Florida Food and Wine Festivals

    Here are some of the major food and wine events scheduled in the Sunshine State, by region and month. Be aware that dates can change; please check individual websites for more complete details.

    South Florida | Central Florida | North Florida


    SOUTH FLORIDA


    JANUARY
     

    FORT MYERS SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL – The title says “seafood” and you’ll get an abundance of that, but meat dishes and vegetarian fare will also be served at this three-day event. While enjoying your food, listen to live musical performances by some of Florida’s and the region’s top musical talents in such genres as R&B, jazz, rock, reggae and Caribbean sounds.
    Where:
    On the waterfront in Fort Myers
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    ENGLEWOOD SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL - Feast on fresh seafood and other fare and groove to live music by some of the region’s top talents. Also, explore a marketplace offering arts, crafts, gourmet food items and specialty products.
    Where: Englewood
    Web: 
    seafoodfestivals.com

    MULLET FESTIVAL – The quaint, quiet fishing village of Goodland gets crazy for a weekend at a Mullet Festival hosted around Stan’s Idle Hour Restaurant, one of only a few eateries in town. Try different variations of mullet – perhaps smoked or in a dip – while being entertained by the strange Buzzard Lope Queen Contest, which draws thousands every year.
    Where: Goodland on Marco Island
    Webstansidlehour.net/TheBuzzardLope

    NAPLES WINTER WINE FESTIVAL – Learn about wine bouquets, finishes and feels from Master Sommeliers (there are only about 200 in the world) in this three-day lineup of a luncheon, an auction, a dinner prepared by some of the world’s greatest chefs and a brunch finale.
    Where: Naples
    Webnapleswinefestival.com/

    CLAMJAM OF SOUTHWEST FLORIDA – Seminars, entertainment, arts & crafts, contests and, of course, fresh clams -- top neck, middle neck, little neck, steamers and Venus (if you know your clams). Other seafood, right off the boats of local fishermen, also will be served. Lots of non-seafood fare will be available, too, including BBQ chicken, ribs and goat, pulled pork, hamburgers and hot dogs. Also included: live music, kids games and rides and contests for all age groups.
    Where: Cape Coral
    Webclamjamswfl.com

    PORT SALERNO FOOD SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – The Treasure Coast’s fishermen (and women) and their families, friends and volunteers get together to host an old-fashioned fish fry with fresh catches from the East Coast waters, plus plenty of beer and soft drinks. Kids can enjoy finger foods, as well as games and interactive play zones.
    Where: Port Salerno
    Webportsalernoseafoodfestival.org/

    KEY WEST FOOD AND WINE FESTIVAL – Those who have an appreciation for the finer culinary things in life will find plenty to enjoy in this week-long series of events all over town, such as a sunset wine tasting, a trolley tour of Key West’s most beautiful kitchens, a whiskey primer, a shrimp boil, a poolside happy hour with appetizers, a salt and honey tasting and other creative food and drink parties.
    Where: Various locations in Key West
    Webkeywestfoodandwinefestival.com

    BIG SWAMP SMOKE-OFF – If Bar-B-Que is your thing, don’t miss this one, which is part of the Collier County Fair. Some of the country's top cook teams will compete for bragging rights. The two-day event includes activities for the kids, live entertainment and other vendors.
    Where:
    Naples
    Web:
    bigswampsmokeoff.com

    UNCORKED: KEY LARGO & ISLAMORADA FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL – It’s got a long name and it is long on great events spread over 11 days. There are wine tastings, cooking demonstrations, wine dinners, live music, food and wine pairing classes, progressive wine dinners, art and wine shows. The festival highlight is The Grand Tasting on the final day. It’s a multi-sensory experience not to be missed. Area restaurants and wine experts will come together to present samples of their finest cuisine and world-class wines. Live music, celebrity chef appearances and cooking demos combine to serve up a recipe for a spectacular afternoon of tasting and sipping.
    Where:
    Key Largo and Islamorada
    Web:
    keylargofoodandwinefestival.com

    ST. GEORGE GREEK FESTIVAL – Lamb shanks! Souvlaki! Fresh-carved gyro off the spit! Pastitsio! Moussaka! And, too many more yummy dishes to name! In addition to the food, enjoy live Greek music and dancing.
    Where:
    Hollywood
    Web:
    stgeorgehollywood.org

    FLORIDA KEYS SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – This fest celebrates the Key West community by bringing families and friends together in a joyful and fun environment to sample the local catch.  This family-friendly event was created to showcase local seafood and the Keys’ commercial fishing industry by providing the freshest seafood available. Fishermen and women are proud to offer the community and visitors a variety of seafood at reasonable prices.
    Where: Key West
    Web: floridakeysseafoodfestival.com

    INTERNATIONAL CHOCOLATE FESTIVAL -- Indulge in chocolate delicacies and enjoy fine chocolate samples from artisan chocolatiers, lectures on chocolate making and demonstrations from the Miami area’s master chefs and chocolatiers. Take the Chocowalk to learn about the life cycle of a cacao plant, with stops in a rainforest. Find out everything you ever needed to know about chocolate from the experts.
    Where:
    Coral Gables
    Web:
    fairchildgarden.org/Chocolate-Weekend

    SUNSHINE STATE STEAK COOK-OFF: Grill teams will be vying for the top prize in this professionally-judged event. Tickets include live music, kids fun zone, a 16-ounce rib eye steak, salad, roll, baked potato and water. Enjoy the tantalizing aroma of more than 2,000 steaks being grilled.
    Where:
    Ave Maria
    Web:
    sunshinestatesteakcookoff.com

    STONE CRAB & SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – This celebration of the South Florida seafood industry will feature some of Fort Lauderdale’s favorite seafood restaurants as they serve up an array of fresh seafood dishes. Seafood lovers of all ages are welcome to come out rain or shine and enjoy a day of great food, cold drinks, a beer garden, music and more, including the crowd-favorite hermit crab races.
    Where:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Web:
    goriverwalk.com/riverwalk-stone-crab-seafood-festival

    KISS COUNTRY CHILI COOK-OFF – Hot chili and hot country music -- who could ask for anything more? Chili cookers from far and wide come to compete to win the top prize. And, who wins, beside the best chili cooker? You do, if you attend! The cook-off always attracts some of the top names in country music.
    Where:
    Pembroke Pines
    Web:
    wkis.com
     

    FEBRUARY
     

    VERITAGEMIAMI – This epic 3-day food and beverage festival attracts food, wine, beer and spirits aficionados to eat, drink and have a great time. It features three major events – Craft Beer Tasting, Bubbly Brunch and Interactive Dinner – stretching from February through spring. Top chefs along with hundreds of local restaurants and breweries promise palate-pleasing pleasures.
    Where: Various locations across Miami
    Webveritagemiami.com/

    SOUTH FLORIDA GARLIC FEST – It’s called “The Best Stinkin’ Party in Town” and with good reason. This popular food and entertainment event features national act entertainment, a gourmet alley food area with more than 100 garlic-laced menu items (including garlic ice cream!) a large children’s amusement area with rides, arts and craft vendors, a garlic chef cooking competition, the Cloves & Vines Wine Garden and full liquor bars -- all in celebration of the bulbous herb. 
    Where: Lake Worth
    Webgarlicfestfl.com

    PUNTA GORDA SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL -- Seafood dishes are prepared using indigenous and sustainable seafood from Florida's coastal waters. Plenty of meat dishes and vegetarian food will be served, too. You’ll enjoy a host of fine musicians in the genres of rock, jazz, reggae, R&B and Caribbean sounds.
    Where:
    Punta Gorda
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    SOUTH BEACH WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL – The Food Network and Cooking Channel team up with Food & Wine Magazine for a star-studded event sure to please even the most amateur or sophisticated foodie. Included will be intimate dinners, chef demos, walk-around tastings and late-night parties. Events in Broward County have now been added as part of the CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale series.
    Where: Miami Beach and Fort Lauderdale
    Websobefest.com

    CORAL GABLES FOOD, WINE & SPIRITS FESTIVAL – This is not about little tiny samples, here. We’re talking about very respectable portions from 20 outstanding local restaurants. You have access to an open bar, with more than 200 brands of wine, spirits and craft beer to choose from. Live music, too. And, you also have access to the rest of the Coral Gables Art & Mega Festival.
    Where:
    Coral Gables
    Web:
    coralgablesartfestival.com/beer-a-licious

    PUNTA GORDA WINE & JAZZ FESTIVAL – The tastings are a delectable backdrop to performances by outstanding jazz and blues musicians.
    Where: Punta Gorda
    Web: puntagordachamber.com/wine-jazz-festival

    BOCA RATON SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL -- Enjoy yummy food cooked fresh on site, including seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes. Seafood dishes are prepared using indigenous and sustainable seafood from Florida's coastal waters. Add to your main course with selections from a diverse menu of side dishes. While enjoying your meal, sit back and relax to musical entertainment consisting of live performances by creative and talented musicians from both the local and regional circuit.
    Where:
    Boca Raton
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    LABELLE SWAMP CABBAGE FESTIVAL -- Sample dishes made with swamp cabbage (also known as hearts of palm), which comes from the state tree, the sabal or cabbage palm. The event includes a parade, motorcycle & car shows, entertainment, a carnival, a 5-K run, a bass tournament, a rodeo, and the "Grasscar" lawnmower race.
    Where:
    LaBelle
    Web:
    labelleswampcabbagefestival.org

    JUPITER SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – Two days of local fresh seafood, a cornhole tournament, live entertainment, nautical vendors, live entertainment and family-oriented rides.
    Where:
    Jupiter
    Web:
    Jupiterseafoodfestival.net

    EVERGLADES CITY SEAFOOD FESTIVAL -- More than 100 vendors will offer up fresh gulf shrimp, stone crab claws, fried gator and lots more seafood. Also included: live country music, handmade arts & crafts and midway carnival rides.
    Where:
    Everglades City
    Web:
    evergladesseafoodfestival.org

    SOLA RUM, FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL -- A wide variety of multicultural tapas style food, rum and wine will be served, along with live music and seminars led by mixologists. The VIP package will get you exclusive chef presentations and a three-course meal with food and beverage pairings.
    Where:
    Lauderhill
    Web:
    solarumfoodwinefest.com

    ITALIAN FEAST & CARNIVAL -- On the menu will be all kinds of great Italian food and wine, along with midway rides, games and live music.
    Where:
    Venice
    Web:
    italianamericanclubofvenice.com

    FORT LAUDERDALE GREEK FESTIVAL – Celebrate the best of Greek food, music, dancing, and culture. Experience authentic Greek foods and homemade Greek pastries, Greek music, traditional Greek dancing by Palazakia and Kamaria dancers, an indoor marketplace full of vendors and an outdoor area for kids with carnival rides and games.
    Where:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Web:
    fortlauderdalegreekfestival.org
     

    MARCH
     

    WELLINGTON BACON & BOURBON FESTIVAL – Two American favorites, bourbon and bacon, are wrapped together in a two-day, palate-pleasing party. Taste an array of bacon and pork-related dishes such as braised pork bellies with tamari, garlic, ginger & chili peppers, and polish it off with bacon ice cream. Try an eclectic selection of bourbon and whiskeys and learn more about the spirits through seminars and tastings.
    Where: Wellington
    Web: baconbourbonfest.com

    MARATHON SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – What began as a small gathering in a Publix parking lot has grown to a popular fresh seafood extravaganza drawing more than 20,000 attendees each year.  The event is designed to allow Marathon and Middle Keys commercial fishermen and their families (and visitors) to kick back and enjoy the fruits of their labor in the form of fried fresh catches and spiny lobster, raw oysters, stone crab claws and other delicious shellfish and seafood from the warm Keys waters. Also included: live music, more than 200 arts & crafts vendors, raffles and lots of activities for kids.
    Where: Marathon
    Webmarathonseafoodfestival.com

    BOCA BACCHANAL – Guests meet award-winning chefs and vintners while savoring their signature cuisine and wine selections at an open-air event. It features hundreds of wines, by-the-bite specialties prepared by exceptional chefs from South Florida restaurants as well as a beer garden serving craft beer, ales and lagers. Events include Bacchus Beckons, Bubbles & Burgers, Vintner Dinners and the Grand Tasting.
    Where:
    Boca Raton
    Web: 
    bocabacchanal.com

