Everyone knows the real action at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival happens after hours when chefs are sauced and events are actually either free or somewhat affordable. Take The Dead Rabbit, for instance, the famed NYC bar owned by Jack McGarry and Sean Muldoon, setting up shop at Patpong Road, 1661 Meridian Ave, from 8p.m. until whenever Friday, Feb. 21 and Saturday, Feb. 22. The event will “act as a gathering place where chefs, food lovers, and locals attending” this year’s fest can sip drinks by McGarry, 2013 Tales of the Cocktail International Bartender of the Year, whose greatest hits are historically accurate cocktails created by 19th century bartenders. Best of all, admission is free and it’s open to the public. That’ s retro too.
For those who laugh when they see “$15 drink specials,” for those in the biz who know better, consider the 3-2-1 Lounge at The Stage Miami, 170 NE 38th St., where, from 5 p.m. until closing Monday through Thursday, drinks are $3, beer is $2 and shots are $1. On Mondays and Tuesdays, bartenders, servers, hosts and hostesses will get 15 percent off their tab with a valid ID and current pay stub. The This Is It food truck will offer $1 tacos from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and, for those who just can’t stay away, there’s also free WiFi. “Our hope is to attract the area’s young working folks and give them an affordable, yet refined atmosphere to unwind after a hard day’s work,” says The Stage’s owner Carlos F. Garcia. “Our service and beverage selection is unparalleled and we are proud to be offering an extra incentive for people who work in the hospitality industry. We want to become Miami’s destination getaway after 5 p.m.”
The Man in Mansion
Because banana hammocks are the official underwear of Miami, “Chippendales, The Show” has extended its South Beach residency at Mansion, 1235 Washington ave., from now through Saturday, March 22. “Miami Beach has been very good to us,” said Chippendales managing partner Kevin Denberg. Opium Group’s Vanessa Menkes agrees, saying “Mansion has not been the same since Chippendales opened . . . even male club goers are taking notice and arriving earlier to mingle with the women as they are let out of the show.” Shows start at 9 p.m. and tickets, ranging from $49.95 to $99.95 per person offer access to the club after the show. To purchase, go to chippendaales.wantickets.com.
Just Eat It
Yes, yes, it’s the South Beach Wine & Food Frenzy–er, Festival, but not everyone has $500 to blow on burgers with thousands of hungry, antsy, interloping, Guy Fieri autograph seeking carnivores. A locals’ alternative to that would be Eats N Beats, from 7:30 p.m. to midnight Saturday, Feb. 22 at the Moore Building, 4040 NE 2nd Ave. and featuring DJ Irie, Kitty Carmichael, DJ Mr. Sandman and DJ Michelle Pooch. That’s the beats part of it. The eats includes food from a zillion local restaurants including Gibraltar at Grove Isle, City Hall the Restaurant, Larios, Ralph Pagano’s yet-to-be-named Mexican restaurant, Epicure, Ana Paz Cakes, 2 Girls and a Cupcake and more. There will also be booze, because if you can name one Miami event that’s dry besides an AA meeting, we’ll give you our tickets to the Burger Bash. Tickets, which cost $99 for general admission and $250 for VIP which includes an hour early admission, swag and more, will benefit the Irie Foundation that aims to aid youth and improve their graduation rates. For info and tix, go to eatsnbeatsmiami.com.