Brilliant Stories

Savoring Spring: A Culinary Tour of Champaign-Urbana's Local Flavors

January 3, 2024

As we await the vibrant hues of spring to emerge in Champaign-Urbana, we can plan to enjoy the do the flavors of the season. From farmers' markets bursting with fresh produce to local eateries crafting seasonal delights, our community offers a culinary adventure for foodies. Here’s the top spots showcasing local foods that make springtime in Champaign-Urbana an irresistible feast.


Farmers' Market Freshness

Starting in May, the Champaign-Urbana area is bursting with opportunities to shop area farmers’ markets, with a market happening on five of the seven days of the week. Urbana's Market at the Square, held in Downtown Urbana, is a haven for local produce. Spring brings an abundance of fresh greens, crisp asparagus, and juicy strawberries. Indulge in the farm-to-table experience as you fill your basket with seasonal delights straight from local farmers.


Fresh Salads and Greens

Spring greens take center stage on local menus. From spinach and arugula to microgreens, restaurants in Champaign-Urbana embrace the season's bounty. Try fresh salads featuring local ingredients at spots like The Wheelhouse or Silvercreek.


Seasonal Desserts

Indulge your sweet tooth with desserts highlighting the flavors of spring. From rhubarb pies to lavender-infused treats, local bakeries like Suzu’s Bakery and Lucky Moon Pies have an array of seasonal delights to satisfy your cravings.


Outdoor Dining Delights

As the weather warms up, local eateries open their patios for al fresco dining. Enjoy the spring breeze while relishing dishes made with locally sourced ingredients. Big Grove Tavern and The Bread Company are just a couple of places where you can dine outdoors and savor the flavors of the season.


Local Brews and Patio Vibes

Champaign-Urbana boasts a vibrant craft beer scene. Visit local breweries like Riggs Beer Company or Triptych Brewing and savor a refreshing pint on their outdoor patios. With the sun shining and a local brew in hand, you'll find the perfect pairing for a spring afternoon.


Plan a Picnic

Following the Farmers’ Market, enjoy the fresh air after the long winter with a picnic in our many scenic spots. Head to Meadowbrook Park & Wandell Sculpture Garden where the prairie awakens with pollinators and spring wildflowers. Known for their abundant bluebells, Heron View Forest Preserve is the perfect spot to lay down a blanket and enjoy local flavors and spring’s beauty. Head to the Arboretum where you may spot the Sakura (cherry blossoms) that bloom in the Japan House gardens and see the early blooms taking shape in the Idea Garden.


In Champaign-Urbana, spring isn't just a season; it's a culinary celebration. Embrace the local flavor and savor every bite as you immerse yourself in the gastronomic delights that make springtime truly delicious.


Start planning your spring getaway today! Request your copy of our free Experience Guide and check out the many great accommodations for your visit.

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