After partying into the wee hours of the morning at The Florida Room, and doing a book signing along with Tyler Florence at 3:30 p.m. outside the Village, Bobby Flay closed the festival on stage cooking for one of the rowdiest crowds he’s ever faced (maybe because the Village tents had just closed, so people made their way over to Flay’s show feeling, uh, real good.).
“This is the craziest thing I’ve seen in my life,” he said. “Is this a cooking demo?”
With the audience (which was testosterone-laden with plenty of New York accents) cheering Flay each time he took a sip from his beer, Flay asked the crowd, “Where are we drinking next?” Someone shouted the Sagamore Hotel. “The Sagamore? Sagamore poolside. Can you make the reservations? For about 600 of us.”
Each time he messed up when he explained the ingredients, he would take a sip of beer to the delight of the crowd. “If I stay sober I can’t talk straight,” he joked.
Among the requests from the audience, either yelled at Flay or asked using a microphone:
“Take your shirt off!” The Naked Chef he was not – no shirt came off.
“I wanna know where your wife is.” She had already headed back to New York on Sunday afternoon.
“What do you sleep in at night?” Flay’s answer: “Well, clothes are very overrated.”
Midway through his 35 minute show, Guy Fieri came on stage and handled the grilling duties, including monitoring the shrimp.
“We want to see a drinking competition between you and Guy,” a fan asked.
“I know I wouldn’t win that,” Flay said.
Finally, someone asked Flay about bringing a restaurant to Miami.
“You want me to open a restaurant in Miami? Would you come?” he asked the crowd, which cheered with approval.
“Well, if you have a good restaurant space let me know and we’ll do it.”
After the show, and about 15 minutes of signing autographs, Bobby went backstage, changed shirts and raced to the beach for a video shoot as the sun was setting.
- Fred Gonzalez