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Courtesy of Xiamen

Our food nerd wet dream has officially begun. This fall, the city’s annual event line up might actually blow your mind. Well, maybe not your mind, but certainly your waistline is a GONER. Prepare to eat, drink and eat more…food porn galore. We’ll love every minute of it and thinking you will too.

Since there’s oh so many edible extravaganzas this fall, we did the dirty for you. Inside this post, the DIRT Team rounds up 7 of Chicago’s not to miss annual food festivals, events, + fiestas.

Chicago Gourmet Favorite Chocolate Cake by Barry Callebaut

Inside: Chris Pandel, Stephanie Izard, Mindy Segal, Graham Elliot, Chicago Gourmet, Hamburger Hop, Harris Theater Rooftop, Cultivate Chicago, Chipotle, Family Farmed, Paul Kahan, Tony Mantuano, Bruce Sherman, Paul Virant, Richard Blais, Michael Chiarello, Jonathan Waxman, Chicago magazine, Chicago’s Table, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Big Star, Davanti Enoteca, The Florentine, Longman & Eagle, Sable Kitchen & Bar, Second Annual Food Film Festival, New York Food Festival, Chicago’s Gateway Green, Green Tie Ball, A. Finkl & Sons, Return to Emerald City, Supreme Lobster Chef Challenge, Royster with Oyster, Shaw’s Crab House, Adam Richman, Man V Food

Delicious DIRT’s Fall Food Event Extravaganza Roundup

Courtesy of Eianz SEQ

9/17  Did you go green? This year’s Green Tie Ball boasted 65 Restaurants, 4 food trucks, and a partridge and a pear tree. Chicago’s Gateway Green hosted the 20th annual Green Tie Ball. This event truly helps keep Chicago green + serene. This year’s theme = The Return to Emerald City. We filled our pumpkin chariot with food, drinks + a huge party. Stay tuned for a full report on Delicious DIRT. Hint: our fave was the Bull + Bear BURGER. Heavenly. WE ate 6 of them! Hey, they were mini’s… For now, we hope you raised your glasses, loosened your belts, and helped keep Chicago sustainable.

Kouzina 2010 by

9/21- 9/23 Get Everyone to the Greek! Join intellectuals, socialites, philanthropists and straight up food nerds at National Hellenic Museum’s Kouzina dedicated to showcasing culinary + cultural awesomeness of The Mediterranean culture. 9/21 entails sampling + tasting from Chicago’s trendiest most progressive varieties in Greek & Mediterranean foods + wines. On 9/22 Food Network star David Schneider, mastermind behind Taxim, serves a 4 course, 5 star meal paired with grandiose Greek wines as Culinary Institute of America Chairman Bill Anton wins his inaugural Cultural Icon Award. Food, wine, book signings, cooking demos, & many Greek market place delicacies are sure to leave you satiated. $200 for all 3 days, 1 day pass is $100. Nature Hellenic Museum 333 S Halsted

Photograph by Andrew Stamm

9/23 – 9/25 One of Chicago’s biggest and most anticipated culinary events, Chicago Gourmet, returns with weekend filled with chefs + fabulous food!
Hamburger Hop kick starts the weekend event from 6 – 9 pm as many of our friends & favorite chefs battle it out for best burger. Take those burgers down in true Chicago fashion at the Harris Theater Rooftop.  Saturday & Sunday are filled with an insane line up of live cooking demonstrations, seminars, tastings, speakers, classes + more.  Hundreds of our favorite chefs participate in Chicago Gourmet and then some (hottie Bannos JR, Izard (girl crush), Bayless, Priolo, Hogan, Poli, and oh so many more). You’ll get your gourmet on hardcore with the multitude of food, demos, exhibitions and classes. Ticket prices vary depending on the events.  201 E. Randolph St.

Chicago Gourmet 2010 Courtesy of Deja Views USA

10/1 Cultivate Chicago = a FREE food filled festival that brings together eats, farmers, chefs, thought leaders (interesante), and musicians in the heart of Chicago’s Lincoln Park. Chipotle sponsors this free event + sells crafted dishes specifically for the day –> proceeds going to an org we LOVE = Chicago chefs Paul Kahan, Tony Mantuano, Bruce Sherman, and Paul Virant will be there in addition to Richard Blais, Michael Chiarello, and Jonathan Waxman. Perfect fall Saturday in the LP.

