Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Taste of Chicago Just Kicked It Up a Notch

I'm all about the Tast of Chicago, but it's usually the same vendor every year. Not that I don't love O'Brien's or Lou Malnati's, but how many times can you pay for a 'taste portion' of deep dish with $5 worth of tickets?

The Chicago Park District - the new Taste owners - put out their list of vendors for this year's event, and I'm both impressed and excited! In addition to the old favs, you'll see Alhambra Palace, Banana Leaf Restaurant, Beggars Pizza, Chicago Sweet Connection Bakery, The Fudge Pot, Lao Sze Chuan, Loving Hut, Parrot Cage Restaurant, Ryba’s Fudge Shops, Smoke Daddy, Starfruit CafĂ© and Texas de Brazil. And if you want to start "Tasting" early, you can visit the participating restaurants from May 28 - 30 and get special discounts at each location.

Via Taste of Chicaog photo gallery
It seems that the Chicago Park District has the right idea with their Taste improvements. Check out a few of the highlights:

 - Each vendor will now offer two "Taste Of" portions for $2 or less. (For non-Taste goers, a taste portion is a smaller and cheaper portion of food the restaurant offers.)

 - If you're trying to eat healty at the Taste (which is the dumbest idea I've ever heard) keep an eye out for the Humana Healthier Choices green apple icon on the vendors' menus. It indicates healtheir food choices.

 - Instead of waiting in the loooonnnnngggg line to get your food tickets, you can buy them in advanced at Dominick's when you show your Frest Values Card. Tickets will be sold in strips of 12 for $8, but if you buy them at Dominick's from June 16 - 23 they're $6 per strip.

 - There will be more Taste parking lots available at a discounted rate, and you can take the free trolley from the lots to the event. Although if you can use public transporation, I definitely would.

Are you going to the Taste of Chicago this year? Have you gone before? What's your favorite vendor?

Photo from Wee Windy City


  1. oh yum! i've actually never gone to this, but i'm thinking now i def need to go this year!


  2. I did the taste my first summer living here, and once was enough for me! I'd rather spend the money on a good dinner out somewhere. We did go after work, mid-week, which is the least crazy time to go. I'm looking forward to this type of summer stuff!

  3. i LOVE the taste of chicago! h and i have gone for the past two years, we always buy tickets in advance. we're already planning what day to go this year! cant wait :) xoxo jillian:: cornflake dreams

  4. I haven't been to the taste of chicago in YEARS. but, I'm determined to go this year. Thanks for the tip about buying tickets in advance - I don't think I would have thought of that!

  5. Thank GOD you can buy your tix in advance. The one time I went really put me off because of that. It might actually be worth my while now!

  6. Thanks for the tip about buying tix early! I love trying new restaurants, but usually can't mentally deal with the huge crowds of people at the Taste. Being able to avoid the ticket lines and having cheaper tasting options may be worth giving the Taste another shot!

  7. I went to Taste of Chicago when I was pregnant years ago and had the best time. Loved it!