South Beach Seafood Week       |       October 22 - 26, 2019       |       Miami Beach, Florida

Preview: Battle Taco

Best Miami Chefs: Chef Ralph Pagano vs. Chef Bernie Matz

The rematch you’ve all been waiting for is coming October 25th at the Sobe Seafood Festival. Buy your tickets, mark your calendars, and make your way to South Beach to witness the showdown between Chef Ralph Pagano and Chef Bernie Matz.

The competition is sure to be fierce as these two experts go head to head in a long-anticipated rematch. After Chef Matz enjoyed 3 consecutive years as champion, Chef Pagano took home the gold last year in a shocking turn of events. With such a close contest, we want to be sure everyone has all of the background they need ahead of time so they can cast an informed vote. Let’s take a closer look at the competition:

The Defender: Chef Ralph Pagano – Naked Taco

Reigning champion Chef Pagano stunned in last year’s battle by taking the crown from 3-peat winner Chef Matz. This year, he has graciously accepted the proposed rematch for the 2019 Battle Taco. He hails from the restaurant Naked Taco and has been both a contestant on Hell’s Kitchen as well as hosted the show “Pressure Cook.” Naked Taco is a popular restaurant for parties and events, with a creative menu sure to satisfy everyone’s tastes. Let’s see if Ralph really is #Fireproof as this year’s competition heats up on the sand.

Follow Chef Pagano @RalphPagano and his restaurant @lovenakedtaco on Instagram for updates.

The Challenger: Chef Bernie Matz – Bodega Taqueria y Tequila

Chef Matz is back from his year-long hiatus as champ in the hopes of taking back the title. His restaurant may not appear as fancy as Naked Taco, but their menu does not disappoint. Not to mention, they feature lower prices. The difference in style of these two chefs and their restaurants certainly adds some spice to the contest, and we expect the decision to be tough. The two have already stoked the flames, though, in one of the latest videos found on South Beach Seafood Festival’s Instagram (@sobeseafoodfest). Chef Matz calls out Pagano’s authenticity for never having made tacos in Mexico. Pagano’s response? “Bring your mariachi.”

Follow Chef Matz @chefberniematz and his restaurant @bodegasobe on Instagram for the latest.

Be sure to purchase your tickets here.

The 2018 Battle Taco was said to be the most intense of the lineup, so you can be sure that this year it will be even more fiery. On one side, Chef Bernie Matz fighting to reclaim his title. On the other, Chef Ralph Pagano battling to maintain the throne. Not to mention you get to see 12 other chefs face-off in 6 more showdowns, all on the very same night. This is certainly an event you do not want to miss, both for the good eats and the entertainment. And, of course, your chance to cast your vote! Be sure to purchase your tickets for South Beach Seafood Festival, and we look forward to seeing you there on October 25th.

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SOUTH BEACH SEAFOOD WEEK

An Evening At Joe's
Tue, October 22, 2019
Cooking & Cocktails
Wed, October 23, 2019
Crabs, Slabs & Cabs
Thu, October 24, 2019
Chef Showdown
Fri, October 25, 2019
South Beach Seafood Festival
Sat, October 26, 2019