On Sunday November 8th, the Liquid Projects and MIAbites presented Taco & Tequila Showdown #TNTShowdown at the hip Vagabond Restaurant in MiMo. A sold out crowd tasted signature tacos from some of Miami's most creative and innovative chefs, and sampled tequila and mezcal cocktail creations featuring 10 different craft brands as hand selected by Liquid Projects founder, Jennifer Massolo.
Creative is an understatement as both the chefs and bartenders definitely brought their A game to the event which only made it more difficult for the Judges; Evan Benn of the Miami Herald, Nidal Barake, top food blogger from Venezuela, and Gabe Orta, from Bar Lab , who tasted blindly without knowledge of "who or what" they were sampling, and then had to decide on Best Taco and Best Cocktail. Attendees also got to vote for their favorites as part of the People's Choice.
Drum roll please as we announce and celebrate the winners, but also celebrate ALL of the talent that was in the room that night.
BEST TACO: Chef Aaron Brooks from EDGE Steak Bar whose kangaroo asado taco was a crowd favorite.
Second Place: Chef Giorgio Rapacavoli of Eating House
BEST COCKTAIL: Dustin Dinter of Taquiza, whose cactus, pineapple juice and mexcal cocktail was smoky and delicious.
Second Place: Jack Colombo of Vagabond
PEOPLE'S CHOICE Winners:
BEST TACO: Chef Bee from Oishi Thai's spicy salmon and truffle oil in hard taco shell
Second place: Chef Aaron Brooks from EDGE Steak & Bar ( again! )
BEST COCKTAIL: Ricky Rodriguez, who was partnered with BC Taco Truck and created a spicy and sweet watermelon hibiscus tequila cocktail.
Second Place: Tibor from Oishi Thai
The winners received Movado watches and the runners up received gift certificates from Brava! at The Arsht Center.
Thank you to all the chefs, bartenders, judges, volunteers, sponsors and attendees for helping to make a very special Sunday event such a success that benefitted Urban Oasis Project!
( Photo credits to GourmandJ, CarmaPR, Miami Mich Blog, MIAbites, PeaceSoulSunshine, and Paatkinson)