Every summer, stages are built, hotels are booked and crowds from around the country gather in Chicago, all in anticipation of the city’s hottest annual musical festival: Lollapalooza. This year’s schedule features mega-artists Paul McCartney and Sam Smith, but the lineup we’re really dreaming about is the culinary one. Here, we’ve selected the eats you can’t miss at the festival — they’ll be music to your mouth!
Dark Matter Coffee
Get your caffeine fix this from fair trade and sustainability-focused company, which will be brewing its cool and creamy Chocolate City iced coffee ($4), infused with caramel, hazelnut and light lemon citrus.
Franks ‘N’ Dawgs
Not your average hot dog stand, this establishment — whose motto is “Five-star dining on a bun” — will serve inventive eats like the Southerner, a pork loin sausage on corn bread, topped with cherry bourbon BBQ sauce and scallions ($11).
Dia De Los Tamales
Spice things up with the trendiest tamales in town. Chef Keith Carlson brings his unique take on traditional Mexican fare to Lolla with buffalo chicken and roasted pepper and goat cheese tamales (1 for $6 or 2 for $10) and Nacho Mama’s Nachos, complete with picked jalapeños ($9).
Owen + Alchemy Cold-Pressed Juices
If street food isn’t your thing, refresh and revitalize with this juice apothecary’s nutrient-packed juices like the L1 ($7) with blueberry, basil and lemonade; the L2 ($8) with kale, spinach, apple and lemon; and the L3 ($6) with watermelon, mint, cucumber and ginger.
The Crave Bar
Beat the heat with this food truck’s salty-yet-sweet pretzel ice cream bars ($7). Choose from flavors like vanilla dark chocolate, salted caramel-licious or milk chocolate madness — each made with handcrafted pretzels.
It wouldn’t be a Chicago festival without Chicago-style pizza. The legendary local restaurant will serve up both individual slices ($4) and whole pizzas ($15) of cheese, sausage and pepperoni in its signature deep-dish.
This smokehouse — the brainchild of local chefs David Morton, Michael Kornick and Erick Williams — brings Memphis to Chicago with bites like its tangy Carolina pulled pork sandwich with mustard BBQ sauce ($10).
Edzo’s Burger Shop
Because nothing is better than a burger and fries, indulge in this up-and-coming Chicago joint’s hearty Wisconsin bacon-cheddar burger ($8) and fresh-cut truffle Parmesan fries ($7).