of each individual chefs and mixologist.
Throughout the evening, there were also some Powerpoint slides showcasing Fort Lauderdale, we got to learn more about this destination. Did you know that The Greater Fort Lauderdale currently have 13 craft beer breweries? I love craft beer. And in particular, they told us that the Funky Buddha Brewery is #1 craft beer in Fort Lauderdale. I really want to try its Maple Bacon Coffee Porter craft beer. Hopefully one day I get to try it!
After the nice meal and cocktail drinks, 3 lucky winners won a pair of flight tickets each to fly to Fort Lauderdale, courtesy by Sunwing Vacations. The free pair of tickets are good for a year, so the winners can decide within this year when they want to visit Fort Lauderdale and enjoy more good food and sunshine.
Overall, MoKenny and I had a great time at this Florida Foodie Event. We attended so many events for many years and this one is definitely on top of our MoVernie`s Top List coz it`s an event that was exclusive, small and cozy crowd. It`s well-organized, carefully planned throughout the entire event. Every chef and mixologist had a chance to shine. The CEO of The Greater Fort Lauderdale got a chance to introduce herself and provided INFO to the crowd about the Greater Fort Lauderdale.
There were many travel events that I attended where they only serve finger foods and food stations but it`s not common to allow the chefs to have a kitchen studio to prepare their food on the spot and provided the attendees with a sit down meal. I like the sit down meal very much coz it had a good proportion of food and plating presentations, I got to taste and try out the chefs’ creations and it’s more comfy to dine at a spot instead of standing up the whole time. So, the sit down element was a nice touch and I value it greatly. Furthermore, choosing The Market Kitchen at the St. Lawrence Market was a great decision as well.
Special thank you to the CEO of Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau and Resource Media for having us.
MoKenny and I hope to visit Fort Lauderdale some day especially we need some sunshine and beautiful beaches.
Want to plan your next trip to Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Check out its website here.
Also follow its hashtag HelloSunnyTO.