Things to do in Miami: Estrella Damm Culinary Journey

That unmistakable Spanish style in Miami this month? You can thank iconic Barcelona brewer Estrella Damm for making it happen.

Each year, the Spanish brewer teams up with many Miami chefs and restaurants, encouraging them to create special menus and tastings that pair perfectly with Estrella Damm’s lager.

It’s known as the Estrella Damm Culinary Journey and runs through the end of May, with more than 40 restaurants in Miami-Dade and Broward counties participating.

“With this program, we are supporting our local chefs and restaurants while highlighting their dishes,” says Marjanne Kalf, Miami market manager for Estrella Damm. “Restaurants are handpicked, and we really have no desire to become a huge machine with this. Miami is becoming so much of a food city, it’s a way for people to get out and try some of the best places.”

Inspired by a similar “tapas trip” in Barcelona, ​​the Estrella Damm Culinary Journey was first launched in Miami by Kalf and his teammates in 2014. Since then, it has also expanded with similar month-long extravaganzas. in Toronto and Chile.

At its start in Miami, it was known as “The Chef’s Choice” and there were stricter chef parameters to enter, including a required ingredient, such as chickpeas, or a twist on a specific dish such as paella. The pandemic caused a relaxation of the requirements.

“In October 2020, we asked our restaurants what they needed help with and they said, ‘We need help telling people we’re open,’” says Kalf. “So we removed the restrictions, renamed it ‘Culinary Journey,’ and let restaurants serve whatever they wanted to go with Estrella Damm beer. We also paid influencers to visit and help promote the restaurants, in addition to our regular marketing, and it helped generate a lot of interest.”

Among the restaurant options, two types of experiences are available, each one paired with an Estrella Damm: The “Pereja Perfecta”, where guests can enjoy a signature dish paired with an Estrella Damm; or the “Chef’s Tasting”, a multi-course meal selected by the chef of the host restaurant. With a quick look at the participating restaurants and their offerings, available at miami.estrelladammjourney.com, it’s clear that all cuisines are at home with this versatile drink. Options range from an $8 red taco and beer at Backroom Vegan Taco Bar to a 14-course tasting menu at Bazaar by José Andrés ($175).

“This is a great opportunity to sample some of the menus you’ve always wanted to try,” says Kalf. “The most important thing is that our restaurants still need support, so please visit them and make the most of this month.”

Estrella Damm Culinary Day. Through May 31, at various locations in Miami-Dade and Broward counties; miami.estrelladammjourney.com.

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