Courtesy of 4 BP Blogspot

10/10 – 10/14  The World Is Officially Your Royster. Another of our FAVORITE festivals is Shaw’s Royster with Oyster. Literally awesome mind-blowing lobster rolls, oyster po boys and food for the books! Slurp up! You must add Royster with Oyster to your autumn calendar. Join in the annual “Slurp-o-Rama” contest & hope Adam Richman from Man Vs Food doesn’t show up & shut the place down. This four day extravaganza in Shaw’s LONG TENT is non-stop action we savor: oyster suckin ‘n slurpin, lobster rolls you’ll moan while eating, live music, drinking, and outdoor activities. Shuck + swallow all the 50 cent oyster’s your little tummies can handle. 21 E Hubbard St, Chicago, IL.

Pork Belly w Asian BBQ sauce by Blue 13 @ Chicago Gourmet 2010

10/21 Another charitable food event is Chicago magazine’s Chicago’s Table which benefits research and therapies for stroke patients at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. From 6 – 9 pm indulge in food from some of our favorite Chicago restaurants and chefs such as Big Star, Davanti Enoteca, The Florentine, Longman & Eagle, and Sable Kitchen & Bar. $125  online. 435 East Illinois Street.

11/18-11/20 Taste what you see on the screen at the Second Annual Chicago Film Festival. This one of a kind event is THE film fest you certainly do NOT want to miss. Your senses will be overflowing! Details + line up soon to be released. Stay tuned. For now, get your New York Food Film Festival on October 13-16 at Tribeca Cinemas (hint Food Porn Party is surely to rock your world). Both fests feature food porn galore, movies you’ll feel all over + a ton of fun.

Michael Kornick @ Chicago Food Film Fest 2010

Hoosier Mama Pies @ Chicago Food Film Festival 2010


Molly Bett Kovler is a social worker turned social media strategist, editor, publicist, blogger and event executor. After graduating with a Master’s from The University of Chicago and working on the Obama ’08 campaign, MBK founded and runs Elevate Your Presence, LLC. EYP is a full service publicity, social media, editorial, management, and event execution firm defining excellence. MBK is highly connected & heavily embedded in the social web. Join EYP’s exclusive client list to Embrace. Evolve. Elevate – Elevate Your Presence. #DeliciousDIRT

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Delicious DIRT. Events

Inside: MK, Beethoven, Beethoven Festival, Chicago Urban Art Society, Homage Street Foods, Berghoff Oktoberfest, Guinness Oyster Fest, Green City Market, Slow Food $5 Challenge, Matt Eversman, Bistro Voltaire, Double Door, Raincoats, Big Star, Violet Hour, A Reasonable Facsimile Theatre Company, Classic TV-Re-Runs, Mary’s Attic, Hamburger Mary’s, Green Tie Ball, Chicago’s Gateway Green, A. Finkl & Sons

Pure #DeliciousDIRT by The Berghoff

9/13 WE LOVE A BARGAIN and so will you! Throughout the month of September, mk the restaurant is offering wines at half price every Tuesday night. mk is one of our FAVORITES. Treat yourself + dive into your Tuesday w/ a stellar meal with reduced price wine. 868 N. Franklin.

Sweet Potato Fries @ DMK. Have you been to mk sister burger joint DMK Burger Bar yet? Stay tuned to Delicious DIRT for a full roundup of that heaven.

9/14 – 9/18
Celebrate Beethoven at the Beethoven Festival sponsored by  Chicago Urban Art Society. Over 100 musicians perform over the five day festival and exhibits showcase commissioned portraits of Beethoven.  Watch short film premieres and installations. Tickets online. Of course there’s food –> Homage Street Foods. 2229 South Halsted.

9/14 – 9/16
  LONGEST BRAT? You know it. Enjoy Berghoff Oktoberfest Chicago style held at John C. Kluczynski Federal Plaza from 11 am to 9 pm both days. Indulge in classic German food, beer, and music. Not just the tip!  Don’t miss Berghoff’s attempt to beat the Midwest’s record of longest bratwurst = 45 feet on the 15th between 3 – 5 pm. Sales of this brat will go to the Mercy Home for Boys & Girls. Adams and Dearborn Streets.

