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Foodseum, Chicago’s food museum, slated to open in 2017

Written by
Jessica Berson

Chicago is finally being recognized for the culinary hub that it is with the popularity of Chicago Gourmet, the arrival of the James Beard Awards and, now, the prospect of its very own food museum.

The Foodseum, set to open in 2017 at an undetermined location, was the topic of a dinner I attended Tuesday night at Howell's and Hood. The event, dubbed "Feed Your Curiosity," was intended to be a media preview of the museum, as details about it have been scant thus far.

The project is spearheaded by executive director and tech entrepreneur Kyle Joseph, who hopes to create a space that is not only instructive in all things delicious, but also an interactive experience that will help to create a generation of educated consumers. The goal of each exhibit will be to appeal to visitors' senses with the smells and sounds of the food they are learning about as well as giving them the history of each dish, explaining how it is made and showing its cultural impact. The exhibits will rotate to showcase everything from cheese to chocolate to bread, but will stay away from focusing on things like GMOs, gluten or veganism in favor of inspiring people to learn more about where their food comes from.

This May will see the first of a series of pop-up exhibits (location still to be determined) that will educate visitors about the history of hot dogs and will include not only cooking demos, but a full-service restaurant, which will provide diners with sausage recipes contributed by some of Chicago's top chefs.

Food museums aren't just a Chicago thing. New Orleans is home to the Southern Food & Beverage Museum, while New York's Museum of Food and Drink is also in the works.

The Foodseum is accepting donations through its website.

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