There’s been a lot about seafood in foodie news lately – National Oyster Day, National Lobster Day, Oyster Shucking Festivals, and more. Well, here’s something else to add to the buzz: Chicago’s first Great American Lobster Fest on August 16th and 17th at Navy Pier. Over 25 bands will provide live music over the course of the weekend, including Local H and Nine Days. The festival takes place on the same weekend as Chicago’s Annual Air & Water Show – even more reason why you should go. Fresh live lobsters will be flown in daily from Boston by the New England Seafood Company. Tickets to the festival can be purchased here. Advance tickets range between $10 and $25, while day-of prices are from $15 to $35. Not a seafood person? Have picky kids? No worries – they have tons of non-seafood items to choose from. Check out the menu here. The festival will have fireworks, carnival games, and plenty for you to drink.
There’s a “National ____ Day” for just about everything on the planet. While I agree it’s getting a little out of hand, I’m partial to tomorrow’s event, which happens to be National Oyster Day, and Hugo’s Frog Bar & Fish House and Tavern on Rush have some great ways to celebrate the delicacy. Hugo’s (Chicago and Naperville locations) will serve guests $1 oysters the whole day and will also offer a $15 fried oyster po’ boy sandwich with fried oysters and coleslaw on a tasty New England roll. Tavern on Rush will feature $1 oysters on the half shell, $2 stone oven baked oysters, and $10 fried oyster baskets. Not to mention the drink specials – get a $3 bottle of Guinness or a glass of $5 Costamolino Vermentino wine on Tuesday only.
The most hush-hush yet frou-frou dinner event you may have never heard of: Dîner en Blanc. With strict rules like seating arrangement and white attire, Dîner en Blanc may seem like something out of a movie, and that’s exactly the point. The whereabouts of the event are meant to be low-profile – that is, until hundreds of guests all dressed in white carrying picnic baskets, chairs, and tables converge at one undisclosed but very public outdoor location whereupon the event comes to life, leaving passersby in awe. This year, Chicago’s third installment of the annual event will take place on Thursday, August 21st. We don’t know where it will be, of course – participants won’t know until just hours before the dinner takes place. More than 1000 guests are expected to attend this year. Here’s the thing: the rules and restrictions are numerous. Read More
Let’s admit it, some Chicago food/neighborhood fests are overrated. Fiesta del Sol, however, is not. It’s long been the largest Latino festival in the Midwest. This year, Fiesta del Sol kicks off today and ends Sunday, taking place in the heart of Pilsen (1400 W. Cermak Rd). May St Cafe (1146 W. Cermak Rd.), one of Pilsen’s finest gems, is contributing to the festivities by creating a mini menu exclusively for festival days. The menu features empanadas, tacos de lechon (roast pig), fish tacos, Cubanos, and a signature May Street mini burger with avocado crema and chihuahua cheese. Local DJs will be performing on May Street’s patio each day of the festival. And don’t forget the tropical drink specials, sangria, fresh margaritas, and cold Mexican beer to beat the heat. If you’re not going to Lollapalooza, this is a great alternative.
To learn more about Fiesta del Sol, featured restaurants, music lineup, and more, click here.
One of Chicago’s most anticipated culinary events - The Taste of the Nation - is headed back on Wednesday, August 13th at Navy Pier in the Grand Ballroom (600 E Grand Ave). More than 85 renowned chefs and mixologists from all over Chicago will participate in one of the largest food-focused events in the city, now in its 26th year. All proceeds from the event will go toward the Share Our Strength’s “No Kid Hungry” Campaign, which seeks to end childhood hunger across America. Learn more about the organization here.
It’s easy to buy a bunch of seasonal ingredients at the Farmer’s Market; the hard part is often knowing how to cook them. The Green City Market is here to help. This month, GCM is out with the Green City Market Cookbook, featuring recipes that use local ingredients from the market. The cookbook includes 88 recipes, from chefs and farmers alike, which were tested and reviewed by volunteers. The book represents everything local: local ingredients, local chefs, even photographs by a local photographer.
The cookbook can be purchased here.