Seed Food & Wine Festival Day: Miami's Vegans Come of Age

All photos by Hannah Sentenac
With Seed Food & Wine Festival's inaugural run all wrapped up, it's clear that Miami's plant-based culinary community was bigger, stronger, and way more dedicated than anyone probably imagined. Myself included.

With five full days of plant-based soirees, celebrity hosts, chef dinners, and vegan vendors, this was no ordinary veg fest. Basically, it was the South Beach Wine & Food Festival on plants -- just as delicious, just as sophisticated and way friendlier for the waistline, the planet, and our animal friends.

Thousands of people turned up for Saturday's festival day alone. Imagine, South Floridians of all ages, interests and eating habits clamoring for meatless sausage, vegan pork rinds and zucchini noodles ... I can honestly say, never thought I'd see the day.

After this weekend, Miami has undoubtedly earned herself a leadership role in the plant-based revolution.

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Seed's Vedge Dinner: Alicia Silverstone, Salt-Roasted Beets, and Korean Eggplant Tacos

Photo by Hannah Sentenac
This weekend, Miami's love for all things meat played second fiddle to the newest star in the culinary constellation: the mighty vegetable.

On Friday night, Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby, the duo behind Philadelphia's Vedge and just-opened V Street, made kitchen magic with a rainbow-hued spectrum of fresh veggies, from sashimi-thin golden beets to pleasantly bitter broccoli rabe. One-hundred-and-twenty people packed into South Beach's Tongue and Cheek eatery for a sold-out dinner extravaganza.

See also: Alicia Silverstone on Kind Living, Picky Kids, and Seed Food & Wine Festival

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Seed Food & Wine Festival 2014: What to See and Where to Park

Photo by Amy Neunsinger
Tomorrow marks a big day for Miami -- finally, the red headed stepchild of the culinary world comes into her own. Seed Food & Wine Festival is bringing a truckload of plant-based vendors, celebrities, experts and eats to Midtown Miami.

For once, the 305 is ahead of the game. Take that, Portland!

To prep you for this herbivorous extravaganza, we've put together a handy guide for tomorrow's festivities. Here's what to do, who to see and (most importantly) where to park.

See also: Alicia Silverstone on Kind Living, Picky Kids, and Seed Food & Wine Festival

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Deliver Lean revAMP Aims to Make Detoxing Easier with Actual Food

All photos by Hannah Sentenac

Post-Thanksgiving feast or tailgate binge, when you're bloated and miserable, ever wished you could hit the reset button on your bod?

Deliver Lean's revAMP is your five-day ticket back to bring a normal human being again. To get the skinny (so to speak) on this program launching in November (perfect time for Turkey/Tofurky day detoxing), we gave it a try. All the dirty clean details after the jump.

See also: Deliver Lean Is Your Gateway to Veganism

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Alicia Silverstone on Kind Living, Picky Kids, and Seed Food & Wine Festival

Photo by Amy Neunsinger
It's likely you know her best as Cher, the fashion-forward, well-intentioned Beverly Hills high-schooler who created pop culture legend in 1995's Clueless. But Alicia Silverstone is much more than a pretty face and Aerosmith video vixen -- she's also a dedicated mom, author, and vegan activist.

Her cookbook The Kind Diet earned a spot on the New York Times Best Seller list, and she's the face behind the Kind Life online community. Her latest book, The Kind Mama, explores her foray into motherhood.

Silverstone is a champion of plant-based eating and compassionate living, and in support of those missions, she'll visit Miami to host Seed Food and Wine Festival's Vedge dinner with Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby Friday, October 17, at Tongue & Cheek in South Beach. (Tickets cost $100 for early birds and $125 in advance.) In anticipation of her appearance, New Times spoke with the star about what it means to live a kind life, her son Bear's love for daikon, and how to deal with differing opinions.

See also: Seed Food & Wine Fest: "We Want This to Be a Movement"

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Vegan Author Mark Reinfeld Offers Cooking Immersion Starting Monday

Courtesy of Mark Reinfeld
Reinfeld schooling students in one of his vegan immersions.
Mark Reinfeld is a vegan dynamo. Cookbooks, classes, retreats, online instructionals-- the award-winning culinarian covers plant-based eating from every angle. His organization, Vegan Fusion, is all about creating a better, healthier, more peaceful world -- and he's doing it through mouth-watering edibles like pistachio-crusted tofu and curried pumpkin soup.

Reinfeld will be on hand doing seminars and demos as part of the Seed Food & Wine Festival, October 20 - 22, plus he's hosting a 10-day cooking immersion starting this coming Monday, October 6.

Best of all, Reinfeld's not just visiting these parts. He recently relocated to Miami full-time. Check out what he had to say about the city's eating scene, his future plans, and the importance of quinoa.

See also: Seed Food & Wine Fest: "We Want This to Be a Movement"

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Pubbelly Going Vegan for One Night Only October 2

Photo by Stian Roenning
No pig heads on this menu, unless they're made of tofu.
In a sign that the times are most definitely a' changin', the kings of pork are embracing plants. Notable Miami Beach eatery Pubbelly (whose owners were once called the Sovereigns of Swine by the New Times), is going vegan.

In partnership with Jugofresh, the team is hosting a pop-up vegan spread on October 2. For $60 a pop, attendees can dig into animal-free eats by chefs Jose Mendin and Paco.

See also: Chef Paco of Jugofresh Cooks Up Creative Vegan Eats for Conscious Bite Out Dinner

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Bunnie Cakes: Try the Sin Tres Leches in a Mini-Mason Jar

All photos by Hannah Sentenac
Every vegan east of Portland has heard about Bunnie Cakes' impossibly moist cupcake creations. It's this flair for cruelty-free cooking that earned owner Mariana Cortez a spot on Food Network's Cupcake Wars.

But now the cozy bakery is offering something new: to-go treats in adorable mini-mason jars, ranging from cacao chia pudding to passion fruit cheesecake to sin tres leches. And as expected, they're decadently delicious -- with Cortez's famous healthy twist.

See also: Mariana Cortez of Bunnie Cakes Talks Cupcake Wars, Vegan Baking, and Valentine's Day

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Chef Paco of Jugofresh Cooks Up Creative Vegan Eats for Conscious Bite Out Dinner

Photo by Gesi Shilling
Chef Paco and Matthew Sherman at the Jugofresh kitchen in Lemon City.
Chic dinners are usually the domain of foie gras and filets, but little by little, the concept of conscious cuisine is making its way into Miami's foodie scene. On September 27, Darren Lazlo of Jugofresh (AKA Chef Paco) is whipping up a four-course vegan dinner at Primary Projects.

The exotic menu, part of the Conscious Bite Out series, includes eco-friendly eats like cashew queso lollipops, stuffed squash blossom and coconut churro ice cream. Far from flavorless or boring, this is the cutting-edge of plant-based culinary innovation.

See also: Jugofresh Hires In-House Health Expert to Educate Customers

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The Special: Can You Say Hawaiian Kale Salad Delivered?

Courtesy of Andres Orjuela
Healthy and convenient aren't two words that typically go together. Although your stomach might not agree, fast food is easy and cheap, two highly valued qualities in today's fast paced, expensive world.

Maybe you should follow the advice of your cardiologist and stop shoveling pizza and French fries down your gullet. But who has the time or energy to chop vegetables and wash dishes after a long day? Or the money, for that matter, since organic broccoli costs about $8 at Whole Foods?

Imagine if you had your own personal chef who did all of your grocery shopping, chopped all the vegetables, and then combined them into a tasty balance of savory, sweet, and tangy. That is where the Special comes in, It provides a completely different way of thinking about lunch.

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