    DELRAY BEACH WINE AND SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – This gathering draws thousands to its various vendors selling fish tacos, shrimp gumbo, Cajun crab cakes and other delicacies best eaten with a cold Chardonnay or sangria. Live music, too.
    Where: Downtown Delray Beach
    Webwineandseafoodfest.com

    FORT MYERS BEACH SHRIMP FESTIVAL -- It’s one of the major events of the year for Fort Myers Beach. Besides the delicious “pink gold” shrimp dinners, there is a parade, arts & crafts vendors, a Queen Pageant and a shrimp-eating contest.
    Where:
    Fort Myers Beach
    Web:
    fortmyersbeachshrimpfestival.com

    SPECKLED PERCH FESTIVAL – Dating back to 1965, attendees have been enjoying the title-named fish and other good food, local live music, arts and crafts and a parade. There festival is held in collaboration with the Cow Town Rodeo.
    Where:
    Okeechobee
    Web:
    okeechobeemainstreet.org

    MARCO ISLAND SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL -- In addition to a weekend of great music, all your favorite fresh seafood specialties will be available: grouper, crab cakes, stone crab, shrimp, crawdads and chowder to name a few. There is a huge assortment of traditional landlubber favorites, too. Beer and wine will be served to quench your thirst. Also included: live music, more than 60 arts & crafts vendors and a kids zone with a bounce house, slide, rock climbing wall and trampoline.
    Where:
    Marco Island
    Web:
    marcoislandseafoodandmusicfestival.com

    CHILI COOK-OFF -- Come to compete, or come to eat! Prepare your taste buds for an encounter with some delicious chili.  Restaurants, caterers and novices compete for the title of "Best Chili in Town."  Enjoy great live music, good food, and good brew as you take part in activities for the entire family.
    Where:
    Pinecrest
    Web:
    pinecrestgardens.org/entertainment/events-festivals/chili-cook-off

    SUNCOAST BBQ BLUEGRASS BASH -- Feast on championship BBQ, chili, a fish fry, desserts and other yummy foods. There are also lots of exhibits, concessions, balloon rides, a kids park and live bluegrass music.
    Where:
    Venice
    Web:
    suncoastbbqbash.com

    NAPLES CRAFT BEER FEST -- A wide variety of beers from breweries across the country and the world are available for tasting. To enhance the tasting, many local restaurants are a part of the Fest and will provide food pairings that are designed to specifically match with a particular brew. The chefs will compete to win the People's Choice award for best pairing and there will be a Brewer's Choice award, too. The fest also showcases local musical talent.
    Where:
    Naples
    Web:
    paradisecoast.com/event/naples-craft-beer-festival-bayfront/4671

    FEMALE BREW FEST -- This beer festival is a platform highlighting and featuring female beer experts and brewers, offering an opportunity to learn about and taste the different types of beers brewed by them -- all while listening to the sounds female solo artists and bands. And, yes, men are invited and encouraged to attend.
    Where:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Web:
    femalebrewfest.com

    RIVERWALK BURGER BATTLE -- Sample burgers from 16 South Florida restaurants and vote your favorite. Admission includes live music, great burgers, a French fry bar and lots of cold beer.
    Where:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Web:
    goriverwalk.com

    COCONUT GROVE FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL -- Don’t miss the wacky, funny Waiters Race where Coconut Grove‘s top servers race to the finish line through a very difficult obstacle course without spilling a drop!  Festival guests will enjoy food samplings from Coconut Grove & Miami’s finest restaurants, caterers and bakeries. There will also be chef demonstrations, an automotive showcase, live music from local bands and a kids zone. As a bonus, the festival now includes the Coconut Grove Burger, Beer and BBQ bash.
    Where:
    Coconut Grove
    Web:
    coconutgrovefoodandwine.com

    DANIA BEACH ARTS & SEAFOOD CELEBRATION – Fresh seafood and other culinary delights from top local restaurants will be served. Also included: A Chef Showcase, beer & wine garden, live music, arts & crafts vendors, live street art performances and lots of activities for kids.
    Where:
    Dania Beach
    Web:
    daniabeachartsandseafoodcelebration.com

    DORAL FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL -- Enjoy world-renowned wines, beer, spirits and food from top local restaurants. There will also be chef showdowns, culinary and mixology demonstrations, live music, retails displays and a children’s area.
    Where:
    Doral
    Web:
    doralfoodandwinefestival.com

    GREATER FORT LAUDERDALE WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL – Two cities combine for one great festival. The first event is Friday night in Fort Lauderdale, with wine/food pairings and a beautiful oceanfront view. The Saturday Grand Tasting event is in Hollywood and includes food & beverage tastings, cooking demos and live music.
    Where:
    Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood
    Web:
    gflfoodwine.com

    DEERING SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – This consistently sold-out event is known for its cornucopia of culinary delights, featuring delicious catches from the sea, chef demos and sumptuous fare along Seafood Alley. It’s a day of family fun, dancing and grooving to the tunes of the Bahamian Junkanoo and Virgin Island stilt walkers. The Lil Shrimp Kids Zone provides unlimited play on inflatables, creative activities and a kids-friendly menu. Activities also include a rock-climbing wall, Pelican Skipper boat rides and Artists Lane, featuring paintings, photography, crafts and jewelry, all by local artisans.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    deeringestate.org/deering-seafood-festival

    SANIBEL UNCORKED WINE & FOOD FEST -- Enjoy an afternoon of extensive wine and regional craft beer tasting while indulging in Hors d’oeuvres. Discover the secrets of the island’s top chefs while they share their signature creations during cooking demonstrations. Craft beers will also be available. A silent auction with prizes will accompany the tastings and there will be a 50-50 raffle.
    Where:
    Sanibel Island
    Web:
    sancapoptimist.org/sanibel-uncorked
     

    APRIL
     

    SWEET CORN FIESTA -- Sunshine yellow, hot and buttery. What’s not to like about freshly harvested sweet corn grown locally in the famous black soil of The Glades Region in The Palm Beaches. Combine the delectable eats with the all-day events of a harvest celebration and you have a family-friendly treat like no other. Live music, lots of summertime foods and kids activities will keep you smiling all day long. There will also be a sweet corn eating challenge and a corn shucking contest.
    Where:
    West Palm Beach
    Web:
    sweetcornfiesta.com

    LAS OLAS WINE AND FOOD FESTIVAL – Fort Lauderdale’s famous Las Olas Boulevard shuts down for a day to make way for more than 70 of South Florida’s top restaurants, breweries and vineyards as they serve tapas, sliders, salads, cheeses, flatbreads and other dishes, plus beers and wines.
    Where: Fort Lauderdale
    Weblasolaswff.com

    FORT MYERS CRAB & MUSIC FESTIVAL --Crab and shrimp on your list of favorite foods? Love listening to live music? This one is for you. It has more than crab and shrimp: all kinds of seafood, meat dishes and vegetarian meals. Great live music and a marketplace of arts & crafts, gourmet food items and specialty products are also on tap.
    Where:
    River District in downtown Fort Myers
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    POMPANO BEACH SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – Good food for sure, but it doesn’t stop with that. There’s a craft fair, lots of great live music on three stages and a kids zone.
    Where:
    Pompano Beach
    Web:
    pompanobeachseafoodfestival.com

    REDLANDS BLUES & BARBECUE FESTIVAL -- The Festival features award winning BBQ and incredible blues and country music. Lots of children’s activities including pony rides will be available.  A Classic Car and Motorcycle Show will be on site along with live concerts.
    Where:
    Homestead
    Web:
    redlandfruitandspice.com

    SOUTH FLORIDA TACO BATTLE & CRAFT BEER FEST – Tacos and beer – yum! Events include: Best of the Best Taco & Beer competitions (judges’ selections), Fan Favorites Taco and Beer awards (voted by attendees), taco eating contests (male and female categories), Lucha Libre exhibitions and a classic car show. Lots of activities for kids, too.
    Where:
    Pembroke Pines
    Web:
    soflotacocraftbeerfest.com

    PALM BEACH COUNTY SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL -- While enjoying your meal and drinks, listen to the captivating sounds of live musical performances on stage by some of Florida’s and the region’s top musical talents from such genres as R&B, jazz, rock, reggae and Caribbean sounds. There will also be a marketplace of arts & crafts, gourmet food items and specialty products.
    Where:
    Jupiter
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    STOCK ISLAND SEAFOOD CELEBRATION -- Come enjoy the finest Florida Keys seafood, great craft beers, live music, artists, crafters, music and the island atmosphere that only tiny Stock Island can provide. The Shrimp Road Seafood & Craft Beer Festival is the main event at this fest.
    Where:
    Stock Island
    Web:
    fla-keys.com/calendar

    TASTE THE ISLANDS EXPERIENCE -- Enjoy authentic flavors, sights and sounds of the Caribbean, celebrity cooking demos, gourmet bites from a variety of South Florida's favorite Caribbean restaurants, an artisan shopping village, live music and DJs. Food and spirits enthusiasts with a taste for island indulgences will gather for an interactive celebration set along a beautiful Riverwalk area, offering an exciting program of uniquely Caribbean activities.
    Where:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Web:
    ttiexperience.com

    SMOKE ON THE WATER BARBECUE COMPETION & MUSIC FESTIVAL – Enjoy tasty barbecue, rocking tunes (sadly, Deep Purple is not on the entertainment lineup, but one of the bands is likely to play the song) and fun for the whole family.
    Where:
    Fort Myers
    Web:
    sbdac.com/smoke-on-the-water-fort-myers

    BREW AT THE ZOO -- You get to sample savory suds and check out cool critters at the same time. More than 25 Florida craft beer breweries, with a special emphasis on those in Palm Beach County, will be available at tasting stations spread throughout the county’s fantastic zoo. Also on tap: specialty-themed food sections, food trucks and a VIP lounge, at which you can get great eats and beers not found elsewhere on the grounds.
    Where:
    Palm Beach Zoo, West Palm Beach
    Web:
    palmbeachzoo.org/zoo-events
     

    MAY
     

    TASTE OF THE BEACH – More than 20 local restaurants will present their dishes and compete for prizes for Best Appetizer, Best Beef Dish, Best Chicken Dish, Best Seafood Dish and Best Dessert.
    Where:
    Fort Myers Beach
    Web:
    .fortmyersbeach.org/taste-of-the-beach

    KEY LIME FESTIVAL -- You’ll find all kinds of key lime-infused specialties, such as pie, (of course!), gelato, ice cream, marinade, fudge, dips, jelly, candy, cookies, taffy, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and Lime-A-Ritas cocktails. Check out the key lime-scented sea salts and soap, too. There will also be family-friendly games, live music and dancing.
    Where:
    Punta Gorda
    Web:
    fishville.com

    MIAMI NEW TIMES BREW AT THE ZOO – If you haven’t yet been to Miami’s fantastic zoo, this would be a good time to go. Sample more than 100 kinds of beers from around the world. Live music will entertain you as you have your beer. Beer bites will be available for purchase.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    newtimesbrewatthezoo.com

    VENICE BREW BASH -- Sample dozens of domestic, imported and crafted beers. Live music, merchant vendors and some great local eats makes this event something you won't want to miss.  Make a day or weekend trip out of it. Come early and check out all of the great shops and local Farmers Market.
    Where:
    Venice
    Web:
    vbb.wildapricot.org

    PAIRINGS -- More than a dozen eateries will present their fare at this event, which will also include live music, interactive art stations and, of course, good wine and beer to go with the food.
    Where:
    West Palm Beach
    Web:
    downtownwpb.com/pairings

    MIAMI RUM RENAISSANCE FESTIVAL – Spend a weekend trying hundreds of fine rums from the Caribbean and beyond at one of the largest rum festival in the world. Learn how rum makes delicious drinks, from island-style Polynesia tiki cocktails to more sophisticated rums best served straight-up or on the rocks. Take notes from the RumXP International Rum Expert Tasting Panel as it judges multiple categories of the drink.
    Where: Coral Gables
    Webrumrenaissance.com  

