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Chicago's Good Food Festival Is Back And Better Than Ever

By Anthony Todd in Food on Mar 17, 2016 3:21PM

Our favorite weekend of the year for local food (aside from actual harvest) is here: Good Food Festival is coming back to the UIC Forum from March 24 to 26. And while you're welcome to attend the wonkiness on Thursday and Friday, the big show is on Saturday, where chefs, farmers, vendors and more will pack into the Forum for demonstrations, classes, workshops and plenty of great food.

Joking aside, Thursday and Friday's sessions are mostly for small businesses, farmers or those somehow connected to the food industry. Thursday is all about financing and innovation (Good Food Festival runs a fairly awesome venture capital Financing Fair for small food businesses) and Friday is the policy summit, with panels discussing everything from the supply chain for sustainable meat to creating better school lunches. If you want to go to all of this stuff, a weekend-long pass will run you $150.

Most of us civilians go on Saturday. In addition to the always-awesome main conference floor, you can check out some really great workshops. Rob Levitt of Butcher & Larder will be running a ham curing workshop, there will be classes on baking, kombucha-making, bone broth, herbal elixirs and more. There's an entire preservation track of classes, including fermenting, drying and dehydrating, and a full day's worth of sessions just on composting. There is literally something here for every kind of food and agriculture nerd. Heck, there's a session called "Keeping Japanese Quails at Home." We have no idea what that means, but we're certainly intrigued.

Tickets for the Saturday session are only $10, which is an incredible deal. And they're $15 at the door, so you'd be better off buying them online.