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Taste of Chicago 2015 Touts 19 Rookies in 60-Vendor Food Lineup

This year's event runs July 8 through July 12, with tickets for celebrity chef dinners going on sale on Friday.

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The Boarding House's Tanya Baker and Mayor Rahm Emanuel
The Boarding House's Tanya Baker and Mayor Rahm Emanuel
Ashok Selvam
Ashok Selvam is the editor of Eater Chicago and a native Chicagoan armed with more than two decades of award-winning journalism. Now covering the world of restaurants and food, his nut graphs are super nutty.

The city of Chicago is still attempting to pump new life into the Taste of Chicago, announcing 19 new food vendors for this year's festival which will be held from July 8 through July 12 in Grant Park. Diners will also once more have the chance for three- or four-course sit-down meals as part of the Pure Life Celebrity Chef du Jour series.

There will be 60 food vendors at this year's taste, including 15 food trucks and 12 pop-up restaurants. Highlights from this year's new additions include Dia De Los Tamales, Dönerman, Luke's Lobster, Miller's Pub and Puffs of Doom.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, apparently still excited about Chicago hosting the James Beard Foundation Awards, was among those gathered at this morning's announcement at The Boarding House. Although the mayor mistakenly identified restaurant owner Alpana Singh as "Tanya," he was in a joking mood when talking about the Taste's lineup.

"If you're going for your [doctor's] checkup, do it before you go," Emanuel said. The mayor and his staff are proud of their efforts in reshaping the Taste, as Emanuel talked about an advisor telling him to discontinue the event when voters first elected him to office in 2011.

El Ideas' Philip Foss, Boarding House's Tanya Baker, Sixteen's Thomas Lents, GT Fish & Oyster's Giuseppe Tentori and The Purple Pig's Jimmy Bannos Jr. are the celebrity chefs for the Pure Leaf Celebrity Chef du Jour. This is where fest-goers can eat a sit-down meal for $45, and there's a limit of four tickets per-person per-event. They go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday here.

This year, The Taste is debuting an area where crowds can convene and listen to culinary discussions. The "Food For Thought" area will feature panelists from several podcasts, including Michael Gebert of "Airwaves Full of Bacon." There's no change to the prices, as strips of 12 tickets remain at $8.50 and the sample "Taste of" portions continue to cost $2.50 or less. Music-wise, Weezer and Erkyah Badu headline the fest.

Here's the full lineup:

Five-Day Restaurants
Beat Kitchen, 2100 W. Belmont Ave. — Epicurean Taste
Billy Goat Tavern & Grill, 1535 W. Madison St. — Classic Chicago Taste
BJ's Market & Bakery, 8734 S. Stony Island Ave. — Taste of the Sea
Bobak Sausage Co., 5275 S. Archer Ave. — Classic Chicago Taste
Caffe Gelato, 2034 W. Division St. — Sweet Tooth Taste
Carbon Live Fire Mexican Grill, 300 W. 26th St. — World Tour Taste
Chicago's Dog House. 816 W. Fullerton Ave. — Epicurean Taste
Churro Factory, 3755 W. Armitage Ave. — Sweet Tooth Taste
Connie's Pizza, 2373 S. Archer Ave. — Classic Chicago Taste
Dia De Los Tamales, 939 W. 18th St. — World Tour Taste
Eli's Cheesecake Co., 6701 W. Forest Preserve Dr. — Classic Chicago Taste
Emerald Isle, 6686 N. Northwest Hwy. — Classic Chicago Taste
Farmer's Fridge, 111 E. Wacker Dr. — Epicurean Taste
Franco's Ristorante, 300 W. 31st St. — World Tour Taste
Gold Coast Dogs, 225 S. Canal St. — Classic Chicago Taste
Iyanze, 4623 N. Broadway St. — World Tour Taste
Kasia's Deli, 2101 W. Chicago Ave. — World Tour Taste
La Bomba Restaurant, 3221 W. Armitage Ave. — World Tour Taste
La Mexicana, 4171 S. Archer Ave. — World Tour Taste
Lawrence's Fish & Shrimp, 2120 S. Canal St. — Taste of the Sea
Lou Malnati's Pizzeria, 805 S. State St. — Classic Chicago Taste
Mariano's Chicagoland Locations — Classic Chicago Taste
Miller's Pub, 134 S. Wabash Ave. — Classic Chicago Taste
Oak Street Beach Café, 5700 S. Cicero Ave. — Taste of the Sea
O'Briens Restaurant, 1528 N. Wells St. — Classic Chicago Taste
Porkchop, 941 W. Randolph St. — Epicurean Taste
Punky's Pizza & Pasta, 2600 S. Wallace St. — World Tour Taste
Ricobene's on 26th Street, 252 W. 26th St. — Classic Chicago Taste
Robinson's No. 1 Ribs, 225 S. Canal St. — Classic Chicago Taste
Star of Siam, 11 E. Illinois St. — World Tour Taste
The Fudge Pot, 1532 N. Wells St. — Sweet Tooth Taste
Tuscany, 1014 W. Taylor St. — World Tour Taste
Vee-Vee's African Restaurant, 6232 N. Broadway St. — World Tour Taste

Pop-Up Restaurants
Burger Bar Chicago, 1578 N. Clybourn Ave. — Epicurean Taste
Dinky Donuts, Inc., Located at Markets throughout Chicago — Sweet Tooth Taste
DönerMen, Located throughout Chicago — World Tour Taste
Garifuna Flava: A Taste of Belize, 2518 W. 63rd St. — World Tour Taste
Haire's Gulf Shrimp, 8112 S. Vincennes Ave. — Taste of the Sea
Jin Ju Restaurant, 5203 N. Clark St. — World Tour Taste
Luke's Lobster, 134 N. LaSalle St. — Taste of the Sea
Old Crow Smokehouse, 3506 N. Clark St. — Epicurean Taste
Puffs of Doom, Located at Markets throughout Chicago — Epicurean Taste
Riva, 700 E. Grand Ave., Navy Pier — Taste of the Sea
Sono Wood Fired, 1582 N. Clybourn Ave. — Epicurean Taste
Stan's Donuts & Coffee, 1506 N. Damen Ave. — Sweet Tooth Taste

Food Trucks
Beavers Coffee + Donuts — Sweet Tooth Taste
Bruges Brothers — Epicurean Taste
Chicago Cupcake — Sweet Tooth Taste
Chicago Lunchbox — World Tour Taste
Gino's Steaks Truck — Classic Chicago Taste
Giordano's — Classic Chicago Taste
Harold's Chicken — Classic Chicago Taste
Jack's Fork in the Road — Epicurean Taste
Jerk. Modern Jamaican Grill — World Tour Taste
La Cocinita — World Tour Taste
Ms. Tittle's Cupcakes — Sweet Tooth Taste
Starfruit Café — Sweet Tooth Taste
The Crave Bar — Sweet Tooth Taste
The Fat Shallot — Epicurean Taste
Yum Dum — World Tour Taste