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Chicago Food Film Fest Begins with Ramen Burgers on Menu

CHICAGO — For those who wish they could gobble up the fictional smorgasbords seen in films like “Chocolat,” “Hook,” and “Fried Green Tomatoes,” the Chicago Food Film Festival might be made for you.

The fourth annual event offers a chance to “taste what you see on the screen” from Wednesday night until Saturday at Kendall College, 900 N. North Branch St. in Goose Island.

The festival, which began in New York City in 2007 and now has iterations in Chicago and Charleston, S.C., presents a variety of grub-focused documentaries, short films and feature films as well as the actual food depicted in the flicks. Both local and national chefs cook food for the event.

By Emily Morris for

To kick off the feast Wednesday night, chef and blogger Keizo Shimamoto will make ramen burgers to be served alongside the film “Biting into the Ramen Burger” from director Michael Fox.

Other films shown for opening night include “The Perfect Oyster” directed by Craig Noble, “Tako NY” from director Kristoffer Brearton and “Where Does a Compost Cookie Come From?” by director Peter Meehan.

Paired with the films are Compost Cookies from Momofuku Milk Bar, takoyaki from NYC’s chef Karl Palma and local food such as the off-menu Speculoos milkshake from Edzo’s and pickles and more from Stu’s. There will also be wine by Terlato and beers by Warsteiner.

Another notable event of the fest is Friday night’s “Food Porn Party” (aka close-up film of food and not actual porn), which includes a chance to meet “food porn star” Larry Cauldwell (really).

The “food porn” night also features 10 films and bites from Chicago Q (available during the VIP pre-party), Warsteiner beer battered corn dogs from Kendall College, bacon sausage and bacon jam from Big Fork, country fried bacon from Weiner and Still Champion, ice cream from Bobtail, treats from I Love Sweets, among others.

A few tickets for opening night are still available as of early Wednesday afternoon, according to organizers. If you miss opening, night, tickets are still on sale for other festival events.

Some of the proceeds go to the Good Food Project, which aims to bring healthy food to Chicago students.

Seven awards are given out, including Warsteiner Best Feature, Jarlsberg Best Short, Terlato Wines Best Super-Short, In The Raw Best Food Porn, Food Filmmaker of the Year, and the Frei Brothers Reserve Audience Choice Award.

Check out the full list of film and food events here, and tickets may be purchased here. Tickets include food, drinks and entry to the films.

All festival events are restricted to those 21 and older. Tickets for the Chicago Food Festival kickoff party are $65, and doors open at 6:30 p.m. at Kendall College. Festival-wide VIP tickets are $285, and tickets to individual events are available online.

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