Being a champion of bacon, spreading the good word upon many a dish. I was ready to see what Bacon Fest Chicago Chefs had to offer. First impressions of Bacon Fest was the high level of organization the staff exhibited working to line you up and guide you upon your bacon voyage.
When your nose first breaks the plane of the doors of the UIC Forum this smell that to me is what heaven can only smell like. To any UIC students that have to use the building the following days it could be called otherwise.
The smell lead the way inside to “the crowds” and the crowds were the name of the game at Bacon Fest. Everywhere you stepped there was someone enjoying bacon-y goodness. A little frusterating but then again everything happens for a purpose. If I had unrestrictive access to every vendors table my chlosterol level would punch me in the nuts.
I was only able to hit a certain amount of tables before I tapped out from being to full and battling to many bacon lovers. What I did try made ticket prices, crowds, heart attacks, well worth it!
Here are my two standouts:
Townhouse - Bacon Doughnuts, applewood-smoked bacon doughnut hole with bourbon-pecan glaze and vanilla bean gelato. This was one of my favorites being a huge fan of sweet & salty and immense fan of doughnuts. It was a dessert designed in my dreams. Thank you Townhouse for making it a reality!
Sweet Baby Ray - Porchetta Cubano, citrus-infused pork loin wrapped with a slow-smoked latin cured pork belly; shaved thin and served on a petite pressed roll with citrus ginger mustard; topped with a house-made pickle, onion, and salt pork slaw. This sandwich was just hands town good! The layers of taste was insane but all harmonized to create a super sandwich created to fight good and evil both. This would be the dictator of sandwiches because it’s better then all the rest.
State & Lake- Foraged Truffle with Nueske’s bacon, valrhona carmelia vermont maple, buffalo trace. If there was a booth design award State and Lake would hands down take it. Really cool friendly people working there! They help you dig through a box of chocolate dirt to find a truffle. According to them, mine had unicorn blood! It also had an amazing taste of sweet chocolate and salty chunks of bacon.
Sunda - Braised applewood smoked pork belly ssam with crispy bacon, apple kimchi rice with spicy miso paste. Really fresh but still blessed with bacon. It was a lighter tasting bite with the lettuce wrap.
Tiny Lounge - Cherrywood bacon cream puff with bourbon custard. Again i’m a sucker for desserts + bacon. This cream puff was very well balanced and the bourbon custard was pronounced but not overpowering.
Gemini Bistro - Hand rolled porchetta ravioli. This was very good considering they had a mass of people to feed.