CHICAGO GOURMET 2016

As I sip my vanilla latte on this gloomy, rainy Sunday afternoon, I think back to a hot and sunny day, filled with delicious wine and food. Am I dreaming? No. I’m just reminiscing about this year’s CHICAGO GOURMET.

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It’s easily my favorite event of the year for several reasons: it’s held in the gorgeous Millennium Park, every year we’ve enjoyed sunny weather, the food is delicious, the wine never stops flowing, and everyone in attendance has a great time with each other. It was definitely a hot one last Sunday, when thousands of foodies and fans alike gathered to enjoy the day’s festivities.

To balance out the fact that my first sip of the day would be wine, at noon, my first bite of the day was AVOCADO TOAST from 4CornersSteakBar. Yes, I’m an avocado toast fanatic (and have been since I was a child), and this one hit the spot. It made me feel somewhat healthy, while eyeing my next bite. 🙂

AVOCADO TOAST – STEAKBAR

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One our way to the Gibson’s tent, we passed by the Japanese Wagyu tent where we practically floated towards the aroma of grilled wagyu. The simple preparation highlighted the quality of the beef and we could’ve easily gone back for seconds. Definitely a treat, and definitely delicious.

WAGYU BEEF

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We then made it to the Gibson’s tent where we thoroughly enjoyed the crab bisque and filet sliders they served. Gibson’s always seasons their steaks SO well, and this little filet slider was perfectly seasoned as well. I’m usually heavy on the salt, and it was just perfect for me.

CRAB BISQUE & FILET SLIDERS – GIBSON’S

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Some of the other bites we enjoyed were from the International Tasting Pavilion, where my favorite was the corned beef!

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In the blazing heat, the Paloma at the Tequila Cazadores booth was so refreshing! It was a pleasure to meet Manny Hinjosa, Brand Ambassador, and chat about the boyfriend’s Molotov show as well. It’s awesome how food and music bring people together – we were instant friends!

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There was a new tent this year – the NFL Homegating tent, hosted by Eddie Jackson. If you watch the FoodNetwork or Master Chef, you know Eddie Jackson. He was a fan favorite, and my vote for FoodNetwork Star. He is as nice in person as he seemed on TV, and it was fun to create sliders for our NFL teams in the Homegating tent. There was even a Slider Cam, to capture your slider creation and instantly share on social media.

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slidercam

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If you ask the boyfriend what his favorite bite of the day was, he would say the Sprinkles Cupcake from the 4Corners table. I swear he had about six of those little things! Okay okay, the sis and I enjoyed them too 🙂

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Towards the end of the afternoon, we joined the Hennessy: 250 Years of History in Every Glass Seminar, led by Kevin Canchola and Natalia Cardenas, where we learned all about the brand, the different pours and how to drink each. #NeverStopNeverSettle

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After many glasses of wine and other spirits, many bites of food, and 4 hours in the sun, we exited Millennium Park with full tummies and happy hearts.

Thank you, and well done, to the Isabelli team!

{Also thank you to Brodeur Partners and my friend, Chef Ryan McCaskey for the passes!}

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