By Charly SHELTON
During the first month that CV Weekly was in business back in 2009, I went to the fair. I had never been before and I gorged myself on fried food. I paid out of pocket for my deep fried Twinkie, my Krispy Kreme chicken sandwich and whatnot. But then something happened. Something very dangerous. I was invited to the press preview day this year. All of the best new foods that will be offered at the fair are there. And it was all you can eat.
This year I sampled some of the finest food the L.A. County Fair has to offer including deep fried Dodger dogs, curly fries by the pound, a 10 lb. bun of barbecue chicken pizza and a chocolate brûlée dome dessert the size of a cat’s head. All in all, I ate roughly $175 worth of fair food Tuesday night because you, dear Reader, are more important than my digestive health. I bit the proverbial bullet (though it wasn’t deep fried) and tried it all and can now confidently report the facts on the best food you will find at the fair.
If you’re at the fair in the morning and you want to have a good hearty breakfast, swing by Chicken Charlie’s for a bowl of cereal. You have a choice of deep fried Fruity Pebbles or deep fried Cinnamon Toast Crunch. The best way to start any day at the fair.
Maybe cereal is too much of a healthy start. It’s the fair, so let’s splurge a little. Maybe try a deep fried Twinkie. It’s all the fun of a Twinkie pastry with the fried crunch of a potato chip, covered in chocolate sauce and powdered sugar. A fair classic.
Lunchtime! How about something adventurous? How about a Pink’s hot dog with mustard, guacamole, tomatoes, onions and jalapeños? If you don’t want to go to Pink’s, there are other options – a foot-long corn dog at Monster Grill or a Krispy Kreme doughnut sandwich, which is a glazed jelly donut stuffed with chicken – the ultimate sandwich. When you bite into it you can hear a chorus of angels singing, praising the greatest food of all time. And as you stand there, openly weeping among the crowd at the FairPlex wondering how you have lived this long and eaten so many different foods without having this sandwich before, the crowd begins to slowly clap. It’s like an ’80s movie. You will hear the clapping build and build until it is thunderous applause for this sandwich. You will get in line for another.
Time for a snack. Let’s try some fried Kool Aid or maybe some fried cookie dough. No, I know what you want – curly fries! But by the pound. Or maybe a bloomin’ onion that covers an entire plate.
This is starting to sound like too much junk food. Let’s try something healthy – Tasti Chips. These are very thinly sliced potatoes, cooked in peanut oil for a lighter, healthier potato chip. They make you feel better after a day of fried food because you are finally having something that is good for you. Tasti Chips are served lightly crisped in a boat with onion rings slathered in bacon-cheddar cream sauce. See? Healthy.
But all in all, the best in show is still Chicken Charlie’s Fry-B-Q ribs. These fried ribs are slathered in a spicy barbecue sauce and served with fried wings and French fries.
The fair starts on Aug. 31 and runs through Sept. 30. Be sure to come by for all this amazing food. I advise not to eat it all at once. But if you do, make sure to note the location of the first aid tent.