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The Food Network New York City Wine and Food Festival presented by Capital One (NYCWFF) is New York City’s premier culinary event.
The Festival will celebrate 16 years this October 12-15, 2023, with more than 80+ events and over 500 chefs from around the world. A variety of tastings, seminars, intimate dinners, late-night parties and more will take place at locations across the city.
100% of the Festival’s net proceeds will continue to support God’s Love We Deliver, the New York City metropolitan area’s only provider of medically tailored meals and nutrition counseling for individuals living with severe illness.
“For this year’s sweet 16, there’s more opportunities than ever for fans and industry experts to unite and celebrate,” said Festival Founder and Director Lee Brian Schrager.
“We have an incredible ensemble of talent, showcasing today’s top chefs, culinary and lifestyle personalities. We’re also pleased to share new, not-to-be-missed events like The Cookout, an homage to Hip-Hop’s 50th Anniversary that harmoniously blends New York’s most ingenious chefs conjuring their signature flavors alongside performances from the genres most iconic figures.”
In honor of Hip-Hop’s 50th Anniversary Celebration, the Festival’s official closing party will be a cookout MCed by Tamron Hall Emmy award-winning host of the Tamron Hall Show and Angela Yee from Power 105.1’s Way Up with Yee.
Presented by Bacardi, guests can look forward to feature performances by DJ CASSIDY, DJ MICK and 90s icons and Grammy award-winners Rev Run and Ice-T. The culinary offerings are curated by James Beard award winning chef JJ Johnson who has hand selected some of most talented Black chefs in New York to showcase their skills.
The fan-favorite event makes its return to Hudson River Park’s Pier 76 where a sprawling 245,000 sq. ft. outdoor area will be transformed into a gastronomic wonderland showcasing hundreds of winemakers and distillers from the Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits portfolio. Those looking to learn from today’s top content creators about the latest trends and engage in thought-provoking discussions on the intersection of food, culture and tech should grab tickets to FoodieCon® presented by Instagram.
Pier 86, Home of the Intrepid Museum will once again be home to the Festival’s signature pier parties such as: Peroni’s Taste of Italy presented by Stella Italian Cheese hosted by Alex Guarnaschelli and Gabriele Bertaccini (Thursday, October 12)
Blue Moon Burger Bash presented by Pat LaFrieda Meats hosted by Rachael Ray (Friday, October 13) with judges Nadia Caterina Munno (The Pasta Queen), Dan Pelosi (GrossyPelosi) and Jessica Hirsch (CheatDayEats) ,Tacos & Tequila hosted by the Cast of The Kitchen (Saturday, October 14) and Bacardi presents The Cookout: Hip-Hop’s 50th Anniversary Celebration featuring DJ CASSIDY, JJ Johnson, Rev Run, Ice-T, DJ MICK, Tamron Hall & Angela Yee (Sunday, October 15)
Last year alone, the Festival’s charitable partner God’s Love We Deliver, delivered 3.6+ million medically tailored meals, with the help of 19,000 volunteers, to nearly 13,000 individuals. Annually, the Festival generates millions of impressions for God’s Love, raising awareness to grow the organization’s base of volunteers and clients. To date, NYCWFF has generated more than $14.8 million for its charitable causes with one hundred percent of the Festival’s net proceeds supporting its mission to EAT. DRINK. FEED NYC.
Food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival presented by Capital One: The Food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival presented by Capital One is hosted by God’s Love We Deliver with 100% of the Festival’s net proceeds supporting New Yorkers facing severe illness. Over the past 16 years, the Festival has generated more than $14.8 million in net proceeds for its charitable causes. Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits is the exclusive provider of wine and spirits at the Festival.
In November 2022, BizBash named the Festival the #1 Food & Restaurant Industry event in New York for the 10th year in a row.
God’s Love We Deliver: God’s Love We Deliver cooks and home-delivers nutritious, medically tailored meals for people too sick to shop or cook for themselves. Founded in 1985 as a response to the AIDS pandemic, God’s Love now serves people living with more than 200 different diagnoses.
God’s Love addresses food and nutrition insecurity, and supports the health and well-being of their clients, by providing ongoing nutrition assessment, education, and counseling, advocating for food and nutrition support, and delivering medically tailored meals.
