Just a week away from the official kickoff of the South Beach Wine and Food Festival and the sideshow events are pouring in. Among them, Spike Mendelsohn's first ever Let's Get Spiked: Chef Volleyball Tournament, sponsored by Foods from Chile and taking place from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Friday, February 22nd at the James Royal Palm Hotel on South Beach. Confirmed players include Chuck Hughes, Alex Guarnaschelli, Andrew Zimmern, Tim Love, Johnny Iuzzini, Stephanie Izard, Pat LaFrieda, Marcel Vigneron, Jeff Mauro, Kris Wessel, Josh Capon, Justin Warner, Todd Erickson, Adrianne Calvo and Alberto Cabrera. The event is open to the public and should be amusing to say the least. Just ask Zimmern, a guy who's more used to ingesting balls as opposed to spiking them, who told us, "Surprise, here is a sports tournament featuring the worst athletes in the world. I fit right in. I am thrilled Spike is hosting a tourney in a sport he's good at, that no one else plays. He needs a win. And I will give it to him!"
We also asked Mendelsohn how he can compete with the recent model volleyball tournament on South Beach to which he replied, "Well, six packs will be considered beers instead of muscles. Everyone will be well fed - no protein bars- and we will probably use a quarter of the sun tan lotion that they used. We are all looking forward to this celebrity chef volleyball tourney, it gives us a chance to take the smack talk out of the kitchen and onto the beach at the James Hotel. I'm sure our skills will look more like a blooper reel compared to the models. SOBE Chefs versus Models 2014, anyone?"