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Garrett Popcorn Shops (Michigan and Ohio)

July 19, 2021

  • 625 Michigan Avenue
  • Chicago, IL 60611
  • (888) 476-7267
  • Website
  • Menu

Every trip to Chicago needs one thing to make it complete. Popcorn from Garrett Popcorn shop. Hell, I even fly through O’Hare if I get a choice on connection just so I can get bags of popcorn to take home.

We spent a long weekend in Chicago as our summer vacation this year. Navy Pier, Museum of Science and Industry, Lincoln Park Zoo…we did all the touristy things so why not make sure we get the touristy souvenir….Garrett popcorn.

We got our tickets for the Museum of Science and Industry for 11:30 Sunday morning. The bed at our hotel in the Marriott on the Mag Mile was super comfortable…even with three of us sleeping in it. The curtains really blocked out the light and everyone slept until about 8:30. Very unusual for us.

We got up and got moving around 9:00. J looked up the Garrett Popcorn Shop near us and saw they opened at 10. It was only a couple of blocks away so it *should* have been no problem for us to get popcorn and get back before we needed to leave.

We were wrong.

What seems to be the only Garrett Popcorn Shop in downtown Chicago is on Ohio Street but the address says Michigan Avenue. If you go to the address, you’ll find a Timberland store. You need to go around the corner on Ohio Street to actually find the popcorn shop. I remembered this because I actually visited this location in 2013 and had a hard time finding it then.

I was shocked when we walked up, in the rain, and the line was stretched halfway down the block to St. Clair Street. I thought to myself, it’s popcorn, this line should move pretty quickly.

I was wrong.

The line moved INSANELY slow. We waited in line almost an hour….in the rain…before we had to leave to make our time slot at the Museum of Science and Industry. Had we stayed, it probably would have taken close to another hour to get popcorn.

We still had two more days in the city so I figured we’d come back later. I was guessing people were grabbing popcorn as they were checking out of their hotels and leaving town.

I was wrong.

I walked back at 3:00 when we got back from the museum. The line may have been longer than it was in the morning. I went back to the hotel.

We walked back about 5:30 before we went to dinner. No luck, line still half way down the block and not moving.

J said, why don’t we order through UberEats and pick it up. UberEats said it’d be a 20 minute wait. That turned in to a 30 minute wait and we needed to get to our dinner reservation. J walked up to the pick up window and they said they were working on some orders now. They grabbed hers and said it would a few more minutes.

“A few more minutes” later, the lady working the pick up window handed out a bag to J. We had ordered a large bag of Buttery, a large bag of Chicago mix, and two small bags of buttery. I assumed the order was right and we didn’t check the bag because we were now in a hurry to get to our dinner reservations.

I was wrong.

As we were sitting at dinner, I opened the bag and there were only three small bags in order. Two small bags of Chicago mix and one small bag of buttery. Not even close to what we ordered. It was disappointing but we weren’t going to wait in line. Heck, we walked by there on Monday morning to get coffee at Starbucks and there was, again, the same long line down the block.

The experience was super disappointing but the popcorn was delicious though. J’s the only one that really likes the Chicago mix so she got most of those two bags for herself. The kids and I will eat the cheese but the three of us don’t really like the caramel. J likes having both in every handful so she gets kind of protective of her Chicago mix so we don’t just eat the cheese out of it.

I had to share the one bag of Buttery with the kids and we finished if off pretty quickly. Garrett Popcorn is by far my favorite popcorn in the world. Yes, it’s even better than movie theater popcorn. It’s a bummer I was only able to get a small bag to share with the kids but it was still nice to get some before we left.

I understand everyone is short staffed and struggling to get by but, as I’ve mentioned several times, the experience was disappointing. It’s such a well oiled machine at the airports and long lines just keep moving. These lines seemed like they never moved. There used to be three shops downtown (one closer to Millennium Park and one in Water Tower place) but those both looked to be closed at the moment making this one shop at Michigan and Ohio the only place to get Garrett downtown.

This isn’t enough to turn me off to Garrett completely. I still love Garrett Popcorn I’ll still fly through ORD whenever I get the chance. It’s just a bummer something I really looked forward to took up so much of our time with very little reward.

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