Courtesy of Simply Recipes

9/16 – 9/17  NO AW SHUCKS here! One of our FAVORITES is back folks!  Guinness Oyster Fest in Roscoe Village returns this weekend.  Slurp down plenty of oysters and sip on brews you’ll savor while enjoying live music.  Roscoe is oh so beautiful and relaxing. Hit up Fixture while there -> handbags, jewels, sweetness for your home? YUP. The festival is from 6 – 10 pm on the 16th and 11 am – 10 pm on the 17th. Roscoe between Damen + Western.

Photo by Eianz SEQ

9/17  Go Green. Green Tie Ball = 65 Restaurants, 4 food trucks, and a partridge and pear tree. Chicago’s Gateway Green hosts the 20th annual Green Tie Ball Saturday. This event truly helps keep Chicago green + serene. This year’s theme = The Return to Emerald City. Your pumpkin chariot awaits with food, drinks and a huge party. Get lucky when the Supreme Lobster Chef Challenge features its final round of the Chicago Summer Chef Challenge Series at the Green Tie Ball. All attendees will be entered into a raffle to win a pair trip tickets to Hawaii and a chance to judge the challenge. Raise your glasses, raise money, and help keep Chicago green. Event held @ A. Finkl & Sons 2011 N. Southport Ave.

9/17  Up for a challenge? ALWAYS.  Green City Market’s Slow Food $5 Challenge is to create $5 meals from produce bought at the farmer’s market this Saturday. The feeling is that “slow food shouldn’t have to cost more than fast food.” Vendors sell $5 meals + give their secret recipes away from 7 am – 1 pm. 1790 N. Clark.

Chef Matt Eversman by William DeShaze

9/18 Matt Eversman is hosting a pop-up 5-course dinner at Bistro Voltaire from 6 – 9 pm.  Dinner costs $100 -> includes cocktail + wine pairings. Look forward to Southeast Asian influences in his dishes like the Tuna with Grilled Watermelon & Ginger and Duck Pho. Tickets can be purchased online. 226 W Chicago Avenue

No Monday night blues! Head to Double Door for the Raincoats Monday. Doors open at 8:30 pm and the show starts at 9:00 pm. Tickets are $20. Grab a quick bite at Big Star before the show and then head to Violet Hour for drinks afterwards. 1551 N. Damen Ave.

9/20 NOT A LOT BETTER THAN CLASSIC TV. Even the theme songs get us singing like no one’s listening and smiling from ear to ear.  Every 3rd Tuesday of the month,   A Reasonable Facsimile Theatre Company performs Classic TV-Re-Runs in which actors perform staged readings of classic TV shows.  Watch in Mary’s Attic above Hamburger Mary’s and eat eat eat while you laugh laugh laugh. 7:30 pm + tickets are $10. 5400 N. Clark Street.

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MISTURA.THE POWER OF FOOD. TRAILER. from Patricia Perez on Vimeo.

NEW YORK, NY — The NYC Food Film Festival returns to New York City for its 5th consecutive year offering a unique series of events where food and film lovers return to taste what they see on the screen. Yes, the NYC Food Film Festival is the only festival in the world that serves the food that is seen in the films. Produced in association with the James Beard Foundation and benefiting the Food Bank For New York City, the 2011 NYC Food Film Festival runs from October 13 through October 16, 2011 at Tribeca Cinemas.

The NYC Food Film Festival was created by George Motz, the documentary filmmaker behind the award-winning Hamburger America film, book and mobile app. and Chef Harry Hawk. Through documentaries, features and short films, the Festival presents the best, and the most memorable, of the world’s favorite and exotic foods on the big screen…and then serves them to the guests.

