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REAL La Dolce Vita – Sonny’s BBQ Catering With Kim & Sandra

Sonny’s BBQ Catering

REAL La Dolce Vita

Sonny’s BBQ Catering

Let’s Get This Party Started!

By Sandra Halliday

Photography by James Corwin Johnson

The evening of Kim Burns’ birthday party saw cool weather that quickly warmed up when a convivial group of friends and family gathered at iHeart Media’s studio in Sarasota to celebrate another milestone in her journey of life, her love of food, and Southern-style cuisine catered by Sonny’s BBQ. Sonny’s BBQ was founded by Floyd “Sonny” Tillman in Gainesville, Florida, in 1968. Its humble beginnings as a local BBQ joint grew quickly, thanks in part to the passion that the company puts in respecting time-honored traditions in the art of slow smoking meat over oak wood. Oak is a hard wood that burns slowly and gives BBQ cuisine that inimitable smoky flavor that we have come to love.

For lovers of seafood, guests feasted on Chipotle Shrimp Shooters that were beautifully presented in shot glasses. These chipotle-marinated shrimp shooters were served with Sonny’s BBQ cocktail sauce. The sensory experience of uniting sweet with a little spice and heat opened our minds to an exciting new world of bold flavors. It inspired us to journey further into exploring Southern style BBQ cuisine.

The Nacho Tower table offered guests with a selection of two tacos. The Sweet Carolina Taco with pulled pork is seasoned with a mustard based barbeque sauce. Coleslaw was added to bring a balance in texture and flavor. This taco is based on the original pulled pork recipe that brought fame and fortune to Sonny’s BBQ. One bite and we could see why! The Southwest Fish Taco is a mild white fish that’s marinated with a chipotle seasoning. A smoky ranch dressing over black beans and lettuce intensified the aromatic spices and tied all the flavors together in delicious unison.

The Pulled Pork Stuffed Chicken contains Sonny’s BBQ’s signature pulled pork stuffed in a chicken breast and topped with Swiss cheese. Sonny’s BBQ’s Sweet Sauce adorned the proteins with savory happiness. The side dishes included mashed potatoes and green beans with cherry tomatoes. Here we have a nutritious balanced meal that would make any mama proud.

Hands down, everybody’s favorite was the Kansas City style Beef Brisket that’s slow smoked in Sonny’s BBQ sauce. Whether sliced or chopped, beef brisket has a high concentration of connective tissue, as well as a fat cap layer that both tenderizes and helps maintain moisture while smoking. Now imagine combining a super tender, moist meat with a robust smoky flavor and suddenly, you’re floating in seventh heaven for meat lovers.

We satiated our sugar cravings with two Dessert Shooters served in shot glasses. The chocolate aficionados made a bee line for the Hot Fudge Brownie Sundae Shooter, a tempting concoction of brownie chunks with vanilla mousse, whipped cream, and pecans. The Strawberry Shortcake Shooter rewarded our senses with a refreshing burst of fruity delightfulness.

You can’t talk about the art of barbeque without talking about the sauce. All good barbeque is enhanced with great sauce and all four of Sonny’s BBQ sauces are gluten free. The Sizzlin’ Sauce is smoky and sweet with a subtle hint of heat. Brown sugar and molasses bring the sweet; and cayenne and chipotle peppers bring the heat. For those who like their sauce on the sweeter side, Sonny’s BBQ’s Sweet Sauce would be your favorite pick. This wildly popular, always sold-out sauce is a sweet, tangy, tomato-based BBQ sauce that’s infused with brown sugar, vinegar, and a blend of spices. Sounds like a winner. Like some heat with your meat? Then experience the fiery kick with the tomato-based Smokin’ Sauce with aged cayenne, red jalapeno, and habanero peppers. The Original Sauce is Sonny’s BBQ’s newest addition and it’s a traditional sauce with sultry rich molasses and brown sugar.

The uniformed wait staff impressed us with their attentiveness and their knowledge of the ingredients used in the sauces and menu items. Their cheerful disposition and smiling faces brought an uplifting vibe to a happy occasion. Sonny’s BBQ has elevated the art of barbeque to one that speaks to all. The sweet and spicy flavors, the smoky oak aroma, the quality of juicy meat that comes from a slow smoke cooking technique, will all seduce you into falling in love with traditional Southern-Style barbeque cuisine forever.

We were treated to a very unique souvenir to take home that evening—a caricature portrait of each guest drawn by illustrator Michael James White. Professor White teaches at The Ringling College of Art. As a gesture of thanks for celebrating her special day with her, Kim created fashionable party favors for her guests—wine bottles encrusted with jewel-tone sparkles and rhinestones, and embellished with feathers and lace. Each original work of art by Kim was topped with a fancy hat.

As the evening’s festivities came to a close, we left the mirth at iHeart Media and walked into the coolness of the night. Our hearts, however, will forever remain warm by the generosity of the birthday girl. Our taste buds, still sizzling with lingering heady flavors of BBQ spices, now wait with great anticipation for the next event where Sonny’s Southern-Style BBQ will once again be featured as the highlight of the day.

Contact Sonny’s BBQ Catering Department at
(941) 993-0461
Catering@SouthWestBBQ.net
www.southwestbbq.net

Click HERE to download a PDF of the story.

Copyright © 2018 REAL Exclusive Magazine www.getrealexclusive.com
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