Bob Sirott`s One More Thing about Taste of Chicago - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Bob Sirott`s One More Thing about Taste of Chicago

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

One more thing, about "Taste of Chicago." The city just announced that the hot Grammy-award winning band "Fun" will play on opening night of "The Taste" on July 10th. That's a good booking, but there are still big problems ahead.

To reverse a million dollars in losses in 2011 alone, Mayor Emanuel cut last year's "Taste" from 10 days to 5. The number of restaurants was also reduced, reserved concert seats that were free went for $25, and "Taste" was moved away from the busy July 4th weekend. It still lost $1.3 million; $300,000 more than the year before.

Recently the mayor said there needs to be another round of cost-cutting, and he told his cultural affairs team to re-think the "Taste."

That's what I've been doing. Here are my suggestions Mr. Mayor.

Make it truly a "Taste of Chicago," like it was when it first began. Most of the restaurants at "Taste" should be the ones that really do offer a taste of Chicago---the unique foods our great, diverse city is famous for. Choose the best ethnic dishes from all the neighborhoods. Include the singular "specialties of the house" from the most popular downtown restaurants, and make the portions truly "taste size" so people can sample many foods at a reasonable price.

This might also help Mayor Emanuel's campaign to lure more foreign visitors here. I don't consider a major tourist attraction to be a giant $7 grease-dripping turkey leg on a stick.

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