Best Food Outside of Chicago’s Restaurants

When the summer arrives these events offer better food than many restaurants in other cities across the country.

Galdones Photography/COCHON 555
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In Chicago good food isn’t restricted to restaurants. When the summer arrives these events offer better food than many restaurants in other cities across the country.

Swine and Dine

2015 Cochon 555 Chicago

2015 Cochon 555 Chicago

It’s likely that you might not have known that all pigs aren’t the same. In fact there are a breed of pigs that can be traced back to before industrial farming, and they’re known as heritage pigs. Cochon 555 is not only a culinary competition but a delicious opportunity to learn all about heritage hogs while dining on them. Five chefs cook over 2,000 pounds of pork—leaving no piece behind—all paired with wine, craft beer, and cocktails. In addition to the mouthwatering pork, drinks, and notable judges, guests will enjoy pop-up experiences every 20 minutes featuring ramen and tartare bars, signature desserts, sponsored bites and drinks, and more.

Baconfest Chicago maple bacon long John

Glazed and Infused maple bacon long John at Baconfest 2015. Photo by Anne Petersen.

If 2,000 pounds of heritage pigs aren’t enough you’re in luck because Baconfest Chicago is back. It is cured-meat madness as over 100 chefs create delicious bacon concoctions that last year included dishes like tropical pork belly satay, bacon and wild boar arepas, bacon and fudge ice cream, among other plates.

Farmer’s Markets

Green City Market

Green City Market

If for some reason you need some variety then don’t miss out on Green City Market. Yes, visiting farmer’s markets helps the struggling farmer but once you try a crepe, smoothie, fresh blueberries, and pasta at Green City Market you’ll realize the farmers are helping your struggling palate. The food sold here is so good that many of Chicago’s greatest chefs and restaurants get ingredients from the market. You can even catch some of these chefs giving cooking demonstrations at the market like chef Damarr Brown of MK.

Wash it All Down

If you’re feeling thirsty then enjoy the outdoors with a fresh brew at the Chicago Beer Classic. Held on Soldier Field, over 75 breweries will offer their craft brews while attendees enjoy live music, food, and more. Experience some of Chicago’s local breweries like Revolution Brewing, Half Acre Beer Company, Lagunitas Brewing Company, and others.

Pig Skin

Take a break from all the food and experience the return of the NFL Draft. With over 200,000 people attending the festivities at Draft Town in Grant Park during the 2015 NFL Draft, the first one outside of New York in decades, the city and the NFL are looking to make this year’s draft even bigger and better. Expect more interactive events, player meet and greets, food, drinks, and the new class of NFL rookies.


Written By Joel Mora

Joel Mora is editor at Concierge Preferred. Born and raised in Miami, Fl., Joel has slowly ate, drank, and explored his way up north refining all his senses to prepare for the stampede of delicious dining, notorious nightlife, stellar shopping, and captivating culture that calls Chicago home. In the wild he’ll be the red-bearded Cuban with a Lagunitas IPA in his hand.

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