The Deering Estate Foundation’s 13th AnnualWine On Harvest Moon fundraising event presented by South BMW immersed a sold-out crowd in the sites, sounds and flavors of Germany from the moment they arrived at the historic property. Little Red Riding Hood, Prince Charming and a slew of storybook stars escorted guests down the tree-lined entrance and into the Black Forest or Stone House castle, where they began a night of sampling fine wine, fine food and viewing fine art.All proceeds from the event benefit the conservation and preservation of the Deering Estate at Cutler.
Throughout the Estate top area chefs creatively added German influences to their specialties. Participating restaurants were: The Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove – Exec. Chef Ramesh Kaduru, Truluck’s Seafood Steak and Crab House – Exec. ChefMichael Cerny, Crave Coral Gables – Exec. Chef Rolando Centonzio, Whole Foods Market Coral Gables, The Oceanaire Seafood Room – Exec. Chef Kareem Anguin, Smith &Wollensky – Exec. Chef Dana Brizee, Red Fish Grill – Exec. Chef Greg True, Devon Seafood + Steak – Executive Chef Rod Chitikov, Wolfgang’s Steak House – Executive Chef Saad Miguel, Buns and Buns – Chef Rueven Sugarman and Ana Capri Restaurant – Giuseppe Zouzo. Inside the Richmond Cottage Pastry Chef Olivier Rodiguez, The Biltmore Hotel Coral Gables, created a Bavarian Bakery with delectable mounds of cookies, cakes and confections.
Veronica Litton CSW of CrownWine and Spirits coordinated an array of wine tastings with the support of Johnson & Wales University students, whoMs. Litton educated in nuances of German wines. Barbara Selbach of the Selbach-OsterWinery in Mosel, Germany, brought her award-winning Rieslings and rare boutique wines. Blair and Todd Maus proprietors of DeeringWine, Sonoma, CA, held seminars in the Estate’s famous Prohibition Era Wine Cellar.
Outdoors the romantic Biergarten was rimmed with string lights and picnic table seating, and provided guests with a more casual fare of brats, sauerkraut and pretzels and three types of Oktoberfest beers on tap. A contemporary Wunderbar art exhibit was on display inside the two historic homes. Students from FIU School of Music performed classical piano, opera and chamber music in the ballroom, while other entertainment spilled out onto the moonlit front lawn. On stage the Frost School of Music–UM Trombone Choir and Baroque Players entertained, followed by a traditional German dance troupe. There was a strolling accordionist, and even Rapunzel, from Tandem Theatre Co., sang her beautiful melodies from the balcony above the crowd.
The evening culminated with a spectacular auction with Michael Baiamonte, The Arena Voice of the Miami Heat, as auctioneer. The crowd feverishly bid on an exclusive “Deering Experience” 12-day Mediterranean Celebrity Cruise, a date with WPLG-TV stars meteorologist Trent Aric and news anchor Jacey Birch at the Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo, cases of Deering wine and a Maus Vineyard tour, and an artifact of the Berlin Wall that included dinner with the Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Miami.
The evening was a huge success thanks to the generosity of the sponsors: South BMW, Celebrity Cruises, Coconut Grove Bank, Cherry Bekaert, Sunstate Bank, Blooming Gardens, Crown Wine & Spirits, The Village of Palmetto Bay, FPL, Miami Dade County, Carlton Fields Jorden Burt, UBS, Heritage House, Morris & Reynolds, Northwestern Mutual, Gold Coast Beverage Distributors, AGC Advantage Golf Cars, Sabadell United Bank, Gutierrez and Bergman, Boulris PLLC, Binstock, Rubin, Adler, Aldecoa & Ellzey, P.A., and media sponsors South Florida Business Journal , Community Newspapers, Food & Wine Talk, South Florida Gourmet, Pinecrest Magazine and iVino.com
A very special congratulations to Howard Tendrich WOHM chair, Mary Pettit Executive Director of the Deering Estate Foundation, Laura Lagomasino Development Director and Michelle Streit Membership Director, whose attention to detail cleverly created the settings.