The Man behind the Festival: Lee Brian Schrager

It’s hard to believe that SoBe Wine and Food festival started off over a decade ago as a one day festival at Florida International University. Now, the four day festival is a destination for foodies and wine enthusiasts from all over the world. We caught up with Lee Brian Schrager, the man behind it all, to chat about what’s coming up this year and what lies ahead for the future.

What was the most memorable moment you’ve had during a Wine & Food Festival?
There were so many unforgettable memories, but the ones that stand out in my mind were the historic downpour at the 2006 BubbleQ, the tribute to Ferran Adrià, a dinner we hosted with King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia of Spain and last but not least, our Tribute Brunch honoring Jamie Oliver with Alice Waters

Who are the best social media-savvy foodies?
I enjoy posts from @Mariobatali, @KatieLeeKitchen, @onkappysplate & @AndrewZimmern. You should definitely follow them!

How does music and film play a part in the festival?
Music has been a part of the festival for years, we had Ziggy Marley perform last year and this year Sammy Hagar will take the stage! We also screened No Reservations a while back and are screening Soul of a Banquet this year. We’ve added a new spin on the festival by introducing several fitness events, including YogArt and a Flywheel Sports Celebrity Chef Ride!

Food Documentaries are a huge trend these days, are there any must sees on your list?
My personal favorite is Soul of a Banquet, which is a part of the Festival this year. Also, there are several great documentaries nominated in the Miami International Film Festival’s Culinary Cinema, you can view the list here.

What is the best looking bottle of wine you’ve ever seen?
I really love the older bottles of Mouton Rothschild, they used to have famous artists create the labels; including Andy Warhol, Francis Bacon, Jeff Koons, and more.

Which after party are you looking forward to most? 
I’m sure anything we do late-night will be great, and the party at the Shore Club will definitely be a hit!