New offerings include Camp DoorDash, 36 New Eateries, Taste Oasis Concert Viewing Area, Silent Disco, Theatre Garden, The Mermaid Diva Show at Buckingham Fountain, Taste Playground and Ferris Wheel, Farm to Festival and much more!
The 39th Annual Taste of Chicago presented by DoorDash is July 10–14 in Grant Park and will feature new elements and returning favorites that make the world’s largest free-admission food festival a summertime tradition. Open from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, the 39th Taste will feature new offerings including Camp DoorDash, 36 new eateries, the Taste Oasis concert viewing area, Silent Disco, the Theatre Garden, The Mermaid Diva Show at Buckingham Fountain, the Taste Playground and Ferris Wheel and much more. Visit TasteofChicago.us for festival details, including a complete list eateries and menu items.
This year Taste of Chicago is excited to welcome new presenting sponsor DoorDash, the largest and fastest growing on-demand destination for door-to-door delivery service. Available in more than 4,000 cities in the United States and Canada, DoorDash connects Chicagoans and North Americans with their favorite stores and restaurants, including many of this year’s Taste of Chicago participants.
Located at the south end of the festival on the east side of Columbus Drive, Camp DoorDash will offer summer camp nostalgia that includes family-friendly games, a cool place to relax and foodie-inspired fun. Open to everyone passing by, the DoorDash experience will inspire memories of summer camp, outfitted with premium tents (including AC!), kid-friendly activities, a special photo booth, lawn games, and comfortable lounge spaces to enjoy the lakefront breeze and festival eats. Plus, DoorDash will offer a face painting station, where visitors can select a design from their favorite summer-inspired foods.
Showcasing Chicago’s diverse culinary scene, this year’s list of 80 eateries include 40 five-day participants, 24 pop-ups and 16 food trucks. Taste-goers will enjoy an endless variety of more than 300 menu items to suit every palate. New for 2019, Taste of Chicago food and beverage tickets can also be purchased in advance at TasteofChicago.us. The food and beverage tickets are $10 for 14, available at on-site or online.
The Lifeway Foods Taste Kitchen dishes up a full menu of cooking demonstrations by local and national chefs including Chef Mary Nguyen of Saigon Sisters, Chef Martial Noguier of Bistronomic, Chef Michael Sheerin of Taureaux Tavern and Chef Giancarlo Valera of Tanta Chicago. Lifeway Foods, featuring chef Maisha Wynn will give demonstrations on Friday at 11:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Each day of the Taste will feature a different culinary theme: Best Lists, City Streets, Healthy Eating and Spicy Hot, leading up to the Mac N Cheese Smackdown on Sunday.
The United States Army will set up their mess hall and showcase culinary career opportunities during the Taste of Chicago. Chefs from the Fort Lee Culinary Center of Excellence will give cooking demonstrations at noon, 3 p.m. and 6 p.m every day. On Saturday, July 13, at 3 p.m., world-renowned Chef Robert Irvine, celebrity chef and host of Food Network’s “Restaurant Impossible,” will go head-to-head with Army personnel in a cook-off for a panel of celebrity judges.
Taste of Chicago presents a diverse mix of chart-topping national and international acts at the Petrillo Music Shell, including Courtney Barnett, Bomba Estéreo, Cultura Profética, De La Soul, The Strumbellas, lovelytheband and India Arie, with opening performances by Sunflower Bean, Taylor Bennett, Joywave, Meshell Ndegeocello and Bilal.
For all Petrillo concerts, seating tickets are $25 for general admission and $50 for premium seating. New this year, the Taste Oasis offers a prime concert viewing experience in a lounge setting complete with a private cash bar, complimentary bottled water, appetizers and more from 3 to 9 p.m. at the Petrillo Music Shell. Limited tickets are available for $50. As always, the lawn viewing is free. Concerts start at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets for the seating area at the Petrillo Music Shell are on sale now at TasteofChicago.us.
The Goose Island Stage will also feature five days of free performances by the best of Chicago’s local music scene.
