Celebrating local cuisine through cooking demonstrations, sample tastings and chef contests in September.
Dates: Friday, Sept. 7 and Saturday, Sept. 15
Pensacola Beach restaurants are prepped and ready to spice up the food and butter up the crowds at the 11th Annual Taste of the Beach festival on Saturday, Sept. 15.
Presented by the Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce, Taste of the Beach is Pensacola Beach’s annual foodie festival that celebrates the beach’s talented chefs and their unique coastal cuisine with cooking demonstrations, chef challenges, sample tastings and a free live concert.
The six Pensacola Beach Chefs presenting a cooking demonstration and tasting on Saturday include Jere Doyle of Crabs We Got ‘Em; Brad Davis of H2O at the Hilton Pensacola Beach Gulf Front Hotel; Jeffrey Newbill of Peg Leg Pete’s; Dennis Moore of Flounder’s Chowder House; Shane Bourke of Casino Beach Bar & Grille; and John Smith of Hemingway’s Island Grill.
“This is our way of celebrating the amazing culinary scene happening daily on Pensacola Beach and spotlighting those directly responsible for it — our beach chefs,” said Alison Westmoreland, President of the Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce.
The party gets started the weekend before, on Friday night, Sept. 7, with a special, ticketed VIP dinner event at the Hilton Pensacola Beach Front at 6 p.m. Guests will sample specially-created hors d’oeuvres before beginning a formal five-course meal with two-course wine pairing and on-stage cooking demonstration. The night’s featured Pensacola Beach chefs are: Brad Davis, Dennis Moore, Jeffrey Newbill, Jere Doyle and John Smith. Tickets are $75 each and can be purchased at www.TasteofPensacolaBeach.com.
The daylong Taste of the Beach outdoor festival opens at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 15 with 20 beach restaurants showcasing their signature dishes for just $5 each. The festival, which is centered around the Gulfside Pavilion at Casino Beach, amps up the entertainment with chef demonstrations, cooking competitions and live music.
Kicking off the festival is the Chef’s Challenge – starting at 11:00 a.m. in front of the Gulfside Pavilion Stage. The cooking contest pits six Pensacola Beach chefs against each other using a secret ingredient for the chance to win a trophy and bragging rights for a year.
Next up is the Team Cook Off challenge, beginning at 11:45 a.m. Local celebrities, beach businesses and civic organizations will be invited to compete against each other using surprise ingredients for the chance to win the Taste of the Beach team champion’s title.
The six Pensacola Beach Chefs will be presenting simultaneous live cooking demonstrations starting at 1 p.m. Festival goers can gather around and watch as each chef prepares and explains how to make his dish. Those who wish to receive a sample of each chef’s creation can pre-purchase a wristband for $25 at TasteofPensacolaBeach.com. A limited number of chef’s sampling wristbands will be available for purchase at the festival.
From 5 to 7 p.m., attendees can sample a selection of microbrews and beers provided by Lewis Bear Co. Wristbands can be purchased on the website for $15, and the first 200 purchasers will receive a tasting mug.
Finally, prepare to get your ‘80s nostalgia fix on Saturday night at 7 p.m. when Pop Fiction takes the Gulfside Pavilion stage for a two-hour concert. Hailing from Jackson, Miss., Pop Fiction reimagines the modern pop, rock, dance and hip-hop classic hits you love!
Admission to Taste of the Beach is free to the public, however, no coolers or outside food and drink are allowed.
For more delicious details, VIP event tickets or lodging information, visit TasteofPensacolaBeach.com.
About Taste of the Beach
Taste of the Beach is one of several festivals and events presented by the Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce, Inc. The Pensacola Beach Chamber is a not-for-profit corporation committed to promoting, advancing and stimulating civic, business, commercial interests and the general welfare on Pensacola Beach. Sponsorship opportunities are available upon request.
Levin Rinke Realty; ResortQuest By Wyndham Vacation Rentals; Jet 100.7 FM; Nash 102.7 FM; News Talk 1370 AM; Soft Rock 94.1 FM; Sunny 105.7 FM; Cat Country 98.7 FM; WEAR TV; Pensacola News Journal; Cheney Brothers; Performance Food Service; Water Street Seafood; Lewis Bear Company; City Spree; Fisher Cabinet; Visit Pensacola; Santa Rosa Island Authority