    VENICE SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL -- Enjoy delicious food cooked fresh on site including seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes. Seafood dishes are prepared using indigenous and sustainable seafood from Florida's coastal waters. Add to your main course with selections from a diverse menu of side dishes. While enjoying your meal, sit back and relax to musical entertainment consisting of live on stage performances by creative and talented musicians from both the local and regional circuit.
    Where:
    Venice
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    BOYNTON BEACH FOOD, WINE & BREW FESTIVAL – Formerly known as the Taste of Boynton, it is a showcase of the city’s cuisine. It features 30 of Boynton’s finest restaurants and lounges along with wine and craft beer tastings. It's a paradise for foodies and wine lovers who strive to eat and drink local.
    Where: Boynton Beach
    Web:
    bocacal.com/boynton-beach-food-wine-brew-fest

    HAUTE CUISINE: BAL HARBOUR – This one will cost big bucks, for sure, but it is an amazing event. It will feature top international chefs boasting multiple Michelin stars. Haute Cuisine offers a dynamic schedule of interactive cooking classes and theme-based dinners with specially curated menus of tantalizing dishes.
    Where:
    Bal Harbour
    Web:
    .balharbourflorida.com/hautecuisine
     

    JUNE
     

    PGA NATIONAL CRAFT BEER FESTIVAL – It’s a hot summertime party, which will showcase more than 150 varieties of craft beer and hard ciders, with a particular focus on Florida breweries. Vote for your favorite beer and cider to decide the winner of the People’s Choice awards. Live music and entertainment will be performed in two ballrooms.
    Where
    : Palm Beach Gardens
    Web:  pgaresort.com/event/craft-beer-bash

    CORAL GABLES RESTAURANT WEEK –It actually lasts three weeks, which will give you plenty of time to eat your way through Coral Gables, trying new eateries and returning to old favorites, all offering prix-fixe menus.
    Where:
    Coral Gables
    Web:
    coralgablesrestaurantweek.com

    REDLAND SUMMER FRUIT FESTIVAL -- Enjoy seasonal and rare fruits, vendor booths, local wines and yummy foods. Don’t miss the hilarious watermelon-eating contest for kids. Children 11 & under get in free.
    Where:
    Homestead
    Web:
    redlandfruitandspice.com

    CULINARY CREATIONS DINNER -- This unique evening celebrates the talents of 75 of the finest chefs in South Florida. It includes 400 hours of prep that leads to unique five-course gourmet dinners. The event will include a champagne reception with hors d’oeuvres, curated wine pairings for each course and silent and live auctions. The VIP package includes preferred seating, upgraded wine selections, entry into a complimentary raffle with prizes only VIP ticket holders can win and a hand-selected bottle of wine to take-home.
    Where:
    West Palm Beach
    Web:
    quantumhouse.org

    TASTE OF THE CARIBBEAN – This is one of South Florida’s premier culinary competition and cultural showcase. Some of the area’s best chefs and culinary teams unite to demonstrate their skills and provide savory and delectable treats of the islands. It’s a showcase of the hottest and most popular trends in Caribbean gastronomy.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    chtataste.com
     

    JULY
     

    KEY LIME FESTIVAL – Head to this mega-celebration of Florida’s official state pie. It includes, of course, pie eating and pie making contests, the Key Lime Bar Sip & Stroll, a wacky talent show, the Key Lime Pie Hop, samplings of Keys-distilled rum flavored with the tangy lime, a scavenger hunt and the Miss Key Lime Pie and L’il Miss Key Lime pageants.  A spectacular fireworks display on the fourth helps open the festivities.
    Where:
    Key West
    Web:
    keylimefestival.com

    BOCA BURGER BATTLE -- You’ll not only find great burgers, but there will also be an array of tasting stations featuring other gourmet goodies. There also will be a variety of craft beers and outstanding wines.
    Where:
    Boca Raton
    Web:
    facebook.com/BocaBurgerBattle

    PALM BEACH SUMMER BEER FEST --Sample some of the more than 150 available craft beers and choose from an array of outstanding food trucks serving delicious fare that will go great with your cold brewskis.
    Where:
    West Palm Beach
    Web:
    palmbeachsummerbeerfest.com

    THE MONTH OF THE MANGO – Three fests celebrate the King of Tropical Fruit in July: the International Mango & Tropical Fruit Festival, the MangoMania Tropical Fruit Fair and a relative newcomer, the South Beach Mango Festival. A variety of mango-centric activities will be offered at all three: yummy tastings, recipes, food demonstrations, refreshing mango smoothies, mango trees for sale, pie-eating contests, island-flavored music, vendors and children’s activities.
    Where:
    Respectively, Coral Gables, Cape Coral and Miami Beach.
    Web:
    Respectively, fairchildgarden.org, mangomaniafl.net and sobemangofest.com

    FLAVORS OF MIAMI -- Flavors is a culinary experience that goes beyond the traditional gala and provides each table of attendees with a local chef who will prepare a multi-course dinner tableside. Unleash your inner foodie and experience a distinct evening of dining.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    alfflavors.org/miami
     

    AUGUST
     

    KEY WEST LOBSTERFEST – People come from all over the world to fish for lobster at the start of the Florida Keys lobster season, so naturally a kick-off celebration is a must. Known as spiny lobsters, the clawless crustaceans offer sweet and tender meat, delicious served cold with lemon and cocktail sauce or warm with drawn butter, chopped and mixed with mayo for salads and sandwiches and broiled with garlic and tomatoes. If this sounds mouthwatering, hit the Lobsterfest.
    Where: Downtown Key West
    Webkeywestlobsterfest.com

    DINE OUT DOWNTOWN DELRAY RESTAURANT WEEK – Discover the diverse dining scene in downtown Delray Beach in this week-long foodie fest. Enjoy prix fixe lunches and dinners ($40 and under), along with special Dine Out deals. Also included will be a series of creative culinary events and classes throughout the week. Brunch and happy hour specials recently have been added.
    Where:
    Various locations in downtown Delray Beach
    Web:
    downtowndelraybeach.com/restaurantweek

    KEY WEST BREWFEST – Nearly 200 beers and micro-brews are the big draw, but there is a lot more on tap: beer dinners, beer brunches, happy hour parties, pool parties, late-night parties, seminars and the Signature Tasting event.
    Where:
    Various locations in Key West
    Web:
    keywestbrewfest.com

    LITTLE HAITI TASTING & WALKING TOUR – Come explore the culture and heritage – not to mention the yummy food – of this historic neighborhood. The tour showcases local historic sites such as the Little Haiti Cultural Center & Caribbean Marketplace and highlights new developments such as the Little River Business District and Miami Ironside as well as future developments. Throughout the walk, you’ll come across galleries, museums, bookstores and family-owned restaurants. Speaking of food, after the tour, you’ll be served a tasting of Haitian Cuisine such as Griot (fried pork) and Banann Peze (fried plantain). It starts in August and runs Wednesdays to Saturdays through mid-October.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    miamiandbeaches.com

    LITTLE HAVANA FOOD & CULTURAL TOUR – You will appreciate why Little Havana was recently listed as an official “national treasure” of the United States by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The reasons will become clear as you experience the area’s many historic landmarks and artistic offerings. You’ll taste authentic Cuban cuisine and listen to the stories of those who know it best, learn about the spiritual beliefs and community practices (such as Santeria), visit a cigar factory, explore Domino Park and take in the Cuba Ocho Art Museum. It starts in August and runs through early September, but only on weekdays.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    miamiandbeaches.com

    OVERTOWN TASTING & WALKING TOUR -- Formerly known as the “Harlem of the South,” Overtown was an area for black workers who built and serviced the railroad, hotels and streets. This tour will immerse you in the rich culture and heritage of this historic neighborhood. The tour explores the many historic sites, such as D.A. Dorsey House, Ward Rooming House, Greater Historic Bethel AME Church and also highlights new developments currently underway or being planned for Overtown. A delicious tasting of southern cuisine typically found in the neighborhood is included following the tour. It starts in August and runs through mid-October, Wednesdays to Saturdays.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    miamianbeaches.com

    BOCA CHAMBER’S WINE & ALL THAT JAZZ – It’s one of Boca’s largest wine tasting festivals, with up to 18 of the city’s best restaurants and brewers participating. More than 100 fine wines will be available. Live music will be played throughout the evening. There is also a VIP room with even higher end wine, food, beer and spirits.
    Where:
    Boca Raton
    Web:
    wine-and-jazz.com

    MIAMI SPICE – It’s not one, but two full months (August and September) of fantastic dining at some 200 restaurants and bistros. Three-course menus will be offered for lunches, brunches and dinners.
    Where:
    Miami
    Web:
    iLoveMiamiSpice.com

    PGA NATIONAL CRAFT BEER BASH – It’s a summer libation celebration showcasing craft beers and hard ciders, with an emphasis on Florida-made products. After you’ve tasted the beers and ciders, vote for your favorites. Also included will be live music and food vendors.
    Where:
    Palm Beach Gardens
    Web:
    pgaresort.com/craft-beer-bash
     

    SEPTEMBER
     

    FLAVOR PALM BEACH –This month-long event is designed to introduce diners and visitors to the vast array of restaurants throughout Palm Beach County. Each offers a selection of specially priced three-course meals to help guide guests through a gastronomic sampling of great dishes, ranging from steakhouse favorites such as prime rib and truffle-mashed potatoes to lighter ceviche cups and sushi rolls. Just find a restaurant you’d like to try on the website and check out its special Flavor menu.
    Where: Various locations in Palm Beach County
    Webflavorpb.com 

    BOCA RATON RESTAUANT MONTH – Three-course meals for both dinner and lunch are offered at top Boca restaurants throughout the month.
    Where:
    Boca Raton
    Web:
    bocarestaurantmonth.com

    TAPA HOP – This pub crawl features trolley transportation to six restaurants that will provide appetizers and small plate items, a.k.a. tapas. Also included will be raffle prizes, grand prizes and a poker run.
    Where:
    Fort Myers Beach
    Web:
    fortmyersbeach.org/events/tapa-hop

    BIG BAD BBQ BASH ON THE WATER -- Enjoy all-you-can-eat BBQ, drinks, desserts, live music, auction, raffles, Water Taxi tours, local vendors, networking and meeting Special Olympics athletes. A VIP package offers a private area with upscale BBQ specialties from local favorite restaurants, all-you-can drink, specialty beers, desserts, sit-down seating close to the New River and 20 raffle tickets.
    Where:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Web:
    bigbadbbqbash.com
     

    OCTOBER
     

    BEER! BRATWURST! LIVE MUSIC! BAVARIAN BEAUTIES! MORE BEER! -- It being October, we could only be talking about Oktoberfest. Here are some of the places having celebrations in South Florida this month:

    ·        Lake Worth: americangermanclub.org/oktoberfest

    ·        Cape Coral: capecoraloktoberfest.com

    ·        Oakland park: oaklandparkfl.gov/228/Oktoberfest

    ·        Miami: gascmiami.org/oktoberfestmiami

    GROVETOBERFEST: MIAMI’S BEER FESTIVAL – It’s one of the largest craft beer fests in Florida. More than 300 great beers from around the country and the world will be there for the tasting. Attendees will vote for their favorite beers in three categories. Also: live music, the Homebrew Pavilion, the Kitchen Lab for beer/food parings, a VIP area and a designated driver program.
    Where:
    Coconut Grove
    Web:
    grovetoberfest.com

    SOUTH FLORIDA SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – It features the Kitchen Lab, where some of Miami’s top chefs will give demos and share secrets. Great live music and lots of activities for the young ’uns, too: bounce house, slides and interactive games.
    Where:
    Key Biscayne
    Web:
    coconutgroveseafoodfestival.com

    SOUTH BEACH SEAFOOD WEEK & FESTIVAL – Just after the event above ends, head over to this one. You’ll help kick off the Stone Crab season and enjoy a myriad of other seafood yummies prepared by Miami’s top chefs and restaurants. Also: live bands, culinary and mixology demonstrations, a kids zone, health village and VIP hospitality benefits.
    Where:
    Various locations in Miami Beach
    Web:
    sobeseafoodfest.com

