As I promised last year, I was going to let you all know about some food event opportunities BEFORE they happen in case you were interested in attending.

With that said, I wanted to remind you that Chicago Gourmet is in less than two weeks and tickets are still available.  This is a great event for Chicagoans (obviously) but I encourage my small town readers to plan a trip to the city for this one!  You won’t regret it!  (Or ever forget it!)

Chicago Gourmet is special to me because it was my first BIG gourmet event and it introduced me to so many fabulous restaurants in Chicago.  I am excited to be attending again and wanted to offer a “GOURMET” acronym as a guide for my first time attendees.


G IS FOR GASTRONOMY.  The definition of Gastronomy is “the practice or art of choosing, cooking and eating good food.”  I think the definition is perfect for Chicago Gourmet with the exception of replacing the word “good” with “phenomenal.”

The chefs at this event do an amazing job of creating bite size masterpieces.  (I could have also said the “G” is for gluttony but you don’t have to eat EVERYTHING but you can have fun trying!)

O is for OBSERVATION.  Besides the amazing food, Chicago Gourmet offers exciting cooking demonstrations, wine seminars and book signings.  I loved my time last year observing some of Chicago’s (and the country’s) best chefs in action.

U is for UNDERSTANDING.  There are a lot of people at this event but it never felt “crowded.”  Understand if there are lines here and there for some of the tents.  The chefs are going to make sure that the last dish served is as wonderful as the first.

R is for RELAX.  The setting for Chicago Gourmet is beautiful Millennium Park.  Take it all in as you enjoy your food and drinks.

M is for MINGLE.  One of my favorite memories from last year was the people.  We were all there because we LOVE food.  I had delightful conversations with people in line excited to see what was in store with the next bite.   And if you are sitting at a table, don’t be afraid to sit with a stranger.  You never know if you may leave with a new friend.

E is for ELASTIC.  The elastic needs to be in your pants or skirt!!!!   This is not the event you want to wear your tightest pair of slacks or belt on the last notch.  Think of this as Thanksgiving dinner, you need some breathing room.  (Luckily I never saw anyone doing the classic “uncle move” of unzipping his pants.)

T is for TRAVEL.  Whether you are a small towner like myself or a resident Chicagoan, travel safely.  Chicago Gourmet has a wonderful webpage with public transportation and taxi service information.  And if you are not local, designate a driver or so you can guarantee that you make it back next year.

I am officially counting the days down until Chicago Gourmet.  I hope that you can make it but if not….I’ll be writing about it in a couple of weeks!!