Ever wish you could experience the flavors and flair of the annual South Beach Food and Wine Festival without the usual festival mayhem?  Or perhaps you live further afield, in Broward County, and want to dig into plates from your local chefs and restaurants.

Thankfully, the 2016 event has you covered. As it celebrates its 15th anniversary the annual South Beach Wine and Food Festival is introducing Taste Fort Lauderdale, a series of events that brings the festival’s celebrity chefs and stellar food to the north.

Taste Fort Lauderdale opened with Seaside Eats, hosted by Restaurant: Impossible guru, Chef Robert Irvine. The event transformed the beloved Bonnet House Museum into an after-hours tasting party. The Fort Lauderdale area’s hottest restaurants provided the evening’s  small bites, including Steak 954, YOLO, and Dandee Donuts.

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Taste Fort Lauderdale offers additional events through the weekend, like dinners hosted by kitchen gods Todd English, Debi Mazar, and Marc Vetri and a Bloody Mary brunch hosted by the cast of Chopped. Even better the Broward events have an added perk: an escape from the crowds and chaos that marks so many SOBEWFF events.

Elbow room at tasting tables? Yes, please! Like the city, Taste Fort Lauderdale is a wonderfully relaxed counterpart to the Miami Beach festival.

If you do escape north to Taste Fort Lauderdale events, don’t brave the late-night wilds of I-95 to return home. Spend the night in comfort at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort.

Guests of the beachfront resort enjoy modern, well-appointed rooms and suites, ocean and Intracoastal views, and a lush pool deck overlooking a sparkling stretch of sand. Enjoy a spa treatment, or sweat it out at the gym before sipping happy hour cocktails at ilios or the adults-only Balqony bar. If hunger strikes, head to the signature S3 restaurant for contemporary cuisine and waterfront views.

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