GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Flavors of Florida, the premier UF/IFAS tasting showcase, is now an annual event on the University of Florida campus. The March 23 event, hosted in the Champions Club at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at Florida Field, will be from 6 to 8:30 p.m., and tickets are available now at tinyurl.com/IFASFOF23.
Now in its eighth turn, Flavors of Florida invites participants to sample delicious foods and beverages produced in the Sunshine State and aided by UF/IFAS research. Chef-curated tastings highlight at least one fresh, seasonal ingredient from a UF/IFAS research facility or a generous Florida farmer. Fancy Farms in Plant City hopes to provide the UF/IFAS-developed pineberry in addition to the standard strawberry, and Wild Goose Farms in Umatilla will provide in-season blueberries.
Follow along on Instagram as our delivery truck collects this year’s ingredients, March 20-21 @UFIFAS_solutions.
The UF/IFAS Blueberry Breeding Program will again offer taste-testing of its new blueberry varieties; the UF/IFAS food science and human nutrition department will showcase the vibrant purple sweet potato, for which it recently developed a slate of recipes; and Fresh from Florida chef Justin Timineri will prepare a seasonal recipe created for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services program.
The event is more than tasting opportunities, though. Each ticket purchased will give $25 directly to the Field & Fork Campus Food Program. This program, led by the UF/IFAS College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, is multifaceted, with the Field & Fork Farm and Gardens training student interns on small farm production, connecting classroom learning with hands-on experience, hosting volunteer and learning events for the community and providing space for research projects. The Farm and Gardens supply the Alan and Cathy Hitchcock Field & Fork Pantry with fresh produce throughout the year. The Hitchcock Pantry, run by UF Student Life, supports those in the campus community experiencing food insecurity through donations of produce, non-perishables and other products.
Alan Hitchcock, already the namesake and benefactor of the Hitchcock Pantry, furthered his gift as this year’s Pioneer Sponsor of Flavors of Florida.
Those registering for the event are welcome to make an additional gift to Field and Fork program when purchasing their ticket. Anyone can give directly to the fund at ufgive.to/FOF23, as well.
Event tickets are $95. Travelers can also secure a special room block rate at Hotel Eleo at the University of Florida.
Early tasting partners include 4 Rivers Smokehouse, Blue Gill Quality Foods, Cacciatore Catering, Covey Kitchen + Cocktails, First Magnitude Brewing Co., FishHawk Spirits and Mildred’s Big City Food. Sponsors and tasting partners will continue to be added to the event website.
For more information, including about available sponsorship and tasting partner opportunities, please contact Heather Yoder at firstname.lastname@example.org or 352.392.1975.