Chicago Gourmet weekend is now over and I have to say, it was perfect. The weather was amazing (last year was over 95 degrees) and being sober, I was really on the hunt for good food.
Chicago Gourmet is a foodie and wine event that Bon Appetit magazine sponsors every year at Millennium Park. It brings together renowned chefs, restaurants, wine and spirits. There are tastings, book signings, cooking demos, and wine and cocktail seminars throughout the event. It is truly a “foodie” experience.
This year extra special because I got invited to a pre-party with COUNTRY Financial with a demo from Chef Tony Priolo from Piccolo Sogno, which is literally my top 5 favorite restaurants in Chicago. They sponsored the Beer, Bourbon, and BBQ tent, which was one of the best parts. Live music, BBQ, cocktails, and lot’s of photo opportunities.
I will start with some of the misses this year. There really weren’t many, but there was a Cadillac and Do Rite Donuts station where you could make your own donut. Cool right? There was a donut wall and lot’s a Instagrammable opportunities with a Cadillac and donut wall, so you can imagine how long the lines were. UP TO TWO HOURS! No thanks. I can get Do Rite donuts any time, that seemed excessive. In general the lines are long, (actually better this year than last year), but 2 hours is a waste of time.
Another miss was the crab dish from the seafood tent. The seafood tent is known for having ridiculous long lines, so many people do this immediately upon arrival. Which Manny and I did. We had a crab dish from Promontory that was just ok, good, but not worth the long line. Although we did have a very good shrimp ceviche, so it balanced out.
As for the hits, so so so many! I really liked the 12 hour smoked brisket from Old Crow Smoke House with a sriracha sauce that was amazing. I had never eaten there and was really impressed with it. Simple, but worth going back the next day for it. They do have it in the restaurant, so I would love to try it there. I posted about it on Instagram here.
Another favorite was the warm butter cake from Mastro’s. I guess they are known for it, but I had never had it. Now I know why it’s what they are known for. It’s incredible. It is a warm, gooey cake batter topped with bacon. Sweet and savory at its finest.
The two other tents I loved were the Mexico and Thai tent. On Saturday, the Mexico tent had all chefs from Guadalajara, which I thought was cool. The shrimp ceviche in a green salsa was my favorite. There was a tuna tartare, but it was raw and I had to skip it, but heard many good things about it.
In the Thai tent, there was a spicy thai salad with an edible banana leaf. I don’t think I have ever eaten one before, it was delicious. I would love to try it again somewhere.
Lastly, this cake pop from Paramount Events was one of my highlights of the whole weekend. So good and was my substitute to wine! Ha. I also took one home for Noah, so you know it was that good 🙂
Overall, this year was great and I am thankful to have gone both days. You can see my both photos here and here on Instagram. And while you are there, might as well hit the follow button to follow along on all my adventures. 🙂 Anyone else want to go together next year?! I would love to go again!
As always, thanks for following along and you can sign up for weekly emails here.
Until next time,