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16 Chicago Food Events to Savor this September

Meredith Francis
Pierogis on a plate
Image: tbralnina / iStock

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Kids may be back in school, but there is still plenty of summer fun to be had with a wide variety of food events in Chicago and the suburbs this September. Oktoberfests, apple festivals, and a popular Polish festival are all back. Be sure to double-check the event pages for times, locations, and admission information.

What are we missing? Send your food event suggestions to us at [email protected].

1. Taste of Polonia

Friday, Sept. 1, through Monday, Sept. 4 | Copernicus Center, 5216 W. Lawrence Ave.
The massive Taste of Polonia festival is back in Jefferson Park in what they say is one of the largest Polish festivals in the country. Feast on Polish sausage, pierogis, potato pancakes, pork cutlets, and more amid the celebration of Polish culture, music, and heritage.

2. Taste of Melrose Park

Friday, Sept. 1 through Sunday, Sept. 3 | 1000 North 25th Ave., Melrose Park
Now in its 41st year, the Taste of Melrose Park features dozens of food vendors and entertainment, plus a firework show on Sunday.

3. Wing Out Chicago

Saturday, Sept. 2 and Sunday, Sept. 3 | Gallagher Way, 3635 N. Clark St.
This festival at Gallagher Way outside Wrigley Field promises dozens of varieties of chicken wings, including flavors like the classic buffalo, jerk, spicy garlic, honey chili, and more.

4. Chef BBQ 2023

Thursday, Sept. 7 | South End of Lincoln Park, 1817 N. Clark St.
This food festival in Lincoln Park will have more than 100 restaurants, brewers, winemakers, and mixologists on hand creating all manner of dishes and drinks.

5. Festival of the Vine

Friday, Sept. 8 through Sunday, Sept. 10 | James St. between S. Fourth & S. Fifth, Geneva
Geneva hosts this food- and wine-centric festival. Restaurants from the western suburb create dishes paired with wine, music, and other entertainment. The festival also boasts an arts and crafts show, horse-drawn carriages, and more.

6. Taste of Chicago

Friday, Sept. 8 through Sunday, Sept. 10 | Grant Park
First established in 1980, the Taste of Chicago is being held in September this year, but it’s still the same summer tradition with dozens of food vendors, as well as several food trucks.

7. German American Oktoberfest

Friday, Sept. 8 through Sunday, Sept. 10 | Lincoln Square, N. Lincoln Ave. & W. Leland Ave.
Lincoln Square’s Oktoberfest (one of several in the Chicago area) returns this September with German food, beer, wine, dancing, and general merriment.

8. World Dumpling Fest

Saturday, Sept. 9 | Logan Square Blue Line Station
This “cross-cultural food festival” is being held near the Logan Square Blue Line station and will serve dumplings from local neighborhood restaurants reflecting a variety of culinary cultures.

9. Glendale Heights Oktoberfest

Thursday, Sept. 14 through Sunday, September 24 | Camera Park, Glendale Heights
This days-long Oktoberfest, featuring authentic German food and beer, is in west suburban Glendale Heights. It’s almost more like an ongoing market and is held under a tent, so it’ll run rain or shine.

10. Elmhurst Craft Beer Fest

Saturday, Sept. 16 |  Elmhurst History Museum, 120 East Park Ave.
The Elmhurst History Museum hosts this craft beer festival, which will feature dozens of breweries from Chicago and the suburbs.

11. Lincoln Park Uncorked: Lincoln Avenue Wine Stroll

Thursday, Sept. 21 | Lincoln Avenue
Several businesses along Lincoln Avenue in Lincoln Park between Diversey and Webster will become “pop-up tasting rooms” with wine pairings from Vin Chicago.

12. Chicago Gourmet

Thursday, Sept. 21 through Sunday, Sept. 24
The annual Chicago Gourmet dining festival is back, with a spate of events across the city, including Tacos & Tequila, Hamburger Hop, Somm Sessions, and more.

13. Long Grove Apple Fest

Friday, Sept. 22 through Sunday, Sept. 24 | Downtown Long Grove, 145 Old McHenry Rd.
Whether you’re in search of a fresh apple or the ones dipped in caramel or baked into pies, the Long Grove Apple Fest promises quite a spread for apple-lovers at this family-friendly event.

14. Highland Park Oktoberfest

Saturday, Sept. 30 | The Lot, 525 Central Ave., Highland Park
Highland Park is hosting its own Oktoberfest at The Lot this September.

15. Beer in the Woods

Saturday, Sept. 30 | LaBagh Woods
This event is pretty much like it sounds: drinking beer in the woods! The Friends of the Forest Preserves hosts this event at LaBagh Woods, which will have dozens of local beer vendors, as well as non-alcoholic beers and food.

16. Apple Fest Lincoln Square

Saturday, Sept. 30 and Sunday, Oct. 1 | Lincoln Square, N. Lincoln Ave. & W. Leland Ave.
This popular annual apple-centric festival in Lincoln Square returns for its 36th year. Celebrate the beginning of autumn with cozy apple-themed treats.