047. Chicago French Market.

Today for lunch we headed over to the Chicago French Market in the Northwestern Train Station. This was a really interesting experience. I was definitely caught off guard as I thought we were going to a restaurant, but I was very impressed. I will definitely be going back, and I foresee many trips once it warms up.
About the Chicago French Market

The Chicago French Market brings together a unique collection of local vendors that were hand selected for their individual passions and high-quality products. Bringing together the best-of-the-best from Chicago neighborhoods and outlying areas, Chicago French Market is largely comprised of entrepreneurs, family-owned businesses and accomplished purveyors.

The Bensidoun family, the largest market operator in and around Paris since 1953, co-developed the market with Chicago-based U.S. Equities Realty, and operates and manages Chicago French Market. The family operates nearly 100 open-air and indoor markets throughout the U.S. and Europe, including 11 Chicagoland outdoor, summer weekend markets.

As with all local markets, our goal is to bring a sense of community found in the markets of Europe, and provide a place to gather, socialize and purchase quality goods.

The set-up was a bit overwhelming at first. It’s similar to a farmer’s market with the various vendor booths. We walked in at the City Market which is basically the produce, meat and seafood sections of a grocery store. I didn’t look around too much, but everything looked very fresh. Most of the restaurant vendors use local and organic ingredients, and everything looked so fresh. One could easily spend an hour wandering around.
For lunch I had a rotisserie chicken sandwich from Chicago Organic. I was actually some pretty disappointed with it. It was good, but there was definitely a lack of flavor. There were so many other options, I’m sure I could have found something better.

The five of us shared some fries from Frietkoten. They were very tasty. I love fries and these were amazing. They came topped with ketchup, mayonnaise, and chopped red onions. They were perfectly golden and crispy. They were definitely the best fries I’ve had in a while.

We also shared some dessert from Delightful Pastries. We had dark chocolate covered strawberries, tiramisu, an éclair, a lemon bar, and a pecan bar. I had half the éclair, a strawberry, and one bite of the lemon bar. They were all delish!

I definitely plan to go back and visit Raw which is an all-organic and vegan. I had a sample of the garden burger, and I definitely want more! I also want to try FLiP Crepes at some point.

If you’re ever in downtown Chicago, I recommend you check this place out. It’s well worth the trip. It’s just a hop, skip, and jump from the Sear’s Tower (I will never call it Willis Tower.) and Union Station.

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