A continuation of Minnesota’s State Fair foods review…
A five dollar glass of lemonade…Not so much unhealthy as it is “What the fuck am I paying five dollars for when this cost them a nickel to make?” There’s insane mark-up (theater popcorn), and then there’s wallet rape. Grade for taste: B…Heart Attack O-Meter: 1 out of 5. [The lemonade may be healthier than the air quality at the fair.]
Red Velvet Funnel Cake…Instead of the regular brown batter used to make (mostly) tasteless funnel cakes, this uses a red velvet batter that actually does have more flavor. Of course, it’s also covered in enough powder sugar to make a doughnut-loving cop say “How much of a good thing is too much?” Don’t eat this without a gallon jug of water to hydrate yourself. Grade for taste: B+…Heart Attack O-Meter: 4 out of 5. It’s essentially a deep-fried cake covered in powdered sugar and red velvet flavoring. It’s not winning any prizes from Weight Watchers.
Elk Burger…A regular, generic burger made from Elk meat rather than a cow. Which may all sound slightly more innovative than it really is. Grade for taste: C+, the problem is that the meat is cafeteria-level dry and it doesn’t pack the juicy wallop you’d like a burger to. Heart Attack O-Meter: 2 out of 5. This won’t be what kills you…
Deep-Fried Pizza Stick…An ultra-greasy Pizza Hut-esque stick that is fried bread covering pepperoni, cheese, and some marinara sauce. Grade for taste: C…Heart Attack O-Meter: 4 out of 5. Get ready to hate yourself about two minutes after you eat this thing, because you’re not going to feel very good after it.
Deep-Fried Burrito on a Stick…Basically a frozen-burrito quality burrito that’s been fried and put on a stick. The title might say it all. Grade for taste: C+…It reminded me of an egg roll with beef in it. Heart Attack O-Meter: 3.5 out of 5.
Gizmo Sandwich…One of the only truly inedible things I had the fair. It’s like a hot dog bun stuffed with ground beef and covered in some marinara sauce and a heavy layer of cheese. I don’t know if it’s the quality of the ingredients they used, the fact that it had probably been sitting there for two hours before I bought it, or the ultra-nasty guy making them with his bare hands, but I couldn’t finish this and barely wanted to take more than one bite. Grade for Taste: F+ …Heart Attack O-Meter: 4 out of 5
Pork Wings…Think chicken wings but made with pork on a bone instead of the chicken. Grade for taste: A- This thing had a surprisingly strong taste as they used zesty seasoning to bring out the juicy flavor of the wings. Much better than the pork chop on a stick. Heart Attack O-Meter: 3 out of 5 [But is it good for you? Of course not.]
“Cheese curds”…If there’s one thing Minnesotans/Wisconsins love, it’s something called cheese curds. I think just about anyone else on the planet would call them mini-cheese sticks, but fried cheese curds are the milk curds that have been fried, and have a slightly richer flavor than cheese sticks (if they’re done correctly). Grade for taste: B+, B-, C+…I tried these things at three different venues, and the venue did matter in terms of taste. It’s also funny that the B+ ones were five dollars (too much, but still) and the other ones were 6 even though their taste was inferior…Heart Attack O-Meter: 4 out of 5. Did I really just here and debate the taste of cheese curds and which one is better? I need to leave Minnesota immediately.
Malts…I love a really thick milkshake, but they aren’t all created equal at the state fair. The malt place inside the Dairy Barn (which distinguished itself by having some dipshits sculpt butter and have factoids about dairy that you’ll never want to read) had a really long line, but was actually overrated. Their malts were just huge blobs of vanilla ice cream, topped with “fresh toppings” like blueberries that weren’t mixed into the ice cream. Having “fresh” (i.e. slightly warm) blueberries sitting on top of your malt will melt the ice cream into a disgusting purple mess. I much preferred a quiet malt booth in the back of the fair that had some delicious strawberry malts…Grade for taste: C, B+…Heart Attack O-Meter: 3.5 for both
Old-Fashioned Ice Cream…Next to the John Deere section of the fair (go ahead, laugh, I know I did) was a homemade ice cream booth called R.J.’s ice cream that was operated by a guy who looks like he’d definitely be on the sex offender registry and used questionable sanitation methods. It doesn’t matter, because that ice cream was delicious…Grade for taste: A, taste-wise, the best thing I had at the fair…Heart Attack O-Meter: Who knows? Maybe his recipe includes crystal meth or kitchen cleaner. All I know is that I wanted more. I’m going to go out on a limb and say it’s pretty bad for you though, but since everything at the fair is, I’ll choose this over any of the other ice creams (including the overrated frozen custard stand, even though I usually love frozen custard).