    GOOD EATS IN NAPLES – The Naples Foodie Camp and the Naples Stone Crab Festival coincide with each other. Foodie Camp is a 10-day event that features chef-led 90-minute cooking classes at top area restaurants. Besides great stone crab claws, the Stone Crab Festival also has live music, art and fun activities for the whole family.
    Where:
    Various locations in Naples
    Web:
    Respectively, FoodieCampNaples.com and stonecrabfestival.org

    TASTE OF TAMARAC – Restaurants from this city and surrounding communities will provide delicious tastings and cooking demos. Also included: giveaways and a kids’ corner.
    Where:
    Tamarac
    Web:
    tasteoftamarac.org
     

    NOVEMBER
     

    JOHN OFFERDAHL’S GRIDIRON GRILL-OFF FOOD, WINE & MUSIC FESTIVAL – You like delicious food cooked on the grill? You like premium wine and spirits? You like country music? Want to hang with some Miami Dolphins legends? This one is for you. Celebrity chefs will provide the grilled-to-perfection eats. The musical headliner is always a top country act. Besides Offerdahl, there are always plenty of ex-Dolphin stars on hand.
    Where:
    Pompano Beach
    Web:
    gridirongrilloff.com

    FEAST OF LITTLE ITALY – It’s one of the largest Italian festival in South Florida. Of course, there will be great Italian food and wine, but so much more: live music, art, a bocce pavilion, wine seminars, cooking demos and pizza and lasagna eating contests.
    Where:
    Jupiter
    Web:
    feastoflittleitaly.com

    SEED FOOD & WINE WEEK – This gathering doesn’t like to be called a festival. The organizers like to think of it as a movement and a community of passionate people committed to elevating the conversation around plant-based foods, sustainability and the welfare of animals. There will be some 200 exhibitors, about 40 plant-based chefs and 30 or so vegan experts, athletes, authors and celebrities.
    Where:
    Miami and Miami Beach
    Web:
    seedfoodandwine.com

    BOCA RATON WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL AND GRAND TASTING -- Enjoy unlimited food tastings, artisanal cheese village, fine Wines, craft beers, premium spirits and live entertainment. Chefs from the tri-county area Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade) gather for the Grand Tasting. The festival brings you face-to-face with those who have made their lives their craft.
    Where:
    Boca Raton
    Web:
    bocaratonwineandfoodfestival.com

    GRACE JAMAICAN JERK FESTIVAL – You are no jerk if you attend this jerk-a-thon. It features everything jerk: chicken, pork, lobster, corn, patties and even ice cream. It features cooking demonstrations and competitions, with amateur and professional chefs going head to head in a heated competition for cash, bragging rights and the coveted Dutch Pot Trophy. Top chefs demonstrate and let you sample innovative jerk recipes. Lots of live music and exciting games, too.
    Where:
    Miramar
    Web:
    jerkfestival.com

    TASTE OF THE ISLANDS – This gathering includes fare prepared by 20 restaurants from Sanibel and Captiva islands and features a variety of food categories. Live music, too.
    Where:
    Sanibel
    Web:
    mustdo.com/taste-of-the-islands-sanibel-captiva

    PARADISE COAST WINE & FOOD EXPERIENCE -- Enjoy the Grand Tasting: a gourmet showcase by local chefs, emerging talent and nationally renowned culinary leaders who mix with patrons in a convivial setting. Lively cooking demonstrations, chef meet & greets, and seminars deliver unforgettable experiences for fans, connoisseurs and industry personalities. Indulge in the VIP experience for an hour early admittance into the experience, plus a chance to mix and mingle with chefs. Martha Stewart has been known to be a big part of this event.
    Where:
    Naples
    Web:
    paradisecoast.com

    PERUFEST USA – Enjoy this gastronomical gathering and celebrate Hispanic Heritage Weekend at the same time. In addition to Peruvian and Latin cuisine, you’ll experience a show by international dancers, the “Caballo de Paso” horse show, Quinoa cooking demonstrations, cooking classes for adults and kids and competitions for Best Quinoa-based plate, Best Ceviche, Best Causa and Best Lomo Saltado.
    Where: 
    Miami
    Web: 
    perufestusa.com
     

    DECEMBER
     

    PALM BEACH FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL This fest brings together an eclectic collection of the world’s award-winning chefs, culinary personalities, authors, winemakers and mixologists to this picturesque island. Also included are specialty cocktail and hors d'oeuvre receptions, five-course dinners with premium wine pairings, kids' cooking classes and the final grand tasting and cooking competition.
    Where: Palm Beach
    Webpbfwf.com

    SIESTA BEACH SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL – A variety of seafood, cooked fresh on site, will be available, along with plenty of meat dishes and vegetarian fare. While savoring your meal, relax to some of Florida’s top musical groups and solo acts from genres such as R&B, blues, jazz, rock and Caribbean sounds.
    Where:
    Siesta Key
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    SIZZLE SWFL RESTAURANT WEEK -- It’s actually two weeks long and features specially-curated two-course lunches and three-course dinners Eat your way happy across SW Florida.
    Where:
     Outstanding restaurants in Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Estero, Fort Myers, Marco Island and Naples.
    Web: 
    swflrestaurantweek.com

    TASTES OF MIAMI – If you haven’t yet been to the Miami Seaquarium, this festival would be a good time to go. This colorful and energetic-five day Latin & Caribbean food and music festival features an array of good eats and sounds, dance and arts and crafts. Each day, local food trucks will offer up their savory dishes. In addition, other food locations will serve churros, arepas and Tex-Mex corn. The music will be hot, too, as outstanding local bands will keep everyone on their dancing toes. Speaking of dance, Salsa and Zumba instructors will be on hand. Kids can enjoy a play area, with games and prizes, bounce houses and arts and crafts.
    Where: Miami
    Web: miamiseaquarium.com/tastesofmiami

    CENTRAL FLORIDA


    JANUARY
     

    FELLSMERE FROG LEG FESTIVAL – For a true, down-home, small-town festival experience, look no further than the Fellsmere Frog Leg Festival, which is exactly what it sounds like: platters of delicious frog legs served with grits, cole slaw and hush puppies. For the squeamish, there’s also the less adventurous gator tail as well as hot dogs, hamburgers, ice cream, candy apples and other festival food fare.
    Where: Fellsmere
    Webfroglegfestival.com

    SARASOTA SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL - Grouper and stone crabs and oysters, oh my! This three-day festival offers fabulous, fresh food as well as live R&B, rock, soul, jazz and Caribbean performances by some of Florida’s top bands. A marketplace brimming with arts, crafts and fine products rounds out the fun.
    Where: Sarasota
    Web: seafoodfestivals.com

    CENTRAL FLORIDA RUM AND FOOD EXPERIENCE – Rum aficionados, rum collectors or simply rum-curious folks will have a blast at this festival designed to both educate and entertain. The ticket includes rum tastings, unlimited food tastings, cooking and cocktail demonstrations by local chefs and mixologists, as well as live music. 
    Where: Lakeland
    Webrumandfood.com

    LAKELAND PIGFEST -- Join the more than 150 competition barbecue teams for a weekend of good eats, good friends and good tunes. Stop by a Pig Bucks booth (located near the entrance and various locations throughout) and exchange your cash for Pig Bucks, the official currency of the Lakeland Pigfest.         
    Where: Lakeland
    Web: lakelandpigfest.org

    KUMQUAT FESTIVAL – It honors the small, squat little citrus fruit and draws tens of thousands of visitors. Hundreds of vendors attempt to rise to the challenge of creating various kumquat jams, syrups, pastries, smoothies, ice creams and salsas.  
    Where: Downtown Dade City
    Webkumquatfestival.org

    KEY LIME FESTIVAL– Florida’s Space Coast pays homage to the state’s signature citrus fruit, the esteemed key lime. Try several variations of a key lime pie, including in a martini or a margarita, and watch the spectacle that is the key lime pie-eating contest or applaud as Miss Florida Key Lime Pie is crowned. 
    Where: Merritt Island
    Webfacebook.com/key-lime-pie-festival

    FORKS & CORKS WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL – This world class weekend offers a bounty of flavors through vintner events, wine and beer tastings and food sampling from top area restaurants. A charity wine auction and live music are also on the schedule. Spring for the VIP package and get a $150 wine voucher.
    Where:
    Sarasota
    Web:
    eatlikealocal.com/forksandcorks

    PIGZ IN Z’HILLS BBQ & BLUES FESTIVAL – It’s a friendly BBQ competition amidst a steady background of blues music. Also included: a business expo, cornhole tournament, kids zone, the Swine & Shine car show, an aviation showcase and a military history museum.
    Where:
    Zephyrhills
    Web:
    zephyrhillschamber.org/bbq-blues

    ENTERPRISE CHILI COOK-OFF – A quaint historic town holds its chili cook-off, offering several types of chili to hungry guests.
    Where
    : Enterprise
    Web
    : oldenterprise.org
     

    FEBRUARY
     

    ST. PETE BEACH SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL – This three-day festival promises the perfect recipe for a great time, blending delectable seafood creations with outstanding live musical performances and a marketplace of arts, crafts and select fine products.
    Where: St. Pete Beach
    Webseafoodfestivals.com

    SEAWORLD SEVEN SEAS FOOD FESTIVAL -- As guests sip and sample their way through the park, they will discover globally-inspired flavors while enjoying local craft beers and culinary marketplaces. The fun goes beyond the food, with live performances from top country, rock and Latin music acts. It usually starts in February and runs through April, but only on weekends.
    Where: Orlando
    Webseaworld.com/seven-seas-food-festival

    FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL – Guests come from near and far to discover not only creative ways to enjoy strawberries, but also to see exhibits of agriculture, commerce, industry, livestock, fine arts, live entertainment, horticulture, and crafts. This 11-day festival sometimes stretches into March.
    Where: Plant City
    Web: flstrawberryfestival.com

    ORLANDO CHILI COOK-OFF
    -- It began as a small gathering of friends and chili lovers, and has now become a regional event attracting cooks and attendees throughout Central Florida and the southeastern states. Teams can win trophies and prizes for the best chili. Also, a best-in-showmanship award will be presented for the most entertaining chili team.  
    Where: Orlando
    Web: visitorlando.com/chili-cook-off

    SUNWEST CRAB & SHRIMP FESTIVAL -- This event brings thousands of individuals to SunWest Park with 3 days of live bands, crab races, carnival rides, Big Storm Brewing beer garden, crafter & business vendors, photo booths, a kids area and a myriad of seafood options.
    Where:
    Hudson
    Web: simplyeventsfl.com/crab-shrimp-festival

    ART & SEAFOOD ON THE WATERFRONT – Some of the Tampa area’s best restaurants and food trucks will provide attendees with delicious seafood. A juried art show rounds out this two-day festival.
    Where:
    Safety Harbor
    Web:
    safetyharborchamber.com/on-the-waterfront

    ST. SOPHIA GREEK FESTIVAL -- Come and enjoy a taste of Greek culture, Greek food, and Greek entertainment. A Sweetheart Dance has been added for those who want to enjoy the festival but still want to sneak a little dance with their spouses, boyfriends and girlfriend and partners. OPA!!
    Where:
    Winter Haven
    Web:
    facebook.com/StSophiaWinterHaven

    CLEARWATER SEA-BLUES FESTIVAL -- A stroll through the food village will surround you with aromas of fresh grouper, Cajun shrimp, large dishes of paella, and that's only the beginning. There are also other options for non-seafood lovers. Attendees will be entertained by five musical acts each day.
    Where:
    Clearwater
    Web:
    myclearwaterevents.com/sea-blues-festival

    DOWNTOWN ORLANDO FOOD & WINE FEST --- The tradition continues as more than 20,000 foodies and wine lovers experience unique local cuisine paired with wines from around the globe. The two-day fest features mouth-watering dishes from more than 30 of Orlando’s premier restaurants, domestic and international wines and live entertainment.
    Where:
    Orlando
    Web:
    festivalnet.com/Downtown-Food-Wine-Fest

