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Fest planner: Taco Fest, City Made, Vegan Mania, more

Fill up at Taco Fest, Apple Fest and new City Made Fest

  • Ready for the city's first taco festival? Of course you are.
Ready for the city's first taco festival? Of course you are. (Lenny Gilmore/RedEye )
September 16, 2013|By Kate Bernot, @redeyeeatdrink | RedEye

Cooling temperatures make this a fantastic weekend for craft beers, apples and ... tacos? Two new Chicago fests—Andersonville City Made Fest and Sam Adams' Lakeview Taco Fest—hit the streets this week with a focus on locally brewed beer and tacos, respectively, while VeganMania keeps veggie-minded folks full and Lincoln Square Apple Fest kicks off the fall season with cider, pie, doughnuts and more. We'd recommend an outfit involving flannel, boots, and your comfiest eating pants. kbernot@tribune.com @redeyeeatdrink

Sam Adams' Lakeview Taco Fest

When: Noon-10 p.m. Saturday; noon-9 p.m. Sunday

Where: Southport Avenue between Addison Street and Newport Avenue

How much: $5 suggested donation

Don't miss: Hard shell or soft, with guac or without, meaty or veggie, tacos will take center stage as local restaurants including Cafe El Tapatio, Crosby's Kitchen, The Pony and Bodega Bar de Tacos dish up their own versions of everyone's favorite tortilla-wrapped snack. Visitors can text to vote for their favorite while watching lucha libre wrestling matches (5-6:30 p.m. both days) and singing along to sets by Get Up With The Get Downs (6 p.m. Saturday), Stache (3:30 p.m. Sunday), Wedding Banned (7:45 p.m. Sunday) and more. Because the fest is sponsored by Sam Adams, expect tents serving a half dozen of the brewery's seasonal beers.

Andersonville City Made Fest

When: Noon-9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

Where: Clark Street from Argyle Street to Carmen Street

How much: $5 suggested donation

Don't miss: This inaugural Andersonville fest focuses on all things locally made, from beer to art to food to music. Sip made-in-the-city beers from 4 Paws Brewing, Ale Syndicate, Begyle Brewing, Metropolitan Brewing, Off Color Brewing, Revolution Brewing and others while rocking to hip hop artist Psalm One (5:15 p.m. Saturday), world music group Funkadesi (7 p.m. Saturday) and hip-hop group Sidewalk Chalk (7:30 p.m. Sunday). Bring your wallet, too, and browse art, jewelry, crafts and food from Ground Up Press, Katherine Anne Confections, Jo Snow Syrups, Moss and more.

Lincoln Square Apple Fest

When: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday

Where: Giddings Plaza (4700 W. Lincoln Ave.)

How much: Free to attend

Don't miss: Pie, cider, doughnuts and more—all made with apples, obvi—are on the menu for this 26th annual fall celebration. With more than 40 vendors, the fest also will host some more creative uses of the fruit, including apple pizzas, apple-caramel bread pudding and smoked pulled pork-and-apple sandwiches. Music and craft beer also are on the line-up, and yes, you can pick up a bushel to take home, too.

VeganMania

When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday

Where: Broadway Armory Park (5917 N. Broadway)

How much: Free to attend

Don't miss: This marks the fifth year for the all-vegan food fest, which includes not just edible options but info on vegan culture and clothing as well. Feel good about snacking on treats from more than a dozen of the city's vegan and vegetarian restaurants; all the utensils and tableware are biodegradable, and trash is meticulously separated from recyclable material. Guests can also check out cooking demonstrations, speakers, workshops and musical performances.

Wurst Festival

When: Noon-8 p.m. Wednesday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Thursday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday

Where: Daley Plaza (50 W. Washington St.)

How much: Free to attend

Don't miss: In a city that loves its sausages, it's somewhat surprising that this is Chicago's first Wurst Festival. The three-day weekday line-up offers cooking demonstrations (including a 10 a.m. Friday installment about chorizo), a sausage-making class with newcomer West Loop Salumi (3 p.m. Friday) and a beer-and-sausage pairing segment (4 p.m. Friday).


UPCOMING FESTS: Sept. 27-29: Oktoberfest Chicago (Lincoln Park); Sept. 28-29: Design Harvest (West Town), Hyde Park Jazz Festival, Rogers Park Harvest Celebration, Chicago Gourmet (Loop)

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