Bacon fest 

The Lollapalooza of bacon events in Chicago, Baconfest is coming up April 25 and April 26, but before the meat-tastic festivities get underway there's a Bacon Month cocktail party and some general bacon info you need to know right this minute.

From hot dogs and burgers to sausage-strewn pizzas, Chicago is a meat-loving town. And nothing quite exemplifies our ardent love for meat quite like Baconfest, a two-day melee of all things pork belly, featuring a who's-who of restaurateurs and chefs cooking up a whimsical array of bacon creations for meat-obsessed attendees. Going into its sixth year on April 25 and 26, Baconfest has amassed so much acclaim and fanfare that it has declared April to be Bacon Month, because god forbid we should resign the porcine glory to a measly two days.

To kick off Bacon Month, the Baconfest brigade is headed to The Berkshire Room at the Acme Hotel Company, the official Baconfest Chicago hotel sponsor, for a Bacon Month Kickoff Cocktail Party on April 1. Taking place from 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m., the swanky cocktail bar will play host to three Chicago mixologists shaking up bacon-inspired cocktails, including Danny Shapiro of Scofflaw, Annemarie Sagoi of The Dawson, and of course Benjamin Schiller of The Berkshire Room. To eat, the bar will feature BLT sliders, bacon popcorn, chocolate-covered bacon, and more. The ticket price of $30 affords attendees one of each cocktail, a can of Labatt Blue, and all the eats they can muster. Tickets can be purchased here.

The kickoff shindig marks the first of many April bacon events, including dine around activities and Whole Foods Market pop-ups, all culminating in a two-day soiree sure to make your cardiologist shiver. Located at the UIC Forum, Baconfest is a veritable meat Mecca, featuring a sea of bacon creations from the city's top chefs, restaurants, and mixologists. This is a binge you can feel good about, though, considering Baconfest donates a portion of proceeds to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.

To learn more about Baconfest click here, and to purchase tickets (which go very quickly), go here.

Photo: Baconfest, courtesy of Anne Petersen