Taste of Chicago banner
Supporting Information Facts


City Services

Presented By:

Pure Leaf Celebrity Chef du Jour


Taste of Chicago MapFestival Map


Press Release: Pure Leaf Celebrity Chef du Jour returns to Taste of Chicago


Follow us on:

facebook twitter YouTube

Taste of Chicago - Pure Leaf Celebrity Chef du Jour

Taste of Chicago  >  Celebrity Chef du Jour 


Pure Leaf Celebrity Chef du Jour Tent

As the City of Chicago continues to demonstrate a robust culinary community of noted chefs, the city’s premier food festival continues its efforts to highlight these food masters as Taste of Chicago once again features the Pure Leaf Celebrity Chef du Jour.

The dining experience offers attendees the opportunity to enjoy a sit-down, three- or four-course meal in an air-conditioned and decorated dining pavilion for only $45 per person (limit 4 tickets per person). Tickets for the dining experience must be purchased in advance and will go on sale Thursday, May 22 beginning at 10am CDT.

Once again, students from the Washburne Culinary Institute will assist the chefs in preparation and serving dining patrons. Founded more than 75 years ago, Washburne Culinary Institute is one of the oldest culinary schools in the nation. Washburne provides students with the latest culinary techniques, along with essential hands-on experience to ensure they are equipped to work in Chicago’s most successful restaurants, hotels, private clubs and other culinary establishments.


Art SmithArt Smith, TABLE fifty-two and LYFE Kitchen

Wednesday, July 9, Dinner at 6:30pm

Chef Art Smith loves bringing people together through food, whether it be as executive chef and co-owner of TABLE fifty-two and LYFE Kitchen or as founder of Common Threads, his non-profit benefiting low-income youth. His passion has been recognized by the culinary professions highest rewards and his countless television appearances on shows such as Top Chef and Top Chef Masters have led to him being a highly sought after celebrity chef and humanitarian. Best known in Chicago as the personal chef for 10 years to Oprah Winfrey, guests will find out first hand why Smith is a true Chicago gem. View Menu (PDF)

Sold Out


Andrew ZimmermanFear no ART's The Dinner Party featuring Andrew Zimmerman, Sepia

Elysabeth AlfanoThursday, July 10, Dinner at 6:30pm

Host Elysabeth Alfano hosts actor George Wendt (Cheers!), stage star Felicia Fields and Ji Suk-Yi of Windy City Live to a dinner made by Chef Andrew Zimmerman. Over food, drinks and some celeb performances, the unscripted conversations flow. Attendees of the dinner enjoy the same food that the chef makes for the celebs and tweet in questions to be a part of the conversation. This interactive foodie talk show and round table has been very popular, with nothing else like it.

Didn't get tickets? The event will be streamed LIVE here from 6:30pm-8pm on July 10. You can still participate and tweet in questions for the Fear no ART's The Dinner Party.

Since taking the culinary lead at Sepia in 2009, Chef Andrew Zimmerman has garnered national acclaim for his inventive American cuisine. His creative direction in the kitchen has earned the Chicago restaurant a Michelin star since 2011. Zimmerman was invited to cook at the James Beard House in New York in 2010. He’s received a James Beard Foundation Award nomination for “Best Chef: Great Lakes” in 2012 and 2013. View Menu (PDF)

Sold Out


Paul VirantPaul Virant, Vie and Perennial Virant

Friday, July 11, Dinner at 6:30pm

Paul Virant, executive chef of the Michelin-starred Vie and Perennial Virant, will bring his culinary prowess to the Taste of Chicago. The award-winning, James Beard nominated chef will emphasize locally-grown, seasonal ingredients that have brought him national acclaim for his contemporary Midwestern cuisine. Not only a chef, but a best selling author of cook books and a canning expert, Virant will present a cornucopia of flavor that will delight guests of all tastes. View Menu (PDF)


Sold Out


Amanda Rockman (Photo credit: Marc Hauser)

Erling Wu-BowerErling Wu-Bower and Amanda Rockman of Nico Osteria

Saturday, July 12, Dinner at 6:30pm

Guests will get double the flavor with the pairing of Erling Wu-Bower and Amanda Rockman of Nico Osteria, one of Chicago’s hottest new restaurants. Early in their careers, both were influenced by 2013 Chef du Jour chefs, Wu-Bower by Paul Kahan and Rick Bayless and Rockman by Gale Gand. Through Wu-Bower’s experience in the kitchens of The Publican and avec he was able to hone his unique approach to ingredients and flavor and his love of seafood is evident in his expert fish preparation. Pastry Chef Rockman has earned a reputation in Chicago for her work at TRU, Spring and the Peninsula Hotel and was awarded the Chicago Tribune Pastry Chef of the Year in 2013. View Menu (PDF)

Sold Out


Matthias MergesMatthias Merges, A10, Yusho and Billy Sunday

Sunday, July 13, Dinner at 5pm

After a 14-year run at the helm of the famed Charlie Trotter’s, Matthias Merges brought his well-crafted cuisine and attention to service to his diverse Chicago restaurants A10 (French and Northern Italian cuisine), Yusho (Japanese inspired) and Billy Sunday (reminiscent of speakeasies). His menus change often, driven by fresh, seasonal ingredients or the kitchen staff’s desire to try something new. This approach offers diners fresh, simple, innovative and delicious dishes. Merges is also a founding member of Pilot Light, a volunteer organization that advocates for child nutrition, health and wellness through education and hands-on experience. View Menu (PDF)

Sold Out



Wednesday, July 9 - Sunday, July 13, 2014


Dinner will begin at 6:30 pm on July 9, 10 , 11 & 12; Dinner will begin at 5 pm on July 13


Grant Park, Buckingham Fountain
500 S. Columbus Dr.
Chicago, IL 60605


$45 per person (limit 4 tickets per person)


Fully Accessible.


Public Transportation:

For travel information, visit www.transitchicago.com