    TAMPA BAY JEWISH FOOD FESTIVAL -- Shop the vendors, let your kids enjoy the kids zone, listen to the wonderful live music and eat some delicious traditional Jewish food and drinks. Here are just some of the mouthwatering eats that will be available: handmade baked goods, matzo ball & chicken soup from scratch, scrumptious corned beef & pastrami from the famous Carnegie Deli, knishes, noodle kugel, bagels & lox, kosher falafel and hot dogs.
    Where:
    Clearwater
    Web:
    tampabayjewishfoodfestival.com

    LAKERIDGE WINERY AND VINEYARDS WINE & SEAFOOD FEST – To kick off Florida’s beautiful spring weather, the winery hosts its signature event featuring its own cuvee blanc, chardonnay, ports and other types of wine, as well as beer, soft drinks and a variety of seafood specialties. Complimentary tastings and tours are included.
    Where: Clermont
    Weblakeridgewinery.com

    ST. PETE CRAB & MUSIC FESTIVAL --Crab and shrimp on your list of favorite foods? Love listening to live music? This one is for you. It has more than crab and shrimp: all kinds of seafood, meat dishes and vegetarian meals. Great live music and a marketplace of arts and crafts, gourmet food items and specialty products are also on tap.
    Where:
    St. Petersburg
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    TAMPA THEATRE WINE FEST – Each year, the theatre has a different movie-themed name (Example: For 2020 it is Cabbyshack). You will taste exceptional wines and delectable food from the area’s finest independent restaurants and have the opportunity to bid on exciting auction items.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    TampaTheatre.org/WineFest

    FLORIDA CRAFT BREW & WINGFEST – Sample hundreds of delicious craft brews, including rare selections and high quality local home brews. Fill your belly with a variety of chicken wings prepared by local chefs and amateur competitors vying for glory in the wing competition. Bring the family to chill on the lawn and jam to the bands, taking in the sun and fun. If you want a full cup of beer, stroll over to one of four beer trucks.
    Where:
    Vero Beach
    Web:
    floridacraftbrewandwingfest.com
     

    MARCH
     

    GRANT SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – A scrumptious menu of succulent seafood is accompanied by more than 100 crafters and live entertainment. All the seafood is cooked by members of the local community.
    Where:
    Grant City
    Web:
    grantseafoodfestival.com

    FLORAL CITY STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL -- There will be plenty of activities for all ages including craft vendors, live entertainment, the Miss Strawberry Pageant, children's activities, and boatloads of fresh strawberries straight from the award-winning Ferris Farms. Don't forget the mouth-watering strawberry shortcake!
    Where:
    Floral City
    Web:
    gostrawberryfest.com

    TAMPA BAY BEER WEEK – Actually, it’s nine days long and once again, with more than 70 local craft beer makers and specialty brews on hand, shows why the Tampa area has become a beer hotbed. Tastings and beer dinners abound.
    Where:
    Various locations in the Tampa area
    Web:
    tampabaybeerweek.com

    SPACE COAST SEAFOOD & MUSIC FEST – Fresh delicious seafood will be provided by local and national vendors. It’s a family-oriented event that includes a wide selection of fantastic seafood, top flight entertainment (the Charlie Daniels Band and Travis Tritt have appeared in the past), an arts & crafts show, a pirate festival, parade and a kids zone.
    Where:
    Viera
    Web:
    portcanaveralseafoodandmusicfestival.com

    TASTE OF BRANDON -- Come enjoy tastes from your favorite restaurants, caterers and bakeries. Cast your vote for the Best Taste Award and Best Dessert Award. Also included: beer and wine tastings, live music and fun for the whole family.
    Where:
    Brandon
    Web:
    brandonchamber.com/taste-of-brandon

    TASTE OF OVIEDO -- Come enjoy delicious dishes from the best local restaurants while the kids enjoy rides and other activities. With live music, refreshing drinks and mouthwatering food, it's not just fun for the whole family, it's fun for the whole town and visitors.
    Where:
    Oviedo
    Web:
    tasteofoviedo.org

    SHRIMPFEST & CRAFT BREW HULLABALLOO – It’s three days of shrimp, craft brews, live music, vendors and activities for kids. A featured event is a shrimp cook-off that pits restaurants against food trucks. Bring your lawn chairs and spend the day under the oaks listening to music, drinking beer and wine and chowing down on shrimp, hot dogs, hamburgers and pizza. Spend some time at the Space Coast Harley Davidson virtual reality simulator that will be at the event all weekend.
    Where:
    Sebastian
    Web:
    shrimpfestfl.com

    BUSCH GARDENS FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL -- This lengthy fest starts in early March and ends in late April, but it is only held on Saturdays and Sundays. It offers a variety of great food, wine, craft beers, cocktails and entertainment. Some of the biggest musical acts in the country will take the stage Festival Field. All concerts are included with daily ticketed admission to the park.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    buschgardens.com/food-and-wine-festival

    SANDY SHOES SEAFOOD & BREW – In addition to the large selection of local seafood, there will be a craft beer pavilion, demonstrations by local celebrity chefs, seaplane rides, more than 100 artists displaying their wares, a Chowder Cup competition, a Citrus Squeeze-Off and a kids zone.
    Where:
    Fort Pierce
    Web:
    sandyshoesseafoodandbrew.com

    WINE FESTIVAL OF CENTRAL FLORIDA – A superb selection of fine wines and gourmet samplings from area chefs and restaurants will be available. But wait, there’s more: micro-brewed beers, liquor tastings and live music.
    Where:
    Lakeland
    Web:
    winefestivalofcentralflorida.com

    ORLANDO/KISSIMMEE CUBAN SANDWICH FESITVAL AND THE TAMPA CUBAN SANDWICH FESTIVAL– Yes, there are two Cuban sandwich festivals in March. An attempt is always made to create the biggest Cuban sandwich in the world. Besides that and yummy individual Cuban sandwiches, there will be other kinds of food, beef, wine, live music and dance performances and lots of activities for kids.
    Where:
    Kissimmee and Tampa
    Web:
    thecubansandwichfestival.com

    ZOOBREWS @ ZOOTAMPA – Wine lovers will sip bold and decadent wines, beer enthusiasts will savor a variety of craft brews and mixologoists will create innovative cocktails. Foodies can indulge in perfect pairings to match their choice of drink. Guests will encounter amazing wildlife and dance the night away to live music in a lush tropical garden.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    zootampa.org/zoobrews
     

    APRIL
     

    COCOA BEACH UNCORKED – This weekend event recognizes the area’s most celebrated chefs, restaurants and breweries while serving up a 180-degree ocean view. It’s your ticket to unwind and wiggle your toes in the sand while enjoying the finest food, craft beers and wine in this popular destination.
    Where:
    Cocoa Beach
    Web:
    CocoaBeachUncorked.com

    FLORIDA WINEFEST & AUCTION -- You are invited to sip and sample some of the world's best wine on the shore of Sarasota Bay, dine and dance in the streets of downtown, savor the flavors of local chefs and raise your bid paddle for some of the best auction lots in the wine business.
    Where:
    Sarasota
    Web:
    floridawinefest.org

    SEBRING SODA FESTIVAL – Join in the fizzy family fun at this two-day celebration of carbonation in downtown Sebring. The nostalgic event offers hundreds of craft sodas that you can sample, as well as a classic car show, live entertainment, art and craft vendors, pop-up stores, food options and a kids zone.
    Where: Sebring
    Web: visitsebring.com/soda-festival

    BLUEGRASS AND BLUEBERRY FESTIVAL – Blue may become your favorite color after a day at this , which offers live entertainment, vendors, raffles, BBQ and a kids zone.
    Where: Avon Park
    Webavonparkrotaryblueberryfestival.com

    FORT PIERCE OYSTER FESTIVAL – A lot to choose from: Oysters Casino, Oysters Mexicali, oyster stew, grilled oysters, raw oysters, fried oysters. While oyster lovers get their fill, festival goers will also contribute to a better ecosystem as shells will be gathered for oyster reef restoration projects. Kids (or anyone who doesn’t love the bivalves) can nosh on other delicious dishes.
    Where: Downtown Fort Pierce
    Webftpierceoysterfest.com

    TAMPA BAY SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL -- Enjoy great food cooked fresh on site including seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes. Seafood dishes are prepared using indigenous and sustainable seafood from Florida's coastal waters. Add to your main course with selections from a diverse menu of side dishes. While enjoying your meal, sit back and relax to musical entertainment consisting of live music by creative and talented musicians from both the local and regional circuit.
    Where:
    Tampa Bay
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    FESTA ITALIANA – Historic Ybor City is known for its Cuban roots thanks to its former cigar-rolling jobs, but the district also likes to honor its Italian culture as well. The Festa Italiana kicks off with a wine party featuring more than 70 wines, as well as Italian antipasti, cuisine and desserts. It ends with the main event, during which dozens of the Tampa Bay area’s top restaurants and catering companies serve delicious dishes and tastings.
    Where: Tampa
    Webfestaitalianatampa.com

    FLORIDA WINEFEST AND AUCTION – The highlight of this four-day fundraising event is undoubtedly the massive amounts of food served by various area restaurants and banquet halls. But there is more, too: a street party featuring seafood and meat dishes, a lunch tasting, a brunch tasting and several wine tastings, including the final soiree, Wine on the Water.
    Where: Sarasota
    Webfloridawinefest.org

    ROTARY CLUB CATFISH FESTIVAL – Catfish dinners, fingerlings and filet sandwiches are the main draw, but there is plenty of other food, such as burgers, hotdogs, chicken fingers, fresh strawberry shortcake, frogs’ legs and swamp cabbage. Also: live music, games for kids, arts and crafts vendors and a parade.
    Where:
    Crescent City
    Web:
    facebook.com/C.C.CatfishFestival

    DESOTO SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – Over the past 30 years, this three-day fest has evolved to become one of the largest in Manatee County. Besides the great seafood, it features live music, arts & crafts and fun for the entire family.
    Where:
    Palmetto
    Web:
    desotosff.com

    BERN’S WINE FEST – You have eight days to indulge in all your wildest culinary and wine fantasies. It was created to allow unique food and wine experiences with the area's most talented culinary teams complemented by the best wines from around the world.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    bernswinefest.com

    BEER & BURGER THROWDOWN -- This event features free samples from six local craft brewers and 40 different burgers from 14 of the best nearby burger joints. Attendees vote for the best burger and craft beer. There will be live music, competitions, outdoor games, and of course, beer and burgers galore.
    Where:
    Safety Harbor
    Web:
    simplyeventsfl.com/beer-burger-throw-down

    TASTE OF WINTER PARK – More than 40 of Central Florida’s top chefs, bakers, caterers and confectioners will offer their fare at this event. All-inclusive tickets include samples of signature dishes, beverages and desserts.
    Where:
    Winter Park
    Web:
    winterpark.org/taste-of-winter-park

    TASTE @ THE STRAZ – This gathering of food groupies and craft beer brewers used to be known as the Best of Tampa Bay. It may have a new name, but the same great time will be had by attendees. It’s an evening of all-you-can-eat and all-you-can-drink fun, with three stages of live music. There will be full open bars and more than 50 of the best local restaurants represented.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    strazcenter.org/bestoftampabay

    NEW SMYRNA BEACH WINE & SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – It features a large selection of wines from California’s Napa and Sonoma regions, as well as international vintages. Participants will discover new wines and an array of gourmet food. The fest showcases some 250 wines with food pairings from top area chefs.
    Where:
    New Smyrna Beach
    Web:
    nsbwinefest.com

    TAMPA BLUEBERRY FESTIVAL -- Every year, Keel and Curley Winery and Keel Farms celebrate the Spring Blueberry Harvest with two days of fun for the whole family. The fest serves up live music, a kids area, u-pick ’em blueberries, wine tasting, food vendors and crafts vendors.
    Where:
    Plant City
    Web:
    keelfarms.com/bbfest/
     

