If you don't know by now, the real side show at Lollapalooza is the food. Chef and Presidential feeder Graham Elliot was put in charge of the Grant Park music festival's "Chow Town" after wowing Lollapalooza founder last year Perry Farrell when he cooked backstage for him. Dude's had a big week after President Obama and his pals stopped in Wednesday at Elliot's River North eatery "Graham Elliot" to celebrate the commander-in-chief's 49th birthday.
I perused the food stalls, took recommendations from staffers at some of the eateries and here's what's rocked as we hit the half-way mark of the three-day music fest....
Spicy Punk Rock Shrimp from Elate, the eatery at Hotel Felix
What's not to love? Sweet, lightly battered and fried rock shrimp dressed in a spicy remoulade (the heat come from a Asian pepper sauce) and, curiously, topped with popcorn to give it a little saltiness. Lovely. $8.
What the staff had to say: "Perry Farrell stopped by here and said it (the shrimp) was excellent."
If you didn't make it to Lollapalooza, Elate is located at 111 W. Huron.
Peach Pie Shake from Hoosier Mama Pie Company
I asked the nice lady behind the counter of this stall which of the three "pie shakes" I should try. The Stawberry? The Peach? Chocolate Cream? All three of them piped up "the peach." Wow. Peach pie filling, vanilla ice cream, and just a touch of nice brown sugary crust in a cup. While there were plenty of peach chunks, they melted as quickly in your mouth as the ice cream. Velvety goodnesss. $6
Staff Comment (as I scooped up my first taste): "Seriously? The. Best."
If you didn't make it to Lollapalooza, the pie shop is at 1618 W. Chicago Ave.
Three Braised Pork Belly Bao Buns Sunda
Pulled pork belly with shaved carrots and cucumber that had been pickled in Japanese spices on a sliced bao bun. Just greasy enough for those bao buns -- and bellies full of those Budweiser tallboys everyone's swilling - to soak up. $9.
Staff comment: "These are life-changing. Really."
If you didn't make it to Lollapalooza, the eatery is at, 111 E. Illinois