Monday, March 4, 2013

Miami Wine & Spirits Expo Media and VIP Event

A next generation of culinary chefs is getting a helping hand thanks to a new partnership between The Miami Wine & Spirits Expo and Miami Dade College’s Miami Culinary Institute. The new alliance was announced during a special media and VIP reception and luncheon on Friday, February 22, 2013 at Miami Dade College’s Miami Culinary Institute in Downtown Miami.
Miami Culinary Institute’s Wine Theater hosted the first part of the event; this state-of-the-art facility with its stadium style seating and high-tech AV system welcomed over 60 media representatives and special guests who listened to the event hosts as they shared with the audience details on the alliance, their vision and goals. Ferllen Winery welcomed everyone with a glass of their fine wines, while hors d’oeuvres from Tuyo Restaurant were passed butler style, which were created by guest chefs Victor Passalacqua, Phillipe Ruiz, Michel Chiche, Mauricio Gutierrez and Jose Casals.
Once all guests were seated overlooking the restaurant-style kitchen, which normally serves as classroom for the Miami Culinary Institute students, Jorge Quiroz – Director of Business Development for the Miami Wine & Spirits Expo - greeted guests and acknowledged co-hosts and partners. Quiroz shared their vision for this new alliance: a portion of the funds rose from the Miami Wine & Spirits Expo 2014 will go towards the Expo Foundation, whose goal is to support the Miami Culinary Institute. This will result in the creation of scholarships for students from the US and Latin America, who otherwise wouldn’t have the means to have access to it.
“We feel we are on the brink of something really special for Miami, the Miami Culinary Institute and our affiliated organizations; the vision is clear and authentic” said John Richards, Director of the Miami Culinary Institute; who emphasized on the importance of properly training future generations of professional chefs, not only with theory but also hands on experience, tasks that are achieved everyday at the MCI, thanks to the perfect blend of technology, sustainability and world-class education that it delivers.
Other speakers included Victor Passalacqua, Managing Partner of By Wines, who is already onboard to support the educational programs; “We are excited to be part of this great new initiative to help students to make their dreams come true by providing them with the tools to build a promising future, while building cultural and educational bridges between South Florida and Latin America” he said. Special guests included Ximena Hernandez, representative of the Ministry of Tourism of Colombia, and Juan Manuel Barrientos, Owner and Executive Chef of El Cielo Restaurant in Colombia

When the speeches concluded, guests were prompted to move on to the 8th floor at Tuyo Restaurant to enjoy a special lunch menu created by Tuyo’s director, renowned chef Norman Van Aken. The food was paired with fine wines from Matarromera, Les Jamelles and Domaines Rollan, along with cocktails by Aguardiente Real 1493 and Ron Medellin.

Some of the distinguished guests who attended the affair include Maria Isabel Castro-General Consul of Colombia, Carolina Villarrubia-General Consul of Uruguay, Maximiliano Vaccaro-Director Digital Media Discovery Latin America, Ana Cecilia Velasco-COO Miami beach Chamber of Commerce, Doreen Colondres-Host of Utilisima/Fox en EspaƱol, representatives of all the supporting and sponsoring brands and organizations, as well as several media representatives.

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