God’s Love is a non-sectarian organization serving individuals living with illness, and their children and caregivers. With a community of thousands of volunteers, they home-delivered more than 3.6+ million medically tailored meals to nearly 13,000 individuals last year. All services are free to clients and full of love.
Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits: Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits is the world’s preeminent distributor of beverage alcohol and proud to be a multi-generational, family-owned company.
The Company has operations in 44 U.S. states, the District of Columbia and Canada. Southern Glazer’s urges all retail customers and adult consumers to market, sell, serve and enjoy its products responsibly.
The food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival presented by Capital One is truly a great event with thousands of people in attendance and supporting the cause to help New York’s Hungry and people who are struggling to put food on the table.
Chef Carlos Barrera, originally from the State of Merida Yucatan, Proud Yucatecan. Raised the first part of his life in Yucatan and developed in the State of Quintana Roo, in the area of Puerto Morelos in his youth teenagers’ years. Moved at the age of 18 to United States, stayed in Philadelphia, Washington DC, New York.
Learned how to cook and eat local’s dishes, as he was doing other things. He didn´t really click at that age and time all the passion for food and was just natural cook.
Carlos was very big on the environment helping support the ecology in preservation of sea life as turtles from the State of Yucatán.
When Cancun was growing and there were no more possible activities to keep doing that he decided to move and open a new page in his life, and moved to California looking for a new opportunity in his young life., Carlos was very lucky he got a job offer from Chef Jose Chavez, Called Sabor in the area of Santa Monica. Chef Chavez opened and taught Carlos teaching his first dishes in Cajun south Latin flavor cuisine.
After that Carlos worked for a Food Factory, that provided food, for Trader Joe Workers in the area. Carlos was a fast learner and was introduced to learn about food catering as well as a Bartender, learning to make all kinds of drinks. Carlos also Worked in Beverly Hills, Bell Air Areas, worked in Harold & AMP a Belles Restaurant a Cajun Restaurant.
Carlos had learned his Cooking, Catering and bartending skills, well and had dreams of working as a chef in Las Vegas. So he got a job in Cesar’s palace and worked also in the Venetian, as well as working under Executive Chef Luciano Pellegrini, Piero Selvaggio’s of Valentino’s Restaurant, next door to Chef Emeril Lagasse, Warner’s Brother Kitchen at the Venetian casino, Zeffirino Italian Restaurant, and other important places Carlos learned his Culinary skills.
Carlos was well on his way living his American Dream, he was very happy with his progress and being an elite executive chef, learning from of the best chef’s in the world. He also got married to Nora Espinoza.
All his life changed 360 Degree’s when he got a call from his family member that his father was on his death bed and wanted to see Carlos. In 2002, packed his bags and headed back to Merida Yucatan the land where he was born. after the death of his Mr. Father, Maestro Carlos Barrera the person that motive him to reach his goals cooking, and he wanted to show and honor his memory, showing and sharing his experience with his family and friends, combining all the recipes and doing some new dishes. To honor his father’s legacy.
So after Carlo’s father passed away he decided to stay in Mexico open his first Restaurant call SeaFari and he had a great successful place where others like Big Locals chefs like Jhon Grey, David Laos and many others who tasted his fresh Lobster tacos, Seafood platers and Mexican Carnitas because Carlos had a big impact in the Village with his way of cooking with simple small kitchen and very creative plates. People were coming back on a regular basis and introducing their friends and family members who too were coming and eating his food.
Carlos with his wife Chef Nora Espinoza, had 3 children, Little Carlos, Mahatma and Indira. Chef Nora grew up in a family of cooks, with a father who was a Cuban chef originally from Cuidad Cien Fuegos, Cuba, and a mother from Veracruz Mexico, who learned ancient Mexican recipes from her grandmothers and taught Nora since she was a child the love of cooking and to do everything from scratch the artisan way, 2 great young Chefs were working together at the same time and decide do something bigger, they begin working hard to get a good position and enter the Yachts community in Cancun, services for catering and private luxury homes, work for celebrities and politician form Mexico, Ex Mexican President and Governors, as also some businessmen of large old Mexican families that visit Cancun.
