Tasti Chips-A Must-Try at the San Diego Fair

If you’re like me, deciding what to eat at the fair can be a little overwhelming. This summer, Tasti Chips are a must-try at the San Diego County Fair. This year Tasti Chips is celebrating their 40th anniversary and we were lucky enough to get a behind the scenes look at the history and the making of these unbelievably tasty Tasti chips.

The History

Tasti Chips was started in 1974 when Grant Vartanian decided that the fair industry was missing fresh potato chips. It was then that Tasti Chips was born.

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2014 San Diego County Fair Summer Concert Series Line-Up

san diego county fair
The world famous San Diego County Fair returns to the Del Mar Fairgrounds this summer. In Celebration of the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ first visit to the United States, the theme this year is, “The Fab Fair”. With fairground gates opening on June 7th, now is the perfect time to take a look at the lineup for the 2014 Toyota Summer Concert Series. The concerts take place at the Heineken Grandstand stage and showcase world renowned and unique artists every year. Here is a brief glance at some of the highlight performers this year: Continue reading

San Diego County Fair Announces Concert Lineup

2014_grandstandheaderThe San Diego County Fair is around the corner. Enjoy 24 nights of entertainment featuring local and nationally known artists. Fair organizers announced the concert lineup for the summer and headliners include Smokey Robinson, Pentatonix, Darius Rucker and more. Many shows are free with Fair admission with the exception of performances by Jeff Dunham, Darius Rucker and Hunter Hayes. There is a limited number of reserved seats available for sale to all free shows and a few shows offer dinner packages. Here is a schedule of the Fair’s Grandstand lineup: Continue reading

2013 San Diego County Fair: Game on! June 8-July 4

fair

Summer is just around the corner and that means it’s time for the San Diego County Fair. This years theme is “Game on!” which will spotlight classic and nostalgic games and show how these have evolved over the years; from board games to video games and computer games, technology has enhanced the gaming culture beyond our dreams.

We recently had the pleasure of previewing some of the top fair foods this year during media day at the 2013 San Diego County Fair. We tasted some classic favorites like corn dogs to new items like bacon root beer. This year the SD Fair will host the Big Bite Bacon Fest, the first and only bacon event of its kind across the nation on Father’s Day, Sunday, June 16, 2013.

bacon root beer

bacon root beer

Some of our favorite featured bacon items were: Deep fried bacon-wrapped pickles at Chicken Charlie’s, bacon root beer and some type of melted cheese-fried dough concoction at the Bacon A-Fair aka Heart Attack Café. We also tried bleu cheese burger (one of our favorites) at Grantburger. Rubicon Deli, one of our favorite delis in San Diego, had bacon sandwiches. For desserts there were bacon-covered maple glazed donuts and bacon flavored cotton candy from the Candy Factory.

Sloppy Joe on a Krispy Kreme donut.

Sloppy Joe on a Krispy Kreme donut.

Now for the classic fair foods. First up is the famous (or infamous) Chicken Charlie’s, known for their outrageous deep fried creations and this year did not disappoint. The new item this year is a sloppy joe with shredded cheddar and a Krispy Kreme donut as the bun. The sweet and spicy flavors make it an interesting and tasty treat. For the healthier conscious eater they have grilled chicken and vegetable kabobs and grilled teriyaki chicken and rice inside a halved pineapple. This little concoction will run you $12.95 if you choose to partake.

Next, we tried “The Ranch” which was serving up tri-tip and pulled pork sandwiches. Both were good and the BBQ sauce was tasty. We recommend this if BBQ is your thing. After that, we headed to “Bacon A-Fair”, where they were serving up wild boar kabobs, which were very good. The boar had a nice sweet marinade and a nice char to it. Chow it down with a chilled bacon root beer!

Bacon bleu cheese burger

Bacon bleu cheese burger

Next was the fried seafood place called Pignotti’s. We tried samples of fried zucchini and fish tacos. The tacos were very good and are repeatedly one of our favorites at the fair year after year. Nearby was Grantburger which was serving up various types of hamburger samples throughout the night. The best was the bacon bleu cheese burger, and the “ghost pepper burger.” Most spicy enthusiasts know the ghost pepper as being one of, if not the #1 spiciest pepper in the world. Unfortunately, the ghost pepper sauce was not spicy at all.

Aside from the aforementioned vendors, we tried the usual dessert items such as the cinnamon rolls, Indian fry bread and funnel cakes which you really can’t go wrong with. Overall our top recommendations are the bacon bleu cheese burger from Grantburger, fish tacos from Pignotti’s, and the bacon-covered maple glazed donuts.

kabob
What are some of your favorite fair foods? Leave a comment below for a chance to win a FREE pair of tickets to the San Diego County Fair*!

The 2013 San Diego County Fair runs from June 8 through July 4 (closed Mondays, except July 1). For tickets and event information please visit their website at www.sdfair.com.

*Open to San Diego residents only. Must be 18 and over to enter. No purchase necessary to enter. Giveaway ends on June 10, 2013 at noon. Winner must contact us within 24 hours of notification, otherwise a new random winner will be chosen. By accepting the prize, the winner acknowledges that Blue Book Publishers Inc., have neither made, nor are in any manner responsible or liable for, any warranty, representation or guarantee, express or implied, in fact or in law, relative to the prize or to any portion thereof.

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
858-755-1161

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