Taste of Chico: Local Showcase Makes for a Good Time!

The weekend of Sept. 8 my friends and I attended Taste of Chico, in downtown Chico, Calif. This event is the largest one-day food, beverage, music and fine art festival in the north valley that allows you to taste what Chico has to offer!

The Downtown Chico Business Association (DCBA), a nonprofit business organization dedicated to maintaining and enhancing downtown Chico as a vital retail and cultural center, produces Taste of Chico. All proceeds from this event help support the DCBA.

Taste of Chico is a Chico tradition and I am definitely going to make this a tradition of my own! This event is all about discovering new food and beverages that you enjoy. I was pleasantly surprised and found a few new restaurants that I will be going back to. Italian Cottage had delicious tortellini and Johnnies Restaurant and Lounge had great steak skewers that I would love to have some more of.

The food and alcohol ticket allowed me to have nine food tastes, eight alcoholic tastes and six non-alcoholic tastes. At first I thought that that would not be enough to fill me, but by the end of the day I had three food punches left and a few drinks to spare. I was stuffed! I recommend splitting a ticket with a friend next year.

This event is what Chico is all about, bringing the small town community together and having a good time. I highly recommend this event to anyone and can’t wait for next year!

group of friends at Taste of Chico
Photo credit: Amanda Papapietro

The Best Burger in Town!

After a five-year stint as a vegetarian, I now can’t go more than a few weeks without a burger. There’s something so satisfying about chomping into a truly great hamburger.

If you’re anything like me, you’re constantly searching for the perfect burger. Well, the wait is over! Here is my breakdown of the top five burgers in Chico.

1. Nobby’s, Nobby Burger: The Nobby Burger is no doubt one of the best burgers I have ever had. Come hungry, because after this monstrous 1/3 pound burger you will be stuffed! Not only does Nobby’s cook your patty to order, but they are most known for their “cheese skirt.” Yes, you read that right. Nobby’s grills the burger with fried cheese, giving it this delicious, crunchy, bubbly effect. YUM. Be warned, Nobby’s is cash only so come prepared! $

2. Sierra Nevada Brewery Co., Taproom Burger: The Taproom Burger is a fan favorite. A close second to the Nobby’s Burger, Sierra Nevada’s Taproom Burger is cooked to order, accompanied with melted cheese and local veggies, then completed with Sierra Nevada sauce, aka heaven. Their sauce is definitely the icing on the cake, or the sauce on the burger, I suppose. Sierra Nevada isn’t exactly in the college student budget, so keep in mind that you will be dropping double digits on a meal here. $$

3. Madison Bear Garden, Jiffy Burger: A Chico classic most beloved by college students, The Bear is a place to grab a meal with friends after work or between classes. The Jiffy Burger is a patty topped with creamy peanut butter, thick cut bacon and melted cheese. Trying this burger for the first time takes bravery, but it’s sure to become your new usual. $

Madison Bear Garden’s Jiffy Burger with fries.
Madison Bear Garden’s Jiffy Burger with fries.

4. Burgers and Brew, Spicy Guacamole Cheeseburger: This burger is large and in charge! A half-pound patty is cooked to order, smothered in homemade spicy guacamole, jalapeno mayo and pepper jack cheese. Served with a large portion of fries or a mixed greens salad, this burger makes a great weekend meal. For a vegetarian option, I suggest the portobello burger. $$

5. The Graduate Family Restaurant and Sports Bar, Uncle Melty: The Graduate rounds out my top five, but definitely does not disappoint. This burger is a half-pound patty, cooked medium, topped with grilled onions and American cheese, served on butter-grilled sourdough bread. The Grad is a great atmosphere to catch a game with friends or play one of their many classic arcade games. $