TT | Christkindlmarket
Christkindlmarket in Chicago is one of my favorite holiday events. Every year vendors from Germany and Chicagoland set up booths filled with sparkling gifts and decorations, as well as German food, beer, and holiday treats. This weekend a couple and I braved a blustery Chicago Sunday and headed downtown to enjoy the snow and holiday cheer.
The market is located on Daley Plaza, and is open from November 24th through December 24th. Most of the vendors are outside, but there are a few places to warm up, and the Grand Timberhouse is heated and has live music. Also, there are plenty of hot beverages to keep your hands warm.
The market is also, of course, a great place to satisfy a holiday sweet tooth. German baked goods and candies, in festive shapes and packaging are available at many of the booths. I haven’t even tried a fraction of all the delicious things that there are. But, let me take you on a tour of the sweet vendors, use this map as a reference.
Chicago’s own Dinkel’s Bakery has a booth at the market. They serve famous Stollen, a traditional German holiday cake as well as other yummy baked goods, along with hot chocolate to keep you warm. They’re located at Booth 31 on the map.
The German Grill Company, LLC from Plauen, Germany is in Booth 35 offering fritters and snow balls as a delicious dessert option.
Helmut’s Original Austrian Strudel is located at booth 38. This is a stand that’s based out of Fredericksburg, VA that tours festivals around the country. They’re serving fresh baked apple, cherry, cheese, apricot almond strudel.
Sweet Swabian from Nordheim, Germany sells roasted nuts, marzipan candy, gingerbread, and chocolate specialties from booth 42.
Right next door, booth 43 boasts Chocolate Covered Treats & Baked Apples. They have, you guessed it, baked apples and chocolate covered fruits. These sweet treats are from Jößnitz, Germany.
Sweet Christmas Delights from Swabia is a new vendor this year, from Besigheim, Germany. They serve up Swabian fruit fritters and doughnuts in booth 46.
Mack’s Bakery from Westhausen, Germany, is booth 5. They’re serving bread and sweet baked goods like Christmas cookies and Stollen, as well as hot fruit punch.
You can also get a sweet pretzel from Bad Oeynhausen, Germany at the Hot Pretzels stand, number 27 on the map.
Then there is my favorite part of the market, The Sweet Castle. Vendors from Neidenbach, Germany set up shop to sell German chocolates & candy, holiday cookies, Stollen, popcorn and cotton candy. I always sneak in there to warm up and get completely seduced by the smell of German chocolates and candies. It’s hard to leave there without buying something (or one of everything!). This year we especially enjoyed the decorated cookies, with cute German phrases and terms of endearment frosted on their fronts. Cute, and educational?
Christmastime in the city always makes me feel extra festive. When the snow sprinkles down a nighttime the streets seem to sparkle and fizzle like champagne. It almost makes dealing with freezing temperatures and wet shoes worth it. Having a sugar high doesn’t hurt either.
I hope you get a chance to stop by Chicago’s Christkindlmarket, or find a cheery festival in your area. If you want to read more about the Christkind tradition and the market in Nuremburg, Germany check out the Chicago site.
I hope everyone is enjoying whatever they love most about this chilly holiday season. Until next Tuesday, have a sweet week!
Eva is a Polish, a ginger, and also our Team Dessert Hooker and author of the “Tuesday Tarlet” right here at Eat.Drink.Repeat.