Annual Taste of Chicago food festival makes its 2019 return

Taste of Chicago

The world’s largest food festival is set to return to Chicago this month with more than 80 eateries taking part.

The 39th Annual Taste of Chicago festival will take place July 10-14 in Grant Park.

36 new vendors will join in the fun with another 24 pop-ups and 17 food trucks.

Out of the many things to do in Chicago, this festival is up there on the list.

The free event will welcome a ‘Taste Oasis’ lounge experience to watch live music, various theatre acts, and family fun such as Eli’s Cheesecake Birthday Celebration.

More than forty participants will serve food for the full five days, including Churro Factory, Ukai Japanese Restaurant, and Yum Dum.

Mayor Emanuel said: “Taste of Chicago is a summer staple and this year’s music lineup will be more vibrant and diverse than ever.

“With our combination of local, national and international talent, Chicago’s incredible culinary and musical culture will be on full display in Grant Park, and promises to be our most successful season yet.”

Taste of Chicago is free to attend, and food and beverage tickets will be sold on site in strips of 14 tickets for $10.

Each vendor will offer small portions of their food for between 1 and 6 tickets, working out to be $3 or less.

A range of vegan and gluten-free items will be available.

The festival has been around every summer since 1980, hosted at Chicago’s Grant Park on the city’s lakefront.

A variety of beverage venues will also be on site, including the CH Vodka Cocktail Lounge, the city’s largest pop-up bar, the Goose Island Backyard Brewery, and the Stella Rosa Wine Garden.

This year’s music headliners include Courtney Barnett, De La Soul, India.Arie, Bomba Estéreo and The Strumbellas.

Seats on the lawn at the Petrillo Music Shell will be free, with seats ticketed. The headliner times are as follows: 

Wednesday, July 10: Sunflower Bean, Courtney Barnett 

Thursday, July 11: Cultura Profética, Bomba Estéreo

Friday, July 12: Taylor Bennett, De La Soul

Saturday, July 13: Joywave, lovelytheband, The Strumbellas

Sunday, July 14: Bilal, Meshell Ndegeocello, India.ArieWednesday, July 10: Sunflower Bean, Courtney Barnett 

Thursday, July 11: Cultura Profética, Bomba Estéreo

Friday, July 12: Taylor Bennett, De La Soul

Saturday, July 13: Joywave, lovelytheband, The Strumbellas

Sunday, July 14: Bilal, Meshell Ndegeocello, India.Arie

Demonstrations by local and national chefs such as Chef Mary Nguyen of Saigon Sisters will be held at the Lifeway Foods Taste Kitchen on Buckingham Fountain Plaza.

The Street Art & Graffiti Alley featuring live painting by local artists will showcase the immense creative work going on in the city, and the Stomping Grounds Chicago area will be home to performances by local dance companies. 

There are tonnes of great events on offer that you don’t want to miss.

Due to the huge scale of the event, various streets will be closed throughout the week. These are Columbus, from Monroe to Balbo and from Balbo to Roosevelt (Balbo remains open to traffic), Jackson, from Michigan to Lake Shore Drive, and Congress, from Columbus to Congress Parkway semi-circle.

Public transport is easy to operate to reach the festival, and there is parking available near the Millenium Garages.

Marina Turea

Marina has been calling Chicago home since 2007. She's a world traveler and an avid reader.

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