MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Sip with #SOBEWFF is a free virtual cocktail class created by the festival’s founder, Lee Schrager.

Schrager came up with the idea while he was sitting in the never-before-used, brand-new SGWS Wynwood, a multi-purpose private event space by Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits that was just completed before shutdown.

“So we have not used this venue that’s fully staffed and operational. It’s beautiful,” Schrager said. “I’m looking at this great 35-foot bar and I said we need to do a cocktail series and right then and there it happened.”

Sip with #SOBEWFF kicked off last week, co-hosted by Gio Gutierrez, a spirit expert and host of Chat Chow TV.

Last week, mixologist James Macinnes of KYU in Wynwood, a hugely popular Korean barbecue inspired spot, prepared three Asian cocktails in the one-hour class.

For Schrager, it’s a fun and positive way to support local restaurants.

“For the restaurants and bartenders participating, it just reinforces that the restaurants are open and that’s really the main purpose,” said Schrager. “So when KYU was on, we talked about how they reopened and the specials going on. So we’re able to plug the restaurant, plug the hours, and at the same time you’re getting a free class and learning how to make a perfect cocktail.”

Guests who sign up must be 21 or older and all will receive the ingredients for the night’s cocktails ahead of time.

“So you can go online and register for free. When you register, you get the Zoom link and you get the recipe for the drinks that you’ll be making. So, if you’re making a margarita, you’ll have the three drinks we’ll be making that day with the recipe in advance with the list of ingredients,” he explained.

This 20-part virtual, live mixology and educational series celebrates 20 years of the South Beach Wine and Food Festival when it opens its doors in February.

“Listen, I think it’s going to look different and feel different but the message will be the same; eating drinking and educating. As soon as the city tells us what the capacity numbers are, we’ll start planning.  We are ready to celebrate with all of our loyal fans of 20 years,” Schrager said.

The free classes are held Wednesdays and Friday evenings and are underwritten by Badia Spices. That said, donations are being accepted and will benefit the Hospitality Industry Relief Fund.

To sign up, visit: www.sobewff.org.

Lisa Petrillo

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