Chicago’s 2015 Christkindl Market

Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 9In December there are few things I love to do more than visit the German Christkindl Market in Chicago’s Daley Plaza. Yes, it’s over-priced, cheesy, and CROWDED but it’s been a family tradition for more than half my life and nothing puts me in a jollier holiday spirit!

Run by the German American Services for the last 20 years, it’s the closest thing to a true German Christmas Market Chicago has. And since my father fell in love with REAL German Christmas Markets on his many business trips overseas, our family has been going for at least the last 15 of those 20 years, gorging on potato pancakes, mulled wine (for the adults), and plenty of gingerbread men happily.Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 4Located in the heart of Daley Plaza underneath the famous unnamed Picasso sculpture, little decorated wooden huts sell almost any German good you could think to buy for the holidays.Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 15 Everything from porcelain houses…Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 16and traditional steins…Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 17to gingerbread men,Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 1 strudels,Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 2stollen bites (a clever, portable version of the traditional German dessert),
Christkindl Market Chicago 2015fresh flavored pretzels…Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 3even cheese cake-stuffed ones,
Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 5 and any kind of ornament you can think of!Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 6Being a self-diagnosed ornament addict, I have to admit that the ornament huts are my absolute favorite part of the entire market.
Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 7The ornaments themselves are pricey but every year we have a family tradition of picking out one for each of our Christmas trees (remember the London bus I brought home last year?). Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 8After a few years you can really amass an enormous collection!Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 15But the very very best part about the Christkindl Market is the mulled wine! Served in adorable stocking-shaped souvenir mugs (I’ve amassed quite a collection of those over the years too) it’s the perfect winter pick-me-up — liquid courage for the crazy Christmas crowds that surround you!

So this year when Anna and I went to the market I was so excited to introduce her to her very first taste of mulled wine. It’s a deliciously spicy red wine, sweetened slightly, and served piping hot… the jolliest holiday drink there is in my opinion!

Care to try a sip of mulled wine yourself?

It’s incredibly easy to make at home!

Heat a robust red wine (I prefer to use burgundy wines) with a tbsp of sugar per serving and a tea-infuser filled with a tbsp per serving of mulling spices. Warm slowly over medium-low heat stirring occasionally to allow the spices to infuse before all the alcohol evaporates (be sure not to boil it). Serve in your favorite cheery mug and toast to the delicious tastes of the season!Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 11Cheers!Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le ChameauWhile Anna and I sipped our mulled wine snow actually began to fall too! Having missed the single snow storm that plagued Chicago last month, I was so excited to finally dance through a few flakes myself!

Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 12Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 3Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 16Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 1Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 17Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 9Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 2Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 19Reiss Forever 21 Uniqlo Le Chameau 4SHOP THE LOOK:

Coat – Forever 21 || Shirt – Uniqlo || Scarf – Reiss || Jeans – Asos ‘Ridley’ || Boots – Le Chameau (similar: 1 / 2|| Bag – Lulu’s (similar: 1 / 2 / 3|| Hat – Forever 21 (similar|| Lips – Stila in ‘Beso’

Photos courtesy of Anna of NoirFriday 

Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 14

After walking around and picking out a few ornaments for our collections, Anna and I ducked into the main lodge to enjoy a small German feast…Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 10Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 11of potato pancakes (delicious though not nearly as good as my Mom’s)Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 12and sauerkraut! While some of you make turn your noses up, my Polish blood lives for delicious sauerkraut like this and I’m almost embarrassed to admit how quickly I demolished this plate…
Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 13 We also splurged on a delicious slice of apple strudel…Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 Pretzel AND enormous, piping hot pretzels!Christkindl Market Chicago 2015 Pretzel 1It was an absolutely magical day filled with all kinds of holiday cheer!

And luckily the Christkindl Market is open right up until Christmas Eve so you’ll probably find me there gorging on potato pancakes and trying not to break all of the ornaments in the ornament hut at least two or three more times before Christmas.

Just remember — blame any ornaments you break on the mulled wine!

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