Factories to Calories Fulton Market Food Tour in Chicago, IL

Stumptown Coffee Roasters Chicago, IL 60642
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During this walking tour, gain insight into one of Chicago’s most interesting neighborhoods—Fulton Market! This educational tour, led by a professional guide, takes you through Fulton’s meatpacking past and into its present as a bustling hub of industry and popular places to eat. Discover just how much this section of Chicago has changed!

Good To Know

from Ashley, one of our Chicago Travel Experts
  • Tour duration approximately 2 hours.
  • Tour includes food samples.
  • Be prepared to walk roughly 1 mile.
  • All gratuities for servers included.
  • A maximum of 14 people are allowed on the tour.


from Factories to Calories Fulton Market Food Tour
Discover the dramatic transformations of Chicago’s most rapidly booming neighborhood on this walking tour. Over the course of this two-hour excursion, you’ll get a glimpse of Fulton Market’s meatpacking past and enjoy a taste of its gourmand present.

Our Fulton Market food tour guests will sample some of the culinary delights of Fulton Market without feeling overstuffed. You’ll get to taste artisanal deli meats from Publican Quality Meats and half of the signature sub at J.P. Graziano, a family-owned shop in its third generation. The neighborhood tour finishes with pickles and a craft beer sample at Haymarket Pub & Brewery. Please keep in mind that this is an educational tour. Other Chicago food tours may focus more on eating, but we will eat a light amount and most of all learn!

We call our Fulton Market food tour the “Factories to Calories” tour because of the area’s shift from a place of production of appliances, furniture, and meat products to a hub of consumption of food and drink. The walking tour starts with a grand view to see the train and highway systems that made Fulton Market into a vital industrial and meatpacking district throughout much of the 1900s.

From there, we’re off on a one-mile jaunt through a neighborhood defined by change. As recently as the 1980’s and 90’s, Fulton Market was home to underground parties, drug busts, and low-rent art galleries. Today instead, you will find high-end retailers and offices of massive corporations like Google and McDonald’s among historic architecture.

Fulton Market Tour Highlights:
• Signature sandwich from a family-owned neighborhood shop
• A giant cold storage facility, now Google offices
• “Gourmet Food Trend Row” and a tasting from Publican Quality Meats
• The striking art deco Richter Foods building
• Hidden clues in the landscape tied to the meatpacking past

Walking Tour Stories and Ideas:
• Chicago’s meatpacking history and the role of Fulton Market
• Impact of transportation infrastructure on neighborhood identity
• The industrial neighborhood disappearing before our eyes
• Family businesses and traditions
• Urban renewal and redevelopment
• Labor history and the Haymarket Affair

Tripster Customer Reviews

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TripAdvisor Reviews
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Chicago, Illinois
"Ghost tour"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed March 16, 2020 NEW
I have lived in Chicago my entire life and still learn things on these tours. Cheap and interesting for tourists or residents.
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Valparaiso, Indiana
"Holidays were made brighter"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed December 22, 2019
Would highly recommend the Holiday Tour of Drinks, Daley’s and Dead Guys. 2.5 hour walking tour of some of the most famous spots in Chicago. Started out at Miller’s Pub and ended at the Chriskindlmarket. Our tour guide Marie was AMAZING!! Friendly, knowledgeable and fun facts at each stop that most people don’t know. Drink stops at Miller’s Pub and The Walnut Room. If your looking for a fun afternoon check them out you won’t be disappointed.
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Detroit, Michigan
"Great tours of lobbies"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed November 17, 2019
We're seven college roommates who love visiting Chicago and wanted to add something new for this visit and since the weather was very wintery a tour of building lobbies was perfect. Our guide, Marie, was enthusiastic, knowledgable, fun and flexible! We will definitely take other tours on future visits! Thanks, Marie!!
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Melbourne, Australia
"Informative and interactive "
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed November 13, 2019
We did the ‘loop interior architecture walking tour’ and our guide Alex was welcoming and knew his stuff! Always happy to answer any questions and a good sense of humour. If you’re looking for a not-so-main-stream experience this is it! Small groups and this particular tour is mostly indoors (parts of Ped-way included) so great for cold or snowy days in Chicago. Thank you Alex for a professional and friendly tour.
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Chicago, Illinois
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed November 02, 2019
Loved Ellen our tour guide. Great detail. Good duration as any longer my attention span was waining. Loved the tidbits and Tiffany facts.
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Factories to Calories Fulton Market Food Tour is located at Stumptown Coffee Roasters Chicago, IL 60642
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Frequently Asked Questions about Factories to Calories Fulton Market Food Tour

How long is the tour?
This tour has a length of 2 hours and a length of 1 mile. Please be prepared to walk or stand for this tour duration, though most tours have moments to sit.

Is food or drink provided?
There will be availability to purchase drinks on the tour, whether soda, water, wine or beer. It’s not included in the cost of the ticket.

Will I have to climb any stairs during the tour?
Yes, most tours have stairs involved. Sometimes there is an elevator available but not in every case. Please call ahead with mobility concerns.

Are kids welcome?
Adults generally have more fun on the tour, but children are welcome! Strollers are welcome on tours, even though there are stairs on some tours.

Are recording or audio devices allowed/provided?
No recording or audio devices on the tour.

Where does the tour start and end? 
Our walking tour starts inside Stumptown Coffee Roasters at 311 N Morgan St. The tour ends inside the Haymarket Pub & Brewery at 737 W Randolph St.

Are tours provided in multiple languages?
All tours are in English.

Will my walking tour be canceled for bad weather? 
Rain or shine our walking tours go on! No refunds. In the case of serious or threatening conditions, we’ll call you.