Chef Carlos and Nora are known as Los Chefs as the name of the new and old Restaurants, begin a new chapter in Cancun Hotel zone, as part of a vacation Club from USA, where he currently works together with his wife Chef Nora and one of the Kids, Mahatma Espinoza in a great quiet place at the end of Pok Ta Pok Av, by the lagoon with the best view of the lagoon side hotel zone.
So when I stayed in Cancun and met Carlos, he prepared Maya Whole Fish dish with rice and salad, with Virgin Mojito’s and Pina Colada’s. It was a wonderful dish, I never personally tasted fish so good and well prepared.
So asked Chef Carlos what’s next for him he told me Los Chefs Carlos and Nora are working on few cookbooks. First book to explain in a simple way how to cook some of our dishes, so you can enjoy with family and friends.
So the next book is very interesting which I sat down with Carlos, for a few hours’ brain storming to see how this next project can be bought to life. I personally loved Carlos’s idea and will help him to make this project a super success. Is to rescue many of the old recipes from the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.
Once these recipes have been saved, they will be added to to Carlo’s Cook Book, for people to try and cook. The next plan is to sell the book and share some of the proceeds with many of the family’s that are struggling and need help. Also some of the book proceeds will be given to environmental causes and natural wild life reserves in the Yucatan Mexico.
So I believe in Carlos, I believe he is a warrior, like myself never gives up and will do everything to make, this project a success, as we will support him as much as possible, with our Humanitarians of the World Inc, org ( www.hotwinc.org ) based here in New York City.
To learn more about Carlos Barrera and Nora Espinoza Los Chefs, to attend their restaurant next time you are in Cancun or to purchase his Cook Book and help or support in some way. Click here for more information.
Our next Stop on our Cancun Mexico travel was to Isla Mujures, Isla Mujeres is a beautiful, peaceful paradise just across the Bahia de Mujeres (Bay of Women) from Cancun, Mexico. Isla Mujeres is more laid-back and tranquil than Cancun, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty to do, it just means you can do nothing at all or fill your day with water sports, shopping, exploring and making new friends
Known for beautiful white sand beaches, calm crystal clear turquoise waters and the friendliest locals in the Mexican Caribbean. Isla’s diversity, from the fisherman, artists and musicians to divers, chefs and ex-pats, make up a community unlike any other.
With the beauty of the Caribbean, the heritage of the Mayans, and the easygoing charm of the people, Isla Mujeres has become a haven for people from all over the world.
There were so many things to see at the Isla Mujures, we had the pleasure of viewing the following sites during our all day trip.
Isla’s Beaches ~ Playa Norte:Playa Norte (North Beach) is considered one of the best beaches in all of Mexico. The soft white sand, palm trees and water so blue the sky looks pale, make it the perfect place to relax and unwind from the rigors of life.
Hacienda Mundaca: Built by the famous pirate Fermin Mundaca, the Hacienda includes ruins, winding paths through the shady grounds and a solar clock garden dedicated to La Triguena.
Zocolo is located at the center. Not much happens during the day but if you decide to extend your visit through the evening, you’ll often see dances, events and celebrations going on. Isla families and tourists alike enjoy their evenings at the Plaza eating tacos and pastries from the vendors, joining a pick-up basketball game, celebrating Mass at the church and watching the world go by.
Goddess Ixchel (Guerrero & Abasolo) in Mayan times, Isla was a sanctuary dedicated to Ixchel.
Punta Sur is located at the southern tip of Isla Mujeres, roughly 60 feet above sea level, where the rising sun first touches Mexican soil. Its rocky cliffs, the waves crashing on the shore and the multitude of blues of the Caribbean Sea make up some of the most spectacular scenery on the island.
This is the highest elevation in the Yucatan and was home to an ancient temple honoring the Mayan Goddess Ixchel, rebuilt after it was partially destroyed in Hurricane Gilbert. Because it was built on high ground, archaeologists believe the temple was also used as a lighthouse to guide trade boats coming from Cozumel, Tulum and Xaman-ha (Playa del Carmen).
For such a small island Isla Mujeres is a foodie’s paradise! There is something for everyone – American, Mediterranean, Italian, French, Asian and of course Mexican and the freshest seafood you can get. Dishes like ceviche, grilled shrimp and lobster and an ancient Mayan dish called Tik’n Xic – a whole fish marinated in achiote, a mild chilli red sauce, and then grilled over an open fire.