    MAY
     

    ST. ARMANDS SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL -- Enjoy delicious food cooked fresh on-site including seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes. Seafood dishes are prepared using indigenous and sustainable seafood from Florida's coastal waters. Add to your main course with selections from a diverse menu of side dishes. While enjoying your meal, sit back and relax to musical entertainment consisting of live performances by creative and talented musicians from both the local and regional circuit.
    Where:
    Sarasota
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    CLEARWATER BEACH TASTE FEST – This fest, held on a beach recently named Trip Advisor's #1 in America, features tastings from more than 30 participating restaurants, wine and craft beer, live entertainment, a live auction, and vendors.
    Where: Clearwater Beach
    Web:  clearwaterbeachtastefest.com

    WINDSOR ZUCCHINI FESTIVAL – Zucchini ice cream? Yup! And lots of other zucchini-inspired dishes, too. Activities include Duke of Zuke & Zuqueenie Pageant, arts & crafts, Cook-a-Zuke contest, live music, hay rides and contests for the biggest, ugliest and best-carved zucchinis.
    Where:
    Windsor
    Web:
    windsor-z-news.org

    WINE QUEST WINE TASTING & AUCTION – This two-night event features wines from around the world and exquisite cuisine. Friday night’s tickets include access to the Grand Tasting of more than 200 wines from wineries all over the world and hors d’oeuvres prepared by the gourmet chefs at the Loews Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Orlando. Saturday night’s tickets include a 5-course exquisite dining experience with wine pairings. Both nights will include raffles, games, and auctions. Cocktail attire is requested.
    Where:
    Orlando
    Web:
    questinc.org/winequest

    NEWBERRY WATERMELON FESTIVAL – Locals and visitors alike have been coming to this watermelon-a-thon since 1946. The festival schedule includes a parade, festival kick-off auction, live music and crowning of the Watermelon Queen.
    Where:
    Newberry
    Web:
    festivalnet.com/Newberry-Watermelon-Festival

    SEAGRAPES WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL -- It provides guests with an unforgettable evening featuring more than 100 types of wine, food from numerous premier restaurants, a full night of entertainment, including access to all the Florida Aquarium’s vibrant exhibits that feature over 8,000+ animals and plants that call the Aquarium home, and a silent auction. Guests can bid on an impressive array of auction items that appeal to adventurers, arts and culture buffs, fashionistas, sports fans, luxury travelers and gourmands.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    flaquarium.org/pressroom/seagrapes

    TAMPA BAY MARGARITA FESTIVAL – This fest includes a wide variety of margaritas, a lineup of top bands and a huge fireworks show to end the night. All margaritas are handcrafted with fresh ingredients by professional bartenders. Also included will be great food options, shopping and games.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    tampamargaritafest.com

    FOOD & WINE ON THE PINE -- This island event will showcase the best wine, art, food and music the area has to offer. Enjoy an upscale culinary event that highlights 25 of the area’s locally owned restaurants. Pair your choices with a variety of over 30 wines and craft beers. There are various art attractions planned throughout the day, including a juried art show with 30 local fine artists showcasing a variety of mediums. Bring your little ones to enjoy a children’s art and activity area. Actors will be amongst the crowds, dressed in period costumes telling the tales of Anna Maria Island’s history. There will be musical performances all day long in different genres with something for everyone to enjoy.
    Where:
    Anna Maria Island
    Web:
    annamaria.com/food-and-wine-on-pine

    TAMPA RIVERFEST -- Events include a full concert line-up, Wiener Dog Derby, Gasparilla Stand-up Paddle board Invasion, Tampa Bay Pride Band, TacoFest, beer bars, margarita bar, Taste of the Riverwalk and Hillsborough County School kid performances. Additionally, many of the venues, museums, bars, and restaurants along the Riverwalk have special activities that day.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    thetampariverwalk.com/riverfest
     

    JUNE

    CHIEFLAND WATERMELON FESTIVAL – Delicious watermelon is the main draw but other activities include a parade, seed-spitting contest, biggest (in pounds) watermelon contest, the selection of the festival queen, a watermelon auction, arts & crafts and lots of children’s activities.
    Where:
    Chiefland
    Web:
    chieflandwomansclub.org/watermelon-festival
     

    JULY

    DUNEDIN ORANGE FESTIVAL – In a town known for its history of oranges, orange groves and citrus packing, this festival became a natural fit in 2010 and has been going strong ever since. Sample some contest entries in the local restaurant Mojo Cook-Off Contest, or try some fruity ice cream, smoothies and juice blends.
    Where: Dunedin
    Webdunedinorangefestival.com

    CHILI COOK-OFF -- Treasure Coast residents and visitors have come to know and love the great food, fun and live entertainment this event has to offer. Each year there is a new and exciting theme and guests come to see up to 40 teams compete for awards based on best chili, team spirit and fundraising.
    Where:
    Fort Pierce
    Web:
    bgcofslc.org/chili-cook
     

    AUGUST
     

    HARVEST GRAPE STOMP – As fall approaches, that means it is time for grape-stomping competitions. It’s the perfect family outing. Listen to continuous live music the entire weekend. Lakeridge Winery wine, beer, soft drinks and a variety of food is available.
    Where:
    Clermont
    Web:
    lakeridgewinery.com/harvest-grape-stomp
     

    SEPTEMBER
     

    EPCOT INTERNATIONAL FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL  If it’s at Walt Disney World, you know it’s going to be magical. Here, you’ll “dine around the world” with tasting events and enjoy big-name entertainment, plus culinary demonstrations and seminars on mixology, beverages and cheeses. It usually starts in late August or early September and runs through almost the end of November.
    Where: Orlando
    Webepcot-international-food-and-wine-festival

    WINE & CHEESE FESTIVAL – This relatively new event will feature all the Lakeridge Winery festival standards, such as live music and a variety of food. But this one features wine and cheese, either separately or paired.
    Where:
    Clermont
    Web:
    lakeridgewinery.com/wine-and-cheese

    CLEARWATER BEACH RESTAURANT WEEK – It’s actually almost two weeks long and gives you the chance to sample some of the area’s top-notch dining or casual fare, all it super low prices. It all begins with a kick-off party that features beer and wine tastings, music and fireworks.
    Where
    : Clearwater Beach
    Web
    : clearwaterbeachrestaurantweek.com

    I LIKE IT HOT! FESTIVAL – If you like it hot – we’re talking mouth-burning, tear-jerking, forehead-sweating spicy – you’ll likely meet your match at this event. The toughest of palates, as well as those who like it considerably milder, can try hundreds of gourmet and novelty foods, including beef jerky, sauces, salsas, jellies, rubs, lollipops and straight-up raw hot peppers. 
    Where
    : Largo
    Web
    : ilikeithotfestival.com/
     

    OCTOBER
     

    CEDAR KEY SEAFOOD FESTIVAL - The historic fishing town celebrates the area’s fishing heritage, offering two days of fantastic food, a  parade, more than 100 arts and crafts exhibitors, live music on a clam boat stage in the beachside park and loads more of family fun.  
    Where:  
    Cedar Key
    Web: 
     cedarkeylionsclub.com

    CENTRAL FLORIDA FALL HARVEST & PEANUT FESTIVAL – Truly Florida’s nuttiest event, Levy County’s peanut festival features all manner and preparations of this prized legume crop. Try peanuts boiled, fried, roasted, mashed into butter, mixed into cookies and cakes, dumped into stews and even fashioned into arts and crafts. Stick around for the crowing of the Little Peanut Baby, King and Queen.
    Where: Williston
    Web: festivalnet.com/Fall-Harvest-Peanut-Festival

    BBQ & BLUES FESTIVAL – Five of the nation’s top BBQ rib cookers from around the country will compete in a battle for the Lakeridge Winery “Rib King.” While you’re feasting on delicious BBQ you can enjoy live music by some of the area’s top blues bands outside, plus some great solo acts inside at the Wine & Cheese Bar. Arts & crafts vendors will also be on hand.
    Where:
    Clermont
    Web:
     lakeridgewinery.com/bbq-and-blues

    TAILGATE TASTE TEST -- Some of the top restaurants in the Tampa Bay area will be cooking up the best tailgate food including, sliders, chicken, barbeque and small plates. There is also a corn hole tournament, live music and football games will be shown on huge LED video screens.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    tailgatetastefest.com

    COOTERS CRAB FEST – It’s the opening of the stone crab season and plenty of that will be served. You’ll also find snow crab, king crab and Dungeness crab, all at reduced prices. Check out the huge party under the big tent with live music and drink specials.
    Where:
    Clearwater Beach
    Web:
    facebook.com/cooters-crab-fest

    SARASOTA OKTOBERFEST – Okay, it’s not Germany, but you might not know the difference. There will be lively music and dancers, mouthwatering food, huge pints of beer and arts & crafts vendors. Re the food: The fare includes, among others, smoked sausages, roasted meats, sauerkraut, cabbage and pretzels.
    Where:
    Sarasota
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com/Oktoberfest

    PIG JIG -- What began as a back-yard barbecue has turned into a large festival with great food, live music, beer, wine and games.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    tampapigjig.com

    CENTRAL FLORIDA VEG FEST – This vegetarian festival touts itself as one of the biggest and best in the country, drawing hundreds of food and product vendors and presenters from around the world. Bring your dog, pet a pig, take a yoga class and sample creative and delicious vegetarian and vegan dishes. 
    Where
    : Orlando
    Web
    : cfvegfest.org/
     

    NOVEMBER
     

    SAVOR ST. PETE FESTIVAL – It’s a palate-pleasing, star-studded weekend showcasing the talents of renowned wine and spirits producers, brew masters, chefs and culinary personalities. The Best Chef competition features culinary professionals from the area’s best and most popular restaurants vying to out-cook each other.
    Where
    : St. Petersburg
    Web:
    savortheburg.com

    NEWS-JOURNAL’S FOOD, WINE & BREW FESTIVAL – This festival, on the banks of a scenic intracoastal waterway in Downtown Daytona Beach, starts with a beer dinner and includes food samples from the best local restaurants along with 100 craft beers and 30 wines from around the country. Enjoy the sports bar with college football games, live entertainment and a cigar lounge.
    Where: Daytona Beach
    Webfestivalnet.com/Food-Wine-Brew-Festival

    SEBRING ART, WINE & JAZZ FESTIVAL – Bring your whole gang – and your appetite for the finer things in life – for a celebration of music, food, art and wine. The festival offers a juried art festival; emerging artists with scholarship awards, an arts activities center, a children’s art tent, local food vendors and mobile food trucks and live music and entertainment.
    Where: Sebring
    Web:  highlandsartleague.org/fine-arts-festival-craft-show

    PEPPER CHILI COOK OFF – Fire up your taste buds! The event includes chili-dog eating contests for both kids and adults, which bring new meaning to the word “messy.”
    Where: Sebring
    Web: rotarychili.com

    STONE CRAB JAM – Celebrate the season of one of Florida’s most sustainable seafood treats, harvested from the tough-shelled, regenerating claws of the stone crab. Along with vendors selling crab, there will also be everything from hot dogs to pizza to snow cones, plus locally made art, clothing and crafts. Register for the corn hole tournament to win cash prizes, or dance along to any of the six bands on three stages.
    Where:
     Downtown Crystal River
    Web:
    stonecrabjam.com

    TAMPA BAY VEG FEST – Vegans and non-vegans alike can enjoy free samples of animal-free dishes at this ever-growing and award-winning fest. It features various grocers, products and eco-friendly organizations from around the Tampa Bay area and also has yoga classes, cooking demonstrations, live music, activities for kids and on-site rescue animal adoptions.
    Where
    : Downtown Tampa
    Web
    tampabayvegfest.org

    YANKEETOWN ARTS, CRAFTS & SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – Celebrate the area’s history and local catch. In addition to delicious fresh local seafood, there will be other food vendors, live entertainment, an arts & crafts show, children’s games and the Blessing of the Fleet on the Withlacoochee River.
    Where:
    Yankeetown
    Web:
    yankeetownseafoodfestival.com

    BRANDON SEAFOOD FESTIVAL -- You want all-you-can-eat seafood all day? That’s what you get at this fest, along with a beer tent, live music, games, a bounce house, a 50-50 raffle, paddleboard event and a pie-eating contest.
    Where:
    Brandon
    Web:
    brandon86rotary.com/brandonseafoodfestival

