Chicago Gourmet is one of the best annual events in the city – especially for food and wine lovers. Chicago Gourmet showcases more than 190 of Chicago’s finest restaurants and chefs, as well as hundreds of renowned vintners, spirit makers, and premium breweries from around the world.
Held in iconic Millennium Park, guests enjoy live cooking demonstrations, expert seminars, tastings, book signings, and more.
During Chicago Gourmet, Millennium Park is broken down into a series of tents and pavilions which houses all of the activity.
The stages host cooking demonstrations and seminars, and the food is located in tents around the perimeter of the park, and are divided into categories such as the Mexico Tasting Pavilion, Big Green Egg Tasting Pavilion, Italian Invasion Tasting Pavilion, and the Dessert Tasting Pavilion.
In the middle of the park are the wine and spirits, with this year’s offerings coming from Joseph Phelps Vineyards, Silver Oak, Chopin Vodka, Crafthouse Cocktails, and more.
Chicago Gourmet kicked off with a Champagne toast and a welcome by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and President & CEO of the Illinois Restaurant Association, Sam Toia, in addition to celebrity chefs Rick Bayless, Emeril Lagasse, Carlos Gaytan, and others.
Favorite bites were from the Supreme Lobster & Seafood Tasting Pavilion, as well as the Four Corners Tavern Group. Why no one has ever thought of waffled cheese with marinara sauce is beyond me, but I am so glad that I made up for lost time by consuming tons of them!
The weather was perfect and everyone in the crowd was convivial, even while sometimes waiting in long line at food tents.
The amount of tastings, seminars, and demos can be overwhelming, so planning in advance is highly encouraged in order to take advantage of all of the offerings.
Chicago Gourmet is a great event to attend with a group of friends, or even by yourself. Trust me, you will make a lot of friends by the end of the day after wining and dining with them!
The location in Millennium Park with the gorgeous views of the city skyline, and the amount of tastings offered make the ticket price well worth it.
Did you attend Chicago Gourmet? What were some of your favorites?
While I attended on a media pass, all opinions expressed herein are my own.