SOBEWFF Chef: "I am an Immigrant"

José Andrés, one of the top chefs present at this weekend's South Beach Wine and Food Festival is making waves following his "I am an immigrant" speech in the middle of the festivities. 

An internationally-recognized culinary innovator, educator, television personality and chef/owner of ThinkFoodGroup, Andrés owns restaurants in not only Miami, but Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Mexico City as well. 

Chef Andrés tweeted this just before 4 p.m. on Sat, Feb. 25, amidst the SOBEWFF festivities, possibly a notion towards the recent turmoil revolving around President Donald Trump's proposed immigration ban:

The international chef, who immigrated from Spain and became a U.S. citizen three years ago, was honored Saturday evening at a South Beach Wine and Food Festival tribute dinner. 

During a speech, he removed his chef's coat to reveal a T-shirt that read the statement that he would continue to elaborate on: "I am an immigrant". 

The 400 or so black-tie guests at the annual auction dinner to raise money for Florida International’s hospitality school stood and applauded so long Andrés had to pause his speech. This was a night when top chefs Andrew Zimmern, Michael Voltaggio, and assistants for Emeril Lagasse collaborated to prepare a decadent meal at $500 a ticket at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel, with Emilio and Gloria Estefan in attendance. It was emceed by chef, author and television host Anthony Bourdain.

Friends, colleagues, mentors, and peers took to social media throughout the event to post pictures and to commend the chef for his inspiring speech on inclusion, equality, and immigration rights and policy. 

Andrés recently opened up a second Miami location, Bazaar Mar, but instead of talking up the new Brickell establishment, he used his time on stage Saturday night to highlight the importance of "inclusion over exclusion" throughout Miami and the entire nation. 

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