South Beach Wine & Food Festival: Aniece Meinhold and Cesar Zapata of The Federal and Daniel Serfer of Blue Collar at the Thrillist BBQ and the Blues Event

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Cesar Zapata of The Federal Food Drink & Provisions

And the food madness rolls on. On the evening of Saturday, February 23rd, the Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival presents Creekstone Farms’ BBQ & the Blues event at the iconic Eden Roc hotel. Hosted by Thrillist and Iron Chef America star Geoffrey Zakarian (consulting chef at New York’s buzzed-about Lambs Club), the evening features a bonanza of barbecue innovations from some of Miami’s top toques, along with cool cocktails and hot sounds from Diablo Dimes and the Bloodhounds, who fuse Cuban and Deep South rhythms into a gumbo paella all their own.

We’re especially delighted that two of our favorite independent restaurants on Miami’s Biscayne Corridor will be participating: Blue Collar and The Federal Food Drink & Provisions. Here, Daniel Serfer from Blue Collar and Aniece Meinhold and Cesar Zapata from The Federal dish on their favorite BBQ and whet our appetite for Saturday’s event.

 

ANIECE MEINHOLD AND CESAR ZAPATA, THE FEDERAL FOOD DRINK & PROVISIONS:

The Federal has been a great hit and locals favorite since its opening. What did you bring to Miami that the city needed?

We’re not 100 percent sure, but according to many guests one attribute always pops up: originality, meaning they’ve never seen or tasted anything like the food we’re doing.

What is your take on BBQ, and what are you planning to do at the BBQ and the Blues event?

We’re pretty traditional when it comes to BBQ. We use chunks of fruitwood to impart a sweet smoke flavor and blend our own spice mixes and sauces. We’ve also learned that BBQ is a labor of love and you can’t leave it alone. If you do, disaster is bound to strike. We will be putting out a smoked-tongue tostada with Brussels sprouts, coleslaw, tomatillo crema and queso fresco.

What in your opinion are the perfect sides for BBQ?

All kind of pickles, coleslaw, burnt ends, beans and Alsatian potato salad.

What has been your most memorable moment at the Fest over the years?

Meeting chef Thomas Keller at Ferran Adrià’s tribute dinner a few year’s ago. He’s a master and an inspiration.

What should we most look forward to at BBQ and the Blues?

Smoke, smoke and more smoke. How to smoke, what to smoke, when to smoke. Everything from odd cuts to shrubbery and herbs. That’s what Q is all about!

 

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Here and below: The Federal Food Drink & Provisions. Photos by Gary James.

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DANIEL SERFER, BLUE COLLAR:

How is your Upper East Side location a factor in your great success?

The restaurant is surrounded by fantastic neighborhoods with really nice people: Belle Meade, Miami Shores, Morningside, and a few others. Plus, we are right on Biscayne, so we are accessible to anyone without it being a hassle.

What is your take on BBQ, and what are you planning to do at the BBQ and the Blues event?

I went to school in Tallahassee, so I love me some good ’cue. We are planning on doing a brisket dish. While it may not exactly be BBQ, it is still a dish that many in Miami have embraced.

Is there a certain kind of BBQ that can be called Miami-style?

Down here the BBQ is influenced a bit more by tropical and Latin flavors. We tend to see more dishes that include stuff like tamarind, mango and guava.

What do you see as the big food trends for 2013?

More and more goat will be popping up on menus, as well as more off-cuts that are not exactly offals. One we are using at the restaurant is lamb neck.

What has been your most memorable moment at the Fest over the years?

My first year doing it, back in ’05, was amazing because there was a great Scotch company at the Grand Tasting who did not feel like schlepping all their bottles back to their car, so they gave them to me, a couple cases of premium stuff.

What should we most look forward to at BBQ and the Blues?

Our Corben sandwich [named after filmmaker Billy Corben], served with latkes, of course.

 

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Blue Collar menu

Blue Collar Restaurant

Clams Casino

Blue Collar Restaurant

Pork and Beans

Blue Collar Restaurant

Veg Plate

Blue Collar Restaurant

Butterscotch Heath Bar Bread Pudding

For more information, visit www.sobefest.com.

 

 

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