    SAFETY HARBOR WINE FESTIVAL – Enjoy an exciting night of wine, live entertainment on multiple stages, great food and arts & crafts vendors.
    Where:
    Safety Harbor
    Web:
    cityofsafetyharbor.com/Wine-Festival

    SOUTH SHORE SEAFOOD & ARTS FESTIVAL – In addition to the savory seafood fare, you will enjoy swaying to the rhythm of live island music and a host of activities, including boating, arts & crafts vendors, educational displays, commercial exhibits and lots of activities for kids.
    Where:
    Ruskin
    Web:
    ruskinseafoodfestival.org

    SEBASTIAN CLAMBAKE – Join the celebration of Florida farm-raised clams with educational exhibits, concerts, a carnival, historical re-enactments of early area settlers and plenty of Florida seafood.
    Where:
    Sebastian
    Web:
    sebastianclambake.com

    TAMPA GREEK FESTIVAL – It’s one of Hillsborough County’s oldest cultural celebrations. Satisfy your craving for lamb, gyros, herb lemon chicken and many more delicious authentic Greek dishes. Don’t miss the sweets, such as Baklava, Kourambiedes and Koulourakia. Attendees can enjoy live music and dancing, strolling the Grand Hall, indulging in the inventive spirits at the Opa! Party Tent and discovering market treasures.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    tampagreekfestival.com

    HOMOSASSA ARTS, CRAFTS AND SEAFOOD FESTIVAL -- Homosassa has been home to many commercial fishermen with its spring-fed river and has been a nationally known sport fishing and recreation area since the mid-1800s.  The art show is judged and non-judged with exhibitors from all over the country. Vendors from the community provide their seafood and other specialties. Whether it's fried catfish, gator tail or conch fritters, you will find it all and more in the food court.
    Where:
    Homosassa
    Web:
    homosassaseafoodfestival.org

    CASSELBERRY FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL – Attendees will enjoy a culinary cuisine tasting, wine sampling, a silent auction and live music.
    Where:
    Casselberry
    Web:
    casselberryfoodwinefest.com

    WALT DISNEY WORLD WINE & FOOD CLASSIC – Come for a day or the weekend to sample wines from around the world and savor culinary artistry from pastries to pasta. There are 11 seminars on such subjects as wines, cocktails, beer, pasta-making, cheese pairing or the fine art of sushi and sake.
    Where:
    Lake Buena Vista
    Web:
    swandolphinfoodandwineclassic.com

    WHISKEY TAMPA FOX TROT – It celebrates women who have helped propel the whiskey industry forward. Enjoy several nights of seated tastings, dinners and classes. It ends with the Grand Tasting, where you can sample more than 200 hand-crafted whiskeys.
    Where:
    Tampa
    Web:
    whiskeytampafoxtrot.com

    VEROVINO WINE & FOOD FESTIVAL – Kick off the holiday season late in the month with wine and food (and, of course, combo wine and food pairings), a concert and a silent auction.
    Where:
    Vero Beach
    Web:
    verovinofestival.com

    ORLANDO BEER FESTIVAL – Sample craft and premium beers from area breweries and around the world. Wine tasting, interactive games, tasty eats and live music keep the party going.
    Where:
    Orlando
    Web:
    orlandobeerfestival.com

    TASTE OF THE FIELDS – Just as the early fall temperatures begin to drop, enjoy an evening of “country elegant” outdoor dining with a multi-course plated meal, served family-style, made from food grown on Hernando County soil. Then relax and enjoy live music, wine tasting, a corn maze and other fun grown-up activities.
    Where
    : Lakeside Ranch, Brooksville
    Web
    : kiwanisofthebrooksvilleridge.com

    ART, CRAFT & WINE FESTIVAL – More than 150 artists and craftsmen sell original artwork and gifts in beautiful Cranes Roost Park. Guests can also stop by the various wine tents and taste a wide variety of reds, whites, champagnes and roses as a part of the event’s Wine Stroll. 
    Where
    : Altamonte Springs
    Web
    : aacwf.com
     

    DECEMBER
     

    COQUINA BEACH SEAFOOD & MUSIC FESTIVAL – Enjoy fresh food cooked on site, and not just seafood. Plenty of meat dishes, vegetarian and desserts will be served. While eating, you’ll enjoy lots of good live music: rock, reggae, jazz, R&B and Caribbean Sounds.
    Where:
    Bradenton
    Web:
    seafoodfestivals.com

    WINE & CHOCOLATE FESTIVAL – Pair Florida-fermented red and white wines with locally made chocolate treats at this event, which is part wine tasting and tours, part arts and crafts show and part concert. Regional blues, jazz and R&B bands entertain while guests mingle about the grounds, sip vino or craft beer and do some Christmas shopping. Bring your lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy the rolling hill scenery of Clermont and the Lakeridge Winery & Vineyards.
    Where:
     Clermont
    Web:
     lakeridgewinery.com/wine-and-chocolate

    COOKIEFEST – Pastries, cookies and cakes are the big draw. Drop by this event to discover your inner-artist and whip-up some holiday goodies.
    Where: Sebring
    Web: highlandsartleague.org/cookiefest

    NORTH FLORIDA

    JANUARY
     

    APALACHICOLA OYSTER COOK-OFF – Up to 90 percent of Florida’s oysters come from the shallow waters of Apalachicola Bay, so naturally, one of the town’s biggest events of the year pays homage to the plump, briny treats. Eat all the oysters you can handle, as well shrimp, smoked mullet, hot dogs, hamburgers and local beer.
    Where: Downtown Historic Apalachicola
    Weboystercookoff.com

    AMELIA ISLAND RESTAURANT WEEK – At one of Florida’s prettiest islands, spend a week dining at some of the 30-plus participating restaurants – from Cuban fare to seafood and pub-style dishes – offering a prix-fixe menu. It also includes mixology tours in which you can stroll among watering holes in historic downtown Fernandina Beach and sample craft cocktails, meet the bartenders and mingle with the Island’s friendly locals.
    Where: Amelia Island
    Webameliaisland.com/yummy

    BUTTS & CLUCKS COOK-OFF ON THE BAY -- This is one of the Apalachicola Bay Chamber of Commerce’s newest events.  It has been sanctioned by the Florida BBQ Association and is now a regional championship BBQ Cook-off with over $15,000 in prizes to be awarded and the winner moving on to the Jack Daniels Championship.  It also features a deviled egg contest.
    Where:
    Apalachicola
    Web:
    apalachicolabay.org/butts-clucks-cook-off-bay

    TALLAHASSEE BEER FESTIVAL -- Enjoy unlimited samples of 200 different beers, ales, ciders, seltzers and meads from 60 plus brewers & breweries. Food will also be available and a cornhole tournament will be held.
    Where:
    Tallahassee
    Web:
    TLHBeerfest.com
     

    FEBRUARY
     

    FIDDLER CRAB FESTIVAL – The small, inedible fiddler crab is a mere backdrop to this festival featuring the Swampwater Cook-Off, in which both amateur and professional chefs toil and boil from sunrise until lunchtime on their secret recipe soups, stews (particularly Brunswick) and chili. In the meantime, festival goers can nosh on seafood, BBQ, kettle corn and funnel cakes.
    Where: Steinhatchee
    Web: steinhatcheechamber.com/fiddler-crab-festival

    THE SANDESTIN GUMBO FESTIVAL 
    – Chefs from all over the Gulf Coast put their own spin on gumbo, whether made with dark or light roux, different types of meat and a range of flavors and spices. Get a wristband and a “taster’s guide” and sample a wide variety of gumbo as you vote for the People’s Choice winner.
    Where: Sandestin
    Websandestingumbofestival.com

    30A WINE FESTIVAL– About a dozen vineyards and wineries from all over the country as well as a handful of local restaurants feature their best fare during an elegant, three-day tasting event. It is a showcase of premiere wine producers and local culinary favorites. It features a Friday night gathering, "Bourbon, Beer, and Butts",  Saturday wine tasting seminars, a walkabout and grand tasting, band party at nightfall, and Sunday's exclusive event, "Fruits de Mer & Sancerre" complete with croquet tournament (appropriate croquet attire encouraged).
    Where: Alys Beach
    Web30awinefestival.com

    RIVERSIDE CRAFT BEER FESTIVAL – Experience live music while sampling more than 100 local and national craft beers and enjoying delicious food from the top area food trucks.
    Where:
    Jacksonville
    Web:
    riversidecraftbeerfestival.com

    NORTHEAST FLORIDA VEGFEST – Bring the entire family for a day packed with entertainment and education about good health, good vegetarian food and ecological sustainability. The fest also includes a beer garden, scavenger hunt, a pie eating contest and seminars on how to grow your own veggies.
    Where:
    Jacksonville
    Web:
    nfvegfest.org

    SOUTHEAST FOOD FEST – More than 100 artisan and gourmet food vendors will be on hand with everything from soup to nuts. There will be samples galore in the culinary marketplace, chef demos and workshops and, of course, food trucks.
    Where:
    Tallahassee
    Web:
    evensi.us/southeast-food-fest-tallahassee

    NORTH FLORIDA VEGFEST – It will feature healthy and sustainable food, nationally recognized speakers and authors, vegan cooking demos, eco-and-animal friendly vendors, eco-friendly kids activities and live music.
    Where:
    Tallahassee
    Web:
    northfloridavegfest.com
     

    MARCH
     

    ST. AUGUSTINE LIONS SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – For more than three decades, this seafood festival has been a favorite among Floridians, drawing tens of thousands every year. And it’s no wonder; with a handful of refundable tokens, you can fill up on everything from seafood quesadillas to rockfish strips to alligator skewers. For dessert, try the chocolate key lime pie or fried candy bars. Also included: 100 arts & craft exhibitors, lots of kids activities and a wide variety of live music.
    Where
    : St. Augustine
    Weblionsfestival.com

    UNwineD – Partnering with Southern Living magazine, UNwineD is a weekend of amazing craft beer, wine and spirits from around the world. You can also sample creations from many of Northwest Florida’s renowned chefs. This award-winning event includes an elegant garden party and grand tasting where guests can mix and mingle while enjoying hors d’oeuvre, cocktails and live music.  
    Where
    : Panama City Beach
    Web: visitpanamacitybeach.com/unwined

    FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL -- Dating back to 1930s, this 10-day fest attracts some 500,000 each year and takes place in one of Florida’s most important winter strawberry growing regions that stretches across 8,000 acres. There are sweet treats galore, where you can nibble on anything from strawberry shortcake and chocolate-dipped strawberries to strawberry pizza and strawberry burgers. The fest showcases a Strawberry Festival Queen in addition to live entertainment, rides, arts & crafts vendors and livestock exhibits. Top musical acts from all genres are included. For example the 2020 event includes Reba McEntire, Oakridge Boys, Patti LaBelle and Lynyrd Skynyrd. This event sometimes starts in February and ends in March.
    Where:
    Plant City
    Web:
    flstrawberryfestival.com

    GASTROFEST – The folks in Northeast Florida wanted to showcase its burgeoning culinary scene, so hence the birth of this eclectic festival. It has everything from fine dining to food trucks, microbrews to local cookbooks and vegan fare to local beef, just to name a few. Also included; live music and a kids zone.
    Where:
    Jacksonville
    Web:
    gastrojax.org/gastrofest

    RHYTHM AND RIBS FESTIVAL – R & R – No, it’s not rest and relaxation. Anything but. This three-day fest features mouth-watering barbecue, live music and lots of children’s activities.
    Where:
    St. Augustine
    Web:
    rhythmandribs.net
     

    APRIL
     

    ISLE OF EIGHT FLAGS SHRIMP FESTIVAL – Amelia Island’s “Isle of Eight Flags” story is a long and complicated one, involving bloody battles and a clash of cultures, but the main take away from it all is that the island’s deep-water harbors contain shrimp. Lots of shrimp. This festival honors Florida’s shrimping industry by serving the little guys up hot, cold, fried, on skewers, in gumbo and chopped into salads. There’s also an ice cream eating contest for the brave and brain-freeze immune. There will be 300 arts & crafters, 50 antique dealers, 25 kid zone activities and live music on two stages.
    Where: Fernandina Beach
    Webshrimpfestival.com