Visitors have said that they come back to Isla every year not just for the beautiful beaches and friendly people but for the food!
Dolphin Discovery: An experience of a lifetime! Swimming with the dolphins is everything you have imagined and more. Everybody will delight in this hands-on experience, listening to the dolphins sing, watching them “tail walk”, and even hugging and kissing these people-loving creatures.
We also booked a Golf Cart US $60.00 for 2 hours, you can drive from one end to the other of the Island and make stops, to buy food drinks, see iconic sites, as mentioned above take pictures and do much more.
The Isla Mujeres was a great day tour, definitely worth going if you like the beaches, history, food and many more activities, the island has to offer.
Myself and my Photographer and videographer traveled to Cancun Mexico in June 2023, for 1-week trip. We traveled from New York, the total trip was about 5 hours’ flight, which included a layover in Miami.
We have to say, when we arrived it was very hot, the Cancun Airport was packed with people coming from all over the world to start their vacation time. I was seated with Jose from Chile and living in San-Diego California a very nice man, who was attending Cancun for the 4th time in the 6-year period.
I asked Jose what he liked and what’s bringing him back again and again. He went on to say, that when he originally came six years ago, for 2 weeks with his wife. They toured many iconic locations in Cancun and really enjoyed it.
So when he came the Second time, he decided to stay in his resort, swim in the pool, go to the beaches and do sun tanning, read books and listen to relaxing music.
Jose went on to say, he works very hard, in his construction business and these two-weeks he spends in Cancun, really helps him relax and makes him feel good.
I also asked many questions as I traveled from the Miami Flight to Cancun, which was approximately 2 hours and was able to learn a lot from him, believe it or not the best advice Jose gave me was not to drink the tap water, which would give you stomach pains, Diarrhea. He told me to get bottled water and filtered water and drink that at all times. If not, you could be looking for a bathroom on a regular basis during your tour.
The people were very nice, helpful, a good amount of them spoke broken English, cab drivers, people working in tours, restaurants, most of the people in our resorts were Bilingual. So you can definitely get by, if you can speak Spanish it is a plus.
Our First trip was to Isle of Mujers, an all day trip from our resort, from 6-30 am till 8-30pm, it included Transportation back and forth to the location, buffet style lunch which included drinks. Most of the people on trip are tourist from all over the world, doing the tour. The Guide talks to you in Spanish and English, explains the historical locations along the way, so you know the history of the location.
This was the highlight of our trip, we went across a private boat to Isle of Mujer, half way to the island, the boat comes to a stop, and you can swim and do Snorkeling, the water is about 16 feet deep, you must know how to swim, before you go in to the water. Then you swim 700 meters away from the boat, and you start doing your activities.
Once you arrive on the Island, the tour guide drops you off, and tells you that he will see you back at the same location, So we had about 3 hours to explore the Isle of Mujures, now you have a few options here. You can rent a taxi, for 2 or 4 people US $100 , or an golf Cart for a party of 4 which costs, around US $60 .
We rented a Golf Cart with a friend and his wife we met at a resort we were staying at, His name was Delvin and his wife Maria, a wonderful couple. I asked him to drive while I was taking pictures and video-taping , he was very happy to do that , since he loved driving.
The Isle of Mujure’s is approximately eight miles long from one end to the other, so you go one way and come back on the other side, you will not get lost. We made many stops, seeing many beaches, Vendors, Iconic locations and much more. You can view the video in our World Liberty TV, Travel and Tourism Channels, titled: Tour of Isla Mujeres in Cancun Mexico-2023, by clicking here.
Our Next tour was the Chichen Itza, cenote and Valldoid, we set off at 7am from our Resort and came back around 9pm in the evening. This was also a great tour, we traveled in an air condition coach.
Our Tour guide, was Julio a Cancun Native, who spoke great English and joked so much and had us laughing each step of the way. We made a stop at a Mayan Town, where we saw a school, where Mayan Children attended to learn Spanish. Here there was a ceremony conducted by a priest who welcomed us and blessed us, by sprinkling water on us. You can see the historic design houses, shops, jungles where the Mayan Community is living, also we saw many Mayan People working cultivating the land and also making natural medicine for healing purposes.
