Sample from Wheeling's Restaurant Row at annual Taste of the Town Oct. 24

Sample from Wheeling's Restaurant Row at annual Taste of the Town Oct. 24

  • Todd Damasky gets a sample of a Spears old-fashioned from bartender Kelsie Jurik during last year's Taste of the Town in Wheeling. The restaurant returns in this year's Taste of the Town Thursday, Oct. 24.

    Todd Damasky gets a sample of a Spears old-fashioned from bartender Kelsie Jurik during last year's Taste of the Town in Wheeling. The restaurant returns in this year's Taste of the Town Thursday, Oct. 24. Daily Herald File Photo

 
By Jennifer Shea
Daily Herald Correspondent
Posted10/21/2019 6:00 AM

If you've ever driven past Wheeling's Restaurant Row on Milwaukee Avenue and marveled at the variety of restaurants on display, now's your chance to sample them.

On Thursday, Oct. 24, the Greater Wheeling Area Chamber of Commerce is hosting Taste of the Town from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Chevy Chase Country Club, 1000 N. Milwaukee Ave., Wheeling.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The event will feature live entertainment, raffle prizes and tastings from 25 restaurants, wineries and breweries. Tickets are $35 in advance and $45 at the door.

"We are excited for this event," Greater Wheeling Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dawn Fletcher Collins said. "Taste of the Town has a committed group of volunteers who have been meeting regularly for six months preparing for a successful event."

Wheeling's Taste of the Town offers food and beverage samples from 25 area restaurants and businesses.
Wheeling's Taste of the Town offers food and beverage samples from 25 area restaurants and businesses. - Daily Herald File Photo

The restaurants at the event include Benihana, Big Bowl Chinese & Thai, Bob Chinn's Crab House, Buca di Beppo Italian restaurant, City Works, Chevy Chase Country Club restaurant, CMX Cinemas, Coffeessions, Culver's, El Famous Burrito, Elephant & Castle Pub, Grill House Northbrook, Liquor Barn, Mexcal Mexican Grill, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Old Munich Tavern, Nino's Pizzeria & Catering, Pita Inn, Plateia Mediterranean Kitchen, Saranello's, Spears, Starbucks, Superdawg, Tuscany and Wildfire.

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It's the 19th year for Taste of the Town, and event co-chairwoman Denise Katz of Rand Manufacturing said they couldn't do it without generous sponsorship.

"The show of support from our sponsors and partners, including the village of Wheeling and Chicago's North Shore Convention & Visitors Bureau, has been tremendous," Katz said. "We're very grateful for all they are doing to help make this year's Taste of the Town the best one yet."

This year, Northwest Suburban High School District 214 culinary program students will be at the event to assist with the food booths. The chamber is donating a portion of the proceeds from the raffle to the culinary program.

Becky Simo and Alex Vilmur, both of Palatine, try a sample from Superdawg at last year's Taste of the Town in Wheeling. More than 20 of the area's most popular restaurants offered samples of popular menu items. "It gives me ideas of places to go," Simo said.
Becky Simo and Alex Vilmur, both of Palatine, try a sample from Superdawg at last year's Taste of the Town in Wheeling. More than 20 of the area's most popular restaurants offered samples of popular menu items. "It gives me ideas of places to go," Simo said. - Daily Herald File Photo
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Adding a new component to Taste of the Town, the chamber also will hold a competition for best appetizer, best dessert and best specialty drink. The judges are blogger Soo Park of Fab Food Chicago, Nicole Groken of Yelp, blogger Pooja Naik of Chicago Pescatarian and television host Dawn Jackson Blattner of S.E.E. Chicago TV on WGN.

They will make their decision before the doors open, and the winners will get a ribbon to decorate their booth.

Simply Elton, a musical tribute to Elton John, returns to perform at this year's Taste of the Town event in Wheeling.
Simply Elton, a musical tribute to Elton John, returns to perform at this year's Taste of the Town event in Wheeling. - Courtesy of Brian Harris

The live entertainment portion of the evening will showcase Anthony Cassano and Simply Elton: A Magical Tribute to Sir Elton John. Local radio personality Jerry Riles will emcee the event.

"Guests are in for a real treat with this performance," said event co-chair Kimberly Schwartz of Devon Bank.

"Simply Elton was with us last year and added so much fun and energy to the evening. There was no doubt we wanted him back again."

Taste of the Town will feature a raffle, as well. The raffle prizes include restaurant gift cards, "Wine & Dine" packages and spa services.

All told, it should be a dynamic evening. Last year's event drew nearly 600 people. Advance tickets can be purchased online at tinyurl.com/WheelingTaste.

• • •

Wheeling Chamber of Commerce's 19th annual Taste of the Town

When: 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 24

Where: Chevy Chase Country Club, 1000 N. Milwaukee Ave., Wheeling

Tickets: $35 in advance, $45 at the door

Details: wphchamber.com or (847) 541-0170

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