    SOUTH WALTON BEACHES FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL – Wash down fine cheeses, olives, sushi, oysters, charcuterie and chocolates with a selection of more than 800 wines. This jam-packed weekend of events is spread among several resorts, wine shops and other venues where people can smell and taste different reds, whites and champagnes, sample craft beer and try creative and unusual wine and cheese pairings.
    Where: South Walton
    Websowalwine.com

    TASTE OF ST. AUGUSTINE – The Taste of St. Augustine is a great way to become familiar with more than 20 of the city’s best restaurants as they all bring their A-game to compete for food contest categories such as Best Family Dining, Best Upscale, Best Ethnic and Best Dessert. Local breweries and wineries also get in on the fun, and there are soft drinks and familiar finger foods for the kids.
    Where: St. Augustine
    Webepicbh.org/tasteofstaugustine

    BRADFORD COUNTY STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL – In addition to all the fresh strawberries and lots of homemade strawberry goodies, the fest includes a car show and craft vendors.
    Where:
    Starke
    Web:
    bradfordcountystrawberryfestival.com

    SANDESTIN WINE VESTIVAL -- Take part in Sandestin wine tastings showcasing more than 800 domestic and international wines. Wine novices are able to learn more about wines and sample from a comprehensive selection including the finest appellations from all major producing countries in all varieties, styles and price ranges. Wine aficionados enjoy meeting winemakers, asking questions and acquiring hard-to-get selections. Good food should accompany good wine and plenty of that will be available, too.
    Where:
    Sandestin
    Web:
    sandestinwinefestival.com

    PENSACOLA CRAWFISH FESTIVAL – The event is one of the largest crawfish boils in the state and features thousands of pounds of boiled crawfish in addition to other traditional Cajun and Creole fare such as red beans & rice, crawfish pie, boudin balls and even fried gator tails. Also included: a crawfish eating contest, arts & crafts vendors, live music and a children’s play area.
    Where:
    Pensacola
    Web:
    fiestapensacola.org/pensacola-crawfish-festival
     

    MAY
     

    PANACEA BLUE CRAB FEST – In addition to delicious boiled blue crab, you’ll enjoy a parade, live music, dance performances, a crab picking contest, a mullet toss and fireworks.
    Where:
    Panacea
    Web:
    festivalnet.com/Panacea-Blue-Crab-Festival
     

    JUNE
     

    WELLBORN BLUEBERRY FESTIVAL – This event includes a blueberry bake-off, pancake breakfast, talent contest, arts & crafts, and entertainment.
    Where:
    Wellborn
    Web:
    wellborncommunityassociation.com/blueberry-festival

    PANHANDLE WATERMELON FESTIVAL – You’ll enjoy great food and entertainment at this fest. Activities include a seed spitting contest, watermelon auction, car show, art show, horseshoe tournament, live country music and street fair.
    Where:
    Chipley
    Web:
    panhandlewatermelon.com

    OUR TOWN WATERMELON FESTIVAL – Held on five days over a two-week period, this fest is chocked full of activities –and, of course, great watermelon. Activities include beauty pageants, a bed race, rodeo, fashion show bbq dinner, ultimate air dogs, antique car display, wacky watermelon games, an art show and a vendors’ village.
    Where:
    Monticello
    Web:
    monticellojeffersonfl.com/watermelonfestival

    WILD BLACKBERRY FESTIVAL — Explore three of the state’s meandering rivers — the Suwannee, Withlacoochee and Alapaha — either on foot or by boat, then head to downtown Jasper for the festival that features blackberry pancakes, cobblers, jams and jellies, as well as live music, family activities and craft vendors.
    Where:
     Jasper
    Web: 
    festivalnet.com/Wild-Blackberry-Festival
     

    JULY
     

    SMOKIN’ ON THE SUWANNEE – One of the largest barbecue contests in the Southeast features a car, truck and tractor show, vendor booths, live music, children’s activities and lots of mouthwatering barbecue.
    Where: Live Oak
    Web: smokinonthesuwannee.com

    August

    WAUSAU POSSUM FESTIVAL – Possum stew is the main food dish, but there is a whole lot of fun to be had at this fest: Possum King & Queen contest, live music (country, bluegrass and gospel), arts & crafts vendors, the Possum Parade, horseshoe pitching, sack races, hog calling, rooster crowing and cow lowing.
    Where:
    Wausau
    Web:
    wausaupossumfestival.com/

    GREEK FESTIVAL – There’s a lot more than just great Greek food and pastries: live music, dancers, a silent auction and arts & craft booths.
    Where:
    Fort Walton Beach
    Web:
    stmarkella.org/festival

    FLORIDA SCALLOP, MUSIC & ARTS FESTIVAL – Fried scallop plates will be available at the festival and you can take frozen scallops home. The event also includes live music, arts and crafts vendors, educational exhibits and a kids zone.
    Where:
    Port St. Joe
    Web:
    scallopfestfl.org

    September

    PENSACOLA SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – It’s one of Northwest Florida’s longest running festivals and you can expect lots of great Gulf-to-table dishes, like fried mullet and shrimp and grits from the city’s top restaurants. Also included will be live music, cooking demonstrations and an array of family-friendly activities like face painting and arts & crafts.
    Where:
    Downtown Pensacola
    Web:
    pensacolaseafoodfestival.com

    BOLD CITY BEER & MUSIC FESTIVAL – It features beer sampling, two music stages, food trucks vendors and VIP beer passes.
    Where:
    Jacksonville
    Web:
    visitjacksonville.com-beer-music

    SOUTHERN PINES BLUES & BBQ FESTIVAL — Get slathered and sauced and enjoy a break from all thing merry and bright at this event, which pairs downhome BBQ with soulful blues. Come hungry, the People’s Choice category features more than 35 different pulled pork recipes. Participants will be vying for bragging rights and thousands of dollars in prize money. It also includes$10,000 in prize money. It also features arts & crafts vendors, an antique car show a kids play area and live music.
    Where
    : Perry
    Web:
    eventcrazy.com/Southern-Pines-Blues-and-BBQ-Festival

    October

    PANAMA CITY BEACH OKTOBERFEST – You might think you are in Munich when you are under the massive 150-foot by 50-foot big tent. Outside there are two beer gardens. Pair your German or locally-brewed beer with brats (famous or smoked), meterwurst or hotdogs (with or without sauerkraut). Don’t miss the giant pretzels with beer-infused cheese. The fest also includes live music, dancers and lots of activities for kids.
    Where:
    Panama City Beach
    Web:
    visitpanamacitybeach.com/oktoberfest

    TALLAHASSEE GREEK FOOD FESTIVAL – Florida’s Greek population brings a lot of great things to the Sunshine State, not the least of which is delicious Mediterranean cuisine such as gyros, spanakopita, baklava, moussaka, Greek salad and anise-infused ouzo.
    Where: Tallahassee
    Web: tallahasseegreekfoodfest.com

    DESTIN SEAFOOD FESTIVAL – Hankering for some fresh Gulf seafood? This one is for you. It also includes live music, arts & crafts vendors and lots of activities for the kids.
    Where:
    Destin
    Web:
     destinseafoodfestival.com

    ST. MARKS STONE CRAB FESTIVAL – As the fishing boats begin hauling in giant-clawed Florida stone crabs in October, you’ll know it’s time for this small-town festival. Sit down with a platter of tough-shelled and messy (but delicious!) claws, served with lemon, drawn butter and/or cocktail sauce, or take a break from the cracking with hot dogs, hamburgers, ice cream, funnel cakes and other fun foods. 
    Where: St. Marks
    Webstmarksstonecrabfest.com

    DATIL PEPPER FALL FESTIVAL -- This event celebrates the spicy little Datil Pepper. Local chefs will be offering their Datil inspired cuisine.  Sample the dishes and then vote for your favorite dinner and appetizer. There’ll be a variety of vendors, showcasing their unique items (including rain barrels). Also included: a master gardener plant sale and a food court. 
    Where:
    St. Augustine
    Web:
    oldcity.com/datil-pepper-fall-festival

    ST. AUGUSTINE FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL & RESTAURANT WEEK -- This week-long festival helps connect St. Augustine, the Spanish Wine Capitol of America, to the city’s Spanish history through a series of special events that feature Spanish wine, cuisine and culture. Get good deals for lunch and dinner at selected independently-owned restaurants.
    Where:
    St. Augustine
    Web:
    staugustinerestaurants.com/food-wine-festival and staugustinerestaurants.com/restaurantweek

    TASTE OF THE BEACH – This festival is filled with chefs’ challenges, team cook-offs, tastings, a dining tent, restaurants’ signature dishes and a kids area. There is also a progressive VIP Dinner, where attendees will be transported to four of the area’s best restaurants. If you haven’t seen the beautiful white sandy beaches and the lush green waters of Pensacola Beach, this would be a good time to go.
    Where:
    Pensacola Beach
    Web:
    tasteofpensacolabeach.com

    ST. AUGUSTINE GREEK FESTIVAL -- Savor the aromas and flavors of freshly prepared Greek food and Pastries. Enjoy costumed dancers performing to the music of a live Greek band, then join in the fun. Celebrate the Greek culture that is an integral part of St. Augustine’s history.  Come see why this is one of St. Augustine’s largest community events.
    Where:
    St. Augustine
    Web:
    stauggreekfest.com

    LOBSTER FESTIVAL & TOURNAMENT -- This week-long celebration offers live music, contests and lots of Florida lobster. With huge local lobsters on the weigh-in scales, fresh lobster prepared every mouth-watering way you can imagine, and the Schooners Sand Sculpting Contest, it is a huge event that draws thousands of divers and lobster fans from all over the Southeast.
    Where:
    Panama City Beach
    Web:
    schooners.com/lobsterfestival

    ONE HARRISON FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL -- Set in charming Downtown Panama City on the Marina overlooking the bay, this festival takes place over two days offering a variety of flavors and experiences. Meet and dine with an array of local chefs, culinary personalities, artisans, and wine enthusiasts as well as craft beer and cocktail experts, highlighted by a diverse lineup of musical acts and exciting activities for the whole gang.
    Where: Panama City
    Web: destinationpanamacity.com
     

    NOVEMBER
     

    THE GREAT CHOWDER DEBATE – Thousands gather for this chocked full of chowder event. More than 30 area restaurants compete for top honors. Winners are selected for New England, Minorcan and various conch and seafood categories. Some 2,000 gallons of chowder will be consumed.
    Where: St. Augustine
    Webconch-house.com/chowder-debate

    JEFFERSON COUNTY BBQ FEST – In addition to professional and “backyard” BBQ competitions, there is a chili cook-off, a car show, an ax-throwing contest, a cornhole tournament, a pig chase and live music.
    Where:
    Monticello
    Web:
    monticellojeffersonfl.com/bbq-fest

    SEEING RED WINE FESTIVAL – The four days of festivities include reserve wine tastings, dinners and a brunch with featured guest winemakers. Several of Seaside’s well-known restaurants showcase how their farm-to-fork and gulf-to-table offerings pair beautifully with the featured red wines. And, yes, whites and roses also will be available.
    Where: Seaside
    Webseeingredwinefestival.com

    FLORIDA SEAFOOD FESTIVAL  Long-limbed oaks along the Apalachicola River make for a gorgeous venue for thousands of visitors seeking fresh seafood paired with country music. Also featured: an oyster eating and oyster shucking contest, a blessing of the fleet, Tonging For Treasure and a 5K Redfish Run.
    Where: 
    Apalachicola
    Web:
     floridasforgottencoast.com/seafood-festival

    RIVERSIDE WINEFEST –Some 300 wines will be available at this fest, which also includes food vendors, live entertainment and shopping.
    Where:
    Jacksonville
    Web:
    riversidewinefest.com

    APALACHICOLA DOWNTOWN OYSTER ROAST – They will serve up roasted oysters, oysters on the half shell, oyster bisque, locally-caught blue crab and shrimp, gumbo, salad and desserts, including from-scratch-made cakes. It’s an outdoor evening event, so you’ll get a beautiful view of the stars.
    Where:
    Apalachicola
    Web:
    floridasforgottencoast.com/downtown-oyster-roast

    Places to Remember

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