OMG! Israeli Picnic & a Movie | Genuine Summer Series Spotlight

Winner winner, chicken soup dinner.  Are you ready to OMG! over a cultural, spiritual and culinary journey with James Beard Award-winning chef and cookbook author Michael Solomonov as your guide?  We certainly are.  Be inspired to pick up a book, a fork, or better yet a plane ticket as you experience the Israel you never knew existed through the eyes of people passionate to share its beautifully complicated identity through food In Search of Israeli Cuisine, directed by documentarian Roger Sherman.  Release is super limited, so OMG! Picnic & A Movie is your chance to catch it, Friday, July 8 from 6-9PM in the Miami Design District (tickets here include dinner and the film!)

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A nostalgic summer-time twist on the OMG! Dinner & a Movie experience that began at O Cinema in Wynwood in 2011 with Michael’s Genuine and Harry’s Pizzeria, this next level sunset screening comes to Palm Court with a picnic-style meal conjuring the film’s theme by TGHG executive chef Bradley Herron.  Grab a TV dinner tray and dig into three food stations including house-made pita bread with hummus, marinated vegetables, Israeli salad and tabbouleh; kefte sandwiches with yogurt sauce and cilantro on a potato bun; and chicken & grilled vegetable kebabs with parsley sauce and pickled onions.  There may even be recipe cameo from Zahav: A World of Israeli Cooking, Solomonov and partner Steven Cook’s now James Beard Award-winning cookbook.  New for this OMG! edition are beverage concessions, a signature Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink bottled cocktail, rosé, and beer, all included in the ticket price. There’s a movie snack, too, of course — Brad’s Israeli-spiced popcorn to satisfy sweet and salty theater cravings and ensure there are no growling tummies during the screening!

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Israel wasn’t really on Roger’s radar, at least not as a destination for a food documentary, when he first traveled there in 2010.  Like many American impressions, hummus and falafel were all that came to mind.  But after an initial trip, the vibrant restaurant scene, modern approach to agriculture and rich convergence of global culinary traditions revealed themselves as a story that needed to be told.  In 2013 his crew filmed at over 100 locations all over Israel.

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You definitely want to follow Israeli Cuisine on Instagram, for behind the scenes images and commentary. It’s frequently updated and a great source of information and eye candy.

The country has 350 boutique wineries that are gaining international acclaim.  It produces distinctive cheeses that you’d find in France or Italy. Most important Roger discovered the people of Israel and the remarkable, diverse backgrounds coming together at the table – Moroccan, Persian, Lebanese, French, Italian, and Russian – Jewish, Arab, Palestinian, Christian, and Druze, kosher and non-kosher, secular and religious.  Home cooks are preserving their grandmothers’ recipes and dynamic chefs are updating them.  It also became clear that most people he met in the United States didn’t know much about Israelis either, and were surprised at what Roger discovered.

The clincher to make the film was most people didn’t have a clue what was going on in the culinary scene of Israel. “People laughed when I told them Israel has one of the most dynamic food cultures in the world,” Roger said. He makes films to surprise and delight. Here was the perfect subject with an enormous potential audience.

We are surprised and delighted to be able to cook up this special experience for you.  Join us!

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