We had a Buffett Lunch, where we enjoyed Mayan Dancers and singers doing live performance, this was more like a tango with nice outfits on. Then I saw something that was awesome both of the dancers had a beer bottle on top of their heads while they danced, the beer bottle was full and both of the dancers danced for 2 minutes.
The Buffett Style lunch was great Mexican cuisine, all you can eat and you can make many trips to the Buffett stations. Now the drinks including soft drinks were not included.
After that we did a chocolate tasting, Cacao, grown in the region by the Mayan’s. The Chocolate was very pure and tasted very good.
After the Blessing, by the priest and fully belly of food and chocolate tasting we went to get on the bus and headed to our Main event, the 7th Wonder of the World, Chichen Itza.
Once we arrived to our location, I was told at the location, that you were not able to take a microphone, or video camera unless you have a permit. So I asked the officer that I was a media person and I needed to video-taping, so he said you can get a permit and then take it in. Which I was not too happy with the idea. So I paid for the permit and was able to take the camera in.
It was Scorching hot, it felt like 110 Degrees, sun is brutally hot, you must have a water bottle, wear something light like a tee-shirt and shorts to keep you cool.
We had a tour guide Pablo, who took us around Chichen Itza, the Ruins and other locations in the area, explaining the history. I have never seen so many vendors in one location, selling so many gifts related to Chichen Itza, everything possible you wanted to get. Some of the Vendors where making some of the gifts at their booths. A lot of them were very pushy trying to sell to you, which is ok, because that’s how they make their money and survive.
I met one interesting vendor, he was making a wooden Jaguar whistle, it looks like a wooden Jaguar well painted you blow on the top side, and put your hand over the air vent and blow hard and it makes a Jaguar sound. I ended up buying that, so soon as I came home, I blew it and my cat got scared and was trying to figure out what it was, so I told him if you misbehave I will call the Jaguar to straighten you out, lol!.
After that we went to Cenote, In fact it’s considered one of the best cenotes near Chichen Itza, although one of the most crowded, unfortunately. I am not going to go into too much details. You can see the Video titled, Tour of Chichen Itza “Seventh Wonder of World” in Cancun Mexico-2023. In our World Liberty TV, Travel and Tourism Channels by clicking here.
Also we went to the Mayan Museum, this has so many Artifacts on display, you can also walk outside and see many ruins, of many Mayan people and so much history, if you are a museum person this is the place to be.
We also went to the Shopping district , Avenida Kukulkán is basically the main strip in Cancun. Most hotels are located directly on the street. On Kukulkan you can find anything you’re looking for in Cancun. Shopping plazas, high end restaurants, local restaurants, nightlife etc.
Arguably the most popular tourist spot, Cancun’s Hotel Zone (also known as Zona Hotelera) is a long, narrow island with a vast lagoon, Laguna Nichupté, made up of seven lakes. This area has a great variety of activities and a pulsating nightlife.
The City of Cancun is divided into two parts – the Downtown area and the Cancun Hotel Zone. All of Cancun’s nightlife is in Punta Cancun, which is also known as the Party Zone.
Garza Blanca Cancun’s Newly opened Resort is where a lot of celebrities hang out , which includes Boxing great Floyd “Money “ Mayweather.
Travelers visiting Cancun can stay out until 5 or 6am in most Cancun Super clubs. The majority of these hotspots are located in the Hotel District itself, making them a convenient cab ride or bus ride home from an evening on the town.
We had a pleasure of meeting Carlos Barrera and his wife Nora Espinoza, running the Restaurant called Los Chefs, at Coral Mar. He is one of the best chef’s in whole of Cancun, multi-talented, he prepares all kinds of food, including old Yucatan, recipes, Steaks, Pasta’s and every possible Mexican dish you can think of, also the best drink I tasted was the Virgin Mojito (Without Alcholol) He is writing a book about his ventures and comes out very soon. You can see exclusive interview with Carlos Berrera , of Los Chefs in our World Liberty TV, Food and Wine Channels by clicking here.
We had a great time in Cancun, very friendly people, great food, iconic locations and so much more. We only stayed for seven days. Next time we will stay maybe 2 weeks and showcase many more locations of Cancun. You must go once in your lifetime to Cancun.