First Bites Bash

First Bites Bash is the official kick-off event for Chicago Restaurant Week, produced by Choose Chicago. On January 26, 2017, the magnificent Aon Grand Ballroom at Navy Pier featured over 60 of Chicago's most celebrated chefs and restaurants serving up savory and sweet food tastings along with beer, wine and spirits. Chef/Partner Sarah Grueneberg of Monteverde Restaurant & Pastificio hosted the 2017 event, from which a portion of the proceeds benefited Greater Chicago Food Depository. View photos from the 2017 event, and stay tuned for information on First Bites Bash 2018!
Restaurant Week Sponsors


Host, First Bites Bash 2017
Since her childhood cooking with her grandparents on their ranch in Victoria, Texas, Sarah Grueneberg knew she was destined to work in the culinary world. Originally from Houston, Grueneberg moved to Chicago in 2005 to join the team at the award-winning Spiaggia under the leadership of Tony Mantuano. Beginning as a line cook, she quickly rose the ranks to Chef di Cucina in 2008 and then Executive Chef in 2010. During her tenure as Executive Chef, Spiaggia was awarded one Michelin Star for three consecutive years.
The Greater Chicago Food Depository, Chicago’s food bank, is a nonprofit food distribution and training center providing food for hungry people while striving to end hunger in our community. The Food Depository, founded in 1979, makes a daily impact across Cook County with a network of 650 pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, mobile programs, children’s programs, older adult programs and innovative responses that address the root causes of hunger. Last year, the Food Depository distributed 70 million pounds of shelf-stable food, fresh produce, dairy products and meat, the equivalent of 160,000 meals every day.




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Official Partner of First Bites Bash