The 2018 Crave Greater Fort Lauderdale Series Includes New Events, Dinners, Seminars, Celebrity Chefs and More

GREATER FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (Jan. 3, 2018) – The Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival (SOBEWFF®) returns for its 17th year in 2018, along with the Third Annual CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series of events, taking place February 21-25. The five-day CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series will feature an all-star line-up of chefs, celebrities and new events.

Kicking off the savory series on Wednesday, February 21, world barbeque champion Chris Lilly and Jorge Ramos – chef at the Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach – will host a family-style BBQ dinner at the newly opened Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach.

The new luxury oceanfront resort will continue the series with Chef Jorge Ramos and iconic chef Emeril Lagasse as they host the ultimate Clambakeboasting specially-prepared dishes from more than a dozen of South Florida’s most popular seafood spots and unique desserts from popular Food Network personality and Charm City Cakes founder Duff Goldman – on Thursday, February 22.

On Friday, February 23, James Beard Award-winning chef Alon Shaya and Colombian-American television personality Ingrid Hoffmann will join forces for the Women of Syria Dinner, a heritage food experience unlike any other at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts.  This family-style dinner will be prepared by women representing two organizations dedicated to supporting Syrian refugees – the Denver-based Comal Heritage Food Incubator and Miami-based Zaytouna and Syrian Supper Club.   

New this year, the W Fort Lauderdale will be the site for a Rooftop Rosé Happy Hour hosted by television star and lifestyle guru Kristin Cavallari on Saturday, February 24. The property will also hold a returning fan-favorite festival event – Lucky Chopsticks hosted by Andrew Zimmern – which is coming to Broward County for the first time on Friday, February 23.

"We are looking forward to hosting another successful Crave Greater Fort Lauderdale Series, as part of the Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival this year,” said Stacy Ritter, president and CEO of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau. “As this series has grown over the last three years in Greater Fort Lauderdale with new events and celebrity chefs, so has the destination’s food scene flourished to take its rightful place on a bigger culinary stage. We can’t wait for all foodies to experience what we have cooked up for them in 2018.”

Please find below the complete lineup of delectable dinners and special culinary events with local and celebrity chefs showcased at the 2018 CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series.

Wednesday, February 21

  • BBQ Dinner hosted by Chris Lilly and Jorge Ramos at the Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Thursday, February 22

Friday, February 23

  • Women of Syria Dinner hosted by Alon Shaya and Ingrid Hoffman in the Porter Ballroom at the Broward Center for Performing Arts from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
  • Lucky Chopsticks hosted by Andrew Zimmern at the Courtyard in the W Fort Lauderdale from 8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Saturday, February 24

Sunday, February 25

  • Grand Bloody Mary Brunch hosted by Geoffrey Zakarian and Aarón Sánchez at Point Royal inside The Diplomat Beach Resort from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

 For information on Greater Fort Lauderdale’s restaurants, visit

# # #

About the Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival

EAT. DRINK. EDUCATE. All proceeds from the Festival benefit the students of the Florida International University Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management who also assist Festival organizers with sponsorship fulfillment, restaurant and exhibitor recruitment, logistics, and inventory as well as working alongside some of the world’s greatest celebrity chefs and winemakers. To date, the Festival has raised more than $26 million for the School. In September 2017, BizBash named the Festival the #1 Food & Restaurant Industry event in the United States for the fifth year in a row.    

The Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival is produced by Florida International University and Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, with the support of the Miami Beach Visitors & Convention Authority and the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs. For more information about the Festival, visit or call 877-762-3933. For more information about Florida International University visit, for the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management visit and for more information about Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits visit

About Greater Fort Lauderdale

From the seagrass to the sawgrass, Greater Fort Lauderdale, located in Broward County, boasts more than 34,000 lodging accommodations at a variety of hotels, luxury spa resorts, and Superior Small Lodgings reflecting a vibrant cosmopolitan vibe. Visitors enjoy 23 miles of Blue Wave certified beaches, discover 300+ miles of inland waterways that run from the Intracoastal Waterway to the Everglades, dine at thousands of restaurants and eateries, get immersed in a thriving arts and culture scene and indulge in top shopping.

For more information, contact the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau at (800) 22-SUNNY or visit Get social and engage with Greater Fort Lauderdale on social media channels including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram: @visitlauderdale.

Media Contact:
Jessica Savage 
Greater Fort Lauderdale CVB