As part of the Year of Chicago Theatre, through a generous grant from the Bayless Family Foundation, the Theatre Garden at Taste of Chicago will showcase local theater talent with performances by the world-renowned Second City, Porchlight Music Theatre and other sketch and improv groups. The area highlights family performances early in the day along with interactive workshops and performances organized by Pocket Con, an annual convention for Chicago youth that highlights comics and illustration work by diverse artists. The Theatre Garden’s artistic elements were designed by John Preus in a piece called Holding Patterns. Theatre Garden programming takes place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Additionally, Chicago’s very own Kit Kat Lounge and Supper Club presents The Mermaid Diva Show on the west side of Buckingham Fountain each day at 3 p.m.
Each evening, Chicago Summer Dance, the largest annual outdoor live music and dancing series, opens at Buckingham Fountain Plaza with free dance lessons and live music from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Earlier in the day, everyone is invited to test out the dance floor at a Silent Disco powered by HUSH concerts. Participants get a set of headphones and dance along to tunes from one of two DJs spinning different genres.
The Taste Playground on the west side of Columbus Drive offers fun for all ages, including the return of the Taste of Chicago Ferris Wheel and an inflatables area for children. Tickets for rides will be available for purchase on site.
Visit the Farm to Festival area for horticulture fun and education for all ages from 811 Chicago and the Department of Planning. Daily highlights include instruction on planting pollinator, rain and raised-bed gardens, inspiring tips for small space and “she shed” designs and more. For children, Illinois Master Gardeners hosts its Bug Zoo with rare species, such as the Rosie Haired Tarantula and Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches, and the Chicago Department of Transportations’ 811 Chicago offers a Dign’ for Prizes garden, along with safety tips on what to know before digging. New this year are a spectacular garden display, a nature play area presented by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County and an exhibit of hydroponic grow towers from Southside Occupational Academy.
Taste of Chicago is presented by DoorDash and produced by the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events in coordination with the Illinois Restaurant Association, which manages food and beverage operations. The festival is sponsored in part by CH Vodka, Chicago Transit Authority, Chicago Tribune, CLTV-Chicagoland’s Television, Communications Direct, Eli’s Cheesecake, Goose Island Beer Company, IL Lottery, Lifeway Foods, Pepsi, Riboli Family Wines, Shoreline Sightseeing, Southwest Airlines and WGN-Television.
The 39th Annual Taste of Chicago is July 10–14 in Grant Park with hours 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Wednesday–Friday, and 10 a.m.–9 p.m., Saturday and Sunday. For more information on the FREE-admission festival, visit TasteofChicago.us. To plan your trip to Chicago, visit choosechicago.com. Join the conversation on Facebook at Taste of Chicago and follow us on Twitter @TasteofChi and Instagram @ChicagoDCASE (#TasteofChicago).
DoorDash is a technology company that connects customers with their favorite local and national businesses in over 4,000 cities in all 50 states across the United States and in Canada. Founded in 2013, DoorDash empowers merchants to grow their businesses by offering on-demand delivery, data-driven insights and better in-store efficiency, providing delightful experiences from door to door. DoorDash Drive is the last-mile logistics platform that powers direct delivery for any business. By building the last-mile delivery infrastructure for local cities, DoorDash is bringing communities closer, one doorstep at a time. Read more on the DoorDash blog or at doordash.com
Illinois Restaurant Association
Founded in 1914, the Illinois Restaurant Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting, protecting, educating and improving the restaurant industry in Illinois. The Association manages the food and beverage portion of Taste of Chicago for the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. Visit illinoisrestaurants.org and follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events
The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) is dedicated to enriching Chicago’s artistic vitality and cultural vibrancy. This includes fostering the development of Chicago’s non-profit arts sector, independent working artists and for-profit arts businesses; providing a framework to guide the City’s future cultural and economic growth, via the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan; marketing the City’s cultural assets to a worldwide audience; and presenting high-quality, free and affordable cultural programs for residents and visitors.