Sip. Savor. Surf.

Pensacola Beach // September 18-19, 2015

Festival Schedule


September 18th

VIP Event


September 19th


Pensacola Beach Chamber invites you to Taste of the Beach, September 18-19, 2015. Celebrity Chef John Besh hosts Friday night’s VIP event – tickets are available for $65/person – and party-goers can sample delicious coastal cuisines presented by Chef Besh along with six of the beach’s finest chefs. Entry is free for Saturday’s day-long festival, with signature dishes priced at $5 or less. With a special cooking demonstration presented by Chef John Besh, chef competitions, live entertainment and kid-friendly activities, you’ll have so much fun you’ll want to stay the whole day. Taste of the Beach is a primary off-season festival bringing thousands of locals and visitors to Pensacola Beach and was recently named one of the top 20 events in the Southeast for September by the Southeast Tourism Society.

Friday, Sept. 18th

VIP Event – $65 per ticket / Cash Bar

New to this year’s festival is cooking demonstration and meet and greet and question and answer session with celebrity chef John Besh.

  • 6 p.m. Six Beach Chefs Tastings
  • 7 p.m. John Besh cooking demonstration
  • 8 p.m. Questions/Autographs/Pictures with John Besh
  • Eventbrite - Meet & Greet with Celebrity Chef John Besh

Saturday, Sept. 19th

Event located at Casino Beach directly south of the only traffic light on Pensacola Beach.

Taste of the Beach is fun for the whole family! The weekend is filled with lots of things to do surrounding our Celebrity Guest Chef, John Besh. Cooking demonstrations, tastings, restaurants, water booth, frozen zone, football tent, dining tent, hospitality tent, kids area, and t-shirt sales and much more start at the festival opening at 10a.m.!

  • 9 a.m. Innerlight Kids Surfing Lessons, west of the Gulf Pier.
  • 10 a.m. Festival Opens
  • 11 a.m. Chef’s Challenge – 8 chefs face off in a cooking contest
  • 12:45 p.m. Chef Cook Off Awards
  • 1 p.m. John Besh Live on Gulfside Pavilion Stage. Cooking demonstration
  • 1:45 p.m. Question and Answer Session with Celebrity Chef John Besh
  • 2 p.m. Meet and Greet with John Besh. Guests line up near Boogie tent, proceed west to east across stage to meet John, get autograph, take selfie
  • 3 p.m. Island Times How Sweet IT Is Dessert Contest Finals. John Besh to serve as judge
  • 3:30 p.m. Awards
  • 4 p.m. Crab Racing
  • 5 p.m. Beer Tasting in the football tent
  • 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. Acoustic Concert – Tim Spencer
  • 6 p.m. Beer Tastings
  • 6:30 p.m. See the Stars! Free star gaze. Hosted by the Astronomers Club.
  • 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. Concert – The Molly Ringwalds
  • 10 p.m. Festival Closes

Chef John Besh

You’ve seen him on The Food Network, hosting his cooking shows, “Chef John Besh’s New Orleans,” and “Chef John Besh’s Family Table,” on national public television, and traveling the country in search of failing restaurants to help on the Spike network show “Hungry Investors.” Now you can meet him in person! Chef John Besh is coming to this year’s Taste of the Beach festival! He’ll cook, answer questions and you can even take a “selfie” with the celebrity chef and get his autograph. Special mini commemorative posters will be available at the Pensacola Beach Chamber’s Hospitality Tent.

The Molly Ringwalds

They are the World’s Greatest 80’s Experience. Hailing from Sheffield, England, this legendary quintet has been able to combine their individual and very formidable talents to create the true essence of the most radical decade to ever be called “The 80’s.” The Molly Ringwalds create an 80’s Experience by honing their abilities to apply make-up and tease their hair while showcasing all the musical genres of the decade.

Boogie Inc.

Boogie Inc. is the official DJ entertainment for Taste of the Beach. In addition to playing your favorite songs, Boogie will broadcast all of the festival’s performances stage entertainment onto large, high definition screens located under the dining tent. Have a song request? Boogie will be located at the center of the festival action, near the stage, at the Gulfside Pavilion.

Island Times How Sweet IT Is Dessert Contest

The Island Times How Sweet IT Is contest will be held at the Gulfside Pavillion at 2:45pm on Saturday. Judges include Celebrity Chef John Besh, Chef Blake Rushing of Type in Pensacola, Chef Sam Trahan personal chef from Louisiana and Kathi Lewis, Island Times cooking columnist and former owner of the Sand Dollar Café on Pensacola Beach. Awards will be presented at 3:45 pm.

Innerlight Surf Camp

FREE Surf Camp for kids and adults ages 8 and up! Registration will take place at the beach beginning at 8:00am. The Surf Camp will be located on the right side of the Pensacola Beach Gulf Pier. It will be first come, first serve and groups will rotate to insure everyone gets a chance to surf. The Surf Camp will be held from 9:00am to 11:00am so don’t miss out! For more information, please email

Kids Area

The Beach Chamber loves kids!

Stop by the Kids Area for sweet stuff, fun games, snow cones, cotton candy, face painting and more!

Mermaid & Pirate Parade

Open to mystical mermaids, proud pirates, Neptune look-alikes, or anyone else who wants to join in the procession. Get your costume ready!

Check back for participant locations, parking and overall logistics. We’ll post up-to-minute additions and changes on social media feeds but most importantly sign up here for email updates.

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