We here at the Republic of Bacon just can’t get enough of bacon festivals. There is something about the pomp and circumstance of these events that just make our hearts swell with bacon-loving pride. Not to mention that they provide an excellent opportunity (not that any of you need an excuse) to try a whole new assortment of bacon dishes from talented chefs all under one roof, and to check out all the new and exciting bacon products being offered by the latest crop of talented entrepreneurs.

So it is with great joy that we report that this year’s Chicago Baconfest, which took place on April 14th 2012, was a smashing success of epic proportions. Featuring over 3000 guests, 107 restaurants, a whole whack of “bacontrepreneurs” and other talented presenters, this year’s festival was a high point in the event’s history. An astounding 4,375 pounds of bacon were consumed over the course of the day, which works out to almost a pound and a half per guest!

Bacon For Charity

The Chicago Baconfest is not only wonderful because of all the great work it does for bacon, but also because it does good in the world in general. Festival participants donated non-perishables to the Greater Chicago Food Depository, which helps families and individuals in need from going hungry, and were able to donate an astonishing 2,298 pounds of food. They also worked their magic when it came to fund raising, and at the end of the festival presented the GCFD with a cheque for $50,000. We love it when bacon is used to do real good in the world!

Golden Rashers

The talented chefs who participated in the event also got some love in the form of “Golden Rasher” awards presents to the most delicious and creative dishes at the festival. Popular dishes and products included the ever-popular bacon jam, succulent and sweet bacon baklava (we’re drooling as we imagine the honey and bacon in crunchy pastry), and whiskey bacon pops, which sounds like something we’d be allowed to eat in heaven.

Considering that tickets to this year’s Baconfest sold out way back in February, we’d say that Chicago’s love affair with this king of all meats is far from over. We can’t wait until next year, which we are sure will be even bigger and better!