Local Foods, a Chicago distributor of local and regional farm and artisan food products, has opened a 27,000-square foot store not far from the city’s downtown. It is carrying produce, dairy, eggs, and meats from farms in the Midwest region centered on its biggest city, along with fresh, frozen and packaged foods from top regional artisans — and is considered a big step forward in local food retailing by advocates of the Good Food movement.
[The original version of this article was published May 1 on the Huffington Post website.] As FamilyFarmed prepared for the James Beard Foundation Awards in Chicago on May 4, we decided to welcome out-of-town attendees with an article providing “10 delicious facts” about the blossoming Good Food scene in our hometown. We found we had created a pretty sweeping guide to Chicagoland Good Food, so we’re making it a standing feature. And we’d love to hear about the Good Food scene where you live — let civic pride rule!
The glamour of the annual James Beard Foundation Awards, held earlier this month in Chicago, has subsided. So it’s timely to assess what the event meant for the Good Food movement. The bottom line is that the James Beard Awards were very good news for Good Food.
Chicago on Monday hosted the annual James Beard Foundation culinary awards ceremony, and Rick Bayless was one of the event’s co-chairmen. Famed for popularizing regional Mexican cuisine in the city, he is a celebrity chef with a long-running TV show, and he has just added to his long list of cookbooks. But to many in the Good Food movement, it is his history of helping building the region’s local food system that is his biggest starring role.
by Jim Slama and Bob Benenson, Family Farmed [Note: This article was first published on the Huffington Post news website.] As advocates of the Good Food movement in Chicago, we are honored that the James Beard Foundation Awards are coming to town. The Foundation was created to honor the legacy of chef James Beard. After Read more about Welcome to Chicago, James Beard Foundation: 10 Delicious Facts About the Windy City[…]
T.J. Callahan, the founder and owner of the Farmhouse Tavern restaurants in downtown Chicago and suburban Evanston is a bit wary of the “farm to table” label, which some critics say has been overused to the point of becoming a cliche. “Farm to table, it’s such a nebulous kind of concept,” Callahan said in an interview with Good Food on Every Table. “So we’ve called ourself, from day one, a ‘Midwestern craft tavern.'”
Paul Fehribach of Big Jones restaurant in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood will receive FamilyFarmed’s Good Food Chef of the Year award during the Good Food Festival, Saturday, March 21 at Chicago’s UIC Forum. He earned the award because of his culinary skills — steeped in the traditions of Southern cooking — and also because of the strong values that prompt him to seek out locally and sustainably produced ingredients, including many rare or heirloom varieties.
What would you pay to welcome the glorious arrival of spring with one of Chicago’s best annual food and drink tasting events?
Most sampling events these days will set you back three figures. But Localicious — on the evening of Friday, March 20 at Chicago’s UIC Forum — is a great night of eating and drinking great local products, for just $80.
Rob Levitt established himself as a major figure on Chicago’s food scene when he and his wife Allie opened The Butcher & Larder meat shop four years ago. Here Rob Levitt discusses his somewhat unexpected career as a butcher and his hopes for bigger things with his upcoming move, expected this spring, into a larger space in the new Local Foods retail store.
by Roberta Laughlin, FamilyFarmed This is what happens when you invite top chefs who seek out local and sustainable food for their menus, match them up with farmers who produce the region’s best ingredients, and bring them all together in one place for one great night. You get Localicious, Chicago’s unique, one-of-a-kind party on March 20 that gives Read more about Localicious: One of the Year’s Most Delicious — and Virtuous — Tasting Events[…]
The goal of creating a year-round local food culture in the nation’s northern regions is hindered by relatively short growing seasons. But the increasing number of indoor growing facilities — such as Illinois’ Living Water Farms — is helping to change that.
Paul Fehribach has always been generous about sharing his recipes at his Southern-themed Big Jones restaurant in Chicago. Now he has compiled his tips into The Big Jones Cookbook, coming out this spring.
The National Restaurant Association’s annual predictions of top culinary trends are out — and it looks like 2015 will be another great year for the fast-growing Good Food movement.
When you write about the launch of a start-up business, it is often worthwhile checking back in to see how things are working out. It is especially rewarding to do when the enterprise has flourished — which is the case for Chicago’s Honey Butter Fried Chicken, which on Sept. 14 rounded out a smashing first year in business.
Justin Vrany’s Sandwich Me In — which serves local and sustainably produced food and has a zero-waste principle — is so busy that he is in the process of hiring a sous chef to help him with the load.
Hard cider can be described fairly as America’s native local drink, the most popular fermented beverage among the nation’s early drinkers. And while cider declined and today is a tiny sliver of the U.S. adult beverage market, sales and interest are surging all of a sudden.
Jen Rosenthal’s first full year as the rooftop farmer at Uncommon Ground restaurant can be fairly described as a big success. By the time the roughly half-year growing season ends in a few weeks, Rosenthal and her team of mainly interns and volunteers will have harvested nearly a ton of tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, greens, beans, herbs, and other produce, most of which is used in the restaurant downstairs.