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Delicious DIRT. Events Week of Labor Day 2011

Inside: Colin Quinn: Long Story Short, Colin Quinn, Foodlife, Lettuce Entertain You, Book Club, The Whistler, Paul McGee, Toque: An Evening with Chicago’s Culinary Masters, Children’s Oncology Services (COSI), Dr. Sandy Goldberg, Michael Kornick, Chris Pandel, Stephanize Izard, Mindy Segal, Graham Elliot, 900 N Michigan Fashion’s Night Out, Mario Tricoci, Bloomingdales, David Burke’s Primehouse, Sixteen at Trump, prasion, Brad Goreski, Windy City Wine Festival, Slow Food Chicago, 3rd Annual Pig Roast, Goose Island, Slagel Farms, Rick Gresh, Rob Levitt, Intelligentsia, Chris Spear, Uncommon Ground, Shedd Aquarium, Community Discount Days, Eleven City Diner

9/6  WE LOVE LAUGHING. Who doesn’t? Chuckle it up as you check out  Colin Quinn: Long Story Short. The former SNL member rounds up of the history of the world in 75 minutes. The show runs through September 10th so get it while you can. Chow down at one of our faves Foodlife  before the show if you’re open to pig out. You know this Delicious DIRT go to =  Lettuce Entertain You’s upscale food court… Stay tuned as Foodease (their expansion) opens soon. Showtime is 730pm through 9/10 @ Broadway Playhouse. 175 E. Chestnut St.

9/7 Attend the alternative Book Club at The Whistler at 6:00 pm where bartender, Paul McGee, picks a book from his personal library and creates a monthly cocktail party based on the chosen book. Past events featured tropical tiki drinks based off the book Trader Vic’s Bartender’s Guide by Victor “Trader Vic” Bergeron. We dig. 2421 N. Milwaukee Ave.

9/8 Give back + eat eat eat at one of our favorite events of the year. Toque: An Evening with Chicago’s Culinary Masters at The Renaissance Hotel supports a truly important charity, Children’s Oncology Services (life changing important organization + past Invest For Kids recipient). Host Dr. Sandy Goldberg has the pleasure of welcoming popular Chicago chefs like Michael Kornick, who happens to be the chef coordinator, Chris Pandel, Stephanie Izard, Mindy Segal, and Graham Elliot.  This annual event is on our #MUST list. 630pm, $250 @ One W. Wacker Drive.

Brad Goreski Courtesy of Brad Goreski

9/8 Fame, Fashion & Flavor @ 900 North Michigan Shops. Hit up Bravo TV’s fashion guru Brad Goreski and CS Magazine on Fashion’s Night Out for the ultimate party in Chicago. Head to 900 N Michigan for Fashion’s Night Out and shop ‘til you drop from 6 – 9 pm. Head to Mario Tricoci and Bloomingdales for complimentary lash extensions, hair flair, and mini manicures. If shopping makes you hungry, nibble on bites from David Burke’s Primehouse, Sixteen at Trump and #FaveWeCrave -> Prasino. Big spenders -> $1,000 gets you access to TZAR’s VIP Lounge to hang out with Bravo TV’s Brad Goreski. 900 North Michigan Avenue.

9/9 – 9/10 Buckingham Fountain is the jam for 2011′s Windy City Wine Festival. Sample more than 270 wines, participate in wine seminars + cooking demonstrations and get down to live music. You’ll be drunk enough to dance like no one’s watching you (if you’re lucky). Listen up all you designated drivers, $10 allows you to play too… with two non-alcoholic drinks and all the same entertainment the winos drunkenly swallow.  Regular tickets are $27 advance, $35 at door. 500 S. Columbus Drive.

9/11  Slow Food Chicago presents their 3rd Annual Pig Roast at Goose Island featuring 5 chefs preparing different dishes using Slagel Farm pigs. Tons of our favorite chefs are involved in this annual Slow Food Chicago fundraiser (Rick Gresh + Rob Levitt + more). Down Goose Island beer and sober up with Intelligentsia coffee. Attention #vegetarians, look for Chris Spear of Uncommon Ground‘s meat free dishes you’ll devour. $60, 2-5pm, 1800 W. Fulton St.

9/12 – 9/13 FREE FREE FREE. Not a lot better than FREE.  Take advantage of the Shedd Aquarium Community Discount Days as Illinois residents receive free general admission… While in the area, dive into some solid deli food at Eleven City Diner. 1200 S. Lake Shore Drive.

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