SBWFF 2014: Talking Miami restaurants, late-night parties & food trends with Eric Ripert

Set sail this year as SBWFF celebrates the high seas with an Ocean Liner dinner hosted by Anthony Bourdain at the Wolfsonian. Inspired by the “days-gone-by elegance of first-class ocean liner dining and travel,” the meal blends the talents and dishes of Boudain, Daniel Boulud, Andrew Carmellini, Frederic Morin, Francois Payard, and Eric Ripert. We spoke with Ripert about the dinner, the Festival and 2014 food trends…

Tell us about your plans for the Ocean Liner dinner.
I’m very excited about because it’s food that is not seen every day anymore because it’s not modern enough. We’re making lobster bisque with black truffles. Then I have the rest of the weekend to enjoy the festival.

What are you most looking forward to?
I always like the chef tribute dinner at the Loews because the food is delicious. I love to pass by the tents and see the chef demos and I like the parties at night. I’m looking forward to everything. All the parties, all the events, I’m a trouper.

How is South Beach festival different from other food festivals?
The size of the Festival is very unique. I believe it’s the biggest food festival in America. It’s very diverse in terms of bringing different events & talents.

And beyond the Festival, what are your favorite Miami restaurants?
I love Nobu, Zuma, Casa Tua, the SoHo House, Hakkasan and Juvia. Miami has changed a lot over the past decade. It was basically nothing 15-20 years ago, and now there’s so many restaurants and talent in the city. It’s very exciting because it’s good food and sexy surroundings.

Last question – what food trends to you expect to see in 2014?
I see Korean food coming very, very strongly in America. But every time I say a trend, I’ve been wrong. 

Epic Ripert is cooking at the Ocean Liner Dinner Friday, Feb 21 at the Wolfsonian. Click here for info, tickets & availability