Taste of Chicago Brings Food Trucks On Board

By Ted Cox on April 12, 2013 10:45am | Updated on April 12, 2013 3:45pm

 Rosemary Krimbel, commissioner for the Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection, has invited Dan Salls' Salsa Truck to Taste of Chicago.
Rosemary Krimbel, commissioner for the Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection, has invited Dan Salls' Salsa Truck to Taste of Chicago.
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DNAinfo/Lizzie Schiffman

CITY HALL — The Taste of Chicago is calling in food trucks for reinforcements.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel's office announced Friday that all licensed city food trucks will be invited to set up shop July 10-14 at Taste concerts at the Petrillo Music Shell.

The trucks will be permitted to park on the center-field concrete path just east of lawn seating at the music shell and will serve from an hour before the start throughout the music shows.

"The food-truck industry continues to build in strength and numbers, and my administration is committed to creating the conditions and opportunities that will allow this industry to thrive, create jobs and support a vibrant food culture across Chicago," Emanuel said. "This will be a great way for many Chicagoans to get a sense of the excitement of this industry and sample some great food."

The benefit comes with strings attached, however. The trucks will have to accept Taste tickets (strips of 12 sell for $8) and offer a handful of regular menu items along with two smaller Taste portions. The city will take a 25 percent commission on revenues.

Along with the Taste information, the city announced that two new trucks have been licensed to cook onboard: Jerk and Porkchop. They join the Salsa Truck as the only three permitted to cook on the street, although dozens more are licensed to deliver food to various stops. The city's burgeoning food-truck scene has also attracted the attention of the Food Network's "Great Food Truck Race," which plans to shoot in Chicago for three days in June.

Fun. opens the festival on July 10, and local favorite Kelly Hogan closes on the 14th, with Lil' Ed and the Blues Imperials and other shows in between. Tickets for the seating area are $25, although lawn seating remains free.

Food trucks can register at the official Taste site through May 15. Tickets go on sale in May.

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