Lunch at the Taste of Chicago: Jollaf Rice with Oxtail (Bolat African Cuisine).

Taste of Chicago: Day One

The Taste of Chicago started today. So, of course, I have already been…twice.

I went eight times last year and one of my goals this year is to break that record. So I have to go nine times….

It’s a 20 minute walk from my office to Grant Park to get to the Taste of Chicago, so with an hour lunch break that’s enough time to get in 20 minutes of eating 🙂

For lunch at the Taste of Chicago I had:

Jollaf Rice with Oxtail (Bolat African Cuisine), Grilled Plantain with Spicy Peanut Sauce (Bolat African Cuisine), Enchilada (La Justica), Vegetarian BBQ Twist (Soul Vegetarian East), Italian Breaded Steak Sandwich (Ricobene’s)

I just ate my way through booths 1-4 🙂

Here’s the way my Taste planning works. I go through the brochure and write a list of everything that I could possibly want to eat. After the first time, I went back to my desk, stuffed and exhausted and sweaty from the walk, and look at my list. Anything that still sounds appetizing stays. Anything that makes me want to vomit goes. My list gets cut in half and I get a somewhat manageable list of stuff I might eat in nine times at the Taste. (This also works well for deciding what to eat at state fairs.)

You also have to factor in what’s worth the money. Because there are a lot more 9-ticket items. Seriously, every dish should be cut in half and cost half. That way we could TASTE more. They each have one item for sale like that, but they all should be. Val has spoken.

There was something a little off about the menu for the Taste this year and then I read an article that explained what. Every booth is required to have a “healthy offering.” So…that’s why there are a lot of WHOLE WHEAT pizzas and POTATO Chips and fried VEGETABLES and TURKEY meatballs. We’re Chicagoans. Sorry, but Chicago wasn’t built on steamed vegetables.

For dinner at the Taste of Chicago I had:

Skewered Shark Veracruz (Polo Cafe & Catering), Manzanita Sol (a weird apple soda they were giving away free), Blueberry Bajou Blasters (Heaven on Seven) (they were like a mix of blueberry muffin and New Orleans beignet), Sesame Beef on a Stick (The Noodle Vietnamese Cuisine), Sweet Potato Hashbrowns (Hashbrowns), Mascarpone Gelato (Canady Le Chocolatier)

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Hi, I'm Val. I spent most of my 20s in a standstill, unable to pick which path in life I wanted to take. I wanted the nomadic life of a traveler but also wanted the husband, the condo, and the kitten. Unable to decide which life I wanted more, I did nothing. When I turned 30 I’d had enough of putting my life on hold and decided to start “choosing my figs.” So, I quit my job, bought a one-way ticket to Europe, and traveled for three years. Now I'm back in Chicago, decorating my apartment in all the teal, petting my cats, and planning my next adventure.

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