2012 San Diego County Fair | June 8th – July 4th

San Diego County Fair 2012 | Out of This World

The San Diego Fair has been a great summer attraction for locals and visitors alike for the past seventy-five years. This year we had the opportunity to attend Media Day at the San Diego County Fair. Ever go to the fair, see all the rows of food vendors, wonder how all the food tasted, but didn’t want to spend too much money or your calories for the day? Well, this event answered all those questions for this blogger. Every vendor was giving away free samples of their fare (pun intended) and some gave pretty generous portions. You were pretty much guaranteed to not go home hungry.

san diego fiar

When we entered, the first thing we saw was the infamous booth formerly known as the “Heart Attack Café”, now called “Bacon-A-Fair.” We tried a kabob that was Gouda-stuffed mushrooms wrapped in bacon. This place is a good option for the bacon lovers out there.

san diego fair

Next, we hit up a Chicken Charlie spin-off booth called “Pineapple Express” which served up half-pineapples stuffed with teriyaki chicken, shrimp, rice and pineapple chunks. We liked the presentation but while it may look cool to walk around eating out of a half-pineapple, this little concoction will set you back $13.

We skipped Chicken Charlie’s itself due to the massive line, but they were serving up chicken kabobs and deep fried cereal. The cereal basically looked like a donut with either Trix or Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal in the middle.

Next was the Fair mainstay, Australian Battered Potatoes. I tried these a few years ago and absolutely hated them. I figured a few years apart would mend our issues. They definitely tasted a lot better this time around but I wish the potatoes were cut a little thicker because all you really taste was the batter. My topping of choice was a combo of cheese & ranch but you can also have them with sweet chili and sour cream.

A stall I surprisingly loved, was a seafood vendor named “Pignotti’s” that was serving up fish tacos. The tacos were very flavorful and I came back for more.

Another stall I enjoyed was “Tasti Chips” which served fresh-cut potato chips smothered in a cheese-jalapeno-bacon sauce. These also taste great with just a little malt vinegar and salt! I’ve actually purchased chips from this vendor in the past and its a guilty pleasure I indulge in every year at the fair.

I also enjoyed the burgers at “Grantburger”, not the best burger I’ve ever had, but definitely Fair-worthy. For desserts, we got the totally radical cinnamon rolls from the cinnamon roll vendor (don’t recall the specific name) and some cookie dough on a stick from the Gingerbread Shop which was also good. They also had an Icee booth which served as my beverage option for the night.

The big new item at the Fair this year was the fresh Lobster. We waited in line for 20 minutes to get a couple bites. They didn’t have prices posted, but I can imagine this will be sold at “market price.” The lobster was being cooked in huge steamers and staff members would crack them open and serve bite-sized helpings.

The San Diego Fair will be open to the public starting June 8th to July 4th and closed on Mondays (except July 2). This years theme is “Out of this World”, explore outer space and the world of science fiction, visit the exhibit located at the main entrance. For a full schedule of events including the Toyota Summer Concert Series, entertainment, exhibits, contests, and tickets please visit, San Diego County Fair or contact them at,

2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd.
Del Mar, CA 92014

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Vanessa Turkeltaub
Vanessa Turkeltaub graduated from UC San Diego with a BA in Communication. She has been with Blue Book Publishers for over 5 years, and has written over five-hundred La Jolla related articles. She enjoys going to concerts, art, and traveling. (vanessa@lajollabluebook.com)

One thought on “2012 San Diego County Fair | June 8th – July 4th

  1. This is such a great overview of food options at the Fair – let’s be straight, I go to the fair to let my kids have fun and to sneak away to sample the strange and delicious offerings. Thanks for this great summary – my taste buds are on fire:-)


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