The Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival Begins: Cloud 9 After Party (Photos)

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Friday, December 13th kicked off the start of the 2013 Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival, what -- in its seventh year -- is already considered a distinguished, staple event on Palm Beach's annual social roster as one of the nation's premier culinary festivals. The festival brings together an eclectic collection of the world's most illustrious, award-winning chefs, culinary personalities, authors, winemakers and mixologists -- all right here in Palm Beach County. Together they celebrate the art of preparing and enjoying the world of epicurean pleasures.

This year, legendary chefs including Daniel Boulud, who opened the event at Cafe Boulud in Palm Beach. The celebration continued at the Four Seasons Resort, where the Cloud 9 after party featured some of the nation's hottest pastry chefs, including the Four Seasons Palm Beach executive chef Darryl Moiles.

Jennifer Reed is the proud founder of the sugar monkey, where an infusion of French training mixes with her Midwestern spirit and a distinctly feminine touch for modern American pastries. Her use of natural and organic products, fresh fruits, single estate chocolates, and European style butter has created a demand for the sugar monkey's sweets throughout South Florida. From four star plated desserts for a hundred, to ultra-luxe tiered wedding cakes, to custom designed favors; the sugar monkey is your source for anything your sweet tooth desires. The sugar monkey is also the proud provider of key lime pie for all of Shake Shacks' Florida locations for their signature Key Lime Pie Oh My Concrete.

Chef Darryl Moiles oversees all culinary operations at the oceanfront Five Diamond, Five Star Palm Beach Four Seasons resort, including three restaurants - the poolside Graze eatery, the beachfront Atlantic Bar & Grill and a brand new signature restaurant opening December 2013. Practiced in the art of maximizing local produce and seasonal fare, Moiles cooks with "American flare" that is simple, but also rustic and pure - a combination that fits perfectly in Palm Beach. Moiles began his career with Four Seasons in 1995, working first at Four Seasons Hotel Boston, then Four Seasons Resort Aviara, before joining Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach in 2006. Having baked pies with his mother, Moiles took to cooking at a young age, working alongside his older brother and opening DB Moiles Steakhouse while still in high school and credits his family for helping drive his evolution as a chef. A graduate of Johnson & Wales University, he was knightedinto the Escoffier Society in 1996 and has participated in several events, including Julia Child's Tribute Dinner. Here, his own twist on creme brûlée.

A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America with over 20 years of kitchen experience, Johnny Iuzzini honed his craft at highly lauded New York City dining locations such as The River Café, Daniel, Payard, Café Boulud and Jean Georges. In 1998, he traveled around the world and studied pastry at some of the finest patisseries in France including LaDuree under Pierre Hermès. In 2006, he was recognized as one of the "10 Most Influential Pastry Chefs in America" by Forbes, and as one of the "Top Ten Pastry Chefs in America" by Pastry Arts and Design. Iuzzini was also the head judge of Bravo's "Top Chef Just Desserts" for two seasons. Of his many desserts, this one caught our eye: pineapple polenta.

As founder of the dessert program at Momofuku NYC, Christina Tosi helped Momofuku Ko earn two stars from the MichelinGuide and was integral in propelling Momofuku Ssäm onto the restaurant magazine's top 100 restaurants in the world list. She is the 2012 recipient of the James Beard Rising Star Chef award. During the Cloud 9 event she proudly displayed chocolate pretzel cookie dough "balls." Tosi lives in Brooklyn with her three dogs and eats an unconscionable amount of raw cookie dough every day.

Follow Nicole Danna on Twitter, @SoFloNicole.

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