Beer Bourbon and BBQ Festival

Beer Bourbon and BBQ Festival
The first Beer Bourbon and BBQ Festival of the season kicked off on Saturday, January 27 and we were there to enjoy every last drop of food a drink. Photo by Ariel Ijadoula.

Even though the winter weather is here for a little while longer, it was nice to get a taste of summer when the Beer, Bourbon and BBQ festival made its first stop in New York City at the Terminal in Chelsea.

The Beer, Bourbon and BBQ festival happens every year in cities across the country. The festival features 60 different beers, 40 different bourbons and a lot of great barbecue.

When I walked in, I was greeted by event staff and handed a glass cup to fill up with all the beer and bourbon of my choosing. Vendors lined the walls with treats ready to be devoured and drinks ready to be guzzled.

Bulleit Rye Whisky
Bulleit Rye Whisky has been around for more than 150 years and is just one of the many bourbons featured at the festival. Photo via Trigger Agency.


The Food

The bourbon overflowed, the beer was brewin’ and the BBQ was smokin’. Between the bourbon. beer and BBQ, I’m not sure which I had the most of. I enjoyed the Creamed Bacon on Clam Toast at Certé, American Oak Aged Whiskey at Widow Jane and cider from the Sotheby’s. Each vendor had their own twist on American favorites.

My favorite treats of the day had to be from Kloby’s Smokehouse in Laurel, Maryland and Sands Jerk Hut. I had biscuits with a bacon, bourbon brown sugar glaze from Kloby’s and Pineapple Jerk Chicken from Sands Jerk Hut, it was so juicy and tender. I also loved these dishes because they were a nice change of pace from the bacon and beef many vendors were serving.

Beer Bourbon and BBQ Festival
BBQ for days. Photo c/o Trigger Agency.

The Atmosphere

As if the vendors weren’t enough, every hour roasted pigs were brought out and carved. Each hog was sponsored by different establishments at the Beer, Bourbon and BBQ festival. My favorite was again from Kloby’s Smokehouse, it was the juiciest roasted pork I’ve had in a really long time. They topped it with a peppery barbecue sauce giving it a great kick.

I loved how thought out the festival was. The DJ curated a playlist that was so great. I forgot that New York still looked more like a winter wonderland outside rather than a warm beach. Luckily, I ate enough barbecue to last me until the weather breaks and cookout invitations start rolling in.

If you missed out on this years NYC Beer, Bourbon and BBQ festival, don’t fret, there’s always next year! And if you can’t wait until then (and I don’t blame you–the food was that good) you’re in luck! The festival will be traveling to 12 other cities across the U.S. for the rest of the year!

Good music, all of the beer and bourbon you can drink, what more can you ask for?

Let us know if you plan on attending a Beer, Bourbon and BBQ festival near you. Casandra will be at Atlanta’s festival on March 3. Don’t forget to tag your photos #YumCam and #BeerBourbonBBQ so we can share them!


The last thing I thought during my trip to Connecticut, was that I would find some finger licking BBQ for lunch. I had just wrapped up my interview at Access Tv and Brandon Frame said he knew a great spot. We walked through the rain, passed a few restaurants, and entered Bears. I immediately noticed that the place had plenty of seating and learned that they’re normally packed at all hours. It was still somewhat early but I could sense the real lunch rush was coming and I should make some decisions.


The menu at Bears is on the wall but the food is also right in front of you to pick out and eat with your eyes. I opted for a combo which consisted of two meats and two sides. I couldn’t resist the burnt ends which are said to be a delicacy in the bbq world. They looked too amazing to say no to and were worth every bite. Bears also provides four kinds of BBQ sauces that you can grab at your table, have it served on the side or all over your meats. The fountain drinks are also self serve here but they aren”t your standard fountain drinks; let’s just say they like to stay within the theme.

Burnt Ends

Turkey upclose

I also tried the turkey breast which was so beautifully cut. Contrary to popular belief, I didn’t find the turkey to be boring. The sauces at Bears are all over the place, from the sriracha to their grizzly sauce, so there were plenty of ways to spice things up if needed. The best part of this meal was that I was able to take some home to snack on later. Though I couldn’t save my fries, I was able to save plenty of the macaroni and cheese, which I couldn’t wait to sit with at home.

Mac and cheese

Bears really seemed to be the local favorite BBQ spot and when I’m back in the area, it just might be mine.


The BBQ sauce at Fat Matts is a winner. I encountered this amazing sauce on my last visit to Atlanta and immediately asked if it was for sale. Thank goodness it was and for no more than $5, so I bought two! I’m almost done with my bottles and realized that I can order my sauce online, thank God for the internet!

Fat Matts
Photo Credit:

Fat Matts BBQ sauce is really the best bbq sauce that exist. Not only does it go well with almost everything, but it has a tangy kick to it that exploded on my flavor palette. The craziest part is that I don’t even like BBQ sauce! But this BBQ sauce almost broke some friendships because it’s too good to even share. When I do share it, it’s all about portion control! Don’t drop that alcohol bbq sauce. You should probably get some.

660 Anglers Ropa Vieja and Eggs

I found myself in Miami last week, and of course I did Larios on the beach, my Cuban rave from last fall. (Please try their lightly breaded, juicy chicken chunks!) I went to Medi’s (Huge Drinks, Good Pasta) and Front porch Cafe , but 660 Anglers which is off of Washington Avenue, completely has my heart. I encourage everyone to go to South Beach and get off the strip to eat; there are really some gems out there.

Now let me just share that I haven’t gotten exceptional service in some time. Good service, pretty good service, etcetera, has been cool but Anglers provided exceptional service that weekend for my party of five. Everything on the menu was SOLD, explained in such detail that it was difficult for us, well me at least, to decide on what to get. I wanted steak and eggs and they were serving ropa veija with eggs – close enough for me.

660 Anglers Ropa Vieja and Eggs

That technically means old clothes but in simpler terms, it’s like pulled pork with sweet peppers. I absolutely love ropa vieja and here, they serve it on Ciabatta bread with the eggs anyway you like it.  So on the top of the mea, the BEST COOKED EGG in my life.

660 Anglers Arepas

This meal was just as exceptional as was the service here. My friend had the corn cakes with these guava bbq chicken chunks that everyone was stealing off of her plate. To. Die. For. Another guest had the burger there which had a fig spread on it that made me swoon. This is good food we’re talking about. Not to mention they have great drinks specials. $9 Mimosas, 3 for $14 and $25 for unlimited ones with flavors like guava (YUM), passion fruit, classic, and more.

660 Anglers  Burger

This is a must visit for every trip To south beach.

Honey glazed hot wings baan

Guess who was too excited to try Korean bbq at Baan for the first time? I heard a lot of good things about Baan and I certainly wasn’t let down. The service alone there is awesome.

Honey glazed hot wings baan

The staff were really accommodating and attentive and the food was great.I started with the honey glazed hot wings and tuna sashimi. The wings weren’t too spicy and the glaze was perfect. If you’re not into raw foods however, stay away from the tuna. If you are into it, it was really fresh and a good portion to share.

Tuna Sashimi Baan

The best part of the experience was that we got to grill the Bulgogi (rib eye) ourselves. There are small grills in the middle of each table and you have the option to “make it yourself”, so of course we did and it was so much fun! The slices are so thin, and you can make them to your liking so it was great for us to enjoy. I also indulged in a lychee martini; it was strong but still very tasty. It’s definitely become a restaurant week must.

Lyche Martini Baan