#Foodiechats is proud to present the #SummerSoundBites Series, in partnership with Ravinia Festival, for the 2017 Summer Season. We’ll be featuring all of the onsite dining options available for all concert attendees. Before we make you drool, we wanted to give you the Ravinia Festival Story. What an amazing nonprofit!

Ravinia, North America’s oldest music festival, stands today as its most musically diverse, presenting over 140 different events throughout the summer. The wide variety of concerts run the gamut from Yo-Yo Ma to John Legend to the annual summer residency of the nation’s finest orchestra, The Chicago Symphony Orchestra.  The 36-acre park is nestled in a gently wooded area that makes it an enchanting place to experience music in Highland Park, IL., just 28 miles from Downtown Chicago. Plan your visit.

Wether you’re a Donor Ticket holder, or you purchase performances ala carte, you’re contributing to the Arts. Ravinia, a nonprofit organization, offers community outreach and music education initiatives as their mission. Over 75,000 people are served through Ravinia’s Reach*Teach*Play programs each year, ensuring that great music remains accessible to all.

Ravinia Festival listeners picnicking on the lawn.

On June 24, 2017, we experienced a first class Ravinia Festival experience. We began with a grounds tour and we took in sights and sounds of the listeners ready to secure their seats for the Common performance and setting up their picnics on the lawn.

The prairie-style Martin Theatre, a 850 seat recital hall, is the only building on the grounds that dates back to the original construction of 1904.

We then toured the top notch Ravinia Gift Shop, where you could buy one of everything to mark the memories of your Ravinia Festival Summer. We had some fun picking out summer sweaters for the season.

Nick Pullia, Director of Communications and Ashley were getting all decked put for the Common concert!

We certainly worked up our appetite and we were ready for our dinner reservations at Park View Restaurant, by Executive Chef Michael Tsonton. We were joined by Nick Pullia, Director of Communications, Mindy Moore, Director of Group Events and Dining Services, Allie Brightwell, Media Manager, and of course Steve Green, CEO of #Foodiechats and Angela Woodward, V.P. of #Foodiechats (not pictured)

The Park View Restaurant is located on the second floor of the dining pavilion at Ravinia Festival. This Contemporary American restaurant features sophisticated yet approachable dishes featuring local seasonal ingredients, classic cocktails, craft beer and wine created by Executive Chef, Michael Tsonton.

We began our dining experience with Grilled Spanish Octopus, Hummus Kawarma, and Melon & Feta Cheese Salad.

Grilled Spanish Octopus potato, chorizo, kalamata olives, Farmers cheese 

Hummus Kawarma, braised lamb, pomegranate, hummus, naan, mint 

Melon & Feta Cheese Salad pistachio, arbequina olive oil, watermelon radish, herbs

For our Entrees, Chef and Team served Mushroom Tagliatelle, Roasted Salmon, Pan-Seared Halibut, Wood-Roasted Chicken and Beef Short Ribs. 

Mushroom Tagliatelle fresh egg pasta, San Mariano tomato, Parmesan, Basil

Roasted Salmon summer tomato, Avocado cream, cucumber, dill, Crispy potatoes

            Pan-Seared Halibut celery root, Cauliflower, beat wood Mushroom, caper, lemon

Wood-Roasted Chicken roasted garlic & potato mash, pickled cauliflower, shaved Brussels Sprouts

Beef Short Ribs red wine pomegranate sauce, Moroccan couscous, shaved Brussels Sprouts

But wait there’s more… Dessert…Cappuccino Crunch Pie, Signature Chocolate and, Pistachio Gelato.

Cappuccino Crunch Pie Oreo cookie crust, layers of cappuccino, vanilla and chocolate ice cream, walnut

Signature Chocolate Cake Caramel sauce

Gelato Vanilla, chocolate, pistachio, blood orange sorbet

After our five-star meal at Park View we concluded our evening with Pavilion Seats to watch Chicago native, Common perform.

If you’re a Chicagoland Resident and still haven’t completed your Ravinia Festival bucket list, what are you waiting for? Grab your friends, check out the Summer 2017 lineup, buy your concert tickets, make your dining reservations.

We were so pleased to visit Ravinia Festival and discover all of the onsite dining options that they offer their listeners. From Chef Driven fine dining to catered picnic boxes, they offer an excellent Summer Sound Bites experience for all to enjoy.

Park View: Located on the second floor of the dining pavilion, this Contemporary American restaurant features sophisticated yet approachable dishes featuring local seasonal ingredients, classic cocktails, craft beer and wine.

Mirabelle: Ravinia’s famous Chef’s Table offers a bounty of selections from the Midwest growing season which pair perfectly with a night at Ravinia. Featuring themed and guest chef menus that change daily with an endless variety of gourmet selections. Indoor and alfresco seating. 

The Freehling Room: Critically acclaimed restaurateur Carlos Nieto and his wife Debbie have been serving fine cuisine at Ravinia’s donor dining club, the Freehling Room, for 15 years. While the menu on classical performance evenings will still offer such delicacies as miso-marinated Alaskan halibut and petite filet served with purple potato rosettes in a red-wine reduction, the Freehling Room this summer will also offer more casual fare on the nights of Ravinia’s biggest pop/rock concerts.

Ravinia Market: Offers delicious fresh choices, fast! Take away hot pressed tortas, signature brick oven pizzas or grilled burgers, daily specials, salads, dips and spreads as well as beer, wine and soda. Everything you need to create the perfect picnic!

Carousel Ice Cream Shop: This ice cream shop offers candy, hand-dipped cones, and, of course, Ravinia’s signature cappuccino crunch. The perfect finale to a summer evening!

Fanfare Carts: Located throughout the park, our FanFare Carts provide easy access to all things worth sipping and savoring. From our gourmet specialty coffees to our selection of wines, beers and sodas, our refreshments will stimulate your taste buds and warm the soul while you relax and enjoy the show.

Catering & Group Events: Treat your group to a night of alfresco dining at its best with a Ravinia Lawn Catering picnic! The ultimate experience in summer entertaining, we will prepare a sumptuous feast, cater your affair and take care of all the details so you and your guests can sit back and enjoy the show. Let us plan your next reunion, company outing or gathering of friends!

Picnic Box: No need to go to all the trouble of packing and hauling a big spread. We make it easy for you to have a spur-of-the-moment picnic through our Picnic Box program.

We’ll see you at Ravinia Festival this summer! 

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