Food and Beverage Scene
Culinary Icons like Charlie Trotter and Rick Bayless hail from the windy city. Two of the worlds top 50 best restaurants have come from Chicago, year after year. There are more than 9,000 active & operating restaurant licenses in the city. Over 1,000 open [and as many close] each year. In Chicago, only the best chefs stay in business!
Only a few hours away from every possible type of gourmet ingredient and the freshest produce the city has access to Sea Food from Seattle, Stone Crab from Miami, Lobsters from Boston, or Shrimp from New Orleans. Of course Illinois is one of Americas top farming states. Organic vegetables stream into Chicago from Chicagos local farmers. Fruits and veggies are brought in from nearby Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin. Of course no state in the country makes more or better - cheeses than neighboring Wisconsin. Artisan chesses can be found on every top restaurants menu. You can find every possible cuisine in the windy city. Chicago has always been one of Americas top destinations for new immigrants. Wave after wave of Italian, Irish, Polish, German, Chinese, Greek, Asian Indian, Swedish, and now Mexican nationals have come to Chicago. Each new group has brought their own delicious foods and cuisines along. Today, Chicago has one of the largest Mexican populations in North America. * Chef Rick Bayless is running Americas best Mexican Restaurant here [as chosen by Food & Wine]. Each new group of people have added their own culinary greatness to Americas Culinary Center Piece Today the same fine dining and cultural experiences can be found in towns and small cities across Illinois.
Chicago has become one of the worlds culinary capitals, Illinois has become the home and head quarters to some of the worlds largest food companies. Kraft Foods, Sara Lee, and McDonalds Restaurants all call Illinois home. In fact Ray Kroc invented fast food in Illinois. The first McDonalds restaurant was [and still is] found in a Chicago suburb. The National Restaurant Conference and Show [the nations largest] meets in Chicago each spring. When you are looking for one city that most demonstrates the passion, innovation and culinary expertise that has brought America to the top of the worlds gourmet list Illinois is where to look.
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