Eating Cake at the Versace Mansion and Tiki Drinks with Guy Fieri at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival

Eating Cake at the Versace Mansion and Tiki Drinks with Guy Fieri at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival

We sipped tiki drinks with Guy Fieri, feasted on cake at Versacci's mansion, and soaked in Trisha Yearwood's Southern brunch under the Miami sun at the 15th annual South Beach Wine & Food Festival
March 1, 2016, 7:54pm

Miami's South Beach isn't just a sanctuary for tan lines, neon, and crime shows.


A scene from Friday night's Burger Bash. All photos courtesy of Getty Images.

Or at least that's what we learned this past weekend at the 15th annual South Beach Wine & Food Festival, where we embarked on a four-day culinary journey fueled by world-renowned chefs, celebrities, incredible food, and Guy Fieri.


We ate like Paris was burning when we tasted Toro's foie gras drenched burger.

Last Friday, fresh off the plane and pale from New York's lackluster winter skies, we headed over to the tenth annual Burger Bash to up our iron intake and attempt to sample hundreds of burgers. As thousands of people lined up to taste and vote for the "best burger" of the evening, we wasted no time in trying as many fresh patties as we could, from Toro's deluxe foie gras burger, which showcased chef Jamie Bissonette's unending love for the luxurious ingredient, to Masaharu Morimoto's tempura-fried katsu burger with kimchee. The Iron Chef's creation took top honors that night.


Morimoto's winning katsu burger Guy Fieri signed autographs at the Art of the Tiki: A Cocktail Showdown event.

A few burgers in, we got ourselves into the wonderfully dreamy state that can only be described as a meat coma, so we needed to walk things off on the beach and find a refreshing cocktail or two. Thankfully, Guy Fieri was there to the rescue, shaking things up at The Art of Tiki: A Cocktail Showdown, where we tasted Mai Tai's and drinks that evoked the flavors of vacation, from Fieri's own "Caliente Margarita," to The Golden Tiki's "Coco Moloko" and St. John Frizell's "Body Snatcher."


Guy Fieri's caliente margaritas. "The Body Snatcher," tiki drink by St. John Frizell.


The Golden Tiki's "Coco Moloko."

Now that we had officially gotten ourselves into a tropical state of mind, we realized that no trip to Miami is complete without a pit stop to Ocean Drive, where the Villa Casa Casuarina, a.k.a. the Versace Mansion, continues to rules the oceanside roost. So on Saturday night, we headed over to the mansion for a dessert party, hosted by Charm City Cake's Duff Goldman, to indulge in desserts that would give Veruca Salt serious FOMO, from cake pops to chocolate and Momofuku Milk Bar's strawberry lemon cake.


Momofuku Milk Bar's strawberry lemon cake. Trisha Yearwood serenading the crowd at the country star's Southern Kitchen Sunday Brunch.

By Sunday, our sunny weekend was coming to an end, but we couldn't leave South Beach without paying our respects to Trisha Yearwood's Southern brunch, where the country legend-turned-cooking-show-star serenaded a large crowd over bourbon cocktails and comfort dishes like Milktooth's baghrir crepes topped with Indiana honey, homemade pepper jam, and sea trout lox, and Olamaie's country ham with red eye gravy, grits, a cured egg yolk, benne oil, and marigold.


Milk Tooth's own Jonathan Brooks, pictured left, and Sean Smith. Olamaie restaurant of Austin, Texas made country eggs and ham.


As the songstress ended her set—with no Garth Brooks, a.k.a. Mr. Yearwood, in site—she gave the crowd an excellent tip: "If you partook in more of the bourbon than the food, just walk it off outside on the beach," which is really just great life advice for first-timers in Miami.