Chicago Food & Drink Events


Chicago is a foodie's dream. Each month, there's a new batch of food and drink events that offer a taste of the city's scorching-hot culinary scene. You can take part in exclusive tastings, cocktail classes, talks with celebrity chefs, one-of-a-kind dinners, and more. Here's a preview of just a few of Chicago's upcoming food and drink events: 

First Bites Bash
First Bites Bash 2016

Jan. 24

Sample bites from more than 70 of the city’s most celebrated restaurants at First Bites Bash. The annual kick-off event to Chicago Restaurant Week, this year’s bash will be held at the Field Museum. Tickets are on sale now.

Chicago Restaurant Week
City Winery

Jan. 25 – Feb. 7

Experience the best of Chicago’s celebrated culinary scene during Chicago Restaurant Week. More than 400 local restaurants will be offering special prix fixe menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Check out the menus and book your tables today.

New Year’s Day Pajama Brunch at Stella Barra
Brunch buffet at Stella Barra

Jan. 1

Grab your favorite pajamas and start the New Year right with a delicious brunch buffet at Stella Barra. Diners in pajamas will receive a gift card equal to the price of your meal (minus tax and gratuity) to use on a future visit. Dine on endless options like enchiladas, cinnamon roll bread pudding, bacon mac and cheese, plus $5 bloody marys, mimosas and bellinis.

New Years Day Champagne ​Brunch CruiseOdyssey Cruise at Navy Pier

Jan. 1

Make your first moments of 2019 memorable on a lakefront brunch cruise. Sip champagne and enjoy the signature buffet, while looking out over sweeping views of the skyline and lake. The two-hour cruise departs from Navy Pier.

French Classics Cooking Demo at Mon Ami Gabi
Jan. 12

Learn to prepare French classics at this interactive demonstration. Executive Chef Nelli Maltezos will share her tips and tricks on how to prepare three signature dishes from Mon Ami Gabi's winter menu. Guests will enjoy each course paired with French wines. Tickets are $55 a person.

Cocktails 101 at Violet Hour
Matt Kirouac

Jan. 13

Is your New Year’s resolution to pick up a new skill? Cocktails 101 at Violet Hour is the perfect place to start. Learn all about traditional and seasonal drinks, hear the history behind them and get a hands-on lesson in the fundamentals – all while sipping on expertly crafted cocktails.

Brew U at Dusek’s
Dusek's Board & Beer Chicago

Jan. 16, 23 and 30

Dusek's Board and Beer is taking beer lessons to a new level. For four weeks, they’ll bring in experts from local breweries, like Goose Island Brewing, Hopewell Brewing Company, Half Acre Beer Company and Founders Brewing Company, to share about their craft. Each session will include generous tastings and fascinating conversations with the brains behind the beer.

Hands-On Sourdough Bread Making Workshop at Free Rein
Front window at Free Rein

Jan. 20

Learn how to make a fresh sourdough loaf with the pros. Pastry chefs and bakers will guide you through each step of the process and leave you with a few loaves to take home. You’ll learn about everything from starting a sourdough culture to bulk fermentation to final proofing and baking.

Boka Friends & Family Style
BOKA interior

Jan. 22

In this star-chef-studded dinner series, an array of visiting chefs will collaborate to create a family-style meal at BOKA. The first dinner in the series will feature Chef Lee Wolen of BOKA, Guest Chef Jimmy Papadopoulos from Bellemore, and Chef Zach Engel of much-anticipated Galit. The meal will include an optional wine pairing and be served at communal tables.

Winter Wine & Cheese Fest at Eataly
A pile of cheese at Eataly
Jan. 25 & 26

Eataly's beverage experts and cheesemongers have teamed up to select their favorite pairings to celebrate the Italian eatery and food market's 12th birthday. This tasting event will include 15 hand-picked, high-quality wine and cheese pairings for $45 a person. Tickets also include a commemorative Eataly wine glass and holder, and a special 10% discount in their marketplace to bring home your favorite bites and sips.

Winter Brew 2019
Winter Brew

Jan. 26

At this annual craft beer extravaganza, local breweries and cideries from around Chicago will set up shop in the DANK Haus German American Cultural Center. Each spot will offer two different brews, including rare and specialty tappings. The event will have an afternoon and evening session.

Mac and Cheese Bar Crawl in River North
Jan. 26

Take part in the city’s cheesiest bar crawl. Each stop in River North will offer up their own hearty version of the comfort food classic. Plus, there will be drink specials and fun giveaways throughout the crawl.

Snowball at Field Museum
Jan. 26

Eat, drink and dance the night away at this black-tie event. The Field Museum will be the stunning backdrop of this annual gala, which benefits Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago. Tickets include entry, an open bar, and access to tastings from more than 20 of Chicago's best restaurants. VIP tickets with premium food and drink options are available.

Donut Fest 2019 at Chop Shop
Do-Rite Donuts Chicago
​Jan. 27

Get your sugar fix at this sweet annual food festival. Now in its sixth year, Donut Fest 2019 will feature samples from some of the city's best bakers and finest coffee purveyors. Tickets for the general admission sessions (10 a.m. - 12 p.m. & 12 p.m. - 2 p.m.) are $35 and include entry into the fest, tickets to taste from each of the session's participating vendors, three coffee tickets and a take-home goodie bag. The VIP session tickets (8 a.m. - 10 a.m.) are $50 and include all GA amenities plus early entry into the fest and a limited-